I’ve just finished reading anthropologist Boellstorff’s account of two years of fieldwork within Second Life ‘Coming of Age in Second Life. Coming of Age in Second Life: An Anthropologist Explores the Virtually Human [ Tom Boellstorff] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Millions. Coming of Age in Second Life has ratings and 25 reviews. Zhoel13 said: In his book Coming of Age in Second Life, Tom Boellstorff makes a statement th.

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The subject matter Benton Embodying Tech- They go on to assert that if gradu- nesis: An ethnography on the Second Life virtual world.

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Mister Tom Boellstorff, Professor Tom Boellstorff and the avatar Tom Bukowski are the same entity and the behavior of this entity change according to the constraints and resources posed by time and place. When people describe meeting SL friends in real life; when they describe leaving sealed envelopes for their real life spouse with instructions on what to tell their SL spouse is something happened to them; when they describe the way handicapped people can experience liberation in virtual spaces; when they talk about play SL drunk.

Thanks so much for your careful review. We share a virtual space and a few moments of mutual curiosity drifting off into boredom, until one of us blissfully teleports to another world. It insists that interaction in virtual worlds is interaction with other people, not life in some addictive solipsistic fantasy world as some would argue. Opts for holistic approach to SL as he did in previous study of Indonesia — overarching cultural logic is the focus, not subcultures.

Where do these rumors originate? Skip to main content. I could imagine a project in Second Life or Facebook or elsewhere where it might not make sense, depending on the research questions at hand.

Coming of Age in Second Life: An Anthropologist Explores the Virtually Human

Amin Saeedi rated it it was amazing Sep 20, Many residents find SL creative practice to be inherently rewarding. Life bring to me today a great opportunity.

And above all the book emphasizes the way that plain old participant observation can get us very far in terms of what happens in such a world. I owe both of you a drink at ib AAAs! The effects of lag and afk on social interaction are discussed. He conducted research by interviewing participants and forming focus groups in Second Life. Unlike game worlds, no skill sceond here, although newbies easily recognisable for lack of practical skills.


As far as I am concerned it establishes a new standard for students of virtual worlds in all disciplines, and clears a path for anyone wanting to understand how anthropologists can study virtual worlds. Participant observation Hansen, But these are quibbles which do not offset the value of the book. He asks, what agd and interviews are cited as two main ethnography tell us about virtual methods of data collection.

I continue to broaden my reading in internet studies. The breadth, depth and topi- from malicious tampering. All these data are virtual values which far exceeds currencies in circulation and probably also the real value of wealth possessed by humans. This chapter alone is incredibly impressive and is almost worth the price of admission. To ask other readers questions about Coming of Age in Second Lifeplease sign up.

For me this boellstogff definition of virtual worlds can be a source of confusion.

Coming of Age in Second Life: An Anthropologist Explores the Virtually Human by Tom Boellstorff

They were actually very easy and supportive. I tries it out for a bit, even, and I can see the apeal, even if it’s not my cup of tea: SL accelerates friendships and love. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. In this final chapter, the author sums up the argument and explains what SL is and what it is not. Yet much like Malinowski, the author is a bit superficial secone his interpretation of the field data, allows very little time to discussions of gender and sexuality and adopts a holistic but almost Mead-like isolationist in regards to outside factors reflecting on the ‘virtual world’.

The only thing that I annoyed me with this book is that I felt that he og a lot of time justifying why he was studying this, and explaining the mechanics of Second Life, which meant that there was a lot of information that you had to slough through before getting to any ethnography. This approach was especially appealing to me as it allowed me to think about my motivating question in a unique way. I feel like while he didn’t stay impartial, he did impart bofllstorff lot of wisdom into the psyche and the culture of the virtual world.


In informatics this stay reversible when a backup is done not like in the natural spaces. Notify me of new posts via email. It is hard to create a truly inclusive study in a digital environment that reflects the hear infinite complexity of the cultural strands that constitute lifee internet but even in the time of Mead, who Boellstorff seems to channel at times diffusionism was en vogue, so at least a chapter should have been dedicated to the interplay between boelstorff culture of second life and other ‘cultures’, especially as the topic of other boards and digital environments comes up quite often in his interviews.

This can be something as A key feature of ethnography is simple as ensuring that procedures that it is labour intensive and always are in place to cover any ethical is- involves prolonged direct contact sues which may arise. Such a hypersocial place as SL generated widespread emic concerns about addiction not so much to building or scripting boellstorcf to socialising.

He conducted research by interviewing participants and forming focu Tom Boellstorff takes a fascinating approach to researching culture in one of the largest virtual communities called Second Life. Now, History will boellstoorff us what will come out of ideological battles that are determining the future of swcond like for example this battle between that occur today between the gift zge and the creationist capitalism culture.

I can’t speak to this book’s significance within the field of anthropology or its methodological soundness, but it serves as a well-informed and well-written introduction to Second Life for a non-participant such as myself. Maybe that is what people are really doing in Second Life. The residents of Second Voming create communities, buy property and build homes, go to concerts, meet in bars, attend weddings and religious services, buy and sell virtual goods and services, find friendship, fall in love–the possibilities are endless, and all encountered through a computer screen.

Boellstorff does not stray from from the traditional ethnographic research design, which makes this an insightful, and appreciated look at virtual community.

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