The Second Media Age

Overview

This book examines the implications of new communication technologies in the light of the most recent work in social and cultural theory. Poster evaluates critically the concepts of media and technology in various traditions of cultural theory, with the aim of rethinking the relations of humans to machines. The author also examines theories of postmodernity in relation to the new media and the debate over multiculturalism. He argues that new developments in electronic media, such as the Internet and Virtual ...
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The Second Media Age

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Overview

This book examines the implications of new communication technologies in the light of the most recent work in social and cultural theory. Poster evaluates critically the concepts of media and technology in various traditions of cultural theory, with the aim of rethinking the relations of humans to machines. The author also examines theories of postmodernity in relation to the new media and the debate over multiculturalism. He argues that new developments in electronic media, such as the Internet and Virtual Reality, may so alter our habits of communication and so deeply reposition our identities that the designation "a second media age" is justified. Poster assesses the contributions of theorists such as Baudrillard, Lyotard, Habermas, Haraway, and Guattari. He also develops further his own distinctive and original approach, building on his previous book The Mode of Information. Finally, Poster analyzes various cultural materials in light of his approach: Spike Lee's Do Right Thing, Richard Wagner's Ring on the Nibelung, and the televised reporting of the Gulf War. The Second Media Age will be essential reading for students in media studies, cultural studies, sociology, and social theory.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780745613956
  • Publisher: Polity Press
  • Publication date: 7/1/1995
  • Pages: 192

Meet the Author

Mark Poster is Professor of History at the University of California, Irvine.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
Pt. I Theoretical Reconsiderations 1
1 Social Theory and the New Media 3
2 Postmodern Virtualities 23
3 Postmodernity and the Politics of Multiculturalism 43
4 The Mode of Information and Postmodernity 57
5 Databases as Discourse, or Electronic Interpellations 78
6 Critical Theory and TechnoCulture: Habermas and Baudrillard 95
Pt. II Medias 117
7 Politics in the Mode of Information: Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing 119
8 RoboBody 136
9 What Does Wotan Want? Ambivalent Feminism in Wagner's Ring 141
10 War in the Mode of Information 156
Notes 161
Index 184
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