How have new social media changed the political landscape? Are they a democratizing force or a tool for repression? In what ways do they differ from previous media? These questions anchor our exploration of new media both in American politics and for democratic movements abroad. The literature on new social media is very much in its infancy. Political candidates, leaders of social movements, governments, and academic researchers are all struggling to grasp the significance of new technologies, to understand how they are changing the social and political environment, and to determine whether these technologies really are different from the media environments of our parents and grandparents. As with many things in academe and in life, this course will do more to flesh out the parameters of our questions than offer concrete answers to them.
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Communication Studies Juniors or seniors
Recitation twice weekly for 1.5 hours each.