Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology

Volume 26, Issue 1, 2022

Piercosma Bisconti, Antonio Carnevale
Pages 147-171

Alienation and Recognition
The Δ Phenomenology of the Human–Social Robot Interaction (HSRI)

A crucial philosophical problem of social robots is how much they perform a kind of sociality in interacting with humans. Scholarship diverges between those who sustain that humans and social robots cannot by default have social interactions and those who argue for the possibility of an asymmetric sociality. Against this dichotomy, we argue in this paper for a holistic approach called “Δ phenomenology” of HSRI (Human–Social Robot Interaction). In the first part of the paper, we will analyse the semantics of an HSRI. This is what leads a human being (x) to assign or receive a meaning of sociality (z) by interacting with a social robot (y). Hence, we will question the ontological structure underlying HSRIs, suggesting that HSRIs may lead to a peculiar kind of user alienation. By combining all these variables, we will formulate some final recommendations for an ethics of social robots.