Theories of Media and Technology

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Week 1: Seminal Theory

  • The origins of media theory, and how these thinkers have influenced contemporary thought
  • A brief look at ‘new’ modes of thought that expand on these earlier ones

Week 2: Cybernetics

  • The thinking behind cybernetics, and the technological and social implications of this method of thinking

Week 3: Computation

  • The origins of computational thinking, how it relates to cybernetic systems, and what implications it has for media production and consumption

Week 4: Interaction/Interface

  • How interaction and interfaces has led to new understanding of how people consume, create, and use media

Week 5: Networks

  • How interaction and interfaces has led to new understanding of how people consume, create, and use media

Week 6: Control

  • The ways in which computational systems can be used as agents of control, implied and explicit

Week 7: Affect Theory

  • How theorists understand the self embodied in the machine

Week 8: Actor - Network Theory

  • How ANT is not so much a theory as it is a method for understanding the world around us and the relationship between human and non-human objects

Week 9: Cyborg Life

  • The boundaries of our bodies in relation to the world of technology we have designed around us, what is permeable, what is fixed?

Week 10: Media Archaeology

  • How it’s possible to think about aspects of media through physical artifacts like infrastructure, software, and machines themselves

Week 11: Queer & Feminist Theory

  • How thinking about media has been transformed by, and in turn changed, queer and feminist theory

Week 12: Games

  • How games provide a rich area for different kinds of media study such as platforms studies, software studies, and media archeology

Week 13: Sound & Image

  • How theory has transformed our understanding of ‘traditional’ forms of media like video, sound, and still images

Week 14: Media Now

  • Emerging theories surrounding media studies like Object Oriented Ontology and Post-digitalism

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