Entering the Field: Media Culture I
Full course description
The skills seminar Entering the Field: Media Culture I will acquaint you with classic texts, recurring topics and research puzzles in the (relatively young) field of media studies. The tutorial consists of 7 meetings. Each meeting will be based around the discussion of one key text (comprising about 70 pages), highlighting the different traditions, debates and methods that characterize the field of media studies. The tutorial will address:
- different ways to define (and thus approach) media: (material/technological; institutional; medium-specific; intermedial/textual; remediation; convergence)
- different disciplinary perspectives with its recurring topics/debates: - historical (technological determinism versus contextualist/appropriation; audiences versus users) - sociological (surveillance; public sphere; globalisation; institutions) - interdisciplinary (‘new’ media; convergence/democratization versus ‘connectivity’/exploitation).
The final exam will be a book review (anticipated length 1500 words) from the list of books read in the tutorial and the review should describe in detail the themes and arguments of the book (in its entirety) in the context of the intellectual history of the field, and provide an assessment of the book.
Introduction to some classic texts in the young field of media culture, addressing its history, theory and concepts. The course also provides training in writing book reviews, which is a basic academic skill. However, summarizing, reviewing and assessing texts are competences which are required in many other professional activities.
Bolter, J. D. and R. Grusin (1999). Remediation: Understanding New Media (pp. 2-84). Cambridge Mass./London, England: The MIT Press. Briggs, A. and P. Burke (2005). A Social History of the Media. From Gutenberg to the Internet (2nd ed; pp. 1-87). Cambridge: Polity Press. Gitelman, L. (2008). Always Already New: Media, History, and the Data of Culture. Cambridge Mass.: The MIT Press. Turkle, S. (2011). Alone Together: Why we expect more from technology and less from each other (pp. ix-34; 151-170; 279-305). New York, N.Y.: Basic Books. Manovich, L. (2001). The Language of New Media. Cambridge (pp. 1-74). Mass./London, England: The MIT Press. Van Dijck, J. (2013). The Culture of Connectivity: A Critical History of Social Media (pp. 3-67; 154-176). Oxford etc.: Oxford U.P.