Calendar and Readings

1 Introduction to the Course, Discussion/Negotiation of the Syllabus, Assignments and Self-Introductions  
2 & 3 Theorizing Technological Change

Buy at Amazon Baym, Nancy K. "Making New Media Make Sense." In Personal Connections in the Digital Age. Polity Press, 2010. ISBN: 9780745643328.

Buy at Amazon Winner, Langdon. "Do Artifacts Have Politics?" In The Whale and the Reactor: A Search for Limits in an Age of High Technology. The University of Chicago Press, 1986. ISBN: 9780226902104.

Buy at MIT Press Buy at Amazon Williams, Raymond. "The Technology and the Society." In The New Media Reader. Edited by Noah Wardrip-Fruin and Nick Montfort. MIT Press, 2003. ISBN: 9780262232272. [Preview with Google Books]

3 & 4

Sociology of Deviance & Media Moral Panic

Different Perspectives on Deviance (PDF)

Buy at Amazon Becker, Howard S. "Outsiders," and "Marihuana Use and Social Control." In Outsiders: Studies in the Sociology of Deviance. The Free Press, 1997. ISBN: 9780684836355. [Preview with Google Books]

Buy at Amazon Critcher, Chas. "Made in Britain: The Processual Model of Moral Panics," and "Notes from a Big Country: The Attributional Model of Moral Panics." In Moral Panics and the Media. Open University Press, 2003. ISBN: 9780335209088.

5 & 6 Writing & Print

Plato. "Phaedrus." Translated by Benjamin Jowett. 360 BCE (approx.).

Buy at Amazon Ong, Walter J. "Writing Restructures Consciousness," and "Print, Space and Closure." In Orality and Literacy. 30th anniv. ed. Routledge, 2012. ISBN: 9780415538374. [Preview with Google Books]

Grossman, Lev. "From Scroll to Screen," The New York Times, September 4, 2011.

Helvetica. Directed by Gary Hustwit. Color, 80 min. 2007. (screened in-class during session 6)

7 & 8

Technopanic in Victorian Times

Midterm Assignment Distributed Session 8 (PDF)

Buy at Amazon Picker, John M. "Aural Anxieties and the Advent of Modernity." In The Victorian World. Edited by Martin Hewitt. Routledge, 2012. ISBN: 9780415491877. [Preview with Google Books]

Buy at Amazon Springhall, John. "Penny Dreadful Panic (II): Their Scapegoating for Late Victorian Juvenile Crime." In Youth, Popular Culture and Moral Panics: Penny Gaffs to Gangsta-Rap, 1830-1996. Palgrave Macmillan, 1999. ISBN: 9780312213954.

Buy at Amazon Standage, Tom. "Codes, Hackers, and Cheats." In The Victorian Internet. Walker, 1998. ISBN: 9780297841487.

Optional Reading

Buy at Amazon Standage, Tom. "Electric Skeptics." In The Victorian Internet. Walker, 1998. ISBN: 9780297841487.

9 Television
Guest Speaker: Dr. Heather Hendershot

Buy at Amazon Hendershot, Heather. "Action for (and against) Children's Television: 'Militant Mothers' and the Tactics of Television Reform." In Saturday Morning Censors: Television Regulation before the V-Chip. Duke University Press, 1999. ISBN: 9780822322405. [Preview with Google Books]

Buy at Amazon Spigel, Lynn. "Seducing the Innocent: Childhood and Television in Postwar America." In Welcome to the Dreamhouse: Popular Media and Postwar Suburbs. Duke University Press, 2001. ISBN: 9780822326960. [Preview with Google Books]

10 Comics at Home and Abroad

Tilley, Carol L. "Seducing the Innocent: Fredric Wertham and the Falsifications That Helped Condemn Comics." Information & Culture 47, no. 4 (2012): 383–413.

Buy at Amazon Wertham, Frededric. Seduction of the Innocent. Rinehart & Co., 1954, pp. 220–35. ISBN: 9781596830004.

Itzkoff, Dave. "Scholar Finds Flaws in Work by Archenemy of Comics," The New York Times, February 20, 2013.

Kinsella, Sharon. "Japanese Subculture in the 1990s: Otaku and the Amateur Manga Movement." Journal of Japanese Studies 24, no. 2 (1998): 289–316.

11 & 12


Midterm Due at the Beginning of Session 12

Buy at Amazon Nasaw, David. "Learning to Go to the Movies." In American History: Volume II. Edited by Robert James Maddox. Dushkin Publishing Group, 1997.

Phillips, Kendall R. This resource may not render correctly in a screen reader."The Lost Art of Showing Dangerous Films." (PDF - 3.0MB) Stone Canoe 5 (2010).

Jacobs, Lea. "Reformers and Spectators: The Film Education Movement in the Thirties." Camera Obscura 8, no. 1 (1990): 28–49.

Optional Readings

Buy at Amazon Marx, Karl, and Friedrich Engels. "The Ruling Class and the Ruling Ideas." In Media and Cultural Studies: Keyworks. Edited by Meenakshi Gigi Durham and Douglas M. Kellner. Wiley Blackwell, 2012. ISBN: 9780470658086.

Buy at Amazon Durham, Meenakshi Gigi, and Douglas M. Kellner, eds. "Culture, Ideology, Hegemony." In Media and Cultural Studies: Keyworks. Wiley Blackwell, 2012. ISBN: 9780470658086.

13 What's so new about "New" Media?

Jenkins, Henry. "Eight Traits of the New Media Landscape." Blog post. November 6, 2006.

Buy at Amazon Baym, Nancy K. "Seven Key Concepts." In Personal Connections in the Digital Age. Polity Press, 2010. ISBN: 9780745643328.

Manovich, Lev. This resource may not render correctly in a screen reader."New Media from Borges to HTML." (PDF) 2003.

14 Threat talk

Buy at Amazon Massumi, Brian. "The Future Birth of Affective Fact: The Political Ontology of Threat." In The Affect Theory Reader. Edited by Melissa Gregg and Gregory J. Seigworth. Duke University Press, 2010. ISBN: 9780822347767. [Preview with Google Books]

Buy at Amazon Thomas, Douglas. "Rethinking the Cyberbody: Hackers, Viruses, and Cultural Anxiety." In Technological Visions: Hopes And Fears That Shape New Technologies. Edited by Marita Sturken, Douglas Thomas, and Sandra Ball-Rokeach. Temple University Press, 2004. ISBN: 9781592132270.

Threat Level. blog.


Does the Internet Make Us Stupid?

Final Paper Assignment Distributed (PDF)

Carr, Nicholas. "Is Google Making Us Stupid?" The Atlantic, July 1, 2008.

Pasek, Josh, eian more, et al. "Facebook and Academic Performance: Reconciling a Media Sensation with Data." First Monday 14, no. 5 (2009).

Shirky, Clay. "Why Abundance is Good: A Reply to Nick Carr." Encyclopedia Britannica blog. July 17, 2008.

Optional Readings

Pinker, Steven. "Mind Over Mass Media," The New York Times, June 10, 2010.

Bilton, Nick. "The Defense of Computers, the Internet, and Our Brains." The New York Times Bits blog. June 11, 2010.

16 Privacy, Anonymity, and Deception

Boyd, Danah. "Real Name Policies are an Abuse of Power." Blog post. August 4, 2011.

Donath, Judith. "Identity and Deception in the Virtual Community." 1996.

Turkle, Sherry. This resource may not render correctly in a screen reader."Virtuality and Its Discontents." (PDF - 3.41MB) The American Prospect 7, no. 24 (1996): 50–7.

17 Cyber-Vigilantism

MacKinnon, Rebecca. "From Red Guards to Cyber-Vigilantism to Where Next?" Blog post. February 26, 2009.

Human Flesh Search Engine Parts I & II

Optional Reading

Madrigal, Alexis. "Hey Reddit, Enough Boston Bombing Vigilantism." The Atlantic, April 17, 2013.

18 & 19


Final Paper Topic Due Session 18

Session 19 Guest Speaker: Molly Sauter

Coleman, Gabriella. "Our Weirdness is Free." Triple Canopy 15, January 13, 2012.

Sterling, Bruce. The Hacker Crackdown: Law and Disorder on the Electronic Frontier. Project Gutenberg, 2008.

Buy at Amazon Coleman, E. Gabriella. "Phreaks, Hackers, and Trolls." In The Social Media Reader. Edited by Michael Mandiberg. New York University Press, 2012. ISBN: 9780814764060.

Live Free or Die Hard. Directed by Len Wiseman. Color, 128 min. 20th Century Fox. 2007.

Supplemental Resource

Audio Recording of The Hacker Crackdown: Law and Disorder on the Electronic Frontier as read by Cory Doctorow.

20 & 21 Pornography and Sexual Predators

Buy at MIT Press Buy at Amazon Cassell, Justine, and Meg Cramer. "High Tech or High Risk: Moral Panics about Girls Online." (PDF) In Digital Youth, Innovation, and the Unexpected. Edited by Tara McPherson. MIT Press, 2007. ISBN: 9780262633598. [Preview with Google Books]

Marwick, Alice E. "To Catch a Predator? The MySpace Moral Panic." First Monday 13, no. 6 (2008).

Shah, Nishant. "Subject to Technology: Internet Pornography, Cyber-terrorism and the Indian State." Inter-Asia Cultural Studies 8, no. 3 (2007): 349–366.

Berkman Center for Internet and Society. This resource may not render correctly in a screen reader."Enhancing Child Safety and Online Technologies - Executive Summary." (PDF) 2008.

22 & 23 Trolls and Cyberbullying
Session 23 Guest Speaker: Dr. Nathan Fisk

Chen, Adrian. "Unmasking Reddit's Violentacrez, The Biggest Troll on the Web." Gawker, October 12, 2012.

Phillips, Whitney. "LOLing at Tragedy: Facebook Trolls, Memorial Pages, and Resistance to Grief Online." First Monday 16, no. 12 (2011).

Marwick, Alice E., and Danah Boyd. "The Drama! Teen Conflict, Gossip, and Bullying in Networked Publics." Presented at A Decade in Internet Time: Symposium on the Dynamics of the Internet and Society. Oxford Internet Institute, September 2011.

Fisk, Nathan. "Why Children Laugh at the Word 'Cyberbullying'."  The Society Pages, July 14, 2012.
23 & 24

Video Games, Violence, and Addiction

Final Paper Due Session 24

Buy at Amazon Jenkins, Henry. This resource may not render correctly in a screen reader."The War Between Effects and Meaning: Rethinking the Video Game Violence Debate." (PDF) In Digital Generations: Children, Young People, and New Media. Edited by David Buckingham and Rebekah Willett. Routledge, 2006. ISBN: 9780805859805.

This resource may not render correctly in a screen reader.Brown v. Entertainment Merchants Association (PDF), 564 U. S. ____ (2011).

Playing Columbine. Directed by Danny Ledonne. Color, 94 min. 2008. (screened in-class during session 23)