Perpetual Contact: Mobile Communication, Private Talk, Public Performance

Front Cover
James E. Katz, Mark Aakhus
Cambridge University Press, Mar 21, 2002 - Business & Economics - 391 pages
2 Reviews
The spread of mobile communication, most obtrusively as cell phones but increasingly in other wireless devices, is affecting people's lives and relationships to a previously unthought-of extent. Mobile phones, which are fast becoming ubiquitous, affect either directly or indirectly every aspect of our personal and professional lives. They have transformed social practices and changed the way we do business, yet surprisingly little serious academic work has been done on them. This 2002 book, with contributions from the foremost researchers in the field, studies the impact of the mobile phone on contemporary society from a social scientific perspective. Providing a comprehensive overview of mobile phones and social interaction, it comprises an introduction covering the key issues, a series of unique national studies and a final section examining specific issues.
 

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Contents

Introduction framing the issues
1
Mobile communication national and comparative perspectives
15
Finland a mobile culture
19
Israel chutzpah and chatter in the Holy Land
30
Italy stereotypes true and false
42
Korea personal meanings
63
United States popular pragmatic and problematic
80
France preserving the image
94
Pretense of intimacy in France
193
Mobile phone consumption and concepts of personhood
206
Public performance social groups and structures
223
The challenge of absent presence
227
From mass society to perpetual contact models of communication technologies in social context
242
Mobiles and the Norwegian teen identity gender and class
255
The telephone comes to a Filipino village
274
Beginnings in the telephone
284

The Netherlands and the USA compared
110
Bulgaria mobile phones as postcommunist cultural icons
126
Private talk interpersonal relations and microbehavior
137
Hypercoordination via mobile phones in Norway
139
Mobile culture of children and teenagers in Finland
170
Conclusion making meaning of mobiles a theory of Apparatgeist
301
Appendixes
321
B Opening sequencing
326
Index
386
Copyright

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About the author (2002)

Dr James Katz is the author of several books in the field of technology and society. With Philip Aspden and Ronald E. Rice, he is the co-author of a book about the social impact of the Internet on life in America, to be published by MIT Press. His 1999 book, Connections: Social and Cultural Studies of the Telephone in American Life, was included in the 37th Outstanding Academic Titles award, given by the American Library Association's journal Choice. Another of his books, Congress and Natural Energy Policy, was nominated for the American Political Science Association Gladys Kammerer prize for best political science publication in 1984. In 2000, he won the Rutgers Department of Communication Researcher of the year award. Katz has authored more than 30 peer-reviewed journal articles; his works have been translated into five languages and re-published in numerous edited collections. He earned his Ph.D. in 1974 from Rutgers; in 1997, he joined its department of communication as professor. In between those years he won postdoctoral fellowships at Harvard and MIT, served on the faculties of the University of Texas, Austin and Clarkson University, and headed the social science research unit at Bell Communication Research (Bellcore). He was also granted national and foreign patents on his inventions in telecommunication technology. The national electronic media frequently interview Katz; and he has appeared on numerous network news programs. He has been quoted on the front-pages of leading newspapers including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe and USA Today. He serves on the boards of several leading social science journals and charitable and educational foundations. His teaching and research interests include research methods, the social aspects of communication technology, the contest between privacy and publicity on the Internet, and of course mobile communication and computing.

Dr Aakhus is Assistant Professor of Communication at Rutgers. He investigates how new media and communication formats are designed and implemented to solve problems of human communication. within this domain, Aakhus is especially interested in investigating how such innovations affect the quality of human activities in the areas of learning, organizing, decision-making, and conflict-management. He has published in technology and communication journals. His work appears regularly in international proceedings on argumentation and disputing processes. He earned a Ph. D. at the University of Arizona in Communication with a specialization in Management Information Communication and Technology Commission. He is dispute-mediator and has invented a distributed learning application for educating professionals.

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