Facebook Society: Losing Ourselves in Sharing Ourselves (Hardback)
  • Facebook Society: Losing Ourselves in Sharing Ourselves (Hardback)
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Facebook Society: Losing Ourselves in Sharing Ourselves (Hardback)

(author), (translator)
£30.00
Hardback 296 Pages / Published: 14/08/2018
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Facebook claims that it is building a "global community." Whether this sounds utopian, dystopian, or simply self-promotional, there is no denying that social-media platforms have altered social interaction, political life, and outlooks on the world, even for people who do not regularly use them. In this book, Roberto Simanowski takes Facebook as a starting point to investigate our social-media society-and its insidious consequences for our concept of the self.

Simanowski contends that while they are often denounced as outlets for narcissism and self-branding, social networks and the practices they cultivate in fact remake the self in their image. Sharing is the outsourcing of one's experiences, encouraging unreflective self-narration rather than conscious self-determination. Instead of experiencing the present, we are stuck ceaselessly documenting and archiving it. We let our lives become episodic autobiographies whose real author is the algorithm lurking behind the interface. As we go about accumulating more material for the platform to arrange for us, our sense of self becomes diminished-and Facebook shapes a subject who no longer minds. Social-media companies' relentless pursuit of personal data for advertising purposes presents users with increasingly targeted, customized information, attenuating cultural memory and fracturing collective identity. Presenting a creative, philosophically informed perspective that speaks candidly to a shared reality, Facebook Society asks us to come to terms with the networked world for our own sake and for all those with whom we share it.

Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 9780231182720
Number of pages: 296
Dimensions: 216 x 140 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
Facebook Society arrives at the moment when the idea that 'Facebook is us' is front page news. Just in time, Roberto Simanowski gives us a theory as to how it is that Facebook produces the very subjects who cannot feel shortchanged by what it offers. But he delivers more. Here is the crucial test of the philosophy of history and Frankfurt School critical theory brought to bear on the phenomenon defining the sociality of our time. -- Jane M. Gaines, author of Pink-Slipped: What Happened to Women in the Silent Film Industries?
Facebook Society is a wonderfully rich and deeply thought extended essay on a symptomatic social medium of our day. With his focus on autobiography, friendship, memory, and narrative Simanowski outlines ways in which digital media have the power to change human perception and social relations. A broad historical, literary, and critical perspective on social media such as Simanowski's is very much needed both in the humanities and in the social sciences. -- Andreas Huyssen, author of Twilight Memories: Marking Time in a Culture of Amnesia
Who says Facebook can only lead to a flattening of intellectual life and political discourse? In a series of intriguing readings, Simanowski offers a compelling assessment of Zuckerberg's empire without capitulating before its celebration of ceaseless connectivity and frenzied interaction. Whether it draws on Schopenhauer, Kracauer, or Nancy, Facebook Society brilliantly exemplifies why thought and theory remain essential to gauge the impact of social media on our imagination, our sense of self and community, and our ability to engage the past as a medium to shape different futures. -- Lutz Koepnick, author of On Slowness: Toward an Aesthetic of the Contemporary
From Pascal to Butler, Goethe to Baudrillard, Facebook Society offers a rich philosophical engagement with one of the most important platforms of our time. Simanowski's skillful text demonstrates how the mundane nature of Facebook includes a long media ecology of issues which bind us to others as communities and through friendship while defining what we are as subjects. This book offers coordinates to nothing less than the transformation of this political field. -- Jussi Parikka, author of Digital Contagions and A Geology of Media
Very readable book, I am sure that you will find it very captivating and absolutely informative. I just can tell you that I read it in a few hours. Highly recommended. -- Anna Maria Polidori, freelance journalist * Storie, racconti, recensioni Blog by Anna Maria Polidori *

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