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Shooting a Revolution
Visual Media and Warfare in Syria. Digital Barricades
From ISIS propaganda videos to popular regime-backed TV series and digital activism, the Syrian conflict has been dramatically affected by the production of media, at the same time generating in its turn an impressive visual culture. Yet what are the aesthetic, political and material implications of the collusion between the production of this sheer amount of visual media being continuously shared and re-manipulated on the Internet, and the performance of the conflict on the ground?
This ethnography uses the Syrian case to reflect more broadly on how the networked age reshapes contemporary warfare and impacts on the enactment of violence through images and on images. In stark contrast to the techno-utopias celebrating digital democracy and participatory cultures, Donatella Della Ratta's analysis exposes the dark side of online practices, where visual regimes of representation and media production dramatically intertwine with modes of destruction and the performance of violence.
Exploring the most socially-mediated conflict of contemporary times, the book offers a fascinating insight into the transformation of warfare and life in the age of the internet.
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What Reviewers Are Saying
'In this innovative and original book, Donatella Della Ratta critically engages with the visualization of violence and the violence inherent to visuality, in the Syrian conflict. Essential reading for scholars of media, visual cultures, film, politics, political economy and sociology and those interested in understanding war in the digital age' -- Dina Matar, Head, Centre for Global Media and Communication, SOAS 'This gripping work maps the media transformations in Syria - from the high hopes during the 2011 protests to the depression and despair of a never-ending war... what hits us most is Della Ratta's deep insider knowledge to blend personal insights with urgent critical theory. Tactical media theory at its best' -- Geert Lovink, founding director of the Institute of Network Culture, author of Networks Without a Cause