Spring 2015 - Graduate Course Descriptions
Description of Course:
This course examines surveillance technologies and surveillant media. We all know we live in a "surveillance society," but when did it arise, what dynamics fueled its conception, and when, where, and how did media and communication technologies enter the mix? In our contemporary world, why does surveillance occur where it occurs? How do people challenge, modify, and subvert surveillance practices? To begin, we'll consider the relationship between surveillance and the myth of total transparency in liberal democratic theory, as well as the historical rise of surveillance practices in the West. We'll move from there to the relationship between surveillance and pleasure; sousveillance and coveillance; the construction of certain bodies and populations as the appropriate targets of surveillance; dataveillance; and surveillance as a technique interwoven with practices of measuring, recording, and monitoring. Course readings will include texts drawn from political philosophy, history, film theory, and new media theory. Course materials will include biosensors, films, tactical media, architecture, and networked data projects. We'll spend a third of the class digesting key concepts; a third examining media, projects, and artworks; and a third developing and sharing our projects.
Course Requirements/Evaluation Criteria: