Online Courses

Every year the Visual Media Workshop chooses a theme on which they pull together a free for use open-access course.  We put out an annual call to global scholars working in the fields of social media studies.  From there we provide short lectures, readings and self-directed discussion questions for use in classrooms or for self-study.


The Our Pixilated Eyeballs Course is the product of an international collaboration among a group of global scholars interested in the evolving topic of digital visual culture.  In this free online course, world-renowned academics from the UK to Australia provide insightful 20-30 minute lectures on topics of their current research.  You can learn about topics are wide ranging as the meaning of Kim Kardashian's butt to the online activist group anonymous, as well as 'sexting' to Instagram hashtags.


Online Courses

Images of Social Justice

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Increasingly everyday citizens are using their own mobile phones to capture photos and videos of moments in history that mainstream media misses.  From #feministselfies to activist trolling, cellphone images and shakey-cam videos connect audiences to ordinary and extraordinary quotidian moments around the world from the perspective of the people.  This lecture series explores eight weeks of cases studies of such images, and discusses, via different theoretical standpoints, the social, cultural, political, technological, and economic impact and implications of these visuals.



Here is a list of free books and foundational texts that the visual media workshop recommends.

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Cultural Studies (general)
Stuart Hall.  Encoding/Decoding
Jacques Lacan. Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis.
Deleuze and Guattari.  A Thousand Plateaus.
Michel Foucault. Archaeology of Knowledge.
Laura Mulvey. Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema.
Luce Irigaray. The Sex which is not One.
John Storey. Cultural Studies (book).
Jurgen Habermas. The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere
Judith Butler. Gender Trouble.
Judith Butler. Bodies that Matter.
Roland Barthes. Mythologies.
Roland Barthes. Camera Lucida.

Critical Race Theory
Edward Said. Orientalism.
Alice Walker. The Color Purple.
Audre Lorde. Zami, Sister Outsider, Undersong.
Angela Davis. Women, Race, Class
Angela Davis. Autobiography.
Frantz Fanon. Black Skin, White masks.
Frantz Fanon. The Wretched of the Earth
Gloria Anzaldua.  Borderland.
Patricia Hill Collins (Signs, 1989).  The Social Construction of Black Feminist Thought.
Kimberle Crenshaw. 
(Connecticut Law Review, 2011)
Twenty Years of Critical Race Theory: Looking Back To Move Forward
Nell Irvin Painter. The History of White People.
Cherie L Moraga. The Bridge Called my Back.
Toni Morrison. Beloved.
Ien Ang. On Not Speaking Chinese.
bell hooks. Feminism is for Everyone.
bell hooks. Understanding Patriarchy.
More Coming Soon

Intro to Mass Communication (Canadian Focus, organized thematically)
Whole texts
Meenakshi, Durham and Kellner. Keyworks. Media and Cultural Studies Reader.
Dominic Strinati. An Introduction to Theories of Popular Culture.

Ideology & Hegemony
Antonio Gramsci. The Prison Diaries (whole)
Walter Benjamin. The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction
Adorno and Horkheimer. The Culture Industry
Jurgen Habermas. The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere.
Louis Althusser. Ideology and Ideological State Apparatuses.

Representation and Everyday Life
Stuart Hall. Encoding/Decoding. 
Roland Barthes. Mythologies (whole)
Michel Foucault. Archaeology of Knowledge
John Berger. Ways of Seeing, episode 1episode 2episode 3episode 4.
Marshal McLuhan. The Medium is the Message.
Guy Debord. The Society of the Spectacle.
Dorfman & Mattlelart. How the Read Donald Duck
Raymond Williams. Base and Superstructure.
Dick Hebdige. Subculture: the meaning of style (whole).
Ien Ang. Living Room Wars.
Laura Mulvey. Visual Pleasure
Judith Butler.  Bodies that Matter
Richard Dyer. The Roles of Stereotypes.
bell hooks. Eating the Other.
Patricia Collins.  Booty Call.

Political Economy
Dallas Smythe. On the Audience Commodity and its work.
Edward Herman. The Propaganda Model Revisited.
Pierre Bourdieu. On Television.

Postmodern and New Media
Jean Baudrillard. The Precession of Simulacra, The Orders of the Simulacra
Angela McRobbie. Postmodernism and Popular Culture (whole)
Mark Poster. Postmodern Virtualities.
Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death.
Henry Jenkins.  Confronting the Challenges of Participatory Culture.
Sonia Livingstone. The End of Audiences?
danah Boyd. Sociality through social networks.
Jose van Dyck. Writing the Self.
Bruno Latour. On Interobjectivity.
Bruno Latour.  Drawing Things together.
Bruno Latour. We Have Never Been Modern
Karen Barad. Meeting the Universe Halfway.
Karen Barad. On Touching.

Arjun Appadurai. Disjuncture and Difference
Gloria Anzaldua. The Homeland
Jan Pieterse. Globalization as Hybridization
Kahn & Kellner.  Oppositional Politics and the Internet.

Social Media Theory and Technofeminism
Henry Jenkins.  Confronting the Challenges of Participatory Culture.
Urry, Larsen, Axhausen. Mobilities, Networks, Geographies.
Christian Fuchs. Social Media (only intro)
danah Boyd. Sociality through social networks.
danah boyd. Social network sites: Definition, history, and scholarship
Jose van Dyck. Writing the Self.
Bruno Latour. On Interobjectivity.
Bruno Latour.  Drawing Things together.
Bruno Latour. We Have Never Been Modern
Karen Barad. Meeting the Universe Halfway.
Karen Barad. On Touching.
Kath Albury. Young people and sexting in Australia. 
Jill Walker Rettberg. Seeing Ourselves Through Technology.
Terri Senft. Camgirls.
Donna Harraway. Simians Cyborgs and Women.
Radhika Gajjala. Cyberculture and the Subaltern. (Intro, chpt 4, and conclusion)
Alice Marwick.  Status Update
Karen Elizabeth McIntyre. The Evolution of Social Media from 1969-2013. 
Amparo Lasen. Digital Photography and Picture Sharing.
Mimi Sheller. Mobility.
More Coming Soon

Phenomenology and Internet Studies
Husserl. Cartesian Meditations.
Husserl. Introduction to Transcendental Phenomenology
Smith, A.D. Companion Reader to Husserl's Cartesian Meditations
Heidegger, Martin. Being and Time.
Merleau-Ponty, Maurice. Phenomenology of Perception
Satre, Jean-Paul. Being and Nothingness.
Simone de Beauvoir. The Second Sex
Iris Marion Young. Throwing Like a Girl
Ahmed, Sara. Queer Phenomenologies (too new to link)

Digital Visual Culture Studies
Coming Soon

Queering Internet Studies
Coming Soon