Introduction: The Geopolitcs of Media Studies

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Contribution to Books

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This geography of media studies is concerned with the geographical, institutional, and national co-ordinates of mediatic inquiry; but at the same time, it insists that these concerns be translated through a local/global dynamic, such that the terrain it maps is tectonic and trans-locational. Speaking of the “transatlantic,” attention is consistently directed in this volume and this introductory chapter to the “trans,” that is, on sites of dynamic interfusion of cultural vectors, while maintaining the central focus of the present volume on two specific sites of hyper-active media theorization: North America, especially Canada, and Germany. This conjunction is historically justified, as the present volume argues forcefully, even where the outcomes of media research differ radically, as in the inquiries into orality and literacy of Innis and Kittler.