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Hyperconnectivity and Its Discontents // Rogers Brubaker

Hyperconnectivity and Its Discontents // Rogers Brubaker

2022, 288 pages, Polity Books

#hyperconnectivity #mediastudies #self #surveillance #sociology

Digital hyperconnectivity is a defining fact of our time. The Silicon Valley dream of universal connection – in which everyone and everything is connected to everyone and everything else, everywhere and all the time – is rapidly becoming a reality.  Hyperconnectivity has colonized the self, reorganizing our attention and reshaping our ways of thinking, seeing, and feeling. It has channeled social interaction into platform-friendly, surveillance-enhancing forms and formats.  It has converted the whole of human culture into an unending stream of digital content, served to us by personalized algorithms.  It has given birth to gigantic oligopolies with unprecedented power over our future.  It has fragmented the public sphere, polarizing – and in some ways paralyzing – the citizenry, and strengthening populist challenges to mediating institutions.

In this wide-ranging yet concise and sharply argued book, Rogers Brubaker develops an original interpretive account of these pervasive and unsettling changes.  With characteristic lucidity, Brubaker traces transformations of the self, social relations, culture, economics, and politics, giving special attention to underexplored themes of abundance, miniaturization, convenience, quantification, and discipline.

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