AMCULT 498 - Capstone Seminar in American Culture
Fall 2021, Section 002 - Surveillance and Society
Instruction Mode: Section 002 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: American Culture (AMCULT)
Department: LSA American Culture
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Requirements & Distribution:
Waitlist Capacity:
With permission of department.
May be elected twice for credit. May be elected more than once in the same term.
Primary Instructor:


The world is getting more and more connected everyday: our phones can connect to our computers, which connect to our thermostats, which connect to our credit scores, which connect to our automobiles, and which connect to our Facebook News Feeds. This interweaving network of different technologies might make our lives easier, but it also profoundly changes what we think of when we talk about “society”. In exploring these changes, this course will look to the origins of surveillance, the innovations of digital surveillance, and ultimately the challenges that surveillance poses to society, democracy, and freedom. Key themes include digital technology, surveillance, dataveillance, identity, race, class, gender, citizenship, Google, and the NSA.

By critically assessing surveillance in the contemporary era we will look at how exactly surveillance matters in the making of society. We will focus on a wide spectrum of phenomena, beginning with theories around surveillance, to thinking about surveillance and digital technology, and ending up by studying how surveillance has changed, configured, and challenged through video games, computer software, biometrics, and social networks.

Class Format:


AMCULT 498 - Capstone Seminar in American Culture
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
 In Person
MW 4:00PM - 5:30PM
Note: 001: Skin Deep: Race and Beauty in American Culture
002 (SEM)
 In Person
TuTh 2:30PM - 4:00PM
Note: 002: Surveillance and Society
004 (SEM)
 In Person
F 10:00AM - 1:00PM
Note: 004: Refugees in America
005 (SEM)
 In Person
Tu 4:00PM - 7:00PM
Note: 005: Trans Times and The Futures of Gender

Textbooks/Other Materials

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