c y b o r g   m a n i f e s t o   2 . 0   ::   t e c h n o l o g i e s  ::   h y p e r t e x t
::   v a n i s h i n g   s u b j e c t

As George Landow shows us in chapter 4 of "Hypertext 2.0", the distinction between author(s) and reader become effectively blurred in a hypertext docuverse, because the readergains authorative power by actively following her/his links and constructing her/his own reading. In this breaking into pieces of this previously unifying authorative function that is still so pervasive as a dominant cultural idea, the self in hypertext - in fact, in any networked environment like our postmodern information-based society - becomes essentially fragmented.

Landow quotes Edward Said, who claims that this means that the traditional Western unified subject gets thrown into serious doubt: this subject then gets eroded, or even vanishes completely. Instead of mourning this death of the subject as some theorists tend to do, I would much rather call for new conceptions of the subject as nomad or mestiza, so as to take this socio-historical moment of the vanishing traditional subject an excellent opportunity for politicised change.

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