Nick Couldry: A necessary disenchantment….

A Necessary Disenchantment: myth, agency and injustice in the digital age – Video and audio – News and media – Home.


Couldry’s lecture summarizes prevailing myths about big data (and more generally, digital media) and then elegantly deconstructs them. One way of looking at the claim that big data dispels the need of any theory of behaviour or agency in favour of pragmatic empiricism is, I’d suggest, by thinking our present moment as a respin of early 20th-century notions of the human as body-machine. The point is not to long nostalgically for something that never was, but to inquire into what sorts of justice effects we are putting into motion with big data, which privileges the analytics of documentable behaviour over the romance of inscrutable interiority.

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