Faculty of Arts


Communication, Technology and Culture


Media and communication are big business, and digital media are especially consuming presences in our daily lives. But to what extent do they shape our beliefs, behaviours and politics? Do we live in a more informed and transparent society thanks to the proliferation of digital media, or do we live in a polarised and divided culture as a result? When our everyday lives are digitally recorded and saved, do we enjoy new forms of free expression, are we subjected to new forms of governance and control, or is it some combination of the two?

We will explore the past, present and future of media and communication. In particular, this course highlights the radical changes brought about by the development and diffusion of new media technologies and their interconnection to race, class and gender. It explores the impact these changes have had upon media and communication industries, the content they produce and the audiences and users they serve. We will consider approaches to media texts as well as cultural and technological contexts (including smart technology, A.I. and algorithmic cultures). We will look at information (including social media and news) as well as popular media in order to make sense of media and communication technology in the context of politics and culture.

The course is designed for anyone with an interest in media and communication, regardless of whether you have previously studied these subjects. Key concepts are introduced via case studies, placing special emphasis on a range of current controversies.


Coursework + exam

Availability 2021

Semester 1


Lecturer(s) Dr Ethan Plaut



Recommended Reading



COMMS 100: 15.0 points



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