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Online and #IRL: Digital Media, Power, and Religion
RELI 219
Spring 2023 not offered

From meditation apps and Zoom church to TikTok witches and spiritual influencers, religion and spirituality pervade the Internet. Yet digital media reflects social, economic, and political negotiations of power that often elude our scrolling eyes. This course critically examines digital media and religion by asking how the "power" of digital infrastructures affects religion. Together we will map different platforms and mediators (social media, material technologies, and corporate gatekeepers) that shape "power" and "religion" online. We will survey how religious practitioners navigate digital media through case studies of ex-Evangelical Twitter users, Hindu mega-temple live streams, ritual smartphone apps, and more. We will discuss "spiritual machines" and ask, "Has digital technology become a new god?" This course takes an interdisciplinary approach and engages research from technology studies, media studies, and religious studies. Students will also examine methods, ethics, and theories of studying digital religion and develop their own digital religion case studies.
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: SBS RELI
Course Format: SeminarGrading Mode: Student Option
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: None
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: None

Last Updated on MAY-30-2024
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