The Self in a Culture of Immediacy. An Ethical-Existential Approach

Project Details


With the proliferation and merging of telecommunication media and Internet culture, immediacy has become the cultural principle of late-modern, western, industrialized societies. In this (revised) research proposal, we build upon the idea that immediacy contributes to instant live connectivity. In particular, the growing gamut of ubiquitous social media platforms (e.g. Facebook, Instagram), real-time live streaming tools (e.g. Facebook Live, Periscope) and Internet-mediated social interaction is producing a new culture of self and sociality. The founding question of this project is: How does the culture of ‘immediate connectivity’ and ‘connected immediacy’ impact on the development of selfhood, what is understood here as the existential-ethical task of becoming an onlife self? The proposed research design combines a theoretical study with an empirical investigation of the phenomenological experience of the Internet driven culture of immediacy. In taking this point of departure, we draw upon Kierkegaard’s philosophy of selfhood and his elaboration of the notion of immediacy as a key concept in his description of existential-ethical striving. In doing so we move away from pessimistic accounts towards a more balanced interpretation of selfhood in contemporary cultures of immediacy and connectivity, combining an existential-ethical approach with media-philosophical research and media studies.
Effective start/end date1/01/1831/12/21


  • Philosophy
  • self

Flemish discipline codes 2018-2023

  • Philosophy of social science


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