Comp Lit 504: Virtual Worlds

World, n.
I. Human existence; a period of this.

1. a. Chiefly this world, the world: the earthly state of human existence; this present life. to (unto, OE.o )theworld’send:aslongashumanthingsshalllast,totheendoftime(withadmixtureof senses 7, 9). Similarly in phrases such as as long as the or this world lasts, and in this world.

II. The earth or a region of it; the universe or a part of it.

7. a. The earth and all created things upon it; the terraqueous globe and its inhabitants. (See also 21a, 22a.)

This is our subject. How we imagine it; its singularity or multiplicity; its relation to the globe; to the planet; to globalization; to history; its limitations on the possible; its articulations thereof; its self- containment; its arbitration of the boundary between the virtual and the real; its virtuality; its reality, nonetheless; the forms of its representation and its imagination; its conceptual history; its mapping; its status as a limit to the imagination, to philosophy, to thought; that it is a goad to those same. The present moment as one of globalization; as one in which virtual worlds become “real”; how those interact; their relation to utopia; to history; to law; to literature, to nature. All these toward a theory of modernity.

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