ANTH3001 - Advanced Topics in Digital Culture

Term 1


In this course we will survey the terrain of ‘digital culture’ synthesizing technological, conceptual, historical and ethnographic frames. We will ground the emergence of ‘new’ digital technologies in older communicative, reproductive, replicative and mechanical forms; evaluate the resonance of the digital within cultural production; and investigate the digital as both site and subject of anthropological engagement and enquiry. Key questions asked are: what is new and different about our engagement with digital technologies? Do digital technologies and practices alter or perpetuate continuities in social relationships, hierarchies and political structures? What does it mean to be off line in a digital age? What kinds of new subjectivities and publics do digital practices bring into being?

Throughout the class we will present some ethnographies of emerging digital practices and discuss the social contexts in which they are developing. Some of the areas we will cover are the use of digital channels in the home , in the workplace, in public spaces, in civil society and in migration. We will also address some of the issues surrounding new digital property forms and economies, and new processes of digitization, by tracing the trajectory of diverse digital forms (museum catalogues, medical imaging technologies, digital photography).


Taught by: Dr Stefana Broadbent
Assessment: 1 x 3000 words essay (100%)
Student Contact Hours:
2 hour lecture + 1 hour tutorial per week
Prerequisites: ANTH2006: Theoretical Perspectives in Social Anthropology and Material Culture. 3rd year students only.
Option Type:
Material Culture

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