Sherry Turkles

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Michelle Cervantes
Cecile Harding
English 5A (TTH 8AM)
7 September 2010
Technology and the young
When children hit their adolescent years, most of them are given cellular phones by their parents. Parents may think that by providing their young adolescent with a cellular phone it is a form of keeping touch with them at all times. Even though I do not believe this is very responsible of the parents to do because adolescents do not get to build up a sense of self awareness in the dangerous world around them; they seem to lack their sense of direction since the android cellular phones now in days give you the answers to practically everything. From searching the web to always communicating through a text; cellular phones have tethered the adolescents themselves including the people around them; it involves everyone. In the sections of Sherry Turkle’s essay Can You Hear Me Now, ‘The Tethered Adolescent’ one can connect to prove that society is losing itself through technology but it starts at a young age when given a cellular phone which then evolves into using technology in day to day life communicating through a text, via e-mail or through social networks. I will be explaining how the cellular phone gives “a price to pay in the development of autonomy” how Turkle explains and also how that ties in to how people communicate as they grow older.

Adolescents today have it easy; mom and dad are there just a phone call, even a text away. They have lost the experience of looking at the world differently how it should be; to feel the independence and responsibilities of growing up, the first experience of real life on their own. Like Turkle says in this quote from ‘The Tethered Adolescents’. “There used to be a moment in life of an urban child, usually between the ages of 12 and 14, when there was a first time to navigate the alone. It was a right of passage that communicated. “You are on your own and responsible. If you feel frightened, you have to experience these feelings.” That experience is lost in children, even adults today. Having cellular phones and so much technology around has caused the lack of independence, the natural instinct of problem solving skills that we develop by figuring this out on our own. People have a sense of “comfort in a dangerous world.” (Turkle) as Turkle says. For example, if a teenager was put into a situation where they would have to fill out a work application at the moment it was handed to them, the young teenager would fill out the easiest portions on their own which would be “what’s your first name, last name etc.” And when it got to the harder sections of the application that take some thinking the teen’s first natural reaction is not to try to figure out a way to get a hold of the information they needed on their own but what their first initial reaction is to pick up their cellular phone and call mom or dad to ask them to help out immediately. Gladly their parents are there to the rescue and assist the helpless child in need. In ‘the tethered adolescent’ Turkle shares with us “on the other hand this arrangement give teenagers new freedoms. On the other they do not have the experience of being alone and having to count on themselves; there is always a parent on speed dial. This provides comfort in a dangerous world, yet there is a price to pay in the development of autonomy.” This brings me back to my point where technology interferes with the development of an adolescent. They have more dependence on technology and less in their own abilities to figure things out on their own. Adolescences are babied through their whole lives. Always having someone to help them or by their side to show them the way hand in hand. If it is not their parents it’s their cellular phone. This causes the lack of independence one should experience. So when these adolescence become adults and have children of their own they will not be able to teach them the fundamental ideas such as being responsibilities and...
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