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Technological Constructions of Reality: An Ontological Perspective
Unformatted Document Text:  Running Head: TECHNOLOGICAL CONSTRUCTION OF REALITY social constructs that may be attributed to difference in media exposure due to generational differences of communicative experiences. Research regarding generations like transnational or global generation bonding has been minimally undertaken in the sociological field within the past decade (Mannheim, 1997; Edmunds & Turner, 2005). Karl Mannheim (1997) approached the concept of generations by stressing “that members of a generation are held together by the experience of historical events from the same or similar vantage-point” (Edmunds & Turner, 2005, p. 560). June Edmunds and Bryan Turner (2005) approached generations from a different standpoint where generations can be actualized through the formation of distinct political and cultural identities. To contribute to the various definitions of generational determinations, this study proposes a generational bonding that occurs through shared technological experiences. This paper seeks to address the extent to which technology shapes ontological constructions and the differences that may exist between generations in technological constructions of reality. The following section will address the theoretical foundation and gaps in theoretical knowledge of media use and dependency. The paper will then discuss ways in which technological dependency shapes ontological perspectives. This paper ends with conclusions, limitations, and recommendations for future research. Theoretical Foundation Constructing Reality: Social Constructionism The concept of reality construction was first established through Peter Berger and Thomas Luckmann’s research on the social construction of reality (1966). The underlining assumption to this theory is that humans construct their reality through interaction with other people (Berger & Luckman, 1966). Berger and Luckmann identified three types of reality implied through the construction process: objective social reality, symbolic social reality, and 4

Authors: Vincent, Cindy.
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Running Head: TECHNOLOGICAL CONSTRUCTION OF REALITY
social constructs that may be attributed to difference in media exposure due to generational 
differences of communicative experiences.  Research regarding generations like transnational or 
global generation bonding has been minimally undertaken in the sociological field within the 
past decade (Mannheim, 1997; Edmunds & Turner, 2005).  Karl Mannheim (1997) approached 
the concept of generations by stressing “that members of a generation are held together by the 
experience of historical events from the same or similar vantage-point” (Edmunds & Turner, 
2005, p. 560).  June Edmunds and Bryan Turner (2005) approached generations from a different 
standpoint where generations can be actualized through the formation of distinct political and 
cultural identities.  To contribute to the various definitions of generational determinations, this 
study proposes a generational bonding that occurs through shared technological experiences. 
This paper seeks to address the extent to which technology shapes ontological 
constructions and the differences that may exist between generations in technological 
constructions of reality.  The following section will address the theoretical foundation and gaps 
in theoretical knowledge of media use and dependency.  The paper will then discuss ways in 
which technological dependency shapes ontological perspectives.  This paper ends with 
conclusions, limitations, and recommendations for future research.
Theoretical Foundation
Constructing Reality: Social Constructionism
The concept of reality construction was first established through Peter Berger and 
Thomas Luckmann’s research on the social construction of reality (1966).  The underlining 
assumption to this theory is that humans construct their reality through interaction with other 
people (Berger & Luckman, 1966).  Berger and Luckmann identified three types of reality 
implied through the construction process: objective social reality, symbolic social reality, and 
4


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