Technology’s Bad Side

In the first chapter of the book, “The Empathy Diaries”, the main subject of technology is brought up. I assume that this indicates that the rest of the book is about technology as well. The main idea the author brings up is that technology can hinder conversational skills even though it has aspects that make conversation a whole lot easier. Through numerous studies and life experiences, Sherry Turkle(the author), gives input on how technology is hurting children in schools and their conversation development skills.

On page ten, she explains a story of a man named Henry David Thoreau. He moved away from society to escape random chatter. In his cabin he lived in, he had” three chairs” however. One for solitude, two for friendship, and three for society. Later in the chapter, she explains what is meant by this  on page 11, “We face a flight from conversation that is also a flight from self-reflection, empathy, and mentorship-the virtues of Thoreau’s three chairs”. I feel as though she relates this to technology, because it removes us from being social and breaking the chain of learning to be empathetic towards others.

It is much easier to send a text than to have a face to face conversation. Technology is especially brought up as hurting children’s conversational skills. Sherry Turkle explains on page six, “They are not developing that way of relating where they listen and learn how to look at each other and hear each other”. This quote again connects with being empathetic. To become social, a person must know how to carry conversations on in ways to approach what others say with empathy.  It is difficult for children to learn how other people have feelings as well if all they can see are the words on their phones and computers.


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