Digital Media Theory

Autumn 2018-2019


Patrick Jagoda

This course introduces students to the critical study of digital media and participatory cultures, focusing on the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. Sub-fields and topics may include history of technology, software studies, platform studies, video-game studies, electronic literature, social media, mobile media, network aesthetics, hacktivism, and digital public. We will also discuss ways that digital media theory intersects with and complicates work coming from critical theory, especially feminist, Marxist, queer, and transnational theories. Readings may include work by theorists such as Ian Bogost, Wendy Chun, Mary Flanagan, Alexander Galloway, Mark Hansen, Katherine Hayles, Friedrich Kittler, Alan Liu, Lev Manovich, Franco Moretti, Lisa Nakamura, Rita Raley, and McKenzie Wark. Through a study of contemporary media theory, we will also think carefully about emerging methods of inquiry that accompany this area of study, including multimodal and practice-based research. Students need not be technologically gifted or savvy, but a wide-ranging imagination and interest in new media culture will make for a more exciting quarter. (20th/21st)