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Automation, Intelligence and the Politics of Knowing
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We are living in algorithmic times.

From machine learning and artificial intelligence to blockchain or simpler news-feed filtering, automated systems can transform the social world in ways that are just starting to be imagined.

Redefining these emergent technologies as the new systems of knowing, pioneering scholar David Beer examines the acute tensions they create and how they are changing what is known and what is knowable. Drawing on cases ranging from the art market and the smart home through to financial tech, AI patents and neural networks, he develops key concepts for understanding the framing, envisioning and implementation of algorithms.

This book will be of interest to anyone who is concerned with the rise of algorithmic thinking and the way it permeates society.

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Who Is Stealing Jobs?

Who steals jobs? Who owns jobs?

Focusing on the competitive labour market, this book scrutinizes the narratives created around immigration and automation. The authors explore how the advances in AI and demands for constant flow of immigrant workers eradicate political and working rights, fuelling fears over job theft and ownership.

Shedding light on the multiple ways in which employment is used as an instrument of neoliberal governance, this revealing book sparks new debate on the role of automation and migration policies. It is an invaluable resource for academics and practitioners working in the areas of immigration and labour, capitalism and social exclusion, and economic models and political governance.

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An Anti-fascist Approach to Artificial Intelligence
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Artificial Intelligence (AI) is everywhere, yet it causes damage to society in ways that can’t be fixed. Instead of helping to address our current crises, AI causes divisions that limit people’s life chances, and even suggests fascistic solutions to social problems. This book provides an analysis of AI’s deep learning technology and its political effects and traces the ways that it resonates with contemporary political and social currents, from global austerity to the rise of the far right.

Dan McQuillan calls for us to resist AI as we know it and restructure it by prioritising the common good over algorithmic optimisation. He sets out an anti-fascist approach to AI that replaces exclusions with caring, proposes people’s councils as a way to restructure AI through mutual aid and outlines new mechanisms that would adapt to changing times by supporting collective freedom.

Academically rigorous, yet accessible to a socially engaged readership, this unique book will be of interest to all who wish to challenge the social logic of AI by reasserting the importance of the common good.

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Is it possible to tackle waste by recycling, reusing and reducing consumption on an individual level alone?

This provocative book critically analyses the widespread narrative around waste as a ‘household’ issue.

Expert scholar Myra J. Hird uncovers neoliberal capitalism’s fallacy of infinite growth as the real culprit and shows how industry and local governments work in tandem to deflect attention away from the real causes of our global waste crisis.

Hird offers crucial insights on the relations between waste and wider societal issues such as poverty, racism, sexism, Indigeneity, decolonisation and social justice, showcasing how sociology can contribute to a ‘public imagination’ of waste.

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Digital Data, Gene Technologies, and an Ethics of Transhumanism

The concept of transhumanism emerged in the middle of the 20th century, and has influenced discussions around AI, brain–computer interfaces, genetic technologies and life extension. Despite its enduring influence in the public imagination, a fully developed philosophy of transhumanism has not yet been presented.

In this new book, leading philosopher Stefan Lorenz Sorgner explores the critical issues that link transhumanism with digitalization, gene technologies and ethics. He examines the history and meaning of transhumanism and asks bold questions about human perfection, cyborgs, genetically enhanced entities, and uploaded minds.

Offering insightful reflections on values, norms and utopia, this will be an important guide for readers interested in contemporary digital culture, gene ethics, and policy making.

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The Urgent Need to Transform Society and Reverse Climate Change
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This book is an urgent call to reimagine our social, political and economic systems so that we might transform to a sustainable society.

It considers whether an alternative economic model is possible and examines the factors needed to enable such a transition to occur. The scale and pace of change is unprecedented and the author examines the actions that have to be taken by governments, business and individuals if we are to address the environmental disaster that confronts us. Much needs to change but ultimately, this is a book of hope, believing that evolution to a better, more sustainable society is possible.

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Contradictions and Alternatives to Data Commodification

At a time when the practices of technology companies continue to attract fierce criticism, this book asks what it actually means to hold a 'monopoly' in the tech world and how it might affect the way in which an organization operates.

Combining new and traditional Marxian perspectives, the authors offer an in-depth analysis of how these technology giants are produced, financialized, and regulated.

As technology firms continue to shape our political and socio-economic landscape, this book will be an invaluable resource for scholars and students who seek to understand the function of technological monopolies in contemporary capitalism.

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A Thriving Life That Does Not Cost the Earth
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How can we create a thriving life for us all that doesn’t come at the price of ecological destruction?

This book calls to explore our collective and personal convictions about success and good life. It challenges the mainstream worldview, rooted in economics, that equates happiness with pleasure, and encourages greed, materialism, egoism and disconnection.

Drawing on science and ancient Greek philosophers the author details how we can cultivate our skills for enjoying life without harming ourselves or others, and can live an autonomous, creative and connected life. Complementary to our intellectual understanding, the experiential method of role play and theatre can powerfully facilitate the exploration of the inner drivers and hindrances of a thriving life.

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Classification, Ranking and the Sorting of the Past
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Social media platforms hold vast amounts of biographical data about our lives. They repackage our past content as ‘memories’ and deliver them back to us. But how does that change the way we remember?

Drawing on original qualitative research as well as industry documents and reports, this book critically explores the process behind this new form of memory making. In asking how social media are beginning to change the way we remember, it will be essential reading for scholars and students who are interested in understanding the algorithmically defined spaces of our lives.

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How Technology Shapes 21st-Century American Life
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As the US contends with issues of populism and de-democratization, this timely study considers the impacts of digital technologies on the country’s politics and society.

Timcke provides a Marxist analysis of the rise of digital media, social networks and technology giants like Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Microsoft. He looks at the impact of these new platforms and technologies on their users who have made them among the most valuable firms in the world.

Offering bold new thinking across data politics and digital and economic sociology, this is a powerful demonstration of how algorithms have come to shape everyday life and political legitimacy in the US and beyond.

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