Publicity's Secret

Publicity's Secret : How Technoculture Capitalizes on Democracy

3.58 (12 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

In recent decades, media outlets in the United States--most notably the Internet--have claimed to serve the public's ever-greater thirst for information. Scandals are revealed, details are laid bare because "the public needs to know." In Publicity's Secret, Jodi Dean claims that the public's demands for information both coincide with the interests of the media industry and reinforce the cynicism promoted by contemporary technoculture. Democracy has become a spectacle, and Dean asserts that theories of the "public sphere" endanger democratic politics in the information age.Dean's argument is built around analyses of Bill Gates, Theodore Kaczynski, popular journalism, the Internet and technology, as well as the conspiracy theory subculture that has marked American history from the Declaration Independence to the political celebrity of Hillary Rodham Clinton. The author claims that the media's insistence on the public's right to know leads to the indiscriminate investigation and dissemination of secrets. Consequently, in her view, the theoretical ideal of the public sphere, in which all processes are transparent, reduces real-world politics to the drama of the secret and its discovery.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 224 pages
  • 149.86 x 223.52 x 5.08mm | 181.44g
  • Cornell University Press
  • Ithaca, United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 0801486785
  • 9780801486784
  • 1,069,009

Review quote

"Removing secrets from the soul, where we traditionally suppose them to hide, and from the acts of divination that pretend to uncover them, Jodi Dean examines the genesis of secrecy as a ploy of modern technology. In doing so she does far more than place the secret 'out there' in the various technologies that have become the life-support of a thriving capitalism, she exposes the way a new ideology of intimacy threatens the very possibility of radical democracy. Political, cultural, and psychoanalytic insights spring from each page of this lively and timely book, raising critical concerns about our hasty acceptance of degraded notions of publicity." --Joan Copjec, University at Buffaloshow more

Rating details

12 ratings
3.58 out of 5 stars
5 25% (3)
4 33% (4)
3 25% (3)
2 8% (1)
1 8% (1)
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