Data has become a social and political issue because of its capacity to reconfigure relationships between states, subjects, and citizens. This book explores how data has acquired such an important capacity and examines how critical interventions in its uses in both theory and practice are possible.

Data and politics are now inseparable: data is not only shaping our social relations, preferences and life chances but our very democracies. Expert international contributors consider political questions about data and the ways it provokes subjects to govern themselves by making rights claims. Concerned with the things (infrastructures of servers, devices, and cables) and language (code, programming, and algorithms) that make up cyberspace, this book demonstrates that without understanding these conditions of possibility it is impossible to intervene in or to shape data politics.

Aimed at academics and postgraduate students interested in political aspects of data, this volume will also be of interest to experts in the fields of internet studies, international studies, Big Data, digital social sciences and humanities. The Open Access version of this book, available at https://www.routledge.com/Data-Politics-Worlds-Subjects-Rights/Bigo-Isin-Ruppert/p/book/9781138053267, has been made available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives 4.0 license.

chapter 1|17 pages

Data politics 1

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part I|59 pages

Conditions of possibility of data politics

chapter 2|22 pages

Knowledge infrastructures under siege

Climate data as memory, truce, and target
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chapter 3|21 pages

Against infrasomatization

Towards a critical theory of algorithms
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part II|86 pages


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chapter 7|22 pages

From fake to junk news

The data politics of online virality
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chapter 8|20 pages

Seeing like Big Tech

Security assemblages, technology, and the future of state bureaucracy
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part III|63 pages


chapter 9|20 pages

Towards data justice

Bridging anti-surveillance and social justice activism 1
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chapter 11|21 pages

Data’s empire

Postcolonial data politics
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part IV|56 pages


chapter 12|17 pages

The right to data oblivion

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chapter 13|19 pages

Data citizens

How to reinvent rights
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chapter 14|18 pages

Data rights

Claiming privacy rights through international institutions
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