“Virtual Reality” Reconsidered

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    Abstract

    The term ‘virtual reality' is used widely in contemporary culture to evoke the false worlds of the imagination digital technology has enabled us to create. However, the term itself remains ill defined, particularly amidst recent developments in theories of virtuality and reality that have left contradictory marks on VR. The phrase ‘virtual reality' has become problematic, and is in need of a reconsideration for its continued relevance. This chapter assesses the term throughout its development and in the context of other theorisations such as cinema and cyberspace that have dominated recent digital theory. Taking the Deleuzian expansion of the Virtual and the Lacanian expansion of the Real, the chapter interrogates the constituent processes of VR to suggest a new mode of conceiving the technologies in terms of a parallax between virtual-real and physical-digital within contemporary thought, which will then be applied to a conceptual framework for digital creative practices.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationHandbook of Research on Digital Media and Creative Technologies
    EditorsDew Harrison
    Place of PublicationHershey, PA
    PublisherIGI Global
    Chapter9
    Pages200-223
    Number of pages24
    ISBN (Electronic)9781466682061
    ISBN (Print)9781466682054
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

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