Fundamentals of the Sociology of Media
The object of this course is to examine the notions of medium and mediation from different perspectives. For this purpose the course will cover three main areas. First, it will survey theories and theoretical approaches to media that, directly or indirectly, have contributed to the definition of the field, such as medium theory, information theory, semiotics, cultural studies, mediology and others. Second, it will critically examine today’s media industry, its institutional apparatus, its forms of production and distribution, and its economic and political power. It will be argued that the media are a constitutive element in the power structure of capitalist societies. Third, it will relate some media-specific historical and technological changes such as reproduction, recording, transmission, and networking, to the transformation of social experience. Finally, the course will suggest that it is from the combination of these three levels of analysis that one can understand the experience of mediation and the mediation of experience.