We live in a surveillance society. Anyone who uses a credit card, cell phone, or even search engines to navigate the Web is being monitored and assessed—and often in ways that are imperceptible to us. The first general introduction to the growing field of surveillance studies, SuperVision uses examples drawn from everyday technologies to show how surveillance is used, who is using it, and how it affects our world.
Beginning with a look at the activities and technologies that connect most people to the surveillance matrix, from identification cards to GPS devices in our cars to Facebook, John Gilliom and Torin Monahan invite readers to critically explore surveillance as it relates to issues of law, power, freedom, and inequality. Even if you avoid using credit cards and stay off Facebook, they show, going to work or school inevitably embeds you in surveillance relationships. Finally, they discuss the more obvious forms of surveillance, including the security systems used at airports and on city streets, which both epitomize contemporary surveillance and make impossibly grand promises of safety and security.
Gilliom and Monahan are among the foremost experts on surveillance and society, and, with SuperVision, they offer an immensely accessible and engaging guide, giving readers the tools to understand and to question how deeply surveillance has been woven into the fabric of our everyday lives.