Unplugging Popular Culture : Reconsidering Analog Technology, Materiality, and the “Digital Native
1st Edition

Unplugging Popular Culture
Reconsidering Analog Technology, Materiality, and the “Digital Native"

ISBN 9781138588394
Published December 11, 2018 by Routledge
172 Pages

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Book Description

Unplugging Popular Culture showcases youth and young adult characters from film and television who defy the stereotype of the "digital native" who acts as an unquestioning devotee to screened technologies like the smartphone. In this study, unplugged tools, or non-digital tools, do not necessitate a ban on technology or a refusal to acknowledge its affordances but work instead to highlight the ability of fictional characters to move from high tech settings to low tech ones. By repurposing everyday materials, characters model the process of reusing and upcycling existing materials in innovative ways. In studying examples such as Pitch Perfect, Supernatural, Stranger Things, and Get Out, the book aims to make theories surrounding materiality apparent within popular culture and to help today’s readers reconsider stereotypes of the young people they encounter on a daily basis.

Table of Contents

Introduction Unplugging: "It Forces You to Play Differently" Chapter One "My Charade is the Event of the Season:" Celebrating Supernatural with Materiality, Music, and Generations X to Z Chapter Two Beca as Bricoleur: How Pitch Perfect Characters Embrace Materiality and Music Chapter Three Analog Dinosaurs and Abandoned Kids in Jurassic World Chapter Four "Don’t Adjust Whatever Device You’re Hearing This On:" (Dis)embodiment and Analog Technology in 13 Reasons Why Chapter Five Complicating Materiality and Generational Labels: Get Out and the Role of the Collector Chapter Six Solving Z for X: Extending Generational Paradigms in Stranger ThingsConclusion Blooming (and Burning) Where You Are Planted: The Optimism of Generation Z

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K. Shannon Howard is Assistant Professor in the Department of English and Philosophy at Auburn University Montgomery, USA


"There are a lot of books about digital natives that simplify the complex nature of their experience with culture, technology and how that defines their lives. Professor Howard skilfully illustrates the complex nature of digital natives and their love for both their own tech savvy lives and the wonders of the glitches and DIY projects that are as meaningful today as ever before." --Brian Cogan, Molloy College, USA