Interrogating the Role of Belief in Technology Design and Use


Andre Brock


2020-10-26 15:07:00



GVU Center Brown Bag Seminar: Interrogating the Role of Belief in Technology Design and Use

While STEM fields possess the capacity to analyze the technical and organizational properties of digital interfaces, services, and their associated user practices, they are underequipped to evaluate or interrogate the cultural mediation of design, discourses, and meaning of digital technologies.   This presentation describes a possible methodological intervention: critical technocultural discourse analysis (CTDA). CTDA employs critical cultural frameworks (e.g. critical race or feminist theory) with philosophy of technology and science and technology studies to interrogate digital artifacts, their practices, and the beliefs of the users employs them.

CTDA integrates semiotic interface analysis with critical discourse analysis of the interface’s users. This talk outlines this technique, providing examples of how its methodological flexibility applies to examining varied ICT artifacts while maintaining a hermeneutic perspective on design and use. I designed CTDA especially for researchers interested in minority groups and digital practice as it foregrounds critical cultural theories while examining digital technology, grounded in user perspectives and real-world practices


André Brock is an associate professor of media studies at Georgia Tech. His scholarship examines racial representations in videogames, black women and weblogs, whiteness, blackness, and digital technoculture, as well as innovative and groundbreaking research on Black Twitter. His forthcoming book titled *Distributed Blackness: African American Cybercultures* will be published with NYU Press in February 2020, offering an innovative approach to understanding Black everyday lives mediated by digital technologies