Sherry Turkle is Abby Rockefeller Mauze Professor of the Social Studies of Science and Technology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a sociologist. Born in New York City in 1948, she has focused her research on psychoanalysis and culture and on the psychology of people's relationship with technology, especially computer technology and computer addiction.
In The Second Self, Turkle uses mainly Jean Piaget's psychology discourse to discuss how children learn about computers and how this affects their minds.
In Life on the Screen, Turkle suggests that assuming different personal identities in a MUD (i.e. computer fantasy game) may be therapeutic. She also considers the problems that arise when using MUDs. Turkle discusses what she calls women's "non-linear" approach to the technology, calling it "soft mastery" and "bricolage" (as opposed to the "hard mastery" of linear, abstract thinking and computer programming). She discusses problems that arise when children pose as adults online.
Turkle also explores the psychological and societal impact of such "relational artifacts" as sociable robots, and how these and other technologies are changing attitudes about human life and living things generally. One result may be a devaluation of authentic experience in a relationship.
Turkle was formerly married to Seymour Papert, and together they wrote the influential paper "Epistemological Pluralism and the Revaluation of the Concrete.
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Turkle, Sherry (2007): Authenticity in the age of digital companions. In Interaction Studies, 8 (3) pp. 501-517. http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/jbp/is/2007/00000008/00000003/art00009
Turkle, Sherry, Taggart, Will, Kidd, Cory D., Dasté, Olivia (2006): Relational artifacts with children and elders: the complexitites of cybercompanionship. In Connection Science, 18 (4) pp. 347-361. http://web.mit.edu/sturkle/www/pdfsforstwebpage/ST_Relational%20Artifacts.pdf
Turkle, Sherry (2004): How Computers Change the Way We Think. In Higher Education, 50 (21) pp. .