The research cluster’s aim is to bring together academics from a range of backgrounds with an interest in technology and new media in order to explore and discuss recent and ongoing research. We welcome all students (undergraduate and postgraduate), staff, and visiting scholars to attend and participate in any/all sessions. We especially would like to emphasise multidisciplinary collaboration, not only between departments of the University of Cambridge, but with other universities. As such, most of our events will be hybrid – available both online and offline.
Throughout the 2022 – 2023 academic year, the Technology & New Media cluster will cover a wide range of research topics including digital labour, digital media cultures, organised movements on social media, media representations, and media audiences. An overarching theme of all events will be to critically address the implications for society and social theory that result from empirical observations of change. We especially wish to promote innovative work that explores new methodologies and/or under-studied aspects of digital platforms.
The cluster will host three types of sessions: discussions (members will discuss a stimulating piece of research), presentations (members will present ongoing research or recently published pieces), and speakers sessions (speakers from other institutions will be invited to discuss their work).
- Sophie Mary (PhD candidate, Sociology Department)
- Marisa Tangeman (PhD candidate, Sociology Department)
Sophie Mary is a PhD candidate in the Sociology Department at the University of Cambridge. She holds a BA in Media Culture from Maastricht University (2016 – 2019), as well as an MSc in Marketing from the University of Edinburgh (2019 – 2020).
Her current research, which she began as a master’s student, focuses on the discursive construction of the role of the mother in contemporary media texts, specifically digital branding and advertising, in the United Kingdom. She is especially interested in the dynamics between the affordances of digital platforms and the discourses that they carry. Her broader research interests centre around the relation between digital media and the construction of identities, discourses, and power.
Marisa Tangeman is a PhD candidate in Sociology at the University of Cambridge. Her research investigates the role that popular culture and mainstream media discourses play in the construction of bisexual identity. She is broadly interested in how the enforcement of binary identity categories shapes the experiences of those who live outside them, and how popular media discourses reproduce relations of power. Marisa holds a BA in Sociology from Mills College, California, and a MSc in Media and Communications from LSE.
Wednesday, 8th February 2023 12:30
Join us for our first session of term: a ‘meet-and-greet’ lunch on 8th February 12:30-14:00 in the Open Basement area of the David Williams Building (Law Faculty, Sidgwick Site). You’ll get to meet peers from other disciplines who share an interest in technology and new media research, and to have your say on the agenda for other sessions. We’ll take care of the food.
Friday 3rd March 12:00-13:00 @ Syndics Room, 17 Mill Ln.
Civic technology projects try to create non-political online tools. This… isn’t easy. Creating data about parliaments and governments is hard to do without bringing along the political context that creates that data. In this short talk, Alex Blandford (Oxford) will look at the ways that data is made, and the anxieties about its use, creation, reuse, and ownership.
Friday 10th March 13:00-14:00 @ Syndic Room, 17 Mill Ln.
In Latin America, millions of urban residents live under some form of extra-legal governance. Daniel Rincon-Machon (Cambridge) will talk about how looking at digital communication may help us understand the capacity of criminal groups to enforce social order. He will discuss how the literature on criminal governance can be put into conversation with concepts developed in media studies, and his research plans to study this phenomenon both online and offline.
Thursday 4th May 17:00-18:30 @SG2, Alison Richard Building
Dr Jamie Hakim (King’s College London) will discuss queer men’s use of smartphones to negotiate their culture of intimacy, locating such practises in a historical conjuncture consumed by ‘poly-crisis’ (Tooze, 2021) and defined by a desire for ‘control’. He will consider the politics and ethics of this desire for control, and argue that both conjunctural analysis and research on digital intimacies are mutually enriched when put in conversation with each other. Registration
Monday 15th May 17:00-18.00 @Syndics Room, 17 Mill Lane and Online
Connecting half a decade of empirical research into the circulation of disinformation and misinformation about minoritised and racialised groups in countries as disparate as Brazil, India, Myanmar, and the U.K. with histories of colonial and caste violence, Prof. Shakuntala Banaji (LSE) examines the intersectional politics of hate online through close textual analysis and interviews with experts in the field.
Monday 22nd May 14:00-15:00 @ Online
The last decade has seen an explosion of scholarship on “algorithmic control”, “management”, or “surveillance”. But what do we mean when we use “algorithmic” in this context? And what do we miss by focusing on algorithms as the culprits of exacerbated subordination and precarity in the workplace? Dr Niels van Doorn will discuss the risks of a narrow focus on algorithms, as well as the potential of a “para-algorithmic” approach attending to that which simultaneous exceeds and frames algorithmic operations.