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Artificial Culture: Identity, Technology, and Bodies (Routledge Research in Cultural and Media Studies) Hardcover – December 22, 2011

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Leaver’s Artificial Culture is a positive step in our greater understanding of contemporary culture, and I applaud his attempts at grappling with literary and film media in a single volume. […] Libraries are encouraged to purchase a copy because its breadth of research topics and theoretical approaches will appeal to a broad base of scholars." - Jason W. Ellis, CUNY

"Artificial Culture is a wide-ranging and well-researched analysis of some important cultural sites that share crucial features of ‘artificiality’, specifically technologically driven artificiality... Leaver is careful to foreground the specificities of cultural media, especially of film...[it would] be an appropriate text to include in graduate courses." - Veronica Hollinger, Trent University

"Leaver probes productively at the destabilised boundary between technologies and humans, using the notion of the artificial and the site of the body to map some of the ways contemporary identities and subjectivities are being influenced by both technologies and the rhetoric of the artificial more broadly." - Tully Barnett, Flinders University

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Tama Leaver is a lecturer in the Internet Studies department at Curtin University of Technology.

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Product Details

  • Series: Routledge Research in Cultural and Media Studies (Book 37)
  • Hardcover: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge (December 22, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415899168
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415899161
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,848,803 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
Although Artificial Culture:Identity, Technology, and Bodies explores some rather heavy and complex concepts but it was written very well and raised some really interesting concepts so it didn’t feel like I was reading a dry old textbook at all. Tama Leaver examined several popular science fiction texts such as Avatar, 2001:A Space Odyssey, Terminator, Neuromancer, Marvel’s Spiderman and The Matrix to illustrate the ways in which science fiction popular culture frequently and provocatively deploys ideas of the artificial in ways which the lines between people, our bodies, spaces and culture more broadly blur and, at times, dissolve.

The author argues that technology has become so entrenched in our everyday lives that today we live in an artificial culture due to the deep and inextricable relationship between people, our bodies, and technology at large. It’s an interesting idea to ponder and something I’d like to hear your thoughts on.

I highly recommend Artificial Culture:Identity, Technology, and Bodies to anybody who is interested in digital and contemporary culture. Tama Leaver is a senior lecturer in the department of Internet Studies at Curtin University in Perth, Western Australia. He researches digital identity, social media, and the changing landscapes of media distribution.
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Format: Paperback
Part cinema/literary studies, part philosophy, this is a fascinating exploration of our interactions with technology, and what it means to be human. From Asimov to Avatar, McLuhan to The Matrix, it's both a good introduction to classic theories around artificial intelligence and a fresh look at some more recent interpretations. It's readable but meaty, with plenty of food for thought for anyone interested in technology or popular culture.
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