Lacan´s Mirror Stage Essay

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Lacans mirror stage

Self-recognition is fundamental building block for humans, we exist as individuals each with out own differences and recognition of each other is an important feature for us. Psychoanalytic theorist had attempted to understand the complexities of the human mind truth identity and agency in the world. Advance in technologies brought us an opportunity to create virtual worlds2 and in many ways artificial reality is bound by the fundamental rules of gravity, day night cycle, space distance and even living creatures to inhabit the virtual world. Focus will be drawn to users creation of avatars as a means of identification and constitution of self in virtual world. The avatar has the potential to bring a new dimension to
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The experience with the mirror explains the development of the 'ideal ego' – how I am recognised by other. Because toddler is unable to use structured language, and can only gaze in realm of images, aesthetics and ideal other motor control.
Avatar, on the other hand, is not a real reflection of the self, but more of a constructed external image, that is personalise and modified to ones liking. For instance, in video game EVE online new users are given an option to create and customize their character from body shape to length of hair or even tattoos. In addition, when avatar is created it exist in the digital domain, and is easily perceived as separate entity from us (Taylor 2002). Arguably, avatar creation contains fundamental concepts of Lacan's mirror stage. The mirror stage suggest moments of self perception which goes beyond simple self image. Mirror stage toddler perceive image as a alienated entity. Reflection is perceived by the baby as an outside object which contradicts the fragmented perception of self. Therefore, mirror stage propose dual feeling of identification and estrange, where also a corresponding feelings might be observed with the avatar.


So far, the mirror stage the site where the subject becomes alienated from himself (Evans 1996 p116). Lacan describes the unified body in the mirror as the core of the established infantile, and decentred understanding of self (Lacan 1949). Arguably, sense of being divided can be considered in the
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