What are the virtuous capacities of mass-delivery information technologies? How do they help the world become a better place? Do they present potential threats to individuals and the societies in which they live? Through select theoretical work in sociology, we will reflect upon those questions and apply that knowledge to the world we know. To illustrate these theories, we will resort to past and current examples of the use of the media and new technologies. The course will explore how the media helps uncover injustices, such as police brutality, and generates social mobilization. It will also cover how the media produces political propaganda and provides space for virtual (online) communities. For instance, the course will explore both top-down and ground-up approaches, examples of which are how the United Nations uses new technologies to promote its political agenda or how individuals join online blogs in search of identity and community. The semester will begin with the study of older media outlets, such as newspapers, televisions, and the internet, and move onto newer social media technologies such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. The class will include the topics of gender, race and ethnicity, inequality, and collective identity in the socio-political and cultural terrains. This course is apt for undergraduates interested in communication, culture, and politics.
Faculty: Cristina Lacomba
School: Faculty of Arts & Sciences
Semester: Full Spring Term
Time: 12:00PM - 1:15PM, Tuesday + Thursday