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CMNS Lecture week 8.docx

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CMNS 130

Neo-liberal Perspectives Celebrations of the Information Society Today’s Outline • Housekeeping • Last Lecture Recap – Critical Theory • The Network Society? • Neo-liberalism • Key Features of Celebratory Thought • The new Economy and Its Crash Two general streams of Critical Theory o Critical Political Economy  Herman & Chomsky  McChesney  Focus on economic analysis o Cultural Theory  Frankfurt School  Cultural Industries  Focus on ideological analysis o Convergences between the two (Hesmondhalgh) Key Concepts in Critical Perspectives • SOCIETY is divided or stratified - the illusion of consensus is maintained in the midst of inherent and structural conflicts of interest. • POWER is concentrated, unevenly distributed within certain elites or structures of dominance, problem for democracy • MEDIA, are both constituting and the result of these differential power relations media has a role in shaping the whole ideological environment – in legitimizing the (unequal) social order media is not only part of constituting unequal power, also result of these power relations, power relations influenced media policy and media policy had influence our media today, media has become a perpetuator and product masses buying into consumerism Frankfurt school says media is the new opiate of the masses (drug) The Network Society? • One of many names applied to new historical age • information society, info highway, digital age, global era, etc • From mass communication to networked communication • We live in an information society, info is the commodity • We’ve moved into post modernity (post industrial, post modern) society • Modernity to “postmodernity” • QUESTION THE MODELS! • Manuel Castells, in The Information Age: Economy, Society, Culture What is The Network Society? • Network is made up of nodes, ties and flows • Castel says its not just the technology, its also about shift into a different type of society • We are nodes, Bound together by ties, and the flow is the companionship • Important things has changed, significantly • Observations: 1. Gone from industrial to post industrial, we no longer live in an industrial era where people manufacture things, most work and live where we deal with info 2. Experience of space and time has change, instant information, different concept of space, sense of time is different • Characterized by digital information, result of technology • Anatomy of the network society: Darrin Barney Network technology –we see tech that are developed on network forum, physical tech and network and digital info, info went from voice (analogue) to digital. Network economy – economic structures changed dramatically. Control networks of sub-contractors. Everything connected. Large firms are increasingly networked. (production in other countries, research in others, etc.) Network politics – Changed due to network society. Electronic media. Access to political networks are highly desired. Site become vital actors. Social movements have become different. Tech not issue, its how its used and who uses it. Network identity – has become out identity. Search for it becomes key part. Tough to know who we are. Is often sought through this, look to niches. Source of resistanse. Neo-liberal perspectives • Celebrations of the Information Society Dominant perspective Emerged in the 70s Became powerful through politics Celebratory in approach Information society is completely new Our past problems are disappearing Has a technological determinist quality (technology will automatically solve problems) E.g.: Can be found in Wired Magazine Economic orthodoxy pre 1980s • Liberal Pluralist Economic Theory: Keynesianism economics • the aim of government policy is to maintain economic prosperity and general economic welfare for all • introduces idea of social safety net: minimum wage, unemployment insurance, health or other social policies Shifts in the ‘economic orthodoxy’ • Neo-liberalism • Regan, Thatch
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