Social/Media: Critical Inquiries into Internet Cultures

FallWinter
Fall 2020
Winter 2021
Olympia
Olympia
Daytime
Day
Junior-Senior
Junior–Senior
Class Size: 50
8
Credits per quarter

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Taught by

Julie Russo square
media studies, gender & women's studies, sexuality and queer studies
Stein square
cultural anthropology

Social media websites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr and others permeate our society and daily lives. You may check one or more of these platforms regularly to keep up with friends, communities, or news – or notice their increasing importance in social groups, popular culture, and politics. And yet we rarely step back to examine the structure of these ubiquitous websites and how we use them. In this half-time (8 credit) daytime program, we will critically explore a selection of social media sites and phenomena through theory, media studies, cultural studies, and anthropology. How do these technologies offer new opportunities for individual well-being, creative work, and social action?  In what ways do they represent enhanced forms of distraction, surveillance, exploitation, and inequality? Centering on the notion of the digital “commons”, we will consider the possibilities for shared cultivation of knowledge, art, and community via online platforms.

Program activities include seminar on academic readings, computer labs to analyze websites under study, essay and response writing assignments. Students will take a qualitative, ethnographic approach to social media, through a careful documentation and analysis of particular digital sites and situations. Ethnographic work will culminate in a short audio podcast; as part of this work, students will gain proficiency in the use of audio recording equipment and audio editing software.

8

Credits per quarter

Fees:

$25 fee to cover museum and exhibit costs

Junior-Senior
Class Standing: Junior–Senior
Class Size: 50
Daytime

Scheduled for: Day

Located in: Olympia

Spring 2020: Contact faculty or check offering in Canvas for first class meeting date and time.