Mediated Nostalgia

Mediated Nostalgia : Individual Memory and Contemporary Mass Media

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Considering the current rash of film remakes, vintage video game downloads, and box sets of bygone television shows, media today is obsessed with nostalgia. Instead of presenting a past that functions as an adaptive mirror with which we can compare our contemporary situation, the past is instead presented as an individualized version that transfixes us as uncritical citizens of our own culture. Mediated Nostalgia: Individual Memory and Contemporary Mass Media argues that the cultural implication of a cross-media eternal return to nostalgia is an increasing reliance on defining who we are as people and societies by what media we consumed as children. The unblinking eye toward the past knows no progress, or at the very least, does not employ the past to compare and adaptively engage with the present or future. Examining film, literature, television, and video games, Ryan Lizardi tackles the idea of why that strong sense of nostalgia is such a popular tactic for the media industry, and why it is problematic.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 166 pages
  • 144.78 x 238.76 x 17.78mm | 385.55g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 1 Charts; 2 Halftones, black and white
  • 0739196219
  • 9780739196212

Review quote

Mediated Nostalgia contributes to the existing scholarship on nostalgia by offering an elaborate theoretical and richly illustrated account of an individual, narcissist version of nostalgia...These case studies are familiar, and make the book very practical for lecturing and offering a deeper understanding of individualized nostalgia. Cultural Sociology Lizardi's semiotic analysis of contemporary media convincingly demonstrates how clever packaging of the past encourages a melancholic stance towards various media objects. Reading this book will inevitably prompt your own consideration of what constitutes your "playlist past" while also encouraging a critical analysis of how and why that playlist was constructed. -- Janelle Wilson, University of Minnesota Duluth With thoughtful analysis and accessible scholarship, Mediated Nostalgia argues that the media love to sell us the good old days, even if those days never existed. Exploring the meanings and multiple forms of commodified media nostalgia, Lizardi effectively weaves together cultural theory with a variety of engaging examples, from the Freaks and Geeks DVD collectors' set to reboots of slasher films like Halloween. -- Matthew P. McAllister, Pennsylvania State University
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About Ryan Lizardi

Ryan Lizardi is assistant professor of digital media and humanities at State University of New York Polytechnic Institute.
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Table of contents

Chapter 1: Introduction to the Perpetual Individual Nostalgic's Playlist Past Chapter 2: The Explosion of Digital Archiving Nostalgic Access Chapter 3: The Zombie Television Series Chapter 4: Downloading and Playing an Explicit and Implicit Past Chapter 5: The Epistemology of the Remake Concluding Remarks
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