As I previously blogged about, I wrote an Annual Review of Anthropology on digital media last year. About a month ago, I found out that anyone can download it thanks to a link provided by the ARA, which we are allowed to put on one institutional web page. So go here (and go to the citation for the link) for those who are interested in a way too short review of some of the ethnographic literature on digital media.
Writing the piece left me many psychological wounds and scars, one of which had to do with the fact that I probably overlooked some folks. I have been left out of review type essays and honestly, it sucks. I tried to be as comprehensive as possible: I chose not to massively whittle down the scope (which was an option) and was able to smuggle in more citations than originally allowed and yet I still cut out 200 citations. But in the end I overlooked some folks as I found out about them too late. If I could go back in time, this is who I would include (well there are others but I have chosen these for now).
So Shaka McGlotten: not only does he have a cool name, he studies some cool stuff like DIY online porn, race, and zombies. He has published a bunch of articles and a book is forthcoming. Check out his work here.
I missed this book Online a Lot of the Time: Ritual, Fetish, and Sign by Ken Hills which looks quite pertinent and a great read.
Jonathan Marshall is an anthropologist in Sydney who has been working on digital stuff for a long while now and recently published Living Cybermind, which covers in detail modes of interacting and communicating in a detailed examination of a mailing list by the name of Cybermind.
Although this book is not out yet, it will be soon and looks fascinating: Digital Jesus (great cover). From what I understand, and one of the reasons I want to dive into the book , is because it is so longitudinal, at least when measured in Internet years. Rob Howard has studied Christians online since the days of Usenet to the present and thus this ethnography promises to have some real meat to it.
I am eagerly anticipating the forthcoming book by Beth Coleman . I had a chance to read a chapter recently and it looks fantastic. While in some respects grounded in virtual worlds, it is far more expansive than that topic, addressing a range of issues from desire, experience, emotion and race. Can’t wait.
I cite four dissertations in the ARA mostly because I read them, thought they were great, and material based on the dissertation is en route to being published in some form in the next future. The one dissertation I wish I had read is Jenny Cool’s thesis on cyberorganic.