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With digitalculturebooks, the University of Michigan Press publishes innovative work in new media studies and digital humanities. We began in 2006 as a partnership between MLibrary and the Press, taking advantage of the skills and expertise of staff throughout Michigan Publishing. Our primary goal is to be an incubator for new publishing models in the humanities and social sciences.

Imagining the Global

Transnational Media and Popular Culture Beyond East and West
Fabienne Darling-Wolf
A focused multisited cultural analysis that reflects on the symbiotic relationship between the local, the national, and the global


Based on a series of case studies of globally distributed media and their reception in different parts of the world, Imagining the Global reflects on what contemporary global culture can teach us about transnational cultural dynamics in the 21st century. A focused multisited cultural analysis that reflects on the symbiotic relationship between the local, the national, and the global, it also explores how individuals’ consumption of global media shapes their imagination of both faraway places and their own local lives. Chosen for their continuing influence, historical relationships, and different geopolitical positions, the case sites of France, Japan, and the United States provide opportunities to move beyond common dichotomies between East and West, or United States and “the rest.” From a theoretical point of view, Imagining the Global endeavors to answer the question of how one locale can help us understand another locale. Drawing from a wealth of primary sources—several years of fieldwork; extensive participant observation; more than 80 formal interviews with some 160 media consumers (and occasionally producers) in France, Japan, and the United States; and analyses of media in different languages—author Fabienne Darling-Wolf considers how global culture intersects with other significant identity factors, including gender, race, class, and geography. Imagining the Global investigates who gets to participate in and who gets excluded from global media representation, as well as how and why the distinction matters.

Cover art is part of a series of works, titled Signs of our Times, by John Darling-Wolf. Used with permission.

Fabienne Darling-Wolf is Associate Professor of Mass Media & Communication and Journalism in the School of Media and Communication at Temple University.

Praise / Awards

  • "Imagining the Global is significant scholarship that helps us question the formation of our beliefs as well as value diverse perspectives and participate in a more enlightened manner in our shared global community."
    ---Teachers College Record
  • Winner: 2016 International Communication Association Outstanding Book Award

Look Inside

Product Details

  • 6 x 9.
  • 200pp.
  • 2 halftones.
Available for sale worldwide

  • Hardcover
  • 2014
  • Available
  • 978-0-472-07243-9

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  • $59.95 U.S.

  • Paper
  • 2014
  • Available
  • 978-0-472-05243-1

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  • $29.95 U.S.

  • Open Access
  • 2014
  • Available
  • 978-0-472-90015-2

Read Online


  • Social Media, YouTube, Asian Media, Global Media Industries, International Culture, Popular Culture, Transnational Media, East and West, France, French pop culture, American pop culture, Japan, Japanese pop culture, otaku, doujin culture, anime, Disney, French media