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The first three editions of this bestselling book have established A Social History of the Media as a classic, providing a masterful overview of communication media and of the social and cultural contexts within which they emerged and evolved over time.
This fourth edition has been revised and updated throughout to reflect the latest developments in the field. Additionally, an expanded introduction explores the wide range of secondary literature and theory that inform the study of media history today, and a new eighth chapter surveys the revolutionary media developments of the twenty-first century, including in particular the rise of social and participatory media and the penetration of these technologies into every sphere of social and private life.
Avoiding technological determinism and rejecting assumptions of straightforward evolutionary progress, this book brings out the rich and varied histories of communication media. In an age of fast-paced media developments, a thorough understanding of media history is more important than ever, and this text will continue to be the first choice for students and scholars across the world.