Ghosts in the Machine?: On the Limits of Narrative Identity in Cyberspace

Ghosts in the Machine?: On the Limits of Narrative Identity in Cyberspace

Robert Paul Churchill (George Washington University, Washington D.C., USA)
Copyright: © 2019 |Pages: 14
DOI: 10.4018/IJT.2019010102
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In keeping with the theme of this special journal issue, the crosspollination discussed here includes technologies of cyberspace and the internet, psychological sub-disciplines concerned with personality and identity-formation, philosophy, and the neurosciences. Ordinarily, “crosspollination” connotes the emergence of something positive: a new birth, for instance, or an interesting hybrid. However, contrary to a rosy outlook, this article reflects concern about the effects of cyberspace technologies on personality and identity. “Progress” is an extremely powerful metaphor, or mental frame, and once new social media platforms, and virtual reality and augmented reality technologies are equated with progress, it is extremely difficult to contemplate their possible disadvantages. Nevertheless, glancing-backwards, one can readily concede that eager receptivity for the prospective benefits of new technologies should have been matched with sobriety about unforeseen or unintended consequences.
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