New Books Network

Nick Couldry, “Media, Society, World: Social Theory and Digital Media Practice” (Polity Press, 2012)
In Media, Society, World: Social Theory and Digital Media Practice (Polity Press, 2012), Nick Couldry provides a sweeping synthesis of his important media theory over the last decade. Couldry reassesses his work on media rituals, media power, and the “hidden injuries” of representation in light of cross-cultural diversity as well... Read More
Barry Kernfeld, “Pop Song Piracy: Disobedient Music Distribution Since 1929” (University of Chicago Press, 2011)
Have you ever illegally downloaded a song from the internet? How about illicitly burned copies of a CD? Made a “party tape?” Bought a bootleg album? You may have done these things, but have you purchased a bootlegged song-sheet? In Pop Song Piracy: Disobedient Music Distribution Since 1929 (University of... Read More
Marshall Poe, “A History of Communications: Media and Society from the Evolution of Speech to the Internet” (Cambridge UP, 2011)
It is not every historian who would offer readers an attempt to explain human nature. In A History of Communications: Media and Society from the Evolution of Speech to the Internet (Cambridge University Press, 2011), Marshall Poe does just that. At the same time, Poe guides readers through the history... Read More
Ann M. Blair, “Too Much To Know: Managing Scholarly Information before the Modern Age” (Yale University Press, 2010)
Chewing on raw turnips and sand, keeping both feet in a tub of cold water, reading with just one eye open (to give the other a chance to rest) and sleeping only every other night: no, I am not describing the typical life of a pre-tenure professor trying to get... Read More
Robert Lane Greene, “You Are What You Speak: Grammar Grouches, Language Laws and the Politics of Identity” (Delacorte Press, 2011)
Isn’t it odd how the golden age of correct language always seems to be around the time that its speaker was in high school, and that language has been going to the dogs ever since? Such is the anguish of declinists the world over, pushing the commercial success of language-bashing... Read More
Daniel Veidlinger, “Spreading the Dhamma: Writing, Orality, and Textual Transmission in Buddhist Northern Thailand” (University of Hawaii Press, 2006)
New media technology changes culture. And when it comes to religion, new technology changes the way people think and practice their traditions. And while we usually think of technology as some new gadget or machine, there was a time when the written word itself was a new technology, and this... Read More
Ian McNeely, “Reinventing Knowledge: From Alexandria to the Internet” (Norton, 2008)
We don’t think much about institutions. They just seem to “be there.” But they have a history, as Ian McNeely and Lisa Wolverton show in their important new book Reinventing Knowledge. From Alexandria to the Internet (W.W. Norton, 2008). The book deals specifically with institutions in which knowledge has been... Read More