- Also listed as:
- Cogsci C103
- Masscom C103
- History C192
Room and Instructor Info
Class Schedule and ReadingsJump to this week in the syllabus
Mid-term Exam Study Guide
Final Exam Study Guide
213 Wheeler Hall (click for room info including Ethernet info)
203A South Hall
Office Hours: Tues. 10-11
203A South Hall
Office Hours: Wed. 2-4
Course TA:Alana Pechon
203A South Hall
Office Hours: Thu. 1-2
Class Schedule & Readings:
- = available online
- = California Digital Library
- = in reader
Reader is available at Copy Central, 2560 BancroftAll slides are in .pdf format.
1.1 Aug 27: Introduction: Why "History of Information"? Geoff's slides
1.2 Aug 29: Talking about information Geoff's slides Paul's slides
2.2 Sept 5: On Determinism slides
- Heilbroner, Robert L. 1994. "Do Machines Make History?", pp. 53-65 in Merrit Roe Smith & Leo Marx eds., Does Technology Drive History? Cambridge, MA: MIT Press
- Bijker, Wiebe. 1995. "King of the Road: The Social Construction of the Safety Bicycle," pp. 19 - 100 in Wiebe Bijker, Of Bicycles, Bakelites, and Bulbs: Towards a Theory of Sociotechnical Change. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
3.1 Sept 10: The First Technologies of Information: Writing Systems slides
- Robinson, Andrew. 1995. The Story of Writing. London: Thames & Hudson.Ch. 2, "Sound, Symbol, and Script." Pp. 36-37, 40-45, 50-51
Ch. 3, "Proto-Writing," pp. 52-67
Ch. 5, "Egyptian Hieroglyphs," pp. 92-93, 97, 100-104, 106-107
Ch. 7, "Mayan Glyphs," pp. 121-133, 142-143
Ch. 9, "The First Alphabet," pp 158-167
Ch. 10, "New Alphabets from Old," pp. 168-180
Ch. 11, "Chinese Writing," pp. 182-191
Ch 13, "From Hieroglyphs to Alphabets -- and Back?" pp. 210-217.
3.2 Sept. 12: Cultural Effects of Writing slides
- Goody, Jack and Ian Watt. 1988. "The Consequences of Literacy," from Jack Goody, ed., Literacy in Traditional Societies (Cambridge University Press, 1968). Part 1 and Part 2. Also available at JSTOR in .pdf format.
- Scribner, Silvia and Michael Cole. 1988. "Unpackaging Literacy." at Social Science Information, 17, 1 (1978)
4.1 Sept 17: Manuscript Culture slides
- Trithemius, Johannes. 1974/1492. In Praise of Scribes. R. Behrendt, ed. Lawrence, KA: Coronado Press. pp. 35-69 & 89-97.
4.2 Sept 19: Print Culture slides
- Eisenstein, Elizabeth. 1983. "Some Features of Print Culture," pp 42-91 in Elizabeth Eisenstein, The Printing Revolution in Early Modern Europe. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
5.1 Sept 24: Emergence of the Public Sphere slides
- Cowan, Brian. 2005. "Inventing the Coffee House" and "Penny Universities," pp. 79-112 in The Social Life of Coffee: The Emergence of the British Coffeehouse. New Haven. Yale University Press.
- Darnton, Robert. 2000. "An Early Information Society: News and the Media in Eighteenth-Century Paris." American Historical Review 105.1.
5.2 Sept 26: Scientific information slides
- Sprat, Thomas. 1667. pp 60-79 in The History of the Royal Society of London for the Improving of Natural Knowledge London.
Available at Early English Books Online
Read from: from p. 60 "I come now to the Second Period of my Narration..." to p. 79, "The Royal Society will become Immortal."
- Stubbe, Henry. 1670. 'Mistakes about the Sweating-Sicknes, and its Cure,' pp. 23-25 in Legends No Histories, or, A Specimen of Some Animadversions upon the History of the Royal Society. London.
Available at Early English Books Online.
6.1 Oct 1: Scientific Information, continued; Visual Information see slides for previous class [updated 10/1]
- Headrick, Daniel R. 2000. "Displaying Information: Maps and Graphs," pp 96-141 in When Information Came of Age: Technologies of Knowledge in the Age of Reason and Revolution, 1700-1850. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
6.2 Oct 3: Midterm
7.1 Oct. 8: Reference Books and the Organization of Knowledge slides
- McArthur, Tom. 1986. Ch 12-15, pp. 91-133 in Worlds of Reference. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
7.2 Oct 10: Information Work slides
- Thompson, E.P. 1967. Time, Work-Discipline, and Industrial Capitalism. Past & Present 38 (Dec): 56-97.
- Edwards, James Don. 1960. Early Bookkeeping and its Development into Accounting. Business History Review 34(4): 446-458..
8.1 Oct. 15: The Growth of Literacy slides
- Stone, Lawrence. 1969. "Literacy and Education in England 1640-1900." Past and Present 42: 69-139 (necessary to read only to p. 102).
- Garrison, Dee. 1979. "The Social Ideals of Early Library Leaders," pp 36-63 in Apostles of Culture: The Public Librarian and American Society, 1876-1920. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press.
8.2 Oct. 17: The 19th-century Public Sphere slides
- Knightly, Phillip. 2000/1975. "The First Challenge: 1861-1865," pp. 19-41 in The First Casualty. Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press. (optional reading)
- Schudson, Michael, 1978. pp. 13-60 in Discovering the News. New York: Basic Books.
- Mindich, David. 1998. "Nonpartisanship," pp. 40-63 in Just the Facts: How "Objectivity" Came to Define American Journalism. New York: NYU Press.
9.1 Oct 22: Point-to-Point: Telephone & Telegraph slides
- Friedlander, Amy. 1995. 'Telegraphy: The Precursor to Telephony, 1837-1873' and 'The Period of Patent Monopoly, 1873-1894', pp 10-38 in Amy Friedlander, Natural Monopoly and Universal Service: Telephones and Telegraphs in the U.S. Communications Infrastructure, 1837-1940. Washington, D.C. CNRI.
9.2 Oct 24: The Modern Postal System
- Henkin, David. 2007. Becoming Postal, pp 15-41 in The Postal Age: The Emergence of Modern Communications in Nineteenth-Century America. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
10.1 Oct 29: Intelligence & Information slides
- Sun Tzu. nd. "The Use of Spies," chapter 13 of The Art of War, Lionel Giles, trans.
- Warner, Michael. 2006. "The Divine Skein: Sun Tzu on Intelligence." Intelligence& National Security 21(4): 483-492.
- *Mercado, Stephen C. Reexamining the Distinction Between Open Information and Secrets Studies in Intelligence 49(2).
10.2 Oct. 31: Intelligence & Information (continued) slides
11.1 Nov 5: Technologies of the Image: Photography slides
- Newhall, Beaumont, "Prints from Paper," "Portraits for the Million," "The Faithful Witness," and "The Conquest of Action," pp. 32-57, 66-95 in The History of Photography, From 1839 to the Present Day. New York: Museum of Modern Art, 1964.
- Alan Trachtenberg, "Albums of War," Ch. 2 of American Photographs: Images as History from Matthew Brady to Walker Evans. (pp 71-118). New York: Hill and Wang.
11.2 Nov 7: Broadcast: Radio & Television slides
- Starr, Paul, 2004. "The Creation of the Media," Ch. 10-11, pp. 327-384. New York City, NY: Basic Books.
- Marquis, Alice Goldfarb. 1984. "Written on the Wind: The Impact of Radio during the 1930s." Journal of Contemporary History 19 (3): 385-415.
12.2 Nov 14: Politics, Propaganda, and Persuasion slides
- Marlin, Randall, 2002. "History of Propaganda," pp. 43-94 in Propaganda and the Ethics of Persuasion, Toronto: Broadview Press.
- Taylor, Richard. 1998. "Triumph of the Will," Ch. 13 (pp. 162-173) of Film Propaganda: Soviet Russia and Nazi Germany. London: Tauris.
- Barsam, Richard M. 1973. "American Films for World War II," Ch 10 (pp 216-229) of Nonfiction Film: A Critical History. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.
13.1 Nov. 19: Advertising slides
- McKendrick, Neil. 1982. "Josiah Wedgwood and the Commercialization of the Potteries," pp. 100-145 in McKendrick et al. Birth of a Consumer Society. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.
- *Stevenson, Seth. 2007. There Are 12 Kinds of Ads in the World: Resist them All!."Slate July 23
13.2 Nov. 21: Discussion Class
14.1 Nov 26: Advertising (continued) slides
14.2 Nov. 28: Advent of the computer slides
- *Babbage, Charles. 1835. "Registering Operations" and "On the Method of Observing Manufacturies," chapters 8 & 12 in Economy and Machinery of Manufactures.
- Campbell-Kelly, Martin & William Aspray. 1996. "'Babbage's Dream Comes True," (pp. 53-104) in Martin Campbell-Kelly & William Aspray, Computer: A History of the Information Machine. New York: Basic Books.
15.1 Dec 3: Advent of the Internet Paul's slides (PC)
- Berners-Lee, Tim. 2000. Chapters 1-3, pp. 1-34 in Weaving the Web. New York City: HarperCollins.
15.2 Dec 5: Storage, Search, Web 2.0 slides
- Bush, Vannevar. 1945. As We May Think , Atlantic Monthly; 176 (1): 101-108
- Battelle, John. 2005. Epilogue, pp 281-4 in John Battelle, Search: How Google and Its Rivals Rewrote the Rules of Business and Transformed our Culture. New York: Portfolio/Penguin.
- O'Reilly, Tim. 2005. What Is Web 2.0: Patterns and Business Models for the Next Generation of Software.
- Keen, Andrew. 2007. Introduction and The Great Seduction, pp 1-33 in The Cult of the Amateur. New York: Doubleday.
16.1 Dec. 10: Social Implications of the Internet. slides
- DiMaggio, Paul, Eszter Hargittai, W. Russell Neuman,and John P. Robinson. 2001. "Social Implications of the Internet," Annual Review of Sociology. 27:307–36.
- Nunberg, Geoffrey. 2002. "Will the Internet Always Speak English?" American Prospect, Nov. 30.
Dec. 18, Tues., 8-11 AM Final Exam
Reading assignments (20% of course grade):
There will be 10 readings assignments, each involving submission of a one-paragraph answer to one of a list of several questions about the reading. Assignments are due on the day of the reading; no late assignments will be accepted. Assignments will not be letter-graded but only checked off as acceptable. Each student will get 2 free rides for missed assignments.
Midterm (30% of course grade)
Three essay questions, two from a list of questions provided in advance. One 10-point short-answer section asking for names, dates, etc.
Final (50% of course grade)
Five essay questions, most chosen from a list of questions provided in advance. One 10-point short-answer section asking for names, dates, etc.
From time to time we will give brief homework assignments to be discussed in class. No grade will be assigned for class participation as such, but we tend to look kindly on students who manifest a lively interest in the proceedings.
Exam questions will be based on material covered in readings, slides, and class discussion. Class slides will be posted shortly after each class.