She survives and hires a publicist who will turn her

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suicide attempt. She survives and hires a publicist who will turn her story in a success and help her get work as a public figure. The publicist introduces the CEO of Ordinary People to Charlotte and she agrees to go on board with the project. For Charlotte, participating in the project is about fame and fortune: ‘the very polestars whose gleaming emanations had navigated [her] existence to this point’ (LaM 253). The website quickly becomes a global phenomenon, and the people portrayed, 'the Ordinary Thirty', have become brand names (LaM 510). The stereotype Charlotte embodies online is that of glamorous model who is living the good life, even though she herself has not worked as a model in months, is not recognized by her former colleagues in the industry anymore (due to the plastic surgery), and is struggling with depressions, alcoholism and has tried to commit suicide only moments before she was initiated into the online project. The represented lives are all already made into ‘digestible form’, in the words of the CEO of the company. This is illustrated best 4 Hansen goes past the notion that for African-Americans, passing was not without severe danger. See for analy ses of life threatening situations resulting in a violent death for ‘passers’ in literature for instance Koen Potgieter, “ Somebody Walking Over My Grave: The Symbolic Weight of Violence and Death in the African American Passing Novel” in Vooys: Tijdschrift voor Letteren .
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26 when Charlotte is shown the page of a Kenyan Samburu warrior, one of the International Ordinaries. CEO Keene immediately remarks ‘I don’t know if we’ll end up using him – we may want to go more exotic’ (LaM 322). This statement foregrounds how the people featured in Personal Space are regarded as mere instruments and underwriting stereotypes. The Kenyan Samburu warrior mig ht not be ‘exotic enough’ to fit the stereotype of ‘indigenous African’. The Flesh and the Mind Adam Kelly has already remarked that Look at Me is full of posthuman prosthetic bodies: post- surgery, Charlotte Swanson has a head full of titanium bolts and screws, Charlotte Hauser wears glasses that, in her opinion, when she removes them not only alters her vision but also her identity; her brother Ricky wears a Mediport that keeps him alive; and detective Michael West has a handgun constantly strapped to his calf in order to feel powerful (407). But the posthuman questions that arise because of Charlotte’s interactions with the social network site are left unasked. In this next part the novel’s take on absence, p resence, pattern and randomness is discussed. This take is two-fold; it describes what the site can mean for its user, while learning what it means for the people whose lives are portrayed online. This distinguishing of the double effect of the website is crucial, something that Hayles stresses the Turing test most importantly did: it made the crucial move of distinguishing between the enacted body, present in the flesh on one side of the computer
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