New media, development and globalization are the key terms through which the future is being imagined and performed in governance, development initiatives and public and political discourse. Yet these authoritative terms have arisen within particular cultural and ideological contexts. In using them, we risk promoting over-generalized and seemingly unchallengeable frameworks for action and knowledge production which can blind us to the complex global patterns and promise of social reality.
This compelling book forces us to look at these terms afresh. Drawing on more than ten years of ethnographic fieldwork in Latin America, West Africa and South Asia, Don Slater seeks to challenge these terms as voicing specific northern narratives rather than universal truths, and to see them from the perspective of southern people and communities who are equally concerned to understand new machines for communication, new models of social change and new maps of social connection. The central question the book poses is: how we can democratize the ways we think and practise new media, development and globalization, opening these terms to dialogue and challenge within North-South relations?
Rooted in sociological debates, New Media, Development and Globalization will also be a provocative contribution to media and cultural studies, studies of digital culture, development studies, geography and anthropology.