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Applying Critical Media Sociology: Mapping the Intersections of Media and Communication Research with Surveillance Studies
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Centre for HumanIT. Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Geography, Media and Communication. (HumanIT)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8225-3447
2015 (English)In: Differences, Inequalities and Sociological Imagination: Abstract Book, Prague: Institute of Sociology CAS , 2015Conference paper, Abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The revelations of otherwise confidential intelligence files by Chelsea Manning, Edward Snowden and journalistic organization WikiLeaks showed once more that we live in an era of intensified and all-encompassing communications surveillance, conducted by secret services, intelligence agencies and private companies. This is an era of rapid transformations in the sphere of media and communication, which, according to Robert W. McChesney, “veers toward a classic definition of fascism” (McChesney 2013, 171). Thus it becomes urgent that better sociological conceptualizations of the stance of media and communication as an academic field within these metamorphoses is conducted - together with the explorations of what comprises the fast growing field of surveillance studies.

Within such scope this presentation attempts to sociologically map the academic branch of surveillance studies from the perspective of the scholarly field of media and communication, and to seek out boundaries, limitations, strengths, and weaknesses of the currently conducted research. To be able to properly map out the field and mark important points within the landscape, the Journal of Surveillance & Society, a premier interdisciplinary journal in the field of surveillance, is chosen as a point of departure. Analysis of reiterating topics within the surveillance studies field is conducted based on 296 articles from 40 issues published between 2002 and 2013. While providing the analysis of the frequent topics and thus mapping out the field, the article also engages in the argumentative discussion of the missing points and aspects believed to be in the need of fortification and wider coverage.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Prague: Institute of Sociology CAS , 2015.
Keyword [en]
Media and Communication; Surveillance Studies; Critical Media Sociology; Mapping Academic Field; Content Analysis
National Category
Media and Communications
Research subject
Media and Communication Studies
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-37858OAI: diva2:851581
ESA 2015: The 12th Conference of the European Sociological Association "Differences, Inequalities and Sociological Imagination". ESA (European Sociological Association), Prague, Czech Republic, 25-28 August 2015
Available from: 2015-09-07 Created: 2015-09-07 Last updated: 2016-02-25Bibliographically approved

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