Does Social Networking Make Us Narcissists?

Katherine Toms

I think Nina Arsenault is an incredible artist. [Heads up, her website has some NSFW content.] She explores and deconstructs the concept of “personhood” with such ferocity, it’s completely breathtaking.

Nina Arsenault - Mannequin (2007)

I recently read an interview with Nina Arsenault about her ties with serial killer Luka Magnotta. (Thanks Jeff Perera at Higher Unlearning for sharing the link.) The conversation turned to a general discussion about the “virtual self” and narcissism as the new norm:

Back in the 80s it was difficult for people to understand the concept of virtual reality.  The term was considered an oxymoron.  Now, the minds of an entire generation are developing with virtual selves–representations of themselves which can have exaggerated, false, or accurate relationships to their lived existences.

What my generation calls narcissism–understanding oneself and others as a series of images–is being bred into human beings globally.  Post-millennial children do not really know what life is like…

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The Simple Psychology of Your Social Networks

The Wandering Dreamer

Facebook.  Are we friends or aren’t we?  Like a BFF, wondering if she’s been replaced, facebook connections (whether from real life or not) will run the deepest and be the most hurt if (more like when) you decide to “unfriend” them.  Those darned decisions, right?  It seemed like a good idea to “friend” your entire family… at the time.  Until you realize Cousin Sally shares TMI (too much information) and Aunt Betty is trying to “friend” all of your friends to sell them cactus juice from Sedona.  And, oh by the way, if you are “friends” with your boss, may the force be with you.

Twitter.  Don’t tread on me.  Your Twitter followers will expect that you pick a style and live with it.  Like, forever.  If you tweet about Bob Marley, Hipsters and Donald Trump’s hair this week.  Don’t expect to talk about existentialism, Requiems…

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