My topic has been approved by the graphic design department, and I am on my way to digging into some good and true research for my thesis.
My next steps include getting together some books for initial research, most of which were approved as part of my topic proposal. The other integral part of this is to get a thesis committee together of 3 professors. So far, my emails have either come back with no response of with saying that they aren't the right fit for my topic. I have a sneaking suspicion that being on a thesis committee isn't necessary to keep your job, and can be an extra stress while teaching full time at the university. If there was anyone who understood these stresses, it would be myself, seeing my mother go through being department head - I know how much extra time these things can take up. I just hope that I can find someone who is willing and hopefully also interested in the topic for some good advising along the way.
My first batch I am ordering and will be updating with my thoughts after reading.
A Networked Self: Identity, Community, and Culture on Social Network Sites
by Zizi Papacharissi
A Networked Self examines self presentation and social connection in the digital age. This collection brings together new work on online social networks by leading scholars from a variety of disciplines. The focus of the volume rests on the construction of the self, and what happens to self-identity when it is presented through networks of social connections in new media environments. The volume is structured around the core themes of identity, community, and culture – the central themes of social network sites. Contributors address theory, research, and practical implications of many aspects of online social networks including self-presentation, behavioral norms, patterns and routines, social impact, privacy, class/gender/race divides, taste cultures online, uses of social networking sites within organizations, activism, civic engagement and political impact. [taken from goodreads.com]
by Bill Kovach, Tom Rosenstiel
Amid the hand-wringing over the death of "true journalism" in the Internet Age—the din of bloggers, the echo chamber of Twitter, the predominance of Wikipedia—veteran journalists and media critics Bill Kovach and Tom Rosenstiel have written a pragmatic, serious-minded guide to navigating the twenty-first century media terrain. Yes, old authorities are being dismantled, new ones created, and the very nature of knowledge has changed. But seeking the truth remains the purpose of journalism—and the object for those who consume it. How do we discern what is reliable? How do we determine which facts (or whose opinions) to trust? Blur provides a road map, or more specifically, reveals the craft that has been used in newsrooms by the very best journalists for getting at the truth. In an age when the line between citizen and journalist is becoming increasingly unclear, Blur is a crucial guide for those who want to know what's true.
Ways of Skeptical Knowing—Six Essential Tools for Interpreting theNews
1. What kind of content am I encountering? 2. Is the information complete? If not, what's missing? 3. Who or what are the sources and why should I believe them? 4. What evidence is presented and how was it tested or vetted? 5. What might bean alternative explanation or understanding? 6. Am I learning what I need? [taken from goodreads.com]
Everything Is Miscellaneous: The Power of the New Digital Disorder
by David Weinberger
Let's face it; most of us grew up in an orderly world. Fact memorization, atlases, and the Dewey Decimal System mapped out distinct categories of our universe. In those bygone days before cut-and-paste documents and Photoshop, texts and pictures seemed as solid as marble statues. Since the Digital Revolution, mere anarchy seems to be loosed upon the world. David Weinberger's Everything Is Miscellaneous explains why we can't ignore this often unnerving seismic shift. There's no doubt that things are changing: Intellectual disciplines seem to be melting into one another and even retail specialties are reconfiguring. Upscale fashion boutiques are selling CDs, and many coffee shops now resemble laptop centers. The author of Small Pieces Loosely Joined insists that we can find our way in this new order of things. Hypnotic and hip. [taken from goodreads.com]
On Longing: Narratives of the Miniature, the Gigantic, the Souvenir, the Collection
by Susan Stewart
Miniature books, eighteenth-century novels, Tom Thumb weddings, tall tales, and objects of tourism and nostalgia: this diverse group of cultural forms is the subject of On Longing, a fascinating analysis of the ways in which everyday objects are narrated to animate or realize certain versions of the world. [taken from goodreads.com]
I am excited to get these books in the mail and get my research on!