Special Topics in Cultural Studies:
Winter 2003, T & Th, 12:30-2:20pm
082 & 082A Mary Gates Hall
Steven Shaviro (email@example.com)
Office: A303 Padleford, T & Th 3:00pm-4:00pm
As recently as fifteen years ago, computer-mediated communication (CMC) was in its infancy. The Internet as we know it today scarcely existed. Email accounts were few and far between, 300-baud modems were the rule, and the World Wide Web had not yet been invented. In an astonishingly short time, everything has changed. Today we take the Net so much for granted, that it's hard to gauge the distance we have gone, or the difference it has made. This course will consider the many ways that contemporary culture has been reshaped--and is still in process of being reshaped--as a result of the growth of the Internet, and associated electronic technologies. We will look into the new electronic forms of culture, and try to decode the new messages that are being conveyed by the new digital media: personal computers and world-wide information networks, above all, but also video, multimedia, interactive games, online communities, and virtual reality technologies. We will look at a wide range of material: from theoretical writings about the nature of virtualization to policy debates about issues such as copyright and encryption, and from speculative science fiction to experiments in interface design to "net art" projects.
- Serve as co-facilitator for two classes: this means helping to lead class discussion, and providing me with a copy of your preparatory notes for the class session (15% of grade for each of the two class sessions)
- Make your own weblog, or monitor the progress of someone else's weblog (10% of grade)
- Participation on class bulletin board, with at least one post a week (10% of grade)
- Participation in class discussion (10% of grade)
- Final research project, consisting of a 10-page paper, a website, and an in-class presentation (40% of grade)
January 7: INTRODUCTION
January 9: APPROACHING CYBERSPACE
January 14: THE PHILOSOPHY OF CYBERSPACE--TECHNOLOGY
- Marshall McLuhan, Part
I of Understanding Media
- Pierre Levy, "Collective Intelligence" (T25)
- Donna Haraway, "A Manifesto for Cyborgs" (BK18, or
- Judith Squires, "Fabulous Feminist Futures" (BK22)
- Selections from Sadie Plant (T2, BK19, BK29)
January 16: THE PHILOSOPHY OF CYBERSPACE--VIRTUAL REALITY
January 21: GLOBALIZATION AND THE ECONOMICS OF CYBERSPACE
- Douglas Kellner, "Globalization and the Postmodern Turn"
- Shoshana Zuboff, "Dilemmas of Transformation in the Age of the Smart Machine" (T13)
- Critical Art Ensemble, "The Coming of Age of the Flesh Machine" (T18, or here)
- Arthur Kroker & Michael A. Weinstein, "The Theory of the Virtual Class" (T15 or here)
- Arthur & Marilouise Kroker, "Code Warriors" (BK5 or here)
- Herbert Schiller, "The Global Information Highway" (T17)
- Jon Stratton, "Cyberspace and the Globalization of Culture" (BK47)
- The Cybracero Program
January 23: THE NETWORK SOCIETY
January 28: COMMUNITIES, VIRTUAL AND "REAL"
- Howard Rheingold, from The Virtual Community: Introduction (T27 or here)
- Mark Poster, "Cyberdemocracy" (T26 or here)
- Paulina Borsook, "Cyberselfish"
- Michele Willson, "Community in the Abstract" (BK42)
- Michael Ostwald, "Virtual Urban Futures" (BK43)
- Susan Zickmund, "Approaching the Radical Other" (BK15)
January 30: LIVING IN CYBERSPACE
February 4: VIRTUAL BODIES
- Allucquere Rosanne Stone, "Will the Real Body Please Stand Up?" (BK32, T19, or here)
- Diane Gromala, "Pain and Subjectivity in Virtual Reality" (BK38)
- N. Katherine Hayles, "The Seductions of Cyberspace" (T31)
- N. Katherine Hayles, "The Materiality of Informatics"
- Anne Balsamo, "The Virtual Body in Cyberspace" (BK31)
- Jennifer Gonzalez, "Envisioning Cyborg Bodies" (BK34)
February 6: POSTHUMAN DREAMS
February 11: VIRTUAL IDENTITIES
- Sherry Turkle, "Who Am We?" (T24)
- Allucquere Rosanne Stone, "Violation and Virtuality"
- Shannon McRae, "Coming Apart at the Seams"
- Gareth Branwyn, "Compu-Sex" (BK24)
- Lisa Nakamura, "Race In/For Cyberspace" (BK46, T23, or here)
- Kali Tal, "The Unbearable Whiteness of Being: African American Critical Theory and Cyberculture"
- Cameron Bailey, "Virtual Skin" (T33)
- Guillermo Gomez-Pena, "The Virtual Barrio" (T28)
- Daniel Tsang, "Notes on Queer 'n' Asian Virtual Sex" (BK27)
February 13: BLOGS, CAMS, AND HOMEPAGES
- Paul Bausch, Matthew Haughey, and Meg Hourihan, from We Blog: Publishing Online with Weblogs, Chapter 3: Navigating the Blog Universe
- Rebecca Mead, "You've Got Blog"
- Joe Clark, "Deconstructing 'You've Got Blog'"
- J. D. Lasica, "Blogging as a Form of Journalism" and "Weblogs: A New Source of News"
- Noah Schachtman, "Blogs Make the Headlines"
- Adam Geitgey, Kaycee Nicole Swenson FAQ
- Theresa M. Senft, "Debating Reality: An Online Hoax Is Not a Pox"
- Michelle, Confessions of an Internet Loser
- Stuart Tiros, and my commentary
February 18: HYPERTEXT AND DIGITAL AESTHETICS
February 20: LEXIA TO PERPLEXIA
February 25: COMPUTER GAMES
- "How They Got Game: The History of Videogames and Interactive Simulations"
- Hnery Jenkins, "Art Form for the Digital Age"
- McKenzie Wark, "The Video Game as Emergent Media Form"
- Talmadge Wright, Eric Boria and Paul Breidenbach, "Creative Player Actions in FPS Online Video Games"
- Sue Morris, "Online Gaming Culture: An Examination of Emerging Forms of Production and Participation in Multiplayer First-Person-Shooter Gaming"
- Tim Lenoir and Henry Lowood, "Theaters of War: The Military-Entertainment Complex"
- Ted Friedman, "Civilization and Its Discontents: Simulation, Subjectivity, and Space"
- Ted Friedman, "Making Sense of Software: Computer Games and Interactive Textuality"
- Alex Handy, "Baang You're Dead!"
- Shawn Miklaucic, "Virtual Real(i)ty: SimCity and the Production of Urban Cyberspace"
- Celia Pearce, "Sims, BattleBots, Cellular Automata God and Go: A Conversation with Will Wright"
- Daniel Sieberg, "The World According to Will"
- Nicholas Yee, "The Norrathian Scrolls: A Study of Everquest"
- Anne-Marie Schleiner, "Parasitic Interventions: Game Patches and Hacker Art"
- Rich "Lowtax" Kyanka and CT's Stalker, "How To Survive in Any RPG"
February 27: FILMTEXT
March 4: PRIVACY, OWNERSHIP, HACKING, AND SURVEILLANCE
- Graham Barwell and Kate Bowles, "Border Crossings" (BK45)
- Lawrence Lessig, "Innovation, Regulation, and the Internet"
- Lawrence Lessig, "The Laws of Cyberspace"
- Tim May, "Untraceable Digital Cash, Information Markets, and BlackNet"
- Andrew Ross, "Hacking Away at the Counterculture" (BK16 or here)
- Julian Dibbell, "Viruses Are Good for You"
- The Surveillance Camera Players
March 6: INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND COPYRIGHT
March 11 and 13: STUDENT PRESENTATIONS
March 18: FINAL PAPERS DUE
- The Cybercultures Reader, ed. David Bell and Barbara
M. Kennedy, Routledge (BK)
- Reading Digital Culture, ed. David Trent, Blackwell
- Various online readings
SOME CYBERCULTURE RESOURCES
SOME BLOGGING RESOURCES