In this course, we’ll explore how a variety of media revolutions, from the explosion of mass-produced print, the introduction of photography and the radio, to the rise of the internet, have altered Western Europe and the United States. We will ask how different media have shaped our understanding of what constitutes “news” as a conceptual category, how media have generated a public sphere, how media have altered our notions of intellectual property, how media have constructed our ideas about obscenity and pornography and created celebrity culture. We will think about how all of these discourses proliferated in a variety of forms, from pamphlets to broadsides to radio programs to blogs and tweets. We will also ask what the future of media is and experiment with a variety of technologies for communicating arguments and ideas. Students will investigate a wide variety of texts from 18th-century ballads to Orson Welles’ War of the Worlds to Wikipedia articles.