Hassan (on page 2 of the reading) talks about how informing his son Theo, aged 10, that we live in an ‘information society’ would be ‘meaningless’ in that his son has known no other state of society. As we progress in the readings over the next few weeks, we will appreciate the distinct historical shifts from pre-industrial to industrial to post-industrial society and how these have shaped what we now know as the ‘information society’.
The reading by Dyson et al. is viewed by most academic commentators today as lending itself to an internet-driven zeitgest. Contra-Dyson and her fellow cyber-evangelists, the information society is not a utopian paradise but rather stratified by class, race, gender, and other social inequalities. We will explore these concepts in more detail as we move through the semester.
Hulu and YouTube were unimaginable in Forster’s time. Yet now, with a few clicks we have TV shows like Lost on demand. What is the sociological significance of this? What do you think of Lost in particular and it as a phenomenon.
As discussed in class, comments from this post will be shared with a reporter from the Portland Press Herald.
This is a sociology class aimed at first year students of all backgrounds and interests. It does not require specific sociological knowledge. It is designed to be understood by any student with a general level of information about society, politics, the economy, and international affairs.
This course explores new media forms through discourses of culture, race, space, and power. From the development of the first electronic messaging systems in the 1960s to the advent of interactive social networking Web sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace the role of computer-mediated communication in shaping economies, polities, and societies is discussed. Uses a wide range of sources—recent social science research, Web sites, Facebook, YouTube videos—to examine the roles of new media both in the United States and abroad. We will critically evaluate how our social lives are increasingly digitally mediated and what implications this has on agency, individuality, spatiality, work, and community.