You are here:

Borderlands or Enclosures?: Technology, the University, and Cultural Studies

Review of Education, Pedagogy & Cultural Studies Volume 34, Number 1, ISSN 1071-4413


Technology plays a leading role in how media is imagined, and so how one feels about, understands, and participates in contemporary culture. At the same time, technology is key to the local and global imaginaries of the university. The role of technology in the university is now profound, and indeed has gained in complexity and ambiguity with contemporary media developments. Thus technology both undergirds the university, and also pervades the systems of media, making it doubly difficult to extricate the university from other social and cultural domains. There are many kinds of technology that have a bearing on everyday life--what used to be called "high" technology, and all the other "low" technologies too. In this article, the author focuses on just one strand of technology--the technological systems associated with communication, information, and media technology. In the first part of the article, he reviews and analyzes the contemporary politics of how technology is deployed in pedagogy, especially in the pervasive interface systems used in teaching and assessment. He also considers the new platforms of participatory digital culture--such as Facebook, Second Life, YouTube, iTunes, and smartphones--and how these are figuring in university education. The second section turns to cultural studies and technology. The author discusses how the rise of the Internet and accompanying network cultures have changed the way cultural studies is conceived, taught, and practiced. Following this, he looks at the social functions and cultural politics of contemporary communications and media technologies and networks--especially as these are playing out in the global south, as well as the overly emphasized global north. In the concluding part, the author returns to the overarching argument of the article. Beyond the panics and anxieties about the Internet and its imperiling of cultural life and intellectual standards, the article contends there are real and present dangers manifest in the knotted relationships among the university, technology, and cultural studies. (Contains 1 note.)


Goggin, G. (2012). Borderlands or Enclosures?: Technology, the University, and Cultural Studies. Review of Education, Pedagogy & Cultural Studies, 34(1), 8-22. Retrieved December 4, 2023 from .

This record was imported from ERIC on April 19, 2013. [Original Record]

ERIC is sponsored by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) of the U.S. Department of Education.

Copyright for this record is held by the content creator. For more details see ERIC's copyright policy.