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Reshaping Communications
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Reshaping Communications
Technology, Information and Social Change

First Edition


February 2001 | 320 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
`It is a clich [ac]e but this book is timely, welcome and indeed a breath of fresh air....It is of particular value for people concerned with public communications, political economy, economics and the relationship between society and technology. Moreover, this book powerfully dispels the tacit assumption, prevalent in business, politics, media and academia that a combination of technical fixes and the free market can right all social problems' - Irish Journal of Sociology

Thirty years ago, one writer complained that 'to admire technology is all out of fashion'. Today excited claims are made for the impact that these technologies are having on social, political and economic life. But how are we to assess these claims? This book critically interrogates many of the prevailing ideas offers a fresh perspective on this new`digital age'.

Reshaping Communications:

· Provides an alternative and more grounded account of the complex interplay between new technology and information structures and changes in society

· Illuminates the fundamental continuities as well as changes in socioeconomic and political processes

· Draws on an interdisciplinary perspective and original empirical research.

The book will be essential reading for all those concerned with the new communication technologies, including students of media and communications as well as policy-makers.

 
PART ONE: INTRODUCTION AND OVERVIEW
 
Information Superhighways or Super-Hypeways
 
PART TWO: COMPETING THEORIES OF THE CONTEMPORARY
 
Third Wave Visions
Technology as Social Transformer

 
 
An Archeology of Imformation (Sector) Matters
 
'Information Society' Theories
 
Culture and Information
Postmodernisms and the Public Sphere

 
 
PART THREE: MAPPING A NEW MILLENNIUM AND MULTIMEDIA ORDER
 
Changes, Continuities and Cycles
Towards a More Realist(ic) Theory

 
 
The 'Atoms and Bits' of Informational Capitalism
 
Polarities
New Modes of Work, Consumption and State Regimes

 
 
'Content Is King'?
New Media and 'Mature' Media Innovations

 
 
Information as New Frontier
Commofication and Consumption Stakes

 
 
PART FOUR: ALTERNATIVE PROSPECTS AND POSSIBILITIES
 
Beyond Technological Fetishism
Towards a New Social and Media Order @Y2K+

 

`This is a stimulating, well argued book on an important contemporary subject and based, as is rare in this field, on up-to-date empirical data' - Nicholas Garnham, University of Westminster


“Given the controversies and discursive excesses surrounding the (new) media, a pragmatic voice was long overdue. Reshaping Communications definitely fits in this slot in the discursive universe surrounding new and mature media and communications. . . . Passionately and persuasively argued, the book presents not only a sobering voice in the midst of either excessively eulogizing or apocalyptic ones; it furthermore moves in the direction of making concrete proposals for policy changes that address pressing issues, and initiates a debate on information, technology, communication, and questions social justice.”

Communications: The European Journal of Communication Research

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