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Research Seminar in Post-Kantian European Philosophy, 2019/2020

Unless otherwise stated, Post-Kantian European Philosophy Research Group seminars take place on Tuesdays, 5:30–7:30pm in Room S0.11 (ground floor of Social Studies). All welcome. For further information, please contact tbc

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Philosophy Christmas Lecture 'Myself and my selfie.'

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Location: L3

The talk takes two arguments from Perfect Me – that beauty is a dominant value framework and that our bodies are ourselves – and extends them into the virtual world of social media. In the shift to the virtual our ‘self’, who we are, moves from our ‘inner life’ (our character, feelings and thoughts) to our bodies ‘the outer’, to our curated images on TikTok and Instagram. This dislocation of the self has some features which are continuous with identifying ourselves with our bodies. For example, appearance is paramount on social media and only some faces and bodies make the grade, also, like body work in the ‘real’ world, ‘doing the gram’ takes extraordinary effort. However, the selfie-self, unlike the transforming and imagined self, is a concrete object, an ‘end point’, which we know is fake. While we know in theory that no one looks like their Instagram, in practice we compare our actual bodies with everyone else’s ideal selfie. Even those who look like they succeed on social media, are liked and followed by thousands, cannot close the gap between their ‘real’ selves and their selfie.

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