ABSTRACT

In his recent study of the Internet, Mark Poster has argued for a radical approach that would do more than simply deploy new media as a “tool for determining the fate of groups as they are currently constituted.”1 As Poster sees it, the transformational potential of the new media stems from their impact on how human beings are interpellated as social actors. As it becomes increasingly mediated by the communication networks of the new media, interpellation comes to materialize a “self that is no longer a subject since it no longer subtends the world as if from outside but operates within a machine apparatus as a point in a circuit” (16). In this way, new media allow us to suspend existing cultural figurations of the self-“race, class, and gender, or citizen, manager, and worker”—in order to forge new cultural forms that have the potential to change “the position of existing groups … in unforeseeable ways” (3).