CCT109H5 Lecture 3.docx

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Communication, Culture and Technology
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CCT109H5 Lecture III Tuesday, May 14 2013 Week 2 ­ Class 3 Social Histories Public Spheres, and ICTs • Coffee House Mob was a loud environment. An example of how public spheres looked like the 18th century. • Housekeeping: Test #1 May 21 in tutorial: 1. Classes 1,2,3,4 - Introduction and Module 1 - 10 MC, 10 TF, 1 SA (3 Paragraphs) 2. Lecture Materials (Fair Game) 3. Course Readings: Innis; Macdougall; Lessig and Flew &Smith (Chapters 1-3) 4. Flew & Smith; look for key themes and ideas (Conceptual Knowledge)  Samsung says mobile data breakthrough blows away 4G speed (News Article - Technology)  Today: Quick Recap: Approaching Communications Studies  PART 1: Histories of communication technology: building public spheres, how do construct meaning around technology  PART 2: Telephone, approximately 1880-1930 Canada  Details is not a big deal, focus on the general themes. Dates is not necessarily important  Development  Use  Telephone Operators Last Class  Two dominant ways in which we will approach the study of communications and communication technology  Social Constructionism  Everyday behaviour of technology  Socio Economic Status  Very much focused in how social norms is embedded in society. Social glue  Violating social norms will bring to light the said norm.  Political Economy:  Technology is political. Most media is utilized to make money. Advertisement is the best example  Emphasizing power relations. Political economy is a social resource.  Each represents a unique "lens" for framing knowledge. Social Construcitonism  Social reality is not taken for granted there are no assumptions that particular things "had: to emerge in time  SCOT: Technology is never absolute, its uses are not pre-given, they have to be articulated by people. Political Economy  Who made the telephone? What were the interests? Who wanted to buy the telephone? ICT sand the Construction of Social Orders  Clock towers? First appeared in the 11th-12th Century.  Why do we have clock towers:  Good at organizing people  Dividing your day in 3 eight hour segments. The monks used this to split there day into three parts.  Organized labour and workers. (Work Shifts)  Wage labours was started due to the clock tower.  Originally a religious tool  "The clock, not the steam engine, is the key machine of the modern industrial age" (Lewis Mumford)  Oral Culture and Public Spheres  Unlike print culture, oral forms of communication tend to be highly associated with larger ideas of community and social participation  E.g. Early study of rhetoric and the agora. Rhetoric words to persuade people.  E.g. Catholic Mass, largely oral transmission of knowledge , instrumental in developing a collective sense of belonging and identity  What sorts of communities and social relations were made possible through the telephone? ICTs as Social Progress  C18-19- Emergence of communications technologies which offered the ability to "transcend" (to overcome) time and space (e.g. rail, telegraph, steam, camera)  Belief in social progress through ICTs (ie through science and technology) That technology could fundamentally improve and benefit everyone`s lives equally.  Context: an age of rapid expansion (especially British and European expansion) across territory.  Pollution was even worse back in the day. Advancement in technology was built on the backs of child labour. Advancement in technology is not necessarily a step in progress. ICTs and The Technological Sublime  Technological Sublime: divert a "lower" impulse into a higher cultural or social activity  Communications technology as rendering communication into a new "higher" order which could transcend space and time  Broader notions of cultural and social progress through expansionism  The basic idea that the more advanced the technology , the more sophisticated our society is believed to be. (and therefore, superior to other societies with less developed technology) A higher problematic argument Technological Determinism  The idea that technological change is a causal force in explaining social change.  Violent video games =more violent children?  More specifically it is usually found to denote how technological change is a causal force in the moral and social development of a society, thus the more sophisticated a technology, the more sophisticated or enlightened we believe its people.  Problematic arguments show up when technology is the only one to blame for something. Ie Telephones is the ONLY reason why people become less social  Summary  Social Context: Time or rapid industrialization, expansionism, technological innovation/change rise of scientific inquiry, population growth intensification of global capitalism, changing social norms of labour, growth of secular norms of moral development  Development of ICTs which could transcend time/space Telephone -Why The Telephone?  While virtually ubiquitous now, it was at one point quite unusual to have a telephone  Many of the common assumptions we hold about the use of the telephone would seem quite strange in the early history of telephones  Although we tend to see the telephone as an example of community building and nation- state building, in practice its development was highly uneven  Key technology for stimulating economic growth: better control over production process,
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