ANTHRCUL 237 - Digital Futures: Media Technologies and Social Transformation Around the World
Fall 2022, Section 001
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: Anthropology, Cultural (ANTHRCUL)
Department: LSA Anthropology
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Requirements & Distribution:
May not be repeated for credit.
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Our futures seem increasingly digital. From politics to work, from romance to family, people around the world are grappling with how digital media technologies seep into the nooks and crannies of their everyday lives. The dominance of the digital both provokes panic about the harmful corporate and political forces they are unleashing and inspires hope about the capacity of activists to create better futures. In either case, the emphasis is on the power of technology. But how do communities and social movements around the world think and do about digital media’s promises or perils? This course goes beyond both the hysteria and the hype to examine the social life and futures of digital technologies from Ghana to Venezuela to Iran to the United States and beyond.

 We look at the relationship between technology, culture, and power differentials across different world regions, whether those related to race, ethnicity, gender, class, or religion. What assumptions about self and society do technologies encode as universally valid and “culture-free”? What role do media play in shaping our sense of what is right, true, or just? How are digital technologies implicated in shoring up existing systems of oppression or in creating space for resisting them?

 Each week, we answer these questions through reading about concrete case studies from a wide array of global contexts and watching documentaries about media activism and experiences. Throughout, we explore what an anthropological, people-centered approach offers to understand our digital futures.  


ANTHRCUL 237 - Digital Futures: Media Technologies and Social Transformation Around the World
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
 In Person
MW 1:00PM - 2:30PM
002 (DIS)
 In Person
M 3:00PM - 4:00PM
003 (DIS)
 In Person
Tu 3:00PM - 4:00PM
004 (DIS)
 In Person
Tu 4:00PM - 5:00PM

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