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New Media We Recommend

August 7, 2012

Below is a list of new materials that we have read/watched in recent weeks. The comments are not a “review” of the material, instead sort of an endorsement of ideas and investigations that can provide solid analysis and even inspiration in the struggle for change. All these items are available at The Bloom Collective, so check them out and stimulate your mind.

Ad Nauseam: A Survivor’s Guide to American Consumer Culture, edited by Carrie McLaren – The reality of living in a hyper-marketing and advertiser driven culture is not an epiphany for most of us. This book does in the first section provide us with a useful overview of how advertising impacts us as individuals and as a society. However, the beauty of Ad Nauseam is the collection of stories and reflections on consumer culture and what many people have done in response. Edited by Carrie McLaren, with the anti-consumption blog Stay Free, this anthology is sure to inspire, entertain, inform and even arm readers with some tactics on how to deal with the madness of living in a consumer culture. This book is not only useful for media specialists, but for anyone disgusted with being a target market by advertisers and their lackeys.

Occupying Privilege: Conversations on Love, Race & Liberation, edited by JLove Calderon – This anthology of essays, interviews, letters and poems is one of the best resources on anti-racism/anti-white supremacy I have read in years. The collection of authors is amazing, the stories are fabulous and the lessons learned are invaluable. JLove Calderon has put together an amazing resource that should be used by those who want to: first – come to terms with their own privilege; second – be exposed to an analysis of white supremacy and institutional racism, and: third – have the courage to engage in anti-racist action that is truly liberating. This book is worth every penny and is highly recommended.

Blur: How to Know What’s True in the Age of Information Overload, by Bill Kovach and Tom Rosenstiel – We are all bombarded with information sources on TV & radio, in print and particularly online. How does one separate fact from opinion, especially as journalism invests more in hits than telling the truth? This recent book by two writers with the Project for Excellence in Journalism, provide us with an invaluable resource. Kovach and Rosenstiel look at online sourcing, context and the importance of verification in journalism, where journalist look to second and third sources to verify claims made by news sources, particularly people in power. The authors also argue we need to expand our notion of journalism in the digital age so that relevance, urgency, accountability and transparency can become the fabric of how journalism is conducted in the 21st century. A useful tool for educators,  journalists and those who care about the future of news.

Vocabulary of Change: In Conversation with Angela Davis & Tim Wise (DVD) – This 78 minute DVD brings together for the first time two of the most prolific and dedicate anti-racist organizers and educators in the US. Angela Davis and Tim Wise both share powerful insights into their own evolution as activists and thinkers, the state of the US, institutional racism, the Prison Industrial Complex and the importance of intersectional thinking and strategizing. In addition, both Davis and Wise spend a significant amount of time looking at issues through a class-based lens and both make it clear that in order to create communities without racism, sexism, homophobia, heterosexism, Transphobia and any other kind of social system of oppression, we must dismantle capitalism. Vocabulary of Change is a great tool for group discussion and should be shared widely.

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