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Interpersonal Relationship,Intimacy,and the Self in a Digital Age of Media Globalization

Lynn JAMIESON;CHEN Mingzhe;School of Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh;Si-Mian Institute for Advanced Studies in Humanities, East China Normal University;  
In classical interactionism, face-to-face interpersonal relationship is undoubtedly of ontological necessity. In today's globalized, digitalized world consisted of disembodied discourses and mediated relationships, the key for the subject to obtain ontological security in childhood is still the existence of the embodied significant other. For adults, co-presence may be neither necessary nor sufficient for intimacy, yet the lack of embodied co-presence may also be a significant impediment to the development and sustenance of intimate relationships. Moreover, the effects of digital technology are not determined by the technology itself, but rather by the interaction between everyday life and technology. The interactions between and bonds shared by friends and family and the traditions of family life change the performance of digital communication, while digital communication acts dialectically on intimate relationships, particularly on the communication patterns of romantic and intergenerational relationships. Cybersex creates an imaginary physical intimacy, yet is usually based on the traditional gender script. In cybersex, people experience games and fantasies rather than genuine individuality and intimacy.
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