Learning the Real, Theorizing the Virtual I: Toward a Postmodern Techno-Epistemology

  • Peter Pericles Trifonas
  • Paulo GhiraldelliJr.


How do we characterize the phenomena of virtual learning and its environments when we look at its theoretical presuppositions, its pragmatics, and technologies through a contemporary philosophical perspective on experience and education?


Language Game Virtual Learning Environment Instrumental Reason Frankfurt School Virtual Camp 
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  1. 1.
    See Martin Heidegger, The Question Concerning Technology and Other Essays, trans. William Lovitt (New York: Harper & Row Publishers, 1977) for the discussion of technology as a mode of aletheuein, revealing—the essence of technology being nothing “technological” but poietic. Also Martin Heidegger, The Principle of Reason, trans. Reginald Lilly (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1991). We can follow trail that leads from the transformation of the pre-Socratic notion of Being as physis and aletheia into the conception of Being as eidos and idea from Plato to Being as humanity’s idea to technology.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Jean-François Lyotard, The Postmodern Condition: A Report on Knowledge. Originally published in France in 1979. All further reference to this work in the text are to the English translation by Geoff Bennington and Brian Massumi (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1984).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    See Immanuel Kant, Critique of Practical Reason, trans. Lewis White Beck (New York: Macmillan Publishing Company, 1956)Google Scholar
  4. and Immanuel Kant, The Conflict of the Faculties/Der Streit der Fakultäten, trans. Mary J. Gregor (New York: Abaris Books, 1979).Google Scholar
  5. See also Jacques Derrida, “Mochlos; or, The Conflict of the Faculties,” trans. Richard Rand and Amy Wygant, in Logomachia: The Conflict of the Faculties, ed. Richard Rand (Lincoln; University of Nebraska Press, 1992).Google Scholar
  6. 4.
    See Jacques Derrida, “On a Newly Arisen Apocalytic Tone in Philosophy” trans. John P. Leavey, Jr., in Raising the Tone of Philosophy: Late Essays by Immanuel Kant, Transformative Critique by Jacques Derrida, ed. Peter Fenves (Baltimore; Johns Hopkins University Press, 1993), pp. 117–171.Google Scholar
  7. 5.
    Gianni Vattimo, The End of Modernity: Nihilism and Hermeneutics in Postmodern Culture, trans. Jon R. Snyder (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1988) gives an excellent rendering of the crisis of meaning after the questioning of representation.Google Scholar

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© Peter Pericles Trifonas 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter Pericles Trifonas
  • Paulo GhiraldelliJr.

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