Item description for The Soul in Cyberspace by Douglas R. Groothuis...
This book evaluates the emerging technologies of cyberspace in relation to their effects on our society and souls, and deals especially with the potential pitfall of becoming informationally rich but spiritually deprived.
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Studio: Wipf & Stock Publishers
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.92" Width: 6.2" Height: 0.43" Weight: 0.62 lbs.
Release Date Mar 5, 1999
Publisher Wipf & Stock Publishers
ISBN 1579102298 ISBN13 9781579102296
Availability 0 units.
More About Douglas R. Groothuis
Groothuis lectures widely and gives workshops on the New Age Movement while undertaking Ph.D. studies at the University of Oregon in Eugene.
Reviews - What do customers think about The Soul in Cyberspace?
Groothuis offers a thought provoking look at the Internet. Jul 2, 1999
In our desire for having more information available to us immediately, we have jumped on the Internet bandwagon without taking time to evaluate it. Groothuis, a professor of philosophy, offers an excellent and insightful look at the world of cyberspace. Drawing from the philosophy of Pascal, the Bible, and other material, he examines the nature of leisure and its implications related to the Internet and associated technologies.
He is critical of the hypertext concept and argues that the ability to instantly jump from document to document is not necessarily a good thing. We end up seeing so much information in so many different contexts that it no longer is a learning process, but simply an exercise in clicking and skimming.
Among the specific issues Groothuis examines include the impact of "cybersex"; video games; chat rooms; e-mail; online distance education; and the nature of leisure. Unlike many Internet books which are obsolete before they even go to print, this book will leave you thinking about technology and how you use the Internet.
Groothuis is far from being anti-technology. After all, he admits to writing his book on computer and he maintains his own web site. His emphasis is more on the philosophical implications of technology and how we can think critically about it. He's concerned that online activities (MUDs, for example) and personas (such as Avatars) are getting in the way of real life. As a result, he argues, we are losing a sense of community and face to face interaction. When online, people tend to be bolder - they send "flame" e-mail and say things they would never say to someone in person. They can also pretend to be someone they are not. Groothuis does not condemn leisure activities, but challenges the reader to return to reality.
He also questions the perpetual increase and advances in personal computer technology and how they can negatively affect people. A desire to have the latest technological toy or upgrade to whatever piece of hardware is the latest rage, is not healthy, he argues.
If you're open to thoughtful criticism and evaluation of the Internet, this is a great book to read. If anything, it will make you look at the Internet and technology through philosophical eyes.