New media in all historical periods have contributed in changing people’s perceptions and understandings of what time, space and reality can be. This is not only the case with the new media of our times – virtual reality – but also historically with such innovations as the phonetic alphabet, the telegraph, radio, moving images, etc. The different ways of treating time, space and reality in different media has resulted in various claims on being able actually to change these dimensions, or, at least, to manipulate them in terms of mobility and ease of movement, visibility and access. The virtual reality today is implicated by electronic communication, but historically this has been done by other mediating means, such as text, drama and film.
In the course a culture theoretical and social science perspective will be developed in order to analyse the technological projects of today and yesterday – projects, innovations, applications and services that claim to change time, space and reality. Focus in the analysis is on the critical analysis of the claims to change that these projects are guided by. The changes brought about partly by the media, and also by other means, will be related to theoretical scenarios of social and historical change.