Accepted Paper:

Temporality and the Specious Present: time, self, and perception   


Lisa Nelson (University of Pittsburgh)

Paper short abstract:

While the splintering of our on line and off line selves has been acknowledged, not yet considered is how and why the Internet as a medium might be a contributing cause of it, transforming our lived experience and perception in ways which affects our judgment of consequences and of others.

Paper long abstract:

Temporality and lived experience has been at the heart of a long standing philosophical debate centered on the questions regarding perception, the nature of time and the phenomenology of the past, present and future. The idea of networked time marks a transition in this debate, not only in terms how the Internet may transform notions of temporality and lived experience, but in particular how networked time affects our perceptions and interactions on line. Should we assume that as we transform space into virtual space, time shrinks accordingly and because the spatial constraints have been lifted, we become closer? Are these new temporal worlds constructed by information technologies a "new engagement" or a lesser engagement with reality and those who we encounter in it? Yet, to better understand how and why our interactions via the Internet may be affected by the medium itself, the question has to be framed in the on-going discussion about lived experience, phenomenology and the perception of past, present and future. Phenomenological epistemology assumes consciousness plays an active role in constituting the phenomenon it observes. In this sense, the Internet as a medium may alter the noetic stance (the directional aspect of consciousness) and may bracket our perception of the noematic aspects of phenomenon. The paper represents a chapter in a forthcoming book with Cambridge University Press.

Panel T110
What does it mean to be Human in the 21st Century?