Posts tagged ‘proprioception’
“The question of proprioception, our sense of our bodily outline, will soon emerge as the key psychological issue confronting the new generation of technologically aware people.” – Derrick de Kerckhove
From Galen’s early explorations of human anatomy to the Blakeslees’ recent survey of body maps, humans have steadily wondered where the body ends and the world begins. In our own neatly skinned consciousness capsule, we travel embodied through time and space. Pathology—witness Oliver Sacks’ patient who didn’t recognize his clothes or even his own face and sang through eating and getting dressed in order to navigate the simplest routines—can make the body a stranger. But perhaps stranger still is that now our extrasensory expeditions are taking us, as e.e. cummings framed it, somewhere i have never traveled, gladly beyond.
As everybody knows, Neal Stephenson’s 1992 novel Snow Crash coined the modern sense of the word avatar, from the Sanskrit word avatāra, meaning something similar to incarnation. Before James Cameron’s runaway hit movie, an avatar was considered a three-dimensional model representing you or an alter ego in computer games; or a two-dimensional icon on Internet forums and other communities.
That was so five minutes ago.