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Welcome to our Crowdsourced Book Review on "Race After The Internet"

Welcome to our Crowdsourced Book Review on "Race After The Internet"

We are proud to announce this collection of reviews for Race After The Internet!


We've dubbed this project a "Crowdsourced Book Review" as a nod towards its collective nature. 

Initially, HASTAC Scholars were invited to review one chapter each, and then collectively comment on each other's reviews once they are posted. All peer comments, questions and suggestions would be in the public comments on this site.

Since the orginal project was posted, others have come forward to offer their review too! We invite you to submit your own.

The reviewers are all from different universities, at different points in their academic career, and work in different disciplines. Some of these reviews are fairly personal engagements with the chapter in question, while others are more of a 'report' of the chapter's content. There were no constraints placed on the style or content of the reviews.

We heartily welcome other reviewers to join this collection! If you'd like to add your own review, please post it as a blog on this site, and message me (Fiona Barnett, Director of HASTAC Scholars) with the link, so that I can add you to the list below.

This is such an important book, and it comes at an especially important time. We hope that by highlighting these engaging, innovative and thoughtful projects, that you will be inspired to read, learn & teach this book in the future. 

In the meantime, jump in with comments, questions & your own reviews!

Race After the Internet, edited by Lisa Nakamura and Peter Chow-White. Published by Routledge, October 2011.

Introduction: Lisa Nakamura and Peter Chow-White, "Race and Digital Technology: Code, the Color Line and the Information Society."

Reviewed by: Adeline Koh, Assistant Professor of Literature at Richard Stockton College.

Part I - The History Of Race And Information: Code, Policies, Identities 

Chapter 1: Tara McPherson, "U.S. Operating Systems At Mid-century: The Intertwining Of Race And Unix." 

Reviewed by: Micha Cardenas, Ph.D. student in Interdivisional Program in Media Arts and Practice (iMAP) at the University of Southern California.

Chapter 2: Wendy Hui Kyong Chun, "Race And/as Technology, Or How To Do Things To Race."

Review by: Margaret Rhee, Ph.D. student in Ethnic Studies with a designated emphasis in New Media at the University of California, Berkeley.

Chapter 3: Rayvon Fouché, "From Black Inventors To One Laptop Per Child: Exporting A Racial Politics Of Technology."

Reviewed by: Jade E. Davis, Ph.D. student in the Department of Communication Studies, at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapter 4: Curtis Marez, "Cesar Chavez, The United Farm Workers, And The History Of Star Wars."

Reviewed byTess Habbestad, Ph.D. student in English at Texas A&M University.


Part II Race, Identity, and Digital Sorting

Chapter 5: Alexander Galloway: "Does the Whatever Speak?

Reviewed byKim Singletary, Ph.D. student in Rhetoric and Public Culture, at Northwestern University.

Chapter 6: Oscar Gandy, Jr.: "Matrix Multiplication and the Digital Divide."

Forthcoming Review by: Cassidy Puckett, Ph.D. student in Sociology, at Northwestern University.

Chapter 7: Anna Everett: "Have We Become Postracial Yet? Race and Media Technology in the Age of President Obama."

Reviewed byFaithe Day, Undergraduate student in English and Digital Humanities, at Wesleyan College.

Chapter 8: Christian Sandvig: "Connection at Ewiiaapaayp Mountain: Indigenous Internet Infrastructure."

Reviewed byIskandar Zulkarnain, Ph.D. student in Visual and Cultural Studies, at the University of Rochester.


Part III - Digital Segregations

Chapter 9: danah boyd,"White Flight In Networked Publics: How Race And Class Shaped American Teen Engagement With Myspace And Facebook."

Reviewed by: Ergin Bulut, Ph.D. student at the Institute of Communications Research at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Chapter 10: Eszter Hargittai, "Open Doors, Closed Spaces? Differentiated Adoption Of Social Network Sites By User Background."

Reviewed by: Benjamin Gleason, PhD student in Educational Technology at Michigan State University.

Chapter 11:  Ernest J. Wilson and Sasha Costanza-Chock, "New Voices On The Net? The Digital Journalism Divide And The Costs Of Network Exclusion."

Reviewed byKelsey Brannan, MA candidate in the Communication, Culture, & Technology Program at Georgetown University.

Part IV Biotechnology And Race As Information

Chapter 12: Alondra Nelson And Jeong Won Hwang, "Roots And Revelation: Genetic Ancestry Testing And The Youtube Generation."

Reviewed byEdmond Chang, Ph.D. student in English, at the University of Washington.

Chapter 13: Peter A. Chow-White, "Genomic Databases And An Emerging Digital Divide In Biotechnology."

Reviewed by: Molly Storment, M.A. student in Rhetoric and Composition at North Carolina State University.

Chapter 14: Troy Duster, "The Combustible Intersection: Genomics, Forensics, And Race."

Review byRegina Yung Lee, Ph.D. student in Comparative Literature, University of California - Riverside.


Book Overview from Routledge

In Race After the Internet, Lisa Nakamura and Peter Chow-White bring together a collection of interdisciplinary, forward-looking essays exploring the complex role that digital media technologies play in shaping our ideas about race. Contributors interrogate changing ideas of race within the context of an increasingly digitally mediatized cultural and informational landscape. Using social scientific, rhetorical, textual, and ethnographic approaches, these essays show how new and old styles of race as code, interaction, and image are played out within digital networks of power and privilege.

Race After the Internet includes essays on the shifting terrain of racial identity and its connections to social media technologies like Facebook and MySpace, popular online games like World of Warcraft, YouTube and viral video, WiFi infrastructure, the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) program, genetic ancestry testing, and DNA databases in health and law enforcement. Contributors also investigate the ways in which racial profiling and a culture of racialized surveillance arise from the confluence of digital data and rapid developments in biotechnology. This collection aims to broaden the definition of the "digital divide" in order to convey a more nuanced understanding of access, usage, meaning, participation, and production of digital media technology in light of racial inequality.


Well done! This is an excellent idea, espeically for edited volumes. It would be great to do A Networked Self edited by Zizi Papacharissi and the forthcoming Digital Labor: The Internet as Playground and Factory edited by Trebor Scholz.


Matthew, if you want to organize another review of one of these books, go for it!   The coordination to make this happen is pretty intense but so worthwhile.  I hope you decide to do it.   And, Moya, I plan to do this in my course next year.  In fact, I've made Race After the Internet required reading precisely so doctoral students write chapter reviews in response to other posted reviews.  This is my course in the new PhD Lab in Digital Knowledge to be offered Spring 2013. I hope others take advantage of this opportunity. 


Speaking of which, a class at the ISchool at U of Maryland is doing a brilliant job taking advantage of HASTAC's affordances and becoming a "group" on the site.    I intend to do this next year in my course too.  




So excited by this model of peer review!  I appreciated Cathy Davidson's suggestion about review of chapters as an assignment for students. If I was teachng I totally would! :)