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by Kalamalama staff
Kudos to Dr. Serena Hashimoto, chair of HPU’s graduate program in communication. Her article on where we go when we are talking on our cell phones was published in the December issue of Critical Studies in Media Communication.
Hashimoto began the article, titled “The Occupation of Ethereal Locations: Indications of Mobile Data,” in 2005, working with co-author and former HPU Associate Professor of communication, Scott Campbell.
“ The paper explores the creation of what we are calling ‘ethereal locations,’” Hashimoto said, explaining that these are the “places” we go to when we talk on our cell phones, when we are, in a sense, no longer here and not really there.
“ Instead,” Hashimoto said, “we enter a fantasy space where what John Peters calls ‘pure communication’ is more closely achieved.”
Hashimoto and Campbell argue that “mobile telephony blurs the boundaries between self and other, subject and thing, here and there…. Our experience in the world becomes more ghost-like—ephemeral—due to the increasing amount of time we spend interfacing with technology. Previously, vital issues like the concreteness of place slip away in importance as we take up residence in the fantasy space of ethereal locations.”
Hashimoto’s article continues her interest in technology and the body. “I had an article with similar themes published in Communication Theory in 2005,” she said. ‘“Technology, Corporeal Permeability, Ideology’ traces how we changed our ideology concerning machines and bodies in the early 20th century.”
Hashimoto believes that today’s technologies make it, “indeed, a very interesting time to be alive!”


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