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This title in other editions

The Networked Wilderness: Communicating in Early New England

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The Networked Wilderness: Communicating in Early New England Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In The Networked Wilderness, Matt Cohen examines communications systems in early New England and finds that, surprisingly, struggles over information technology were as important as theology, guns, germs, or steel in shaping the early colonization of North America. Colonists in New England have generally been viewed as immersed in a Protestant culture of piety and alphabetic literacy. At the same time, many scholars have insisted that the culture of the indigenous peoples of the region was a predominantly oral culture. But what if, Cohen posits, we thought about media and technology beyond the terms of orality and literacy?

Reconceptualizing aural and inscribed communication as a spectrum, The Networked Wilderness bridges the gap between the history of the book and Native American systems of communication. Cohen reveals that books, paths, recipes, totems, and animals and their sounds all took on new interactive powers as the English negotiated the well-developed informational trails of the Algonquian East Coast and reported their experiences back to Europe. Native and English encounters forced all parties to think of each other as audiences for any event that might become a kind of "publication."

Using sources ranging from Thomas Morton's Maypole festival to the architecture of today's Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center, Cohen shows that the era before the printing press came to New England was one of extraordinary fertility for communications systems in America.

Book News Annotation:

Now that academic consensus has turned away from the dichotomy between the literate culture of the Puritans and the oral culture of Native Americans, Cohen (English, U. of Texas-Austin) looks at the methodological, disciplinary, legal, political, and aesthetic implications for studying communication during the early period of English colonies in North America. He looks at native audience, good noise from New England, forests of gestures, and multimedia combat and the Pequot War. Annotation ©2010 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

About the Author

Matt Cohen is assistant professor of English at Duke University.

Table of Contents

Note on the Text

Introduction

1. Native Audiences

2. Good Noise from New England

3. Forests of Gestures

4. Multimedia Combat and the Pequot War

Coda

Acknowledgments

Notes

Bibliography

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780816660988
Subtitle:
Communicating in Early New England
Author:
Cohen, Matt
Publisher:
Univ Of Minnesota Press
Subject:
American - General
Subject:
Communication
Subject:
Books and reading -- New England -- History.
Subject:
Indians of North America -- Communication.
Subject:
Communication Studies
Subject:
Intercultural Communications-General
Subject:
American
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Paperback
Publication Date:
20091204
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
296
Dimensions:
8.5 x 5.5 x 0.7 in

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Related Subjects

Business » Communication
History and Social Science » Intercultural Communications » General
History and Social Science » US History » Colonial America
History and Social Science » World History » General
Humanities » Literary Criticism » General

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