front cover of The American Literature Scholar in the Digital Age
The American Literature Scholar in the Digital Age
Edited by Amy E. Earhart and Andrew Jewell
University of Michigan Press, 2010

"By casting the collection explicitly as an outreach to the larger community of Americanists---not primarily those who self-identify as 'digital scholars'---Earhart and Jewell have made an important choice, and one that will likely make this a landmark publication."
---Andrew Stauffer, University of Virginia

The American Literature Scholar in the Digital Age, which features a wide range of practitioner-scholars, is the first of its kind: a gathering of people who are expert in American literary studies and in digital technologies, scholars uniquely able to draw from experience with building digital resources and to provide theoretical commentary on how the transformation to new technologies alters the way we think about and articulate scholarship in American literature. The volume collects articles from those who are involved in tool development, usability testing, editing and textual scholarship, digital librarianship, and issues of race and ethnicity in digital humanities, while also situating digital humanities work within the larger literary discipline. In addition, the volume examines the traditional structures of the fields, including tenure and promotion criteria, modes of scholarly production, the skill sets required for scholarship, and the training of new scholars.

The American Literature Scholar in the Digital Age will attract practitioners of digital humanities in multiple fields, Americanists who utilize digital materials, and those who are intellectually curious about the new movement and materials.

Amy E. Earhart is Assistant Professor in the Department of English at Texas A&M University.

Andrew Jewell is Associate Professor of Digital Projects, University Libraries, at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

Cover art: Book background ©

digitalculturebooks is an imprint of the University of Michigan Press and the Scholarly Publishing Office of the University of Michigan Library dedicated to publishing innovative and accessible work exploring new media and their impact on society, culture, and scholarly communication. Visit the website at


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An Artificial History of Natural Intelligence
Thinking with Machines from Descartes to the Digital Age
David W. Bates
University of Chicago Press, 2024
A new history of human intelligence that argues that humans know themselves by knowing their machines.

We imagine that we are both in control of and controlled by our bodies—autonomous and yet automatic. This entanglement, according to David W. Bates, emerged in the seventeenth century when humans first built and compared themselves with machines. Reading varied thinkers from Descartes to Kant to Turing, Bates reveals how time and time again technological developments offered new ways to imagine how the body’s automaticity worked alongside the mind’s autonomy. Tracing these evolving lines of thought, An Artificial History of Natural Intelligence offers a new theorization of the human as a being that is dependent on technology and produces itself as an artificial automaton without a natural, outside origin.

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Boston Mass-Mediated
Urban Space and Culture in the Digital Age
Stanley Corkin
University of Massachusetts Press, 2024

In the mid-nineteenth century, Boston fashioned itself as a global hub. By the early 1970s, it was barely a dot on the national picture. It had gained a reputation as a decaying city rife with crime and dysfunctional politics, as well as decidedly retrograde race relations, prominently exemplified by white resistance to school integration. Despite this historical ebb in its national and international presence, it still possessed the infrastructure—superb educational institutions such as Harvard and MIT, world-class sports teams like the Celtics and Red Sox, powerful media outlets like The Boston Globe, and extensive shipping capacity—required to eventually thrive in an age of global trade and mass communication.

In Boston Mass-Mediated, Stanley Corkin explores the power of mass media to define a place. He examines the tensions between the emergent and prosperous city of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries and its representation in a range of media genres such as news journalism, professional sports broadcasting, and popular films like Mystic River and The Departed. This mass media, with its ever-increasing digital reach, has emphasized a city restricted by tropes suggestive of an earlier Boston—racism, white ethnic crime, Catholicism, and a pre-modern insularity—even as it becomes increasingly international and multicultural. These tropes mediate our understanding and experience of the city. Using Boston as a case study, Corkin contends that our contemporary sense of place occurs through a media saturated world, a world created by the explosion of digital technology that is steeped in preconceptions.


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Bytes and Backbeats
Repurposing Music in the Digital Age
Steve Savage
University of Michigan Press, 2013

From Attali's "cold social silence" to Baudrillard's hallucinatory reality, reproduced music has long been the target of critical attack. In Bytes and Backbeats, however, Steve Savage deploys an innovative combination of designed recording projects, ethnographic studies of contemporary music practice, and critical analysis to challenge many of these traditional attitudes about the creation and reception of music. Savage adopts the notion of "repurposing" as central to understanding how every aspect of musical activity, from creation to reception, has been transformed, arguing that the tension within production between a naturalizing "art" and a self-conscious "artifice" reflects and feeds into our evolving notions of creativity, authenticity, and community.

At the core of the book are three original audio projects, drawing from rock & roll, jazz, and traditional African music, through which Savage is able to target areas of contemporary practice that are particularly significant in the cultural evolution of the musical experience. Each audio project includes a studio study providing context for the social and cultural analysis that follows. This work stems from Savage's experience as a professional recording engineer and record producer.


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Chinese Film
Realism and Convention from the Silent Era to the Digital Age
Jason McGrath
University of Minnesota Press, 2022

A tour de force chronicling the development of realism in Chinese cinema


The history of Chinese cinema is as long and complicated as the tumultuous history of China itself. Be it the silent, the Communist, or the contemporary, each Chinese cinematic era has necessitated its own form in conversation with broader trends in politics and culture. 

In Chinese Film, Jason McGrath tells this fascinating story by tracing the varied claims to cinematic realism made by Chinese filmmakers, officials, critics, and scholars. Understanding realism as a historical dynamic that is both enabled and mitigated by aesthetic conventions of the day, he analyzes it across six different types of claims: ontological, perceptual, fictional, social, prescriptive, and apophatic.

Through this method, McGrath makes major claims not just about Chinese cinema but also about realism as an aesthetic form that negotiates between cultural conventions and the ever-evolving real. He comes to envision it as more than just a cinematic question, showing how the struggle for realism is central to the Chinese struggle for modernity itself.


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Cinema Futures
Cain, Abel or Cable?: The Screen Arts in the Digital Age
Edited by Kay Hoffmann
Amsterdam University Press, 1998
In the late 1960s, the cinema was pronounced dead. Television, like a Biblical Cain had slain his brother Abel. Some thirty years later, a remarkable reversal: rarely has the cinema been more popular. And yet, rarely has the cinema's future seemed more uncertain. Cinema Futures: Cain, Abel or Cable? presents a careful and forceful argument about predictions that tend to be made when new technologies appear. Examining the complex dynamics of convergence and divergence among the audio-visual media, the authors are realistic in their estimate of the future of the cinema's distinctive aesthetic identity, and robustly optimistic that the different social needs audiences bring to the public and domestic media will ensure their distinctiveness, as well as the necessary openness of cultural meaning and creative imput. The chief contributors include producers, historians, critics and journalists from several countries, creating a lively volume, rich in information and case studies, useful to media students and film scholars, as well as to anyone interested in better understanding the momentous changes transforming our worlds of sound and image.


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Citizen Science in the Digital Age
Rhetoric, Science, and Public Engagement
James Wynn
University of Alabama Press, 2016
A discussion of the benefits and pitfalls of citizen science—scientific undertakings that make use of public participation and crowd-sourced data collection

James Wynn’s timely investigation highlights scientific studies grounded in publicly gathered data and probes the rhetoric these studies employ. Many of these endeavors, such as the widely used SETI@home project, simply draw on the processing power of participants’ home computers; others, like the protein-folding game FoldIt, ask users to take a more active role in solving scientific problems. In Citizen Science in the Digital Age: Rhetoric, Science, and Public Engagement, Wynn analyzes the discourse that enables these scientific ventures, as well as the difficulties that arise in communication between scientists and lay people and the potential for misuse of publicly gathered data.
Wynn puzzles out the intricacies of these exciting new research developments by focusing on various case studies. He explores the Safecast project, which originated from crowd-sourced mapping for Fukushima radiation dispersal, arguing that evolving technologies enable public volunteers to make concrete, sound, science-based arguments. Additionally, he considers the potential use of citizen science as a method of increasing the public’s identification with the scientific community, and contemplates how more collaborative rhetoric might deepen these opportunities for interaction and alignment. Furthermore, he examines ways in which the lived experience of volunteers may be integrated with expert scientific knowledge, and also how this same personal involvement can be used to further policy agendas.

Precious few texts explore the intersection of rhetoric, science, and the Internet. Citizen Science in the Digital Age fills this gap, offering a clear, intelligent overview of the topic intended for rhetoric and communication scholars as well as practitioners and administrators in a number of science-based disciplines. With the expanded availability of once inaccessible technologies and computing power to laypeople, the practice of citizen science will only continue to grow. This study offers insight into how—given prudent application and the clear articulation of common goals—citizen science might strengthen the relationships between scientists and laypeople.

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Communication Culture in a Digital Age
Being Seriously Relational
Cristian Mendoza
St. Augustine's Press, 2023
Why are human beings so attracted to information and communication technologies? Developments in this field have formed new social networks around these technologies and that seem to compete with pre-existing structures in human lives. Cristian Mendoza and Lluís Clavell confront this phenomenon and its effect on human happiness, but have no desire to condemn the trajectory of human reliance on communication technology. Rather, they see an opportunity to explore human nature at greater depths. Only in this way can our use of technology properly support human activity and not sabotage our grasp of reality. 

Mendoza and Clavell's treatment of this topic renders an important philosophical conversation about digital realities and how they can actually make human life more human. This book provides a framework for using human attraction to information and communication tech for human benefit. It can be done! The authors apply the work of old and new masters to help open the new horizons of communication technology wherein human beings can flourish.

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How Girls of Color Find and Define Themselves in the Digital Age
Kimberly A. Scott
University of Illinois Press, 2021
What does is it mean for girls of color to become techno-social change agents--individuals who fuse technological savvy with a deep understanding of society in order to analyze and confront inequality?

Kimberly A. Scott explores this question and others as she details the National Science Foundation-funded enrichment project COMPUGIRLS. This groundbreaking initiative teaches tech skills to adolescent girls of color but, as importantly, offers a setting that emphasizes empowerment, community advancement, and self-discovery. Scott draws on her experience as an architect of COMPUGIRLS to detail the difficulties of translating participants' lives into a digital context while tracing how the program evolved. The dramatic stories of the participants show them blending newly developed technical and communication skills in ways designed to spark effective action and bring about important change.

A compelling merger of theory and storytelling, COMPUGIRLS provides a much-needed roadmap for understanding how girls of color can find and define their selves in today's digital age.


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Digitize and Punish
Racial Criminalization in the Digital Age
Brian Jefferson
University of Minnesota Press, 2020

Tracing the rise of digital computing in policing and punishment and its harmful impact on criminalized communities of color


The U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics estimates that law enforcement agencies have access to more than 100 million names stored in criminal history databases. In some cities, 80 percent of the black male population is registered in these databases. Digitize and Punish explores the long history of digital computing and criminal justice, revealing how big tech, computer scientists, university researchers, and state actors have digitized carceral governance over the past forty years—with devastating impact on poor communities of color.

Providing a comprehensive study of the use of digital technology in American criminal justice, Brian Jefferson shows how the technology has expanded the wars on crime and drugs, enabling our current state of mass incarceration and further entrenching the nation’s racialized policing and punishment. After examining how the criminal justice system conceptualized the benefits of computers to surveil criminalized populations, Jefferson focuses on New York City and Chicago to provide a grounded account of the deployment of digital computing in urban police departments.

By highlighting the intersection of policing and punishment with big data and web technology—resulting in the development of the criminal justice system’s latest tool, crime data centers—Digitize and Punish makes clear the extent to which digital technologies have transformed and intensified the nature of carceral power.


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Call Center Workers Fight for Good Jobs in the Digital Age
Debbie J. Goldman
University of Illinois Press, 2024

Call center employees once blended skill and emotional intelligence to solve customer problems while the workplace itself encouraged camaraderie and job satisfaction. Ten years after telecom industry deregulation, management had isolated the largely female workforce in cubicles, imposed quotas to sell products, and installed surveillance systems that tracked every call and keystroke.

Debbie J. Goldman explores how call center employees and their union fought for good, humane jobs in the face of degraded working conditions and lowered wages. As the workforce coalesced to resist the changes, it demanded the Communications Workers of America (CWA) fight for safe and secure good-paying jobs. But trends in technology, capitalism, and corporate governance--combined with the decline of unions--narrowed the negotiating options for workers. Goldman describes how the actions of workers, management, and policymakers shaped the social impact of the new digital technologies and gave new form to the telecommunications industry in a time of momentous change.

Perceptive and nuanced, Disconnected tells an overlooked story of service workers in a time of change.


front cover of Exploring Past Images in a Digital Age
Exploring Past Images in a Digital Age
Reinventing the Archive
Nezih Erdogan
Amsterdam University Press, 2023
Film archives are fast spreading around the world, and with them issues surrounding archival digitisation, artistic appropriation, and academic reinterpretation of film material that demand scholarly attention. Exploring Past Images in a Digital Age: Reinventing the Archive aims to fill this demand with a thought-provoking collection of original articles contributed by renowned scholars, archivists, and artists. It urges the reader to “forget” standard ways of thinking about film archives and come to grips with the challenges of analysing and recontextualising an area in transit from the analogue to the digital. The book not only throws light on unexplored issues related to film archives but also introduces unconventional approaches and alternative sources for scholarly research and a vast range of artistic possibilities.

front cover of Exposed
Desire and Disobedience in the Digital Age
Bernard E. Harcourt
Harvard University Press, 2015

Social media compile data on users, retailers mine information on consumers, Internet giants create dossiers of who we know and what we do, and intelligence agencies collect all this plus billions of communications daily. Exploiting our boundless desire to access everything all the time, digital technology is breaking down whatever boundaries still exist between the state, the market, and the private realm. Exposed offers a powerful critique of our new virtual transparence, revealing just how unfree we are becoming and how little we seem to care.

Bernard Harcourt guides us through our new digital landscape, one that makes it so easy for others to monitor, profile, and shape our every desire. We are building what he calls the expository society—a platform for unprecedented levels of exhibition, watching, and influence that is reconfiguring our political relations and reshaping our notions of what it means to be an individual.

We are not scandalized by this. To the contrary: we crave exposure and knowingly surrender our privacy and anonymity in order to tap into social networks and consumer convenience—or we give in ambivalently, despite our reservations. But we have arrived at a moment of reckoning. If we do not wish to be trapped in a steel mesh of wireless digits, we have a responsibility to do whatever we can to resist. Disobedience to a regime that relies on massive data mining can take many forms, from aggressively encrypting personal information to leaking government secrets, but all will require conviction and courage.


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The Fanfiction Reader
Folk Tales for the Digital Age
Francesca Coppa
University of Michigan Press, 2017
Written originally as a fanfiction for the series Twilight, the popularity of Fifty Shades of Grey has made obvious what was always clear to fans and literary scholars alike: that it is an essential human activity to read and retell epic stories of famous heroic characters. The Fanfiction Reader showcases the extent to which the archetypal storytelling exemplified by fanfiction has continuities with older forms: the communal tale-telling cultures of the past and the remix cultures of the present have much in common. Short stories that draw on franchises such as Star Trek, Star Wars, Doctor Who, James Bond, and others are accompanied by short contextual and analytical essays wherein Coppa treats fanfiction—a genre primarily written by women and minorities—as a rich literary tradition in which non-mainstream themes and values can thrive.


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Film Criticism in the Digital Age
Frey, Mattias
Rutgers University Press, 2015
Over the past decade, as digital media has expanded and print outlets have declined, pundits have bemoaned a “crisis of criticism” and mourned the “death of the critic.” Now that well-paying jobs in film criticism have largely evaporated, while blogs, message boards, and social media have given new meaning to the saying that “everyone’s a critic,” urgent questions have emerged about the status and purpose of film criticism in the twenty-first century. 
In Film Criticism in the Digital Age, ten scholars from across the globe come together to consider whether we are witnessing the extinction of serious film criticism or seeing the start of its rebirth in a new form. Drawing from a wide variety of case studies and methodological perspectives, the book’s contributors find many signs of the film critic’s declining clout, but they also locate surprising examples of how critics—whether moonlighting bloggers or salaried writers—have been able to intervene in current popular discourse about arts and culture.
In addition to collecting a plethora of scholarly perspectives, Film Criticism in the Digital Age includes statements from key bloggers and print critics, like Armond White and Nick James. Neither an uncritical celebration of digital culture nor a jeremiad against it, this anthology offers a comprehensive look at the challenges and possibilities that the Internet brings to the evaluation, promotion, and explanation of artistic works. 

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Folk Culture in the Digital Age
The Emergent Dynamics of Human Interaction
Trevor J. Blank
Utah State University Press, 2012

Smart phones, tablets, Facebook, Twitter, and wireless Internet connections are the latest technologies to have become entrenched in our culture.  Although traditionalists have argued that computer-mediated communication and cyberspace are incongruent with the study of folklore, Trevor J. Blank sees the digital world as fully capable of generating, transmitting, performing, and archiving vernacular culture. Folklore in the Digital Age documents the emergent cultural scenes and expressive folkloric communications made possible by digital “new media” technologies.

New media is changing the ways in which people learn, share, participate, and engage with others as they adopt technologies to complement and supplement traditional means of vernacular expression. But behavioral and structural overlap in many folkloric forms exists between on- and offline, and emerging patterns in digital rhetoric mimic the dynamics of previously documented folkloric forms, invoking familiar social or behavior customs, linguistic inflections, and symbolic gestures.

Folklore in the Digital Age provides insights and perspectives on the myriad ways in which folk culture manifests in the digital age and contributes to our greater understanding of vernacular expression in our ever-changing technological world.


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Friending the Past
The Sense of History in the Digital Age
Alan Liu
University of Chicago Press, 2018
Can today’s society, increasingly captivated by a constant flow of information, share a sense of history? How did our media-making forebears balance the tension between the present and the absent, the individual and the collective, the static and the dynamic—and how do our current digital networks disrupt these same balances? Can our social media, with its fleeting nature, even be considered social at all?   
          In Friending the Past, Alan Liu proposes fresh answers to these innovative questions of connection. He explores how we can learn from the relationship between past societies whose media forms fostered a communal and self-aware sense of history—such as prehistorical oral societies with robust storytelling cultures, or the great print works of nineteenth-century historicism—and our own instantaneous present. He concludes with a surprising look at how the sense of history exemplified in today’s JavaScript timelines compares to the temporality found in Romantic poetry.
          Interlaced among these inquiries, Liu shows how extensive “network archaeologies” can be constructed as novel ways of thinking about our affiliations with time and with each other. These conceptual architectures of period and age are also always media structures, scaffolded with the outlines of what we mean by history. Thinking about our own time, Liu wonders if the digital, networked future can sustain a similar sense of history.

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From Voice to Influence
Understanding Citizenship in a Digital Age
Edited by Danielle Allen and Jennifer S. Light
University of Chicago Press, 2015
How have online protests—like the recent outrage over the Komen Foundation’s decision to defund Planned Parenthood—changed the nature of political action? How do Facebook and other popular social media platforms shape the conversation around current political issues? The ways in which we gather information about current events and communicate it with others have been transformed by the rapid rise of digital media. The political is no longer confined to the institutional and electoral arenas, and that has profound implications for how we understand citizenship and political participation.

With From Voice to Influence, Danielle Allen and Jennifer S. Light have brought together a stellar group of political and social theorists, social scientists, and media analysts to explore this transformation. Threading through the contributions is the notion of egalitarian participatory democracy, and among the topics discussed are immigration rights activism, the participatory potential of hip hop culture, and the porous boundary between public and private space on social media. The opportunities presented for political efficacy through digital media to people who otherwise might not be easily heard also raise a host of questions about how to define “good participation:” Does the ease with which one can now participate in online petitions or conversations about current events seduce some away from serious civic activities into “slacktivism?”

 Drawing on a diverse body of theory, from Hannah Arendt to Anthony Appiah, From Voice to Influence offers a range of distinctive visions for a political ethics to guide citizens in a digitally connected world.

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Future of Art in a Digital Age
From Hellenistic to Hebraic Consciousness
Mel Alexenberg
Intellect Books, 2006

This work develops the thesis that the transition from pre-modernism to postmodernism in art of the digital age represents a paradigm shift from the Hellenistic to the Hebraic roots of Western culture.

Semiotic and morphological analysis of art and visual culture demonstrate the contemporary confluence between the deep structure of Hebraic consciousness and new directions in art that arise along the interface between scientific inquiry, digital technologies, and multicultural expressions.

Complementing these two analytic methodologies, alternative methodologies of kabbalah and halakhah provide postmodern methods for extending into digital age art forms. Exemplary artworks are described in the text and illustrated with photographs.


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Gen Z, Explained
The Art of Living in a Digital Age
Roberta Katz, Sarah Ogilvie, Jane Shaw, and Linda Woodhead
University of Chicago Press, 2021
An optimistic and nuanced portrait of a generation that has much to teach us about how to live and collaborate in our digital world.

Born since the mid-1990s, members of Generation Z comprise the first generation never to know the world without the internet, and the most diverse generation yet. As Gen Z starts to emerge into adulthood and enter the workforce, what do we really know about them? And what can we learn from them? Gen Z, Explained is the authoritative portrait of this significant generation. It draws on extensive interviews that display this generation’s candor, surveys that explore their views and attitudes, and a vast database of their astonishingly inventive lexicon to build a comprehensive picture of their values, daily lives, and outlook. Gen Z emerges here as an extraordinarily thoughtful, promising, and perceptive generation that is sounding a warning to their elders about the world around them—a warning of a complexity and depth the “OK Boomer” phenomenon can only suggest.

Much of the existing literature about Gen Z has been highly judgmental. In contrast, this book provides a deep and nuanced understanding of a generation facing a future of enormous challenges, from climate change to civil unrest. What’s more, they are facing this future head-on, relying on themselves and their peers to work collaboratively to solve these problems. As Gen Z, Explained shows, this group of young people is as compassionate and imaginative as any that has come before, and understanding the way they tackle problems may enable us to envision new kinds of solutions. This portrait of Gen Z is ultimately an optimistic one, suggesting they have something to teach all of us about how to live and thrive in this digital world.

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Global Cities
Cinema, Architecture, and Urbanism in a Digital Age
Petro, Patrice
Rutgers University Press, 2003
In Global Cities, scholars from an impressive array of disciplines critique the growing body of literature on the process broadly known as "globalization." This interdisciplinary focus enables the authors to explore the complex geographies of modern cities, and offer possible strategies for reclaiming a sense of place and community in these globalized urban settings. While examining major cities including New York, Tokyo, Berlin, Paris, and Hong Kong, contributors insist that the study of urban experiences must remain as attentive to the material effects as to the psychic and social consequences of globalization. Accordingly, essays explore the implications of global culture for architecture, cinema, and communication--but do so in a way that highlights the importance of the spaces between such metropolitan centers. These locations, the authors argue, serve as increasingly important "frontier zones," where a diverse set of actors converge and contend for power and presence. Such a perspective ultimately adds nuance and meaning to our understanding of the heterogeneous urban landscapes of these global cities. Linda Krause is an associate professor in the Department of Architecture at the School of Architecture and Urban Planning, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. Patrice Petro is professor of film studies and director of the Center for International Education at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. A volume in the New Directions in International Studies series, edited by Patrice Petro

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Global City-Twinning in the Digital Age
Michel S. Laguerre
University of Michigan Press, 2019

For many years, cities throughout the globe have developed ties with each other to process and nurture friendship, solidarity, and collaboration. These city relationships constitute a mode of governance distinct from those of cities that are not involved in such cross-border arrangements, with influence that expands far beyond region.

In this light, Global City-Twinning in the Digital Age unveils an analysis of intercity relationships both on a global scale and as a global phenomenon with digital communication technologies that play key roles in upgrading traditional practices, enhancing cross-border cooperation, and facilitating the production of digital sister cities. This book analyzes the deployment of sister-city formations and operations throughout the world with a focus on cities of North America, Latin America, North Africa, Europe, and the Mediterranean region. Using a global approach, it discusses friendship, entrepreneurship, urban development, cooperative management, municipal policy, and digital entanglements. It expands the scope of study of sister cities by unveiling the role of immigrants, diaspora, and post-diaspora in the making and functioning of the digital model of sister cities.


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Heritage and Tourism
Places, Imageries and the Digital Age
Edited by Linde Egberts and Maria D. Alvarez
Amsterdam University Press, 2018
Heritage and tourism mutually reinforce each other, with the presentation of heritage at physical sites mirrored by the ways heritage ispresented on the internet. This interdisciplinary book uses humanities and social sciences to analyse the ways that heritage is brandedand commodified, how stakeholders organise place brands, and how digital strategies shape how visitors appreciate heritage sites. The book covers a wide geographic diversity, offering the reader the chance to find cross-cutting themes and area-specific features of the field.

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A History of Photography in Indonesia
From the Colonial Era to the Digital Age
Brian C. Arnold
Amsterdam University Press, 2022
As a former colonized nation, Indonesia has a unique place in the history of photography. A History of Photography in Indonesia: From the Colonial Era to the Digital Age looks at the development of photography from the beginning and traces its uses in Indonesia from its invention to the present day. The Dutch colonial government first brought the medium to the East Indies in the 1840s and immediately recognized its potential in serving the colonial apparatus. As the country grew and changed, so too did the medium. Photography was not only an essential tool of colonialism, but it also became part of the movement for independence, a voice for reformasi, an agent for advocating democracy, and is now available to anyone with a phone. This book gathers essays by leading artists, scholars, and curators from around the world who have worked with photography in Indonesia and have traced the evolution of the medium from its inception to the present day, addressing the impact of photography on colonialism, independence, and democratization.

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The Hyperlinked Society
Questioning Connections in the Digital Age
Joseph Turow and Lokman Tsui, Editors
University of Michigan Press, 2008

"Links" are among the most basic---and most unexamined---features of online life. Bringing together a prominent array of thinkers from industry and the academy, The Hyperlinked Society addresses a provocative series of questions about the ways in which hyperlinks organize behavior online. How do media producers' considerations of links change the way they approach their work, and how do these considerations in turn affect the ways that audiences consume news and entertainment? What role do economic and political considerations play in information producers' creation of links? How do links shape the size and scope of the public sphere in the digital age? Are hyperlinks "bridging" mechanisms that encourage people to see beyond their personal beliefs to a broader and more diverse world? Or do they simply reinforce existing bonds by encouraging people to ignore social and political perspectives that conflict with their existing interests and beliefs?

This pathbreaking collection of essays will be valuable to anyone interested in the now taken for granted connections that structure communication, commerce, and civic discourse in the world of digital media.

"This collection provides a broad and deep examination of the social, political, and economic implications of the evolving, web-based media environment. The Hyperlinked Society will be a very useful contribution to the scholarly debate about the role of the internet in modern society, and especially about the interaction between the internet and other media systems in modern society."
---Charles Steinfield, Professor and Chairperson, Department of Telecommunication, Information Studies, and Media, Michigan State University

Joseph Turow is Robert Lewis Shayon Professor at the Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania. He was named a Distinguished Scholar by the National Communication Association and a Fellow of the International Communication Association in 2010. He has authored eight books, edited five, and written more than 100 articles on mass media industries. His books include Niche Envy: Marketing Discrimination in the Digital Age and Breaking up America: Advertisers and the New Media World.

Lokman Tsui is a doctoral candidate at the Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania. His research interests center on new media and global communication.

Cover image: This graph from Lada Adamic's chapter depicts the link structure of political blogs in the United States. The shapes reflect the blogs, and the colors of the shapes reflect political orientation---red for conservative blogs, blue for liberal ones. The size of each blog reflects the number of blogs that link to it.

digitalculturebooks is an imprint of the University of Michigan Press and the Scholarly Publishing Office of the University of Michigan Library dedicated to publishing innovative and accessible work exploring new media and their impact on society, culture, and scholarly communication. Visit the website at


front cover of Image Ethics In The Digital Age
Image Ethics In The Digital Age
Larry Gross
University of Minnesota Press, 2003

Over the past quarter century, dramatic technological advances in the production, manipulation, and dissemination of images have transformed the practices of journalism, entertainment, and advertising as well as the visual environment itself. From digital retouching to wholesale deception, the media world is now beset by an unprecedented range of moral, ethical, legal, and professional challenges. Image Ethics in the Digital Age brings together leading experts in the fields of journalism, media studies, and law to address these challenges and assess their implications for personal and societal values and behavior.

Among the issues raised are the threat to journalistic integrity posed by visual editing software; the monopolization of image archives by a handful of corporations and its impact on copyright and fair use laws; the instantaneous electronic distribution of images of dubious provenance around the world; the erosion of privacy and civility under the onslaught of sensationalistic twenty-four-hour television news coverage and entertainment programming; and the increasingly widespread use of surveillance cameras in public spaces. This volume of original essays is vital reading for anyone concerned with the influence of the mass media in the digital age.

Contributors: Howard S. Becker; Derek Bousé, Eastern Mediterranean U, Cyprus; Hart Cohen, U of Western Sydney; Jessica M. Fishman; Paul Frosh, Hebrew U of Jerusalem; Faye Ginsburg, New York U; Laura Grindstaff, U of California, Davis; Dianne Hagaman; Sheldon W. Halpern, Ohio State U; Darrell Y. Hamamoto, U of California, Davis; Marguerite Moritz, U of Colorado, Boulder; David D. Perlmutter, Louisiana State U; Dona Schwartz, U of Minnesota; Matthew Soar, Concordia University; Stephen E. Weil, Smithsonian Institution’s Center for Education and Museum Studies.


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Indian Country
Telling a Story in a Digital Age
Victoria L. LaPoe
Michigan State University Press, 2017
Storytelling has always been an important part of Native culture. Stories play a part in everyday Native life—they are often oral and rich in detail and language and serve as a form of recording history. Digital media now allow for the extension of this storytelling. This necessary text evaluates how digital media are changing the rich cultural act of storytelling within Native communities, with a specific focus on Native newsroom norms and routines. The authors argue that the non-Native press often leave consumers with a stereotypical view of American Indians, and aim to give a more authentic representation to Native journalism. With interviews from more than forty Native journalists around the country, this book is essential to understanding how digital media possibly advances the distribution of storytelling within the American Indian community.

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Interpreter Education in the Digital Age
Innovation, Access, and Change
Suzanne Ehrlich
Gallaudet University Press, 2015
This collection brings together innovative research and approaches for blended learning using digital technology in interpreter education for signed and spoken languages. Volume editors Suzanne Ehrlich and Jemina Napier call upon the expertise of 21 experts, including themselves, to report on the current technology used to provide digital enhancements to interpreter education in Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, Belgium, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Divided into three parts, Innovation, Change, and Community Engagement, this study focuses on the technology itself, rather than how technology enhances curriculum, delivery, or resources.

       Initiatives described in this collection range from the implementation of on-demand interpreting using iPad technology to create personalized, small-group, multidimensional models suited to digital media for 160 languages; introducing students to interpreting in a 3D world through an IVY virtual environment; applying gaming principles to interpreter education; assessing the amenability of the digital pen in the hybrid mode of interpreting; developing multimedia content for both open access and structured interpreter education environments; to preparing interpreting students for interactions in social media forums, and more. Interpreter Education in the Digital Age provides a context for the application of technologies in interpreter education from an international viewpoint across languages and modalities.

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Inventories and Surveys for Heritage Management
Lessons for the Digital Age
David Myers
J. Paul Getty Trust, The, 2024
This open-access publication provides essential guidance on digital inventories and surveys for the identification, conservation, and management of heritage places.

A critical first step in the conservation of cultural heritage is to identify and understand the places we want to protect. Inventories and surveys are essential tools in this effort, and their use in managing national, regional, and local heritage is mandated in heritage-related legislation across the globe. Despite the widespread understanding of the importance of inventories and surveys, however, practical, up-to-date guidance on how they should be created, implemented, and maintained has been substantially lacking—until now.
This publication draws from the Getty Conservation Institute’s ongoing work with heritage inventories and on the Los Angeles Office of Historic Resources’ experience with SurveyLA. It provides technical advice, guidance, and lessons learned for employing inventories and surveys as tools for heritage conservation and management.

The free online edition of this open-access publication will be available at Also available are free PDF and EPUB downloads of the book.

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Islam in the Digital Age
E-Jihad, Online Fatwas and Cyber Islamic Environments
Gary R. Bunt
Pluto Press, 2003

The Internet is an increasingly important source of information for many people in the Muslim world. Many Muslims in majority and minority contexts rely on the Internet -- including websites and e-mail -- as a primary source of news, information and communication about Islam. As a result, a new media culture is emerging which is having a significant impact on areas of global Muslim consciousness. Post-September 11th, this phenomenon has grown more rapidly than ever.

Gary R. Bunt provides a fascinating account of the issues at stake, identifying two radical new concepts:

Firstly, the emergence of e-jihad ('Electronic Jihad') originating from diverse Muslim perspectives -- this is described in its many forms relating to the different definitions of 'jihad', including on-line activism (ranging from promoting militaristic activities to hacking, to co-ordinating peaceful protests) and Muslim expression post 9/11.

Secondly, he discusses religious authority on the Internet -- including the concept of on-line fatwas and their influence in diverse settings, and the complexities of conflicting notions of religious authority.


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Kids Have All the Write Stuff
Revised and Updated for a Digital Age
Robert W. Maloy
University of Massachusetts Press, 2019
You can open up a world of imagination and learning for children when you encourage the expression of ideas through writing. Kids Have All the Write Stuff: Revised and Updated for a Digital Age shows you how to support children's development as confident writers and communicators, offering hundreds of creative ways to integrate writing into the lives of toddlers, preschoolers, and elementary school students—whether at home or at school.

You'll discover:
· how to implement writing as a part of daily life with family and friends;
· processes and invitations fit for young writers;
· strategies for connecting writing to math and coding;
· writing materials and technologies; and
· creative and practical writing ideas, from fiction, nonfiction, and videos to blogs and emails.

In order to connect writing to today's digital revolution, veteran educators Sharon A. Edwards, Robert W. Maloy, and Torrey Trust reveal how digital tools can inspire children to write, and a helpful companion website brings together a range of resources and technologies. This essential book offers enjoyment and inspiration to young writers!

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The Labor of Care
Filipina Migrants and Transnational Families in the Digital Age
Valerie Francisco-Menchavez
University of Illinois Press, 2018
For generations, migration moved in one direction at a time: migrants to host countries, and money to families left behind. The Labor of Care argues that globalization has changed all that. Valerie Francisco-Menchavez spent five years alongside a group of working migrant mothers. Drawing on interviews and up-close collaboration with these women, Francisco-Menchavez looks at the sacrifices, emotional and material consequences, and recasting of roles that emerge from family separation. She pays particular attention to how technologies like Facebook, Skype, and recorded video open up transformative ways of bridging distances while still supporting traditional family dynamics. As she shows, migrants also build communities of care in their host countries. These chosen families provide an essential form of mutual support. What emerges is a fascinating portrait of today's transnational family—sundered, yet inexorably linked over the distances by timeless emotions and new forms of intimacy.

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The Last Laugh
Folk Humor, Celebrity Culture, and Mass-Mediated Disasters in the Digital Age
Trevor J. Blank
University of Wisconsin Press, 2013
Widely publicized in mass media worldwide, high-profile tragedies and celebrity scandals—the untimely deaths of Michael Jackson and Princess Diana, the embarrassing affairs of Tiger Woods and President Clinton, the 9/11 attacks or the Challenger space shuttle explosion—often provoke nervous laughter and black humor. If in the past this snarky folklore may have been shared among friends and uttered behind closed doors, today the Internet's ubiquity and instant interactivity propels such humor across a much more extensive and digitally mediated discursive space. New media not only let more people "in on the joke," but they have also become the "go-to" formats for engaging in symbolic interaction, especially in times of anxiety or emotional suppression, by providing users an expansive forum for humorous, combative, or intellectual communication, including jokes that cross the line of propriety and good taste.
            Moving through engaging case studies of Internet-derived humor about momentous disasters in recent American popular culture and history, The Last Laugh chronicles how and why new media have become a predominant means of vernacular expression. Trevor J. Blank argues that computer-mediated communication has helped to compensate for users' sense of physical detachment in the "real" world, while generating newly meaningful and dynamic opportunities for the creation and dissemination of folklore. Drawing together recent developments in new media studies with the analytical tools of folklore studies, he makes a strong case for the significance to contemporary folklore of technologically driven trends in folk and mass culture.

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Librarian's Guide to Intellectual Property in the Digital Age
American Library Association
American Library Association, 2002

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Material Media-Making in the Digital Age
Daniel Binns
Intellect Books, 2024
An accessible guide to the wealth of media-making tools and processes in our contemporary world.

Today’s world offers no shortage of media for us to consume, and the ever-expanding array of available media has changed the way scholars think about its production and reception. Missing from these conversations about new media, however, is the maker—the one with the power to produce media from their own pocket.

In Material Media-Making in the Digital Age, Daniel Binns looks at the current media landscape in order to understand his own media practice. The result is a personal journey through media theory, history, and technology, furnished with practical lessons on the digital form for teachers, students, professionals, and enthusiasts. A refreshing combination of theory and practice written in a personal, engaging style, this book will enable readers to understand how a personal creative practice might unlock deeper thinking about media and its place in the world. 

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The Maya Art of Speaking Writing
Remediating Indigenous Orality in the Digital Age
Tiffany D. Creegan Miller
University of Arizona Press, 2022
Challenging the distinctions between “old” and “new” media and narratives about the deprecation of orality in favor of inscribed forms, The Maya Art of Speaking Writing draws from Maya concepts of tz’ib’ (recorded knowledge) and tzij, choloj, and ch’owen (orality) to look at expressive work across media and languages.

Based on nearly a decade of fieldwork in the Guatemalan highlands, Tiffany D. Creegan Miller discusses images that are sonic, pictorial, gestural, and alphabetic. She reveals various forms of creativity and agency that are woven through a rich media landscape in Indigenous Guatemala, as well as Maya diasporas in Mexico and the United States. Miller discusses how technologies of inscription and their mediations are shaped by human editors, translators, communities, and audiences, as well as by voices from the natural world.

These texts push back not just on linear and compartmentalized Western notions of media but also on the idea of the singular author, creator, scholar, or artist removed from their environment. The persistence of orality and the interweaving of media forms combine to offer a challenge to audiences to participate in decolonial actions through language preservation.

The Maya Art of Speaking Writing calls for centering Indigenous epistemologies by doing research in and through Indigenous languages as we engage in debates surrounding Indigenous literatures, anthropology, decoloniality, media studies, orality, and the digital humanities.

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Media Policy for the Digital Age
The Netherlands Scientific Council for Government Policy
Amsterdam University Press, 2006
Traditionally, the Netherlands has enjoyed status as a test market for new media. But in the past decade, such innovations have been severely hampered by questions about the future of public broadcasting. This issue has led to abundant political grandstanding, but little in the way of definitive policymaking. In February 2005, the Scientific Council for Government Policy published a report with practical policy suggestions. Media Policy for the Digital Age summarizes the Council’s recommendations, giving readers outside the Netherlands insight into the issues at stake and possible solutions, as well as a concise analysis that tackles the challenges of making robust media policy for the twenty-first century.

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Mediated Mormons
Shifting Religious Identities in the Digital Age
Rosemary Avance
University of Utah Press, 2024
In the early- to mid-2010s, Mitt Romney’s presidential candidacy, the hit Broadway musical The Book of Mormon, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ “I’m a Mormon” media campaign brought critical media attention to Mormonism. In this first lengthy treatment of Mormon identities as they intersect with their religious institution, the internet, and modernity during the so-called “Mormon Moment,” Rosemary Avance explores how LDS stakeholders challenged traditional notions of what it means to be Mormon, vying for control of their own public narratives.

Mediated Mormons uses a case study approach to consider various iterations of Mormon identity as presented by church authorities, faithful members, the secular media, and heterodox and former adherents. These often-conflicting perspectives challenge traditional models of LDS authority, dismantling a monolithic view of Mormons and offering a window into processes of social activism and institutional change in the internet era.

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Muhammad in the Digital Age
Edited by Ruqayya Yasmine Khan, foreword by Randall Nadeau
University of Texas Press, 2015

The early twenty-first century has experienced an unrivaled dissemination of information and misinformation about Islam, its prophet Muhammad, and its followers, largely facilitated by the fact that the tragedy of 9/11 roughly coincided with the advent of the digital age. In the first collection of its kind, Ruqayya Khan has compiled essays that treat Muhammad and the core elements of Islam as focal points in an exploration of how the digital era—including social media and other expressions—have both had an effect on and been affected by Islam.

Scholars from a variety of fields deal with topics such as the 2005 cartoon controversy in Denmark and the infamous 2012 movie trailer “Innocence of Muslims” that some believe sparked the attacks on the US consulate in Benghazi, as well as how the digitization of ancient texts have allowed the origins of Islam to be studied in new ways. Other essays examine how Muhammad’s wives have been represented in various online sources, including a web comic; the contrasting depictions of Muhammad as both a warrior and peacemaker; and how the widespread distribution of “the look” of Islamic terrorists has led to attacks on Sikhs, whose only point of resemblance to them may be a full beard. These findings illuminate the role of the Internet in forms of representation, advocacy, and engagement concerning Islam and Muslims in our world today.


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Multiliteracies for a Digital Age
Stuart A. Selber
Southern Illinois University Press, 2004

Just as the majority of books about computer literacy deal more with technological issues than with literacy issues, most computer literacy programs overemphasize technical skills and fail to adequately prepare students for the writing and communications tasks in a technology-driven era. Multiliteracies for a Digital Age serves as a guide for composition teachers to develop effective, full-scale computer literacy programs that are also professionally responsible by emphasizing different kinds of literacies and proposing methods for helping students move among them in strategic ways.

Defining computer literacy as a domain of writing and communication, Stuart A. Selber addresses the questions that few other computer literacy texts consider: What should a computer literate student be able to do? What is required of literacy teachers to educate such a student? How can functional computer literacy fit within the values of teaching writing and communication as a profession? Reimagining functional literacy in ways that speak to teachers of writing and communication, he builds a framework for computer literacy instruction that blends functional, critical, and rhetorical concerns in the interest of social action and change.

Multiliteracies for a Digital Age reviews the extensive literature on computer literacy and critiques it from a humanistic perspective. This approach, which will remain useful as new versions of computer hardware and software inevitably replace old versions, helps to usher students into an understanding of the biases, belief systems, and politics inherent in technological contexts. Selber redefines rhetoric at the nexus of technology and literacy and argues that students should be prepared as authors of twenty-first-century texts that defy the established purview of English departments. The result is a rich portrait of the ideal multiliterate student in a digital age and a social approach to computer literacy envisioned with the requirements for systemic change in mind.


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Museum Object Lessons for the Digital Age
Haidy Geismar
University College London, 2018
Among the challenges museums face when displaying digital objects are widely held assumptions about the nature of these objects and the material, social, and political foundations of digital art practices.

Museum Object Lessons for the Digital Age urges readers to question their assumptions through four wide-ranging chapters, each focused on a single object—a box, a pen, an effigy, and a cloak. The book begins with an introduction exploring the legacies of older forms of media and earlier museum practices of collection and then offers a critical analysis of contending theories of knowledge production in museums as it relates to digital projects. From there, Haidy Geismar guides readers in lively, accessible prose through a range of objects, from ethnographic and decorative arts collections, bespoke digital experiments, and even the Google Art Project, revealing what these objects can tell us about both the past and the future of digital collection and display.

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Music Generations in the Digital Age
Social Practices of Listening and Idols in Japan
Rafal Zaborowski
Amsterdam University Press, 2024
What do we do when we listen? The act of engagement with music in everyday life may seem simple on the surface but participation, interpretation, circulation and cultural production in the digital age are more complex and entangled than ever before. It is especially so in Japan, with its vast multimedia idol and vocaloid industries. This unique ethnographic work at the intersection of cultural, media and music studies covers a wide spectrum of music-related activities embedded in the daily lives of two Japanese cohorts. The varied case studies, including teen idol groups and virtual idols, aid the detailed examination of the relation between music, generation, and society.

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The New Information Professional
Your Guide to Careers in the Digital Age
Kelly Kowatch
American Library Association, 2010

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News in a Digital Age
Comparing the Presentation of News Information over Time and Across Media Platforms
Jonathan S. Kavanagh
RAND Corporation, 2019
This report presents a quantitative assessment of how the presentation of news has changed over the past 30 years and how it varies across platforms. Over time, and as society moved from “old” to “new” media, news content has generally shifted from more-objective event- and context-based reporting to reporting that is more subjective, relies more heavily on argumentation and advocacy, and includes more emotional appeals.

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Not All Dead White Men
Classics and Misogyny in the Digital Age
Donna Zuckerberg
Harvard University Press, 2018

A Times Higher Education Book of the Week

A virulent strain of antifeminism is thriving online that treats women’s empowerment as a mortal threat to men and to the integrity of Western civilization. Its proponents cite ancient Greek and Latin texts to support their claims—from Ovid’s Ars Amatoria to Seneca and Marcus Aurelius—arguing that they articulate a model of masculinity that sustained generations but is now under siege. Not All Dead White Men reveals that some of the most controversial and consequential debates about the legacy of the ancients are raging not in universities but online.

“A chilling account of trolling, misogyny, racism, and bad history proliferated online by the Alt-Right… Zuckerberg makes a persuasive case for why we need a new, more critical, and less comfortable relationship between the ancient and modern worlds in this important and very timely book.”
—Emily Wilson, translator of The Odyssey

“Explores how ideas about Ancient Greece and Rome are used and misused by antifeminist thinkers today.”

“Zuckerberg presciently analyzes these communities’…embrace of stoicism as a self-help tool to gain confidence, jobs, and girlfriends. Their adoration of men like Marcus Aurelius, Epictetus, and Ovid…is founded in a limited and distorted interpretation of ancient philosophy…lending heft and authority to sexism and abuse.”
The Nation

“Traces the application—and misapplication—of classical authors and texts in online communities that see feminism as a threat.”
Bitch Media


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Opera for Everyone
The Industry's Experiments with American Opera in the Digital Age
Megan Steigerwald Ille
University of Michigan Press, 2024
Opera for Everyone: The Industry’s Experiments with American Opera in the Digital Age draws on seven years of multi-sited ethnography to examine the acclaimed experimental productions of Los Angeles-based opera company The Industry. Steigerwald Ille understands The Industry’s productions as part of an emerging wave of U.S. operas that integrate new media and interactive performance through means such as site-specificity and simulcast video, and then traces the company’s path from Crescent City (2012), the company’s first production, to Sweet Land (2020), the company’s final production before switching to a new production model. Steigerwald Ille argues that by moving opera outside of the opera house, The Industry’s productions expose the economic and aesthetic structures key to the circulation of operatic performance at the same time that they deploy opera as a tool for digital listening, community engagement, popular entertainment, and commentary on systemic racism and settler colonialism. Through ethnographic work with The Industry’s creators and performers, and close examination of the company’s first decade of work, this book reveals how The Industry paradoxically provides both a roadmap and boundary line for experimental and traditional companies trying to find new ways to approach operatic performance in the twenty-first century United States.

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Opposing Democracy in the Digital Age
The Yellow Shirts in Thailand
Aim Sinpeng
University of Michigan Press, 2021

Opposing Democracy in the Digital Age is about why ordinary people in a democratizing state oppose democracy and how they leverage both traditional and social media to do so. Aim Sinpeng focuses on the people behind popular, large-scale antidemocratic movements that helped bring down democracy in 2006 and 2014 in Thailand. The yellow shirts (PAD—People’s Alliance for Democracy) that are the focus of the book are antidemocratic movements grown out of democratic periods in Thailand, but became the catalyst for the country’s democratic breakdown. Why, when, and how supporters of these movements mobilize offline and online to bring down democracy are some of the key questions that Sinpeng answers. While the book primarily uses a qualitative methodological approach, it also uses several quantitative tools to analyze social media data in the later chapters. This is one of few studies in the field of regime transition that focuses on antidemocratic mobilization and takes the role of social media seriously.


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Originality, Imitation, and Plagiarism
Teaching Writing in the Digital Age
Caroline Eisner and Martha Vicinus, Editors
University of Michigan Press, 2008

"At long last, a discussion of plagiarism that doesn't stop at 'Don't do it or else,' but does full justice to the intellectual interest of the topic!"
---Gerald Graff, author of Clueless in Academe and 2008 President, Modern Language Association

This collection is a timely intervention in national debates about what constitutes original or plagiarized writing in the digital age. Somewhat ironically, the Internet makes it both easier to copy and easier to detect copying. The essays in this volume explore the complex issues of originality, imitation, and plagiarism, particularly as they concern students, scholars, professional writers, and readers, while also addressing a range of related issues, including copyright conventions and the ownership of original work, the appropriate dissemination of innovative ideas, and the authority and role of the writer/author. Throughout these essays, the contributors grapple with their desire to encourage and maintain free access to copyrighted material for noncommercial purposes while also respecting the reasonable desires of authors to maintain control over their own work.

Both novice and experienced teachers of writing will learn from the contributors' practical suggestions about how to fashion unique assignments, teach about proper attribution, and increase students' involvement in their own writing. This is an anthology for anyone interested in how scholars and students can navigate the sea of intellectual information that characterizes the digital/information age.

"Eisner and Vicinus have put together an impressive cast of contributors who cut through the war on plagiarism to examine key specificities that often get blurred by the rhetoric of slogans. It will be required reading not only for those concerned with plagiarism, but for the many more who think about what it means to be an author, a student, a scientist, or anyone who negotiates and renegotiates the meaning of originality and imitation in collaborative and information-intensive settings."
---Mario Biagioli, Professor of the History of Science, Harvard University, and coeditor of Scientific Authorship: Credit and Intellectual Property in Science

"This is an important collection that addresses issues of great significance to teachers, to students, and to scholars across several disciplines. . . . These essays tackle their topics head-on in ways that are both accessible and provocative."
---Andrea Lunsford, Louise Hewlett Nixon Professor of English, Claude and Louise Rosenberg Jr. Fellow, and Director of the Program in Writing and Rhetoric at Stanford University and coauthor of Singular Texts/Plural Authors: Perspectives on Collaborative Writing

digitalculturebooks is an imprint of the University of Michigan Press and the Scholarly Publishing Office of the University of Michigan Library dedicated to publishing innovative and accessible work exploring new media and their impact on society, culture, and scholarly communication. Visit the website at


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Playing Fans
Negotiating Fandom and Media in the Digital Age
Paul Booth
University of Iowa Press, 2015
Fans are everywhere: from Fifty Shades of Grey to Veronica Mars, from Comic-Con to sitcom, from niche to Geek Chic, fans are becoming the most visible and important audience of the twenty-first century. For years the media industries ignored fans and fan activities, but now they’re paying attention and a lot of money to develop a whole new wave of products intended to harness the power of fandom. What impact do such corporate media efforts have on fan practice and fan identities? And are the media industries actually responding to fans as fans want them to?

In Playing Fans, Paul Booth argues that the more attention entertainment businesses pay to fans, the more mainstream fans have become popularized. But such mainstreaming ignores important creative fan work and tries to channel fandom into activities lucrative for the companies. Offering a new approach to the longstanding debate about the balance between manipulation and subversion in popular culture, the author argues that we can understand the current moment best through the concepts of pastiche and parody. This sophisticated alternative to conceiving of fans as either dupes of the media industry or rebels against it takes the discussion of “transformative” and “affirmative” fandom in a productive new direction.

With nuanced analyses of the Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff, the representations of fans in TV shows like Community and films like Fanboys, SuperWhoLock fans’ use of gifs, and the similarities in discussions of slash fandom and pornographic parody films, this book reveals how fans borrow media techniques and media industries mimic fan activities. Just as the entertainment industry needs fans to succeed, so too do fans need—and desire—the media, and they represent their love through gif fics, crowdfunding, and digital cosplay. Everyone who wants to understand how consumers are making themselves at home in the brave new world being built by the contemporary media should read this book.

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Poetry's Afterlife
Verse in the Digital Age
Kevin Stein
University of Michigan Press, 2010

"The great pleasure of this book is the writing itself. Not only is it free of academic and ‘lit-crit' jargon, it is lively prose, often deliciously witty or humorous, and utterly contemporary. Poetry's Afterlife has terrific classroom potential, from elementary school teachers seeking to inspire creativity in their students, to graduate students in MFA programs, to working poets who struggle with the aesthetic dilemmas Stein elucidates, and to teachers of poetry on any level."
--- Beckian Fritz Goldberg, Arizona State University

"Kevin Stein is the most astute poet-critic of his generation, and this is a crucial book, confronting the most vexing issues which poetry faces in a new century."
---David Wojahn, Virginia Commonwealth University

At a time when most commentators fixate on American poetry's supposed "death," Kevin Stein's Poetry's Afterlife instead proposes the vitality of its aesthetic hereafter. The essays of Poetry's Afterlife blend memoir, scholarship, and personal essay to survey the current poetry scene, trace how we arrived here, and suggest where poetry is headed in our increasingly digital culture. The result is a book both fetchingly insightful and accessible. Poetry's spirited afterlife has come despite, or perhaps because of, two decades of commentary diagnosing American poetry as moribund if not already deceased. With his 2003 appointment as Illinois Poet Laureate and his forays into public libraries and schools, Stein has discovered that poetry has not given up its literary ghost. For a fated art supposedly pushing up aesthetic daisies, poetry these days is up and about in the streets, schools, and universities, and online in new and compelling digital forms. It flourishes among the people in a lively if curious underground existence largely overlooked by national media. It's this second life, or better, Poetry's Afterlife, that his book examines and celebrates.

Kevin Stein is Caterpillar Professor of English and Director of the Creative Writing Program at Bradley University and has served as Illinois Poet Laureate since 2003, having assumed the position formerly held by Gwendolyn Brooks and Carl Sandburg. He is the author of numerous books of poetry and criticism.

digitalculturebooksis an imprint of the University of Michigan Press and the Scholarly Publishing Office of the University of Michigan Library dedicated to publishing innovative and accessible work exploring new media and their impact on society, culture, and scholarly communication. Visit the website at


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Preserving Our Heritage
Perspectives from Antiquity to the Digital Age
Michele Valerie Cloonan
American Library Association, 2015

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Proofs of Genius
Collected Editions from the American Revolution to the Digital Age
Amanda Gailey
University of Michigan Press, 2015
Proofs of Genius: Collected Editions from the American Revolution to the Digital Age is the first extensive study of the collected edition as an editorial genre within American literary history. Unlike editions of an author’s “selected works” or thematic anthologies, which clearly indicate the presence of non-authorial editorial intervention, collected editions have typically been arranged to imply an unmediated documentary completeness. By design, the collected edition obscures its own role in shaping the cultural reception of the author.

In Proofs of Genius, Amanda Gailey argues that decisions to re-edit major authorial corpora are acts of canon-formation in miniature that indicate more foundational shifts in the way a culture views its literature and itself. By combining a theoretically-informed approach with a broad historical view of collected editions from the late eighteenth century to the present (including the rise of digital editions), Gailey fills a gap in the textual scholarship of the editing history of major figures like Emily Dickinson and Walt Whitman and of the American literary canon itself.

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Radio Content in the Digital Age
The Evolution of a Sound Medium
Edited by Angeliki Gazi, Guy Starkey, and Stanislaw Jedrzejewski
Intellect Books, 2011

The traditional radio medium has seen significant changes in recent years as part of the current global shift toward multimedia content, with both digital and FM making significant use of new technologies, including mobile communications and the Internet. This book focuses on the important role these new technologies play—and will play as radio continues to evolve. This series of essays by top academics in the field examines new options for radio technology as well as a summary of the opportunities and challenges that characterize academic and professional debates around radio today.


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Reading in a Digital Age
David M. Durant
Against the Grain, LLC, 2017
Charleston Briefings: Trending Topics for Information Professionals is a thought-provoking series of brief books concerning innovation in the sphere of libraries, publishing, and technology in scholarly communication. The briefings, growing out of the vital conversations characteristic of the Charleston Conference and Against the Grain, will offer valuable insights into the trends shaping our professional lives and the institutions in which we work.
The Charleston Briefings are written by authorities who provide an effective, readable overview of their topics—not an academic monograph. The intended audience is busy nonspecialist readers who want to be informed concerning important issues in our industry in an accessible and timely manner.

How is reading changing in the digital environment? How will it continue to change? Are we headed for an all- digital future? Or does print still have a place in the reading environment? Does format matter? What do readers tell us they want? This brief monograph offers librarians, publishers, vendors, and others an overview of these key issues as well as advice on how their institutions should approach the print versus digital controversy.

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Rebuilding the News
Metropolitan Journalism in the Digital Age
C. W. Anderson
Temple University Press, 2013

Breaking down the walls of the traditional newsroom, Rebuilding the News traces the evolution of news reporting as it moves from print to online. As the business models of newspapers have collapsed, author C. W. Anderson chronicles how bloggers, citizen journalists, and social networks are implicated in the massive changes confronting journalism.

Through a combination of local newsroom fieldwork, social-network analysis, and online archival research, Rebuilding the News places the current shifts in news production in socio-historical context. Focusing on the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Philadelphia  Daily News, Anderson presents a gripping case study of how these papers have struggled to adapt to emerging economic, social, and technological realities.

As he explores the organizational, networked culture of journalism, Anderson lays bare questions about the future of news-oriented media and its evolving relationship with “the public” in the digital age.


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Remake, Remodel
Women's Magazines in the Digital Age
Brooke Erin Duffy
University of Illinois Press, 2013
What is a magazine? For decades, women's magazines were regularly published, print-bound guidebooks aimed at neatly defined segments of the female audience. Crisp pages, a well-composed visual aesthetic, an intimate tone, and a distinctive editorial voice were among the hallmarks of women's glossies up through the turn of this century. Yet amidst an era of convergent media technologies, participatory culture, and new demands from advertisers, questions about the identity of women's magazines have been cast up for reflection.
Remake, Remodel: Women's Magazines in the Digital Age offers a unique glimpse inside the industry and reveals how executives and content creators are remaking their roles, their audiences, and their products at this critical historic juncture. Through in-depth interviews with women's magazine producers, an examination of hundreds of trade press reports, and in-person observations at industry summits, Brooke Erin Duffy chronicles a fascinating shift in print culture and technology from the magazine as object to the magazine as brand. She draws on these findings to contribute to timely debates about media producers' labor conditions, workplace hierarchies, and creative processes in light of transformed technologies and media economies.

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The Rent of Form
Architecture and Labor in the Digital Age
Pedro Fiori Arantes
University of Minnesota Press, 2019

A critique of prominent architects’ approach to digitally driven design and labor practices over the past two decades

With the advent of revolutionary digital design and production technologies, contemporary architects and their clients developed a taste for dramatic, unconventional forms. Seeking to amaze their audiences and promote their global brands, “starchitects” like Herzog & de Meuron and Frank Gehry have reaped substantial rewards through the pursuit of spectacle enabled by these new technologies. This process reached a climax in projects like Gehry’s Guggenheim Bilbao and the “Bilbao effect,” in which spectacular architectural designs became increasingly sought by municipal and institutional clients for their perceived capacity to enhance property values, which author Pedro Fiori Arantes calls the “rent of form.”

Analyzing many major international architectural projects of the past twenty years, Arantes provides an in-depth account of how this “architecture of exception” has come to dominate today’s industry. Articulating an original, compelling critique of the capital and labor practices that enable many contemporary projects, Arantes explains how circulation (via image culture), consumption (particularly through tourism), the division of labor, and the distribution of wealth came to fix a certain notion of starchitecture at the center of the industry.

Significantly, Arantes’s viewpoint is not that of Euro-American capitalism. Writing from the Global South, this Brazilian theorist offers a fresh perspective that advances ideas less commonly circulated in dominant, English-language academic and popular discourse. Asking key questions about the prevailing logics of finance capital, and revealing inconvenient truths about the changing labor of design and the treatment of construction workers around the world, The Rent of Form delivers a much-needed reevaluation of the astonishing buildings that have increasingly come to define world cities.


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The Scholarly Workflow in the Digital Age
Steven Weiland
Against the Grain, LLC, 2021
The workflow names what is done in the conduct of research reflecting its individual, institutional, social, and technological conditions. It displays the conventions that produce knowledge across the disciplines, and the innovations that enhance and challenge scholarly and scientific routines.  The workflow registers the impact on academic work of libraries and publishing, and their increasingly digital operations. Attention to the workflow shows how the elements of research can be understood and improved, productivity strengthened, and satisfaction in scholarly and scientific careers sustained.

As this Briefing explains, the workflow features planning and structure, and a recognizable sequence of activities. But so too is there room for imagination, improvisation, and serendipity. Science and scholarship are human activities and the workflow in all disciplines reflects both convention and innovation as scholars discover the extent and meanings of their professional interactions with technology. In the digital age the workflow is in a new stage of representing what scholars do to advance knowledge and their careers, at the same time it displays the durability of traditional research practices.

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Systemic Dramaturgy
A Handbook for the Digital Age
Michael Mark Chemers and Mike Sell
Southern Illinois University Press, 2022
Working theatrically with technology 
Systemic Dramaturgy offers an invigorating, practical look at the daunting cultural problems of the digital age as they relate to performance. Authors Michael Mark Chemers and Mike Sell reject the incompatibility of theatre with robots, digital media, or video games. Instead, they argue that technology is the original problem of theatre: How can we tell this story and move this audience with these tools? And if we have different tools, how can that change the stories we tell?
This volume attunes readers to “systemic dramaturgy”—the recursive elements of signification, innovation, and history that underlie all performance—arguing that theatre must be understood as a system of systems, a concatenation of people, places, things, politics, feelings, and interpretations, ideally working together to entertain and edify an audience. The authors discuss in-depth the application of time-tested dramaturgical skills to extra-theatrical endeavors, including multi-platform performance, installations, and videogames. And they identify the unique interventions that dramaturgs can and must make into these art forms.
More than any other book that has been published in the field, Systemic Dramaturgy places historical dramaturgy in conversation with technologies as old as the deus ex machina and as new as artificial intelligence. Spirited and playful in its approach, this volume collates histories, transcripts, and case studies and applies the concepts of systemic dramaturgy to works both old and avant-garde. Between chapters, Chemers and Sell talk with with some of the most forward-thinking, innovative, and creative people working in live media as they share their diverse approaches to the challenges of making performances, games, and digital media that move both heart and mind. This volume is nothing less than a guide for thinking about the future evolution of performance.

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Teaching History in the Digital Age
T. Mills Kelly
University of Michigan Press, 2013
Although many humanities scholars have been talking and writing about the transition to the digital age for more than a decade, only in the last few years have we seen a convergence of the factors that make this transition possible: the spread of sufficient infrastructure on campuses, the creation of truly massive databases of humanities content, and a generation of students that has never known a world without easy Internet access.
Teaching History in the Digital Age serves as a guide for practitioners on how to fruitfully employ the transformative changes of digital media in the research, writing, and teaching of history. T. Mills Kelly synthesizes more than two decades of research in digital history, offering practical advice on how to make best use of the results of this synthesis in the classroom and new ways of thinking about pedagogy in the digital humanities.


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Media in the Digital Age
Nicholas Baer
Amsterdam University Press, 2024
Technics gathers leading international media scholars to rethink technology for the contemporary digital era. The volume’s 28 contributors provide cutting-edge theoretical, historiographical, and methodological reflections on media and technology. Chapters explore the ideas of Walter Benjamin, Ursula Le Guin, Bernhard Siegert, Gilbert Simondon, and Sylvia Wynter in conjunction with urgent issues such as ableism, algorithms, digital infrastructures, generative AI, and geoengineering. An expansive collection of writings on media technologies in the digital age, Technics is an essential resource for students and scholars of film and media studies, digital humanities, science and technology studies, and the philosophy of technology.

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Technology and the Historian
Transformations in the Digital Age
Adam Crymble
University of Illinois Press, 2021
Charting the evolution of practicing digital history

Historians have seen their field transformed by the digital age. Research agendas, teaching and learning, scholarly communication, the nature of the archive—all have undergone a sea change that in and of itself constitutes a fascinating digital history. Yet technology's role in the field's development remains a glaring blind spot among digital scholars.

Adam Crymble mines private and web archives, social media, and oral histories to show how technology and historians have come together. Using case studies, Crymble merges histories and philosophies of the field, separating issues relevant to historians from activities in the broader digital humanities movement. Key themes include the origin myths of digital historical research; a history of mass digitization of sources; how technology influenced changes in the curriculum; a portrait of the self-learning system that trains historians and the problems with that system; how blogs became a part of outreach and academic writing; and a roadmap for the continuing study of history in the digital era.


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Transmediation and the Archive
Decoding Objects in the Digital Age
Astrid J. Smith
Arc Humanities Press, 2024

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The U.S.–China Trade War
Global News Framing and Public Opinion in the Digital Age
Louisa Ha
Michigan State University Press, 2022
Drawing on data from three national surveys, three content analyses, computational topic modeling, and rhetorical analysis, The U.S.–China Trade War sheds light on the twenty-first century’s most high-profile contest over global trade to date. Through diverse empirical studies, the contributors examine the effects of news framing and agenda-setting during the trade war in the Chinese and U.S. news media. Looking at the coverage of Chinese investment in the United States, the use of peace and war journalism frames, and the way media have portrayed the trade war to domestic audiences, the studies explore how media coverage of the trade war has affected public opinion in both countries, as well as how social media has interacted with traditional media in creating news. The authors also analyze the roles of traditional news media and social media in international relations and offer insights into the interactions between professional journalism and user-generated content—interactions that increasingly affect the creation and impact of global news. At a time when social media are being blamed for spreading misinformation and rumors, this book illustrates how professional and user-generated media can reduce international conflicts, foster mutual understanding, and transcend nationalism and ethnocentrism.

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Viral Performance
Contagious Theaters from Modernism to the Digital Age
Miriam Felton-Dansky
Northwestern University Press, 2018
Digital culture has occasioned a seismic shift in the discourse around contagion, transmission, and viral circulation. Yet theater, in the cultural imagination, has always been contagious. Viral Performance proposes the concept of the viral as an essential means of understanding socially engaged and transmedial performance practices since the mid-twentieth century. Its chapters rethink the Living Theatre’s Artaudian revolution through the lens of affect theory, bring fresh attention to General Idea’s media-savvy performances of the 1970s, explore the digital-age provocations of Franco and Eva Mattes and Critical Art Ensemble, and survey the dramaturgies and political stakes of global theatrical networks.

Viral performance practices testify to the age-old—and ever renewed—instinct that when people gather, something spreads. Performance, an art form requiring and relying on live contact, renders such spreading visible, raises its stakes, and encodes it in theatrical form. The artists explored here rarely disseminate their ideas or gestures as directly as a viral marketer or a political movement would; rather, they undermine simplified forms of contagion while holding dialogue with the philosophical and popular discourses, old and new, that have surrounded viral culture.

Viral Performance argues that the concept of the viral is historically deeper than immediate associations with the contemporary digital landscape might suggest, and far more intimately linked to live performance

front cover of Writing History in the Digital Age
Writing History in the Digital Age
Jack Dougherty and Kristen Nawrotzki, editors
University of Michigan Press, 2013

Writing History in the Digital Age began as a “what-if” experiment by posing a question: How have Internet technologies influenced how historians think, teach, author, and publish? To illustrate their answer, the contributors agreed to share the stages of their book-in-progress as it was constructed on the public web.

To facilitate this innovative volume, editors Jack Dougherty and Kristen Nawrotzki designed a born-digital, open-access, and open peer review process to capture commentary from appointed experts and general readers. A customized WordPress plug-in allowed audiences to add page- and paragraph-level comments to the manuscript, transforming it into a socially networked text. The initial six-week proposal phase generated over 250 comments, and the subsequent eight-week public review of full drafts drew 942 additional comments from readers across different parts of the globe.

The finished product now presents 20 essays from a wide array of notable scholars, each examining (and then breaking apart and reexamining) if and how digital and emergent technologies have changed the historical profession.


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