- Tapa blanda: 592 páginas
- Editor: OUP Oxford; Edición: Reprint (5 de septiembre de 2011)
- Idioma: Inglés
- ISBN-10: 0199595690
- ISBN-13: 978-0199595693
- Valoración media de los clientes: Sé el primero en opinar sobre este producto
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nº1.011.427 en Libros en idiomas extranjeros (Ver el Top 100 en Libros en idiomas extranjeros)
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- n.° 6055 en Libros en idiomas extranjeros > Informática, internet y medios digitales > Redes y administración de sistemas
- n.° 6143 en Libros en idiomas extranjeros > Lengua, lingüística y redacción > Periodismo
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Communication Power (Inglés) Tapa blanda – 5 sep 2011
Descripción del producto
Castells has done it again, a masterpiece of global perspective and enviable erudition. Moving beyond his trilogy on the information age, Castells focuses on how cultural, economic and particularly political power relationships are constituted and sustained through systematic communication flows. A new line of analysis draws on neuroscience and cognitive psychology to track the role of emotion in political communication. Case studies include global media deregulation, the politics of scandal, framing the war in Iraq, ecological social movements, the Obama presidential candidacy and a fascinating comparison of media control dynamics in Russia and China. (Advance praise from W. Russell Neuman, Evans Professor of Media Technology, University of Michigan)
How could Manuel Castells have predicted that now is the time of the perfect storm? I do not know. But I do know that his new book coincides with the largest downturn in global economies since the 1930s, with the most important American election since the 1960s, with a most radical transformation of world politics in many generations, and with the most profound reevaluation of the lives of modern citizens, from what they value to how they communicate. We have become used to Castells' careful scholarship and penetrating analyses but in this new book he cuts deeper into the heart of the matter. Sometimes he provides illuminating answers and where he cannot, he frames the questions that must be answered. This is a powerful and much needed book for a world in crisis. (Advance praise from Antonio Damasio, David Dornsife Professor of Neuroscience, Director, Brain and Creativity Institute, University of Southern California)
Manuel Castells unites the mind of a social scientist with the soul of an artist. His trilogy took us to the edge of the millennium. This book takes us beyond to the critical crossroads of the 21st century, where technology, communication, and power converge. (Advance praise from Rosalind Williams, Dibner Professor and Director, Program on Science, Technology and Society, Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
In this timely book, Professor Castells turns his attention from the impact of the internet on the economy to its impact on communications and politics. I can warmly recommend it to all communications practitioners. But his clear analysis and vivid case studies make this book of interest to anyone who wants to understand the nature of power in today's democracy and the meaning of the campaign that swept Barack Obama into the White House. (Advance praise from Margot Wallström, Vice-President of the European Commission responsible for Communication Policy)
Reseña del editor
We live in the midst of a revolution in communication technologies that affects the way in which people feel, think, and behave. The media have become the space where power strategies are played out. In the current technological context mass communication goes beyond traditional media and includes the Internet and mobile communication.
In this wide-ranging and powerful book, Manuel Castells analyses the transformation of the global media industry by this revolution in communication technologies. He argues that a new communication system, mass self-communication, has emerged, and power relationships have been profoundly modified by the emergence of this new communication environment. Created in the commons of the Internet this communication can be locally based, but globally connected. It is built through messaging, social networks sites, and blogging, and is now being used by the millions around the world who have access to the Internet.
Drawing on a wide range of social and psychological theories, Castells presents original research on political processes and social movements, including the misinformation of the American public on the Iraq War, the global environmental movement to prevent climate change, the control of information in China and Russia, and Internet-based political campaigns, such as the Obama campaign in the United States. On the basis of these case studies he proposes a new theory of power in the information age based on the management of communication networks
Justly celebrated for his analysis of the network society, Castells here builds on that work, offering a well grounded and immensely challenging picture of communication and power in the 21st century. This is a book for anyone who wants to understand the dynamics and character of the modern world.
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The subjects he tackles in this book are subjects I am interested in also - such as power. But, unfortunately, he is not helping me. Instead of pre-digesting his material, as a thinker should, and producing something useful, he seems to be suffering from diarrhea.
He thinks we are now a networked society - when this is just the usual hype. I speak as an expert here - if anyone is networked, it is me. But this networking for most is superficial. Only the business world is now networked. One could argue that this is all that matters - but this is only partly right.
He ignores a basic fact - the human world has collapsed under its own weight. And his own writing is proof of that.
One part of the book I can recommend: the Opening, where he talks directly, person to person. His final sentence here:
<And this is my way, my only real way to challenge the powers that be by unveiling their presence in the working of our minds.>
An excellent project! But not a new one. Every great thinker (and some not so great) has tried to do this.
Perhaps someone else will come along and condense Castells' writing for us. But I doubt it.
The second advance is more attention to the struggle over networks: they are programmed and reprogrammed. In a 1999 review of the trilogy The Information Age I accused Castells of completely neglecting the design dimension and the social struggle over networks . At that time, his view was that with networks we have created a machine that is dynamic, full of opportunities but controlled be no one. Now he clearly argues that the `logic' of networks could be transformed (p. 36). He tries to show this in a number of case studies in which communication networks are reprogrammed.
The first study is about the environmental movement and the `new culture of nature' (environmental consciousness). `It was the networking between the scientific community, environmental activists and celebrities that brought the issue to the media, and communicated it to the public at large via multimedia networks' (p. 321). The second study describes the global movement against corporate globalization that is predominantly organized via the Internet (e.g. Indymedia) and mobile telephony. The third study reports the use of mobile telephony (SMS) to launch a public outcry against the deliberate manipulation of the Aznar government after the 2004 terrorist attack in Madrid that accused the ETA in stead of Al Qaeda. The final study analyses the Obama presidential primary campaign amply using the Internet. All these cases are used to demonstrate the potential of the media of mass self communication and the Internet generally to organize counter power or change power relationships.
In my view these studies do not convincingly prove Castells' point despite all descriptive evidence supplied. He gives no detailed information about the networks of scientists, activists and celebrities that are supposed to have brought the issue to the media. Public pressure and the own initiative of the traditional mass media played a role at least as important, and the Internet's role was not more relevant than that of the mass media. The organization of the anti- or other globalization movement certainly depends on counter-networking via the new media. However it has proved to be relatively powerless as is testified by the fact that when its `finest' hour came with the bankruptcy of neo-liberalism and the discredit of global capitalism in the credit crisis, it was virtually absent in public opinion and on the streets. A particular SMS call for a demonstration against the Spanish government's misinformation certainly contributed to the mobilization that stirred a part of the electorate to vote against Aznar. However, a number of old media (newspapers and radio-stations) also played an important role in the public outcry, and they had a larger audience. The role of the Internet in the Obama campaign also is exaggerated . Reading about the superiority of the use of the Internet in this campaign on Castells' account one wonders why Obama did not win with a landslide of 10 to 15 percent. In fact Obama did not win the presidency by means of the Internet but by his personal quality as a candidate attracting many new voters. He was saved by his reaction to the credit crisis at the start of September 2008, just two months before the election when he was at the losing end according to the polls. Despite all Internet use.
Clearly, the Internet and other digital media are getting more important in these, and many other cases. Certainly, they have a liberating potential as was recently demonstrated by the oppositional movement in Iran. However, this case also proves the opposite: the remaining control of the far more important mass media by the regime and the attempts to censor the new media. So, my biggest problem with Castells' analysis is that he is very one-sided in highlighting the liberating potential instead of opposite tendencies. For me it is unacceptable to talk about communication power in networks without any treatment of privacy, security and surveillance issues (with the partial exception of Internet censorship in China). Unfortunately, central registration and control also are important potentials of power in networks. Further, Castells completely ignores the problems of the digital divide and the lack of digital skills among at least half of Internet users, even in high-access countries. The liberating potential of mass self-communication will be seen in another light when Internet use in practice would lead to a reinforcement of the `information elite' and big problems to catch up for large parts of the population.
The theoretical parts of this book are very tough reading for non-academic readers of this book, as the author tries to summarize his former work of the Information Age in a very condensed way. Opposed to that, the descriptive parts are relatively easy to read and well written.
In his conclusions Castells claims to present the beginnings of a general communication theory of power. However, it is utterly disappointing that he does so by only presenting a `methodological approach' and a number of very general hypotheses for others to investigate (p. 430). One wonders why he did not do this himself in the 500 plus pages at his disposal. His hypotheses lack sufficient specification for empirical test as he admits himself: `I am not identifying the concrete social actors who are power-holders' (p. 430). This book contains many well-documented and sharply analysed case studies as we are used to read in Castells' work marked by a very high level of expertise. However, the gap between these cases and a real theory of communication power remains large.
Jan A.G.M. van Dijk
Professor of Communication Science and the Sociology of the Information Society University of Twente, The Netherlands
A longer and more academic version of this review will appear in Communications, The European Journal of Communication