Digital Identities and Epistemic Injustices
The rapid progress in the development of smart systems and digital technologies and its expansion to all the spheres of human life have had an impact on the preexisting inequalities that separate individuals and communities between each other. In this paper, I intend to examine some of the varieties of testimonial and hermeneutical epistemic injustices generated by the mass insertion of the new information and communication technologies (ICTs) in relation to the digital identities, not only individual but also social identities. The paradoxes or even the dilemmas triggered by this new cultural environment, that I will study by means of the analysis of some emblematic cases, including those with positive uses and those with negative uses of these tools, expose the asymmetry between the expansion of our competence as users and the violation or alienation of our individual and collective identities and autonomies. This reflection aims at understanding, in the end, that these ways of digital epistemic injustice stand on a deeper epistemic gap: between the improvements of the “intelligent designs” and our growing dependence on them, on the one hand, and the generalized incomprehension of what makes them possible, on the other hand. Neither the utopian visions nor the dystopian visions are able to fully capture how this new cultural environment challenges the human intelligence, revealing, at the same time, its extraordinary power and its extreme fragility.
Copyright (c) 2020 Silvia Carolina Scotto
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