The Big Disconnect: The Story of Technology and Loneliness

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Prometheus Books, Publishers, 2012 - Science - 306 pages
9 Reviews
Smart phones and social media sites may be contemporary fixations, but using technology to replace face-to-face interactions is not a new cultural phenomenon. Throughout our history, intimacy with machines has often supplanted mutual human connection. This book reveals how consumer technologies changed from analgesic devices that soothed the loneliness of a newly urban generation to prosthetic interfaces that act as substitutes for companionship in modern America. The history of this transformation helps explain why we use technology to mediate our connections with other human beings instead of seeking out face-to-face contact. Do electronic interfaces receive most of our attention to the detriment of real interpersonal communication? Why do sixty million Americans report that isolation and loneliness are major sources of unhappiness? The author provides many insights into our increasingly artificial relationships and a vision for how we can rediscover genuine community and human empathy.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Sullywriter - LibraryThing

Slade is often successful in making the case "that our progressive reliance on technology for companionship is part of a prolonged and increasing disconnection from nature," which includes ... Read full review

Review: Big Disconnect: The Story of Technology and Loneliness

User Review  - Goodreads

Excellent read. Full of strange facts and lot of material on things I had no idea have a back story. Why front porches on houses are disappering,work songs demise or how listening to music alone was ... Read full review

About the author (2012)

Giles Slade is the author of Made to Break: Technology and Obsolescence in America, which won the IPPY gold medal for best environmental book of 2007. He writes regularly for the Huffington Post and is featured in The Light Bulb Conspiracy, a MediaPro documentary about planned obsolescence that premiered on European television in seven languages in 2011.

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