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Online Belongings: Fantasy, Affect and Web Communities

Research output: Book/Report/ProceedingsBook

Published

Publication date2009
Place of publicationBern
PublisherPeter Lang
Number of pages244
ISBN (Print)3039115294
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

What does it mean to 'belong' to an online community? What happens to the body in cyberspace? How has the Internet been theorised: as a site of liberation, duplicity, threat? In her reading of cyberculture studies after the affective turn, the author argues for a new cyberculture studies that goes beyond dominant cultural narratives of the Internet as dystopian or utopian space, and pays attention to the ways in which online culture has become embedded in everyday lives. The book intervenes in narratives of virtual reality to propose that the Internet can be re-read as a space of fantasy. This book draws on readings of the everyday, taken-for-granted sites of digital culture that have often been overlooked by cyberculture studies. Specific themes include religious fundamentalist sites and hate speech, online mourning, vampire homepages, virtual fashion and food shopping sites, and pro-anorexic communities. The book is attentive to the continuities and disruptions between online and offline experience. The author examines the ways in which bodies, subjects and communities are produced and reproduced through the stories we tell about online belongings.