Big Disconnect: The story of technology and loneliness

Giles Slade


Reviewed by Antonia P. Sani

Smart phones and social media sites may be contemporary fixations, but this is not a new cultural phenomenon. Intimacy with machines has often supplanted face-to-face interactions.

This book reveals how consumer technologies were transformed from analgesic devices that soothed the loneliness of a newly urban generation into prosthetic interfaces that act as stand-ins companionship. In this shift, Slade explains why we use technology to mediate our interactions instead of making actual contact. He provides valuable insight into our increasingly artificial relationships and offers tips on how we might rediscover community and human empathy.