putting people first

by experientia
by experientia
14 April 2009

UCL London is starting a new MA in Digital Anthropology

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putting people first
by experientia

MA in Digital Anthropology
UCL (which is the abbreviation for “University College London” although you have to look at the site‘s footer to find out) is starting a new MA in Digital Anthropology. And it seems serious stuff.

Digital technologies have become ubiquitous. From Facebook, Youtube and Flickr to PowerPoint and Second Life. Museum displays migrate to the internet, family communication in the Diaspora is dominated by new media, artists work with digital films and images. Anthropology and ethnographic research is fundamental to understanding the local consequences of these innovations, and to create theories that help us acknowledge, understand and engage with them. Today’s students need to become proficient with digital technologies as research and communication tools. Through combining technical skills with appreciation of social effects, students will be trained for further research and involvement in this emergent world.

This MA brings together three key components in the study of digital culture:
1. Skills training in digital technologies, including our own Digital Lab, from internet and visual arts to e-curation and digital ethnography.
2. Anthropological theories of virtualism, materiality/immateriality and digitisation.
3. Understanding the consequences of digital culture through the ethnographic study of its social and regional impact.

And what’s more: The Ma will be run by Danny Miller, one of the most outstanding anthropologists today, renowned for his book on the use of cellphones in Jamaica, and specialist on material culture. And no other than Stefana Broadbent (former chief anthropologist at Swisscom and featured as such in The Economist) is a fellow in the programme.

The MA starts in September 2009.

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