Narrative as Virtual Reality: Immersion and Interactivity in Literature and Electronic Media

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Johns Hopkins University Press, 2001 - Computers - 399 pages
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Is there a significant difference in attitude between immersion in a game and immersion in a movie or a novel? What are the new possibilities for representation offered by the emerging technology of virtual reality? As Marie-Laure Ryan demonstrates in this study, the questions raised by new, interactive technologies have their precursors and echoes in pre-electronic literary and artistic traditions. Formerly a culture of immersive ideals - getting lost in a good book, for example -we are becoming, Ryan claims, a culture more concerned with interactivity. Approaching the idea of virtual reality as a metaphor for total art, the text applies the concepts of immersion and interactivity to develop a phenomenology of reading.

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Contents

Introduction
1
ONE The Two and Thousand Faces of the Virtual
25
TWO Virtual Reality as Dream and as Technology
48
Copyright

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About the author (2001)

Marie-Laure Ryan is an independent scholar and former software consultant. A Guggenheim Fellowship recipient, she is the author of Possible Worlds, Artificial Intelligence, and Narrative Theory and the editor of Cyberspace Textuality: Computer Technology and Literary Theory and the forthcoming Narrative Across Media: The Languages of Storytelling.

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