Magdalena Kania-Lundholm is a WIAS visiting researcher (May and June 2018). She is a researcher at the Department of Sociology, Uppsala University. 

In this talk, Magdalena Kania-Lundholm (Uppsala University, Sweden) discusses the existing body of research on online disconnection, also referred to as voluntary non-use of technology or media refusal.

She argues that we need to explore and understand the contexts, meanings and conditions under which disconnection becomes relevant. She provides three main reasons why research on online voluntary disconnection is worth developing further:

First, because it challenges the hegemonic ideas about connectivity, participation and the primacy of usage. In doing so, she points to disconnection as socially embedded and flexible over time.

Second, it points towards various forms of media resistance, and saying “no” to the opaque structures of power and control in the networked society, which includes both individual and collective acts.

Third, research on disconnection goes beyond the rhetoric of novelty, progress, self-control and self-empowerment, and by emphasising the materiality of the digital it has the potential to address the politics of social media.

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