Contemporary social and cultural life is increasingly organised around a logic of self-transformation, where changing the body is seen as key. Transforming Images examines how the future functions within this transformative logic to indicate the potential of a materially better time. The book explores the crucial role that images have in organising an imperative for transformation and in making possible, or not, the materialisation of a better future. Coleman asks the questions: which futures are appealing and to whom? How do images tap into and reproduce wider social and cultural processes of inequality?
Drawing on the recent ‘turns’ to affect and emotion and to understanding life in terms of vitality, intensity and ‘liveness’ in social and cultural theory, the book develops a framework for understanding images as felt and lived out. Analysing different screens across popular culture – the screens of shopping, makeover television programmes, online dieting plans and government health campaigns – it traces how images of self-transformation bring the future into the present and affectively ‘draw in’ some bodies more than others.
Transforming Images will be of interest to students and scholars working in sociology, media studies, cultural studies and gender studies.
Acknowledgements. Introduction: Transformation, Potential, Futures 1. Screening Affect: Images, Representational Thinking and the Actualization of the Virtual 2. Bringing the Image to Life: Interactive Mirrorsand Intensive Experience 3. Becoming Different: Makeover Television, Proximity and Immediacy 4. Immanent Measure: Interaction, Attractors and the MultipleTemporalities of Online Dieting 5. Pre-Empting the Future: Obesity, Prediction and Change4Life. Conclusion: Transforming Images: Sociology, the Future and the Virtual. Bibliography. Index.
The International Library of Sociology (ILS) is the most important series of books on sociology ever published. Founded in the 1940s by Karl Mannheim, the series became the forum for pioneering research and theory, marked by comparative approaches and the identification of new directions in sociology, publishing major figures in Anglo-American and European sociology, from Durkheim and Weber to Parsons and Gouldner, and from Ossowski and Klein to Jasanoff and Walby.
Its new editors, John Holmwood (University of Nottingham, UK) and Vineeta Sinha (National University of Singapore), plan to develop the series as a truly global project, reflecting new directions and contributions outside its traditional centres, and connecting with the original aim of the series to produce sociological knowledge that addresses pressing global social problems and supports democratic debate.