Cyberspace here is conceived of as not only an embodied space, but also a space particularly in need of theorizing about constructions of embodiment.
Popular theorizing too often dismisses the body as irrelevant and absent from a disembodied, apolitical cyberspace, despite the work of scholars those who have reflected on biopolitical performances, body-based systems of bias and other embodiment narratives alive and well in this supposed matrix of minds.
Williams and Gillian Bendelow as they review both classic and contemporary sociological works in search of foundations for a new "embodied sociology." In other words, although the body has been emerging as a topic of more serious inquiry in recent scholarship, it remains a highly elusive concept.
As social theory shakes off the remnants of Cartesian dualism which dominated the discussion on embodiment for centuries, new developments in medical science and communication and information technology pose additional challenges to an idea of the body already rendered fragmented, fluid, multiple and contested in poststructuralist study.
In the flurry of recent research on new media and communication technologies, scholars such as Howard Rheingold, Sherry Turkle and Stephen G.
Jones have written extensively on how participants use environments such as Internet relay chat (IRC) platforms, Multi-User Dimensions (MUDs and MOOs), bulletin boards, newsgroups, and other electronic forums to communicate with others who are not physically co-present.
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Colourful photographs of damsels and dragons, movie posters and modern artwork line the walls.
Other visitors mill about and we occasionally eavesdrop on them.
Instead of bumping theories of the body up against borders of skin and bone, an arguably more useful imagining of the body is the stretchy project of being bodied.
If the body can be conceptualized as encompassing the sounds and smells it makes, "personal space" or any other extension beyond epidermal limits, embodiment must instead be thought of as a flexible performance that can be extended via technology.