Ethnographies of Emerging Media|
Fall 2018 not offered
Emerging media, from social network sites to mobile phones, are reshaping many aspects of daily life, selfhood, and society, yet are often designed with elite, technically savvy users in mind. Whose social connections do "social media" articulate? What kinds of mobility are facilitated by laptops and smartphones? This seminar examines the implicit norms that shape technology design and use, especially dominant understandings of sociality and mobility. We will examine emerging social and mobile media through ethnographic, critical, and interpretive approaches from anthropology, science and technology studies (STS), and information studies, as well as feminist and queer theories. The course will emphasize theoretical and analytical tools to address topics such as mobility and disability, the materiality of information, networked forms of sociality and selfhood, digital divides and inequalities, transnationalism and place-making, virtual worlds, "big data," and design ethnography. We will consider emerging media practices in cross-cultural and transnational settings to examine the situated contexts of their design and use, while asking broadly what consequences these technologies have for our social worlds. This course requires intensive reading and writing, including a final project that can be undertaken in a variety of ways, such as an ethnographic or critical analysis of an emerging media practice.
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Seminar||Grading Mode: Graded|
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: None
Heather Horst and Daniel Miller, eds. DIGITAL ANTHROPOLOGY
Tom Boellstorff, COMING OF AGE IN SECOND LIFE
Jenna Burrell, INVISIBLE USERS
Jan English-Lueck, CULTURES@SILICONVALLEY
Bruno Latour, REASSEMBLING THE SOCIAL
Anna Tsing, FRICTION
Christopher Kelty, TWO BITS
|Examination and Assignments: |
Weekly reading responses/reflections, regular in-class presentations, two-part final project (proposal plus final draft).