Paper 4 Prompt
 
Readings:

  • Turkle, Sherry. “Selections from: Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other”
  • Solomon, Andrew. “Son”

 
Question:
In selections from “Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other,” Sherry Turkle explores the evolving nature of our relationship with technology as both technology and our level of exposure to it changes. She investigates these topics through experiments involving young children and interactive robotic toys, noting that “The philosophical churning associated with early computer toys (are they alive? do they know?) quickly gives way to new practices.”
 
In “Son,” Andrew Solomon charges us with exploring differences, and how viewing these differences as “horizontal identities” rather than limitations can change both how we view ourselves and how we interact with others. While he is discussing human relationships, consider how interacting with “alive enough” technology may also impact both our relationships to others and to ourselves.
 
Incorporate these themes from both Turkle and Solomon when responding to the following prompt:
 
How do relationships affect identity formation?
 
Questions to help get you thinking (but should not be answered in a list in your paper):

  • How might the concept of identity be changing in an era where face to face communication has been minimized?
  • In what ways do interactions with other humans shape our sense of self?
  • In what ways do interactions with “alive enough” or interactive technology shape our sense of self?
  • How might interactions with other humans through the use of technology (e.g. social media, text messaging, etc.) impact identity?

 
First Draft Due: Thursday, November 3rd (must be uploaded to Sakai at least one hour prior to the start of class, plus two hard copies brought to class for peer review / turn in). .doc,.docx, or .pdf file type, 12pt font, double spaced, one-inch margins. Four full pages.
 
Second Draft Due: Thursday, November 10th
 
Final Draft Due: Monday, November 14th (must be uploaded to Sakai at least one hour prior to the start of class, plus one hard copy brought to class for instructor review). .doc, .docx, or .pdf file type, 12pt font, double spaced, one-inch margins. Five full pages.

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