Coming of Age in Second Life: An Anthropologist Explores the Virtually Human

Coming of Age in Second Life: An Anthropologist Explores the Virtually Human

5.0 1
by Tom Boellstorff
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

ISBN-10: 0691146276

ISBN-13: 9780691146270

Pub. Date: 04/07/2010

Publisher: Princeton University Press

"Tom Boellstorff describes Second Life warmly and intelligently, highlighting its issues in a thought-provoking manner that is always backed up with evidence. There's an almost tangible depth to his analysis that makes it really stand out. This is just the kind of portrait of a virtual world that I've been waiting to see for years: a full-blooded, book-length

Overview

"Tom Boellstorff describes Second Life warmly and intelligently, highlighting its issues in a thought-provoking manner that is always backed up with evidence. There's an almost tangible depth to his analysis that makes it really stand out. This is just the kind of portrait of a virtual world that I've been waiting to see for years: a full-blooded, book-length tour de force."—Richard A. Bartle, author of Designing Virtual Worlds

"This is the first book to take a sustained look at an environment like Second Life from a purely anthropological perspective. It is sure to become the basis for a new conversation about how we study these spaces. It is impossible to read this book and not come away asking questions about how our lives are being transformed in very real ways by what is happening in the virtual."—Douglas Thomas, author of Hacker Culture

"Taking the bold step of conducting ethnographic fieldwork entirely 'inside' Second Life, Tom Boellstorff invites readers to meditate on the old and new meanings of the virtual and the human. He presses the inventive and compelling claim that anthropologists would do well to imagine culture itself as already harboring the notion of the virtual. Boellstorff argues that being 'virtually human' is what we have been all along."—Stefan Helmreich, author of Silicon Second Nature

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691146270
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
04/07/2010
Pages:
336
Sales rank:
698,998
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents


List of Illustrations     ix
Acknowledgments     xi
Setting the Virtual Stage     1
The Subject and Scope of This Inquiry     3
Arrivals and departures
Everyday Second Life
Terms of discussion
The emergence of virtual worlds
The posthuman and the human
What this, a book, does
History     32
Prehistories of the virtual
Histories of virtual technology
A personal virtual history
Histories of virtual worlds
Histories of cybersociality research
Techne
Method     60
Virtual worlds in their own terms
Anthropology and ethnography
Participant observation
Interviews, focus groups, and beyond the platform
Ethics
Claims and reflexivity
Culture in a Virtual World     87
Place and Time     89
Visuality and land
Builds and objects
Lag
Afk
Immersion
Presence
Personhood     118
The self
The life course
Avatars and alts
Embodiment
Gender and race
Agency
Intimacy     151
Language
Friendship
Sexuality
Love
Family
Addiction
Community     179
The event
The group
Kindness
Griefing
Between virtual worlds
Beyond virtual worlds
The Age of Techne     203
Political Economy     205
Creationist capitalism
Money and labor
Property
Governance
Inequality
Platform and social form
The Virtual     237
The virtual human
Culture and the online
Simulation
Fiction and design
The massively multiple
Toward an anthropology of virtual worlds
Glossary     251
Notes     255
Works Cited     271
Index     303

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >