Thursday, 18 April 2013

Book Review: Localizing the Internet

I recently had the privilege of reviewing John Postill's Localizing the Internet for the LSE Review of Books. It's a fascinating case study conducted in Malaysia, focusing on the way the Internet can shape governance. Postill introduces his concept of the 'field of residential affairs', and explains why the dominant paradigm of 'the community' being impacted upon by 'the network' is less useful than it might appear.

Here's the blurb, written by Managing Editor Amy Mollett:

At a critical time of democratic reform across many parts of Southeast Asia, the suburb of Subang Jaya is regarded as Malaysia’s electronic governance laboratory. The focus of Localizing the Internet is Subang Jaya’s field of residential affairs, a digitally mediated social field in which residents, civil servants, politicians, online journalists, and other social agents struggle over how the locality is to be governed at the dawn of the Information Era. Richard Hanstock finds much of interest for sociologists, media theorists, and anthropologists.

You can read my review here.