The Internet is being considered a powerful platform used by pro-democracy activists to negotiate and sometimes push for reform-based political changes. But is that really the case? Are digital activists the new change instigators? What are the complexities involved in digital activism? Is it ethically right to bolster the new media and networking capabilities of civil society organizations to enable democratic reforms in the global south? Is it within an authoritarian regime’s right to implement restrictions to the various social media sites in a bid to fend off marauding digital activists? These questions and several others will be on the menu in this course, which attempts to probe the vitality, potentiality and ability of communication and technological changes in driving democratic participation around the world. Various cases and concepts including the Arab Spring, Wikileaks, clicktivism and the cute cat theory of digital activism will be explored.
Mode of Instruction
To be confirmed in course syllabus.
Preparation for first session