Seeking texts (any medium) on online representation/digital subcultures
August 19, 2014 4:57 PM   Subscribe

I'm applying to teach an honors-level composition course with a theme of online self-representations and virtual communities. What are some cool texts (in any media) that I can show my students to get them thinking about different aspects of this theme?

I'm applying to teach an honors-level composition class for college freshmen, with an overarching class theme of online representations of the self and of virtual communities/subcultures. I have free rein over the texts I select for the class, and I want to provide my students with a variety of examples using different kinds of media - books/films/TV/articles/Youtube/podcasts/etc. I would really appreciate any help or advice that you could give me in figuring out a wide range of texts to show my students.

To give you an idea, I'm thinking of using (parts of) the film Catfish to get my students thinking about online deception, and maybe one of the ubiquitous articles about fandom (but which one?) I'm intrigued by anything about addictions to online gaming, and I'm also really interested in texts that demonstrate online difficulties faced by particular subgroups (e.g. harassment that female coders face). But really, I'm just looking for a wide mix of sources that might interest my students.

The sources can be highbrow or lowbrow. If it's a book-length (or film-length) work, I'll probably limit myself to using extracts from it, so any texts that are particularly extract-able would be awesome. I'm particularly looking for resources that are easily-accessed for free, though I'd also be open to cheaply-available sources that I can easily photocopy or otherwise distribute.

Thanks so much in advance for any ideas you may have!

(n.b. much of the text of this question is taken from my previous very similar question here.)
posted by littlegreen to Computers & Internet (3 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
There's the classic A Rape in Cyberspace.
posted by zabuni at 5:32 PM on August 19, 2014 [2 favorites]

You might look through the references in the Wikipedia entries for online identity and nymwars. Wow, and there are a shitload in the one about gaming addiction.

Self-naming practices on the Internet. (This is about identity and fandom.)

Communication Processes in Participatory Websites.

Why Women Aren't Welcome on the Internet.

Black Twitter, and #solidarityisforwhitewomen, like this interview for starters.

College freshmen might be an interesting audience for some of danah boyd's work -- like this, but she has written a couple of books and a lot of articles, mostly about youth online.
posted by clavicle at 8:43 PM on August 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

This, from a sociologist, is just a short blog post on Ferguson, but the idea of subcultures on social media affecting journalism might be good to bring up, and surely there'll be more written about this in the near future.
posted by clavicle at 3:14 PM on August 20, 2014

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