The Socialist Computer

The Socialist Computer : Life, Work and Technology as If Profit Didn't Matter

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The Socialist Computer is a unique and highly topical analysis of capitalism and technology. Part cultural analysis, part political analysis, this book emphasises the contradictions and injustices that have stunted the utopian promise of information technology. Bob Hughes provides both a cultural history of computer science and a critical analysis of how it operates within the capitalist system. He gives a fascinating account of the alternative political structures within which computer technology has been used, such as Soviet use of computer technology in revolutionary Russia, and the utopian potential it still contains that is denied by corporate and government control. Referencing a wide range of critical thinkers, including Andre Gorz and Antonio Gramsci, to criticise the way in which information technology has been shaped under capitalism, The Socialist Computer is an entertaining and ground-breaking introduction to the politics of information technology.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 272 pages
  • 135 x 215mm | 453.59g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New.
  • 0745328806
  • 9780745328805

About Bob Hughes

Bob Hughes is an associate of the Oxford International Centre for Publishing Studies, co-founder of No One is Illegal ( and the author of Dust or Magic: Creative Work in the Digital Age (2005).
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Table of contents

Contents 1. Who is "We", and What Does it Want? 2. The Creation and Maintenance of Scarcity 3. Commodification, Globalisation and the Precarisation of Everyday Life 4. The Ragged-Trousered Contortionists 5. Entropy, the Computer and the Managerial Mind 6. The Communists in the Machine 7. Technology Done by Adults 8. Replacing the Market 9. Deciding What We Want: Pulling the Plug on the Ignorance Economy 10. No More Free Rides: Towards a Non-virtual Computer Industry 11. Precepts for a Grownup Economy 12. The World Turned Right Way Up 13. Must We Go Through All this Again?
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Rating details

3 ratings
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