Date of Award


Degree Name



College of Liberal Arts

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Kristen Lillvis

Second Advisor

Walter Squire

Third Advisor

Eric Smith


My Avatar, My Self is a project which seeks to examine cultural conceptions of the flesh-and-machine physical cyborg and to subsequently challenge these conceptions with a new idea of the cyborg: the conceptual cyborg. This thesis serves to discuss through posthuman theory what the conceptual cyborg is, how it has become a prevalent force in advanced technological societies, and what it means for human beings to be conceptual cyborgs. Beyond that, I also discuss the importance of the conceptual cyborg’s ability to be digitally embodied in virtual spaces, and this idea is expanded on through an examination of science-fiction television, video games, and even social media in relation to the conceptual cyborg. By examining contemporary cultural artifacts of the past two decades, I explain how we are all already conceptual cyborgs and how video games are able to serve as the best examples for the conceptual cyborg’s powers of digital embodiment.



Artificial intelligence.