Theodora was an OII DPhil student and digital anthropologist. Her research focused on a community of "digital detoxers" in Northern California, and speaks to fears around internet addiction and authentic sociality.
Former DPhil student
Theodora Sutton graduated from the DPhil in Information, Communication & the Social Sciences in 2021.
Since 2014 Theodora has been studying a community of “digital detoxers” in Northern California, using this as a locus for techno-anxiety, pre-digital nostalgia and the widespread cultural narrative of digital technology as inherently ‘lesser’ or less ‘natural’ than previous forms of communication. Her research addresses questions around internet addiction, and how to use digital technology in a healthy or balanced way, from an anthropological perspective.
Theodora’s research began in the context of a Fine Art degree at Wimbledon College of Art, and she has made sculptures and installations exploring our relationship with digital technology.
Theodora is also interested in methods, particularly ethnography and ethics, and how to incorporate social media into ethnographic research.
She helped to run the OII based seminar series OxDEG: Oxford Digital Ethnography Group.
Digital Anthropology, Digital Detoxing, Pre-digital nostalgia, Nature and ‘the natural’, Mediation, Social Media, Silicon Valley, Digital addiction, Post techno-apocalyptic Narratives, Food and dieting, Healthism, Culturally specific understandings of technology
Positions held at the OII
- DPhil student, October 2015 – May 2021
Supervisors at the OII
- (2017) "Our Virtues and Devices: Exploring the Digital Detox" In: Are We All Addicts Now? Digital Dependence Bartlett, V. and Bowden-Jones, H. (eds.).
- (2017) "Disconnect to reconnect: The food/technology metaphor in digital detoxing", First Monday. 22 (6).
OxDEG – Living with Technology, Turning Down the News: Forces of Disenchantment and Re-Enchantment in a Community of Digital Detoxers
17 May 2021
OxDEG is pleased to welcome Dr. Theodora Sutton to deliver this online session.
23 January 2019
Panellists will reflect on ethical challenges in the context of digital ethnography and how they overcame any hurdles by sharing their approaches.
7 February 2018
The Oxford Internet Institute is excited to have Theodora Sutton, DPhil student at the OII, for the OxDeg talk 'Digital detox: One Forest, Two Cities, and My Facebook'.
4 February 2020
Authors: Theodora Sutton
Q&A with Doctoral Candidate Theodora Sutton In her article “Digital Harm and Addiction: an Anthropological View“, published in Anthropology Today, OII DPhil student and ...
2 March 2017
Authors: David Sutcliffe, Theodora Sutton
The new (old) inbox. Camp Grounded tries to build up attendees’ confidence to be silly and playful, with their identities less tied to their ...
24 July 2018 The New Statesman
As an anthropologist specialising in ‘Digital Detoxing,’ I’ve watched years of anti-tech rhetoric play out through over-used riffs.