As technology increasingly dominates the public sphere, Technologies of Public Persuasion: An Accidental Issue
offers richly descriptive examples of how technologically influenced forms and artifacts of communication effect transformations in the self-understandings of publics and subjects. This special issue of Public Culture
exposes readers to new discursive genres and practices, linking literary cultural methodologies and theories to social analysis.
The contributors explore topics ranging from the use of cell phones by middle-class Filipinos in the civilian-backed overthrow of President Joseph Estrada to a media reported "hint" from Alan Greenspan that impacted and altered economic reality through speculation. An essay investigates the politics surrounding the formation and use of Indonesian as a self-consciously modern language designed to reconstitute the social and political identities of its speakers. A photo-essay depicts graffiti on abandoned school buildings as a communicative medium. "Crimes of Substitution: Detection in the Late Soviet Society" looks at late-Soviet detective fiction, censorship strategies, and Soviet semiotics to show how Soviet citizens subverted dictated modes of behavior and challenged the symbolic order of Soviet society. One contributor examines how performance and ethnolinguistic practices become techniques for spatially and socially locating identity.
Contributors. Alberta Arthurs, Dilip Parameshwar Gaonkar, Michael Kaplan, Webb Keane, Patrick Mullen, Serguei Oushakine, Elizabeth A. Povinelli, Vicente L. Rafael, Christopher Schneider, Michael Silverstein, Amanda Weidman