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Encyclopedia > Manuel Castells

Manuel Castells (full Spanish name: Manuel Castells Oliván[1]; born 1942 in Hellín, Albacete, Spain) is a sociologist, particularly associated with research into the information society and communications. According to the Social Sciences Citation Index's survey of research in 2000-06, Castells was ranked as the fourth most cited social sciences scholar and the foremost cited communications scholar in the world[2][3]. In Spanish-speaking countries, people normally have at least two surnames. ... Year 1942 (MCMXLII) was a common year starting on Thursday (the link will display the full 1942 calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Hellín is a town and municipality located in the south of the province of Albacete, in Castile-La Mancha, Spain. ... Albacete province Albacete is a province of central Spain, in the southern part of the autonomous community of Castilla-La Mancha. ... Sociology (from Latin: socius, companion; and the suffix -ology, the study of, from Greek λόγος, lógos, knowledge) is an academic and applied discipline that studies society and human social interaction. ... For other uses, see Information society (disambiguation). ... The term communications is used in a number of disciplines: Communications, also known as communication studies is the academic discipline which studies communication, generally seen as a mixture between media studies and linguistics. ... The social sciences are groups of academic disciplines that study the human aspects of the world. ...



Raised primarily in Barcelona as part of a conservative family, Castells became politically active in the student anti-Franco movement as a teenager. Because of his political activism, he had to flee the country, going to Paris to finish his degree at the age of 20. After completing a doctorate in Sociology at the University of Paris, he taught at the university between 1967 and 1979, first at the Nanterre Campus, from which he was expelled after the 1968 student protest, then, from 1970 to 1979, at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales. In 1979 he was appointed Professor of Sociology and Professor of City and Regional Planning at the University of California, Berkeley. In 2001 he also became a research professor at the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC), Barcelona. In 2003 he left UC Berkeley to join the University of Southern California (USC) Annenberg School for Communication as a professor of communication and the first Wallis Annenberg endowed Chair of Communication and Technology. He is a founding member of the USC Center on Public Diplomacy and a senior member of the Center's Faculty Advisory Council. Castells is also a member of the Annenberg Research Network on International Communication. He received numerous honorary doctorates and other honors in recognition of his work. “Franco” redirects here. ... The Sorbonne, Paris, in a 17th century engraving The historic University of Paris (French: ) first appeared in the second half of the 12th century, but was in 1970 reorganised as 13 autonomous universities (University of Paris I–XIII). ... The École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (French for School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences; EHESS) is a French institution for research and higher education, a Grand Établissement. ... Urban, city, or town planning, deals with design of the built environment from the municipal and metropolitan perspective. ... Sather tower (the Campanile) looking out over the San Francisco Bay and Mount Tamalpais. ... Universidat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) is the Catalonian name of the Open University of Catalunya. ... Location Coordinates : Time Zone : CET (GMT +1) - summer: CEST (GMT +2) General information Native name Barcelona (Catalan) Spanish name Barcelona Nickname Ciutat Comtal (City of Counts) Postal code 08001–08080 Area code 34 (Spain) + 93 (Barcelona) Website http://www. ... The Trojan Shrine, better known as Tommy Trojan located in the center of University of Southern California campus. ... The Annenberg School for Communication entrance. ... The University of Southern California Center on Public Diplomacy is a joint academic research, teaching and training center created and run jointly by the USC Annenberg School for Communication and the USC College of Letters, Arts and Sciences School of International Relations. ...

Castells lives in Barcelona and Santa Monica, California and is married to Emma Kiselyova.


During the 1970s Castells played a key role in the development of a Marxist urban sociology. He emphasized the role of social movements in the conflictive transformation of the urban landscape. He introduced the concept of 'collective consumption' (public transport, public housing, etc.) to frame a wide range of social struggles, displaced from the economic to the political field by state intervention. Abandoning the strictures of Marxism in the early 1980s, he began to focus on the role of new technologies in economic restructuring. In 1989, he introduced the concept of the 'space of flows' by which he meant the material and immaterial components of the global information networks through which more and more of the economy was coordinated, in real time across distances. In the 1990s, he combined both strands of his research into a massive study, Information Age, published as a trilogy between 1996 and 1998. In response to the critical reception of that work at a number of large seminars held at universities across the world, a second edition was published in 2000. Urban sociology is the sociological study of the various statistics among the population in cities. ... American Civil Rights Movement is one of the most famous social movements of the 20th century. ... Space of flows is a concept introduced by Manuel Castells in his book The Informational City in 1989 and elaborated in numerous additional books since. ... A university computer lab containing many desktop PCs The transition of communication technology: Oral Culture, Manuscript Culture, Print Culture, and Information Age Information Age is a name given to a period after the industrial age and before the Knowledge Economy. ... Year 2000 (MM) was a leap year starting on Saturday (link will display full 2000 Gregorian calendar). ...

Castells analysis unfolds along three basic dimensions: production, power and experience. This stresses that the organization of the economy, of the state and its institutions, and of the ways people create meaning in their lives through collective action are irreducible sources of social dynamics. They need to be understood on their own terms as well as relating to one another. Applying such an analysis to the development of the Internet, Castells stresses the roles of the state (military, academia), the social movements (hackers, social activists) and of businesses in shaping the infrastructure according to their (conflicting) agendas. Much of the recent sociological debate on power revolves around the issue of the constraining and/or enabling nature of power. ... Look up Experience in Wiktionary, the free dictionary This article discusses the general concept of experience. ... For other uses, see State (disambiguation). ... Social dynamics means the ability of a society to react to inner and outer changes and deals with its regulation mechanisms. ...

In the trilogy, he condenses this view to the statement "our societies are increasingly structured around the bipolar opposition of the Net and the Self" (1996, p. 3). The Net means the new, networked forms of organization which are replacing vertically integrated hierarchies as the dominant form of social organization. The Self, on the other hand, relates to the multiple practices through which people try to reaffirm identity and meaning in a landscape of rapid change. Castells also coined the term 4th World. From a classical sociological perspective, the self is a relatively stable set of perceptions of who we are in relation to ourselves, to others, and to social systems. ... Identity is an umbrella term used throughout the social sciences for an individuals comprehension of him or herself as a discrete, separate entity. ... The term 4th World was coined by Manuel Castells to refer to black holes of social exclusion. ...


Manuel Castells is one of the world's most highly cited social science and communication scholars[4][5] and has written more than 20 books including:

  • The Urban Question. A Marxist Approach (trans: Alan Sheridan). London, Edward Arnold (1977) (Original publication in French, 1972)
  • City, Class and Power. London; New York, MacMillan; St. Martins Press (1978)
  • The Economic Crisis and American Society. Princeton, NJ, Princeton UP (1980)
  • The City and the Grassroots: A Cross-cultural Theory of Urban Social Movements. Berkeley: University of California Press (1983)
  • The Informational City: Information Technology, Economic Restructuring, and the Urban Regional Process. Oxford, UK; Cambridge, MA: Blackwell (1989)
  • The Rise of the Network Society, The Information Age: Economy, Society and Culture, Vol. I. Cambridge, MA; Oxford, UK: Blackwell (1996) (second edition, 2000)
  • The Power of Identity, The Information Age: Economy, Society and Culture, Vol. II. Cambridge, MA; Oxford, UK: Blackwell (1997) (second edition, 2004)
  • The End of the Millennium, The Information Age: Economy, Society and Culture, Vol. III. Cambridge, MA; Oxford, UK: Blackwell (1998) (second edition, 2000)
  • The Internet Galaxy. Reflections on the Internet, Business and Society. Oxford UP (2001)
  • The Information Society and the Welfare State: The Finnish Model. Oxford UP, Oxford (2002) (co-author, Pekka Himanen )
  • The Network Society: A Cross-Cultural Perspective. Cheltenham, UK; Northampton, MA, Edward Edgar (2004), (editor and co-author)
  • The Network Society: From Knowledge to Policy. Center for Transatlantic Relations (2006) (co-editor)
  • Mobile Communication and Society: A Global Perspective. MIT Press (2006) (co-author)

Relevant papers The term Network Society was coined by Jan van Dijk in his Dutch book De Netwerkmaatschappij (1991) -translation: The Network Society (1999, 2006)- and by Manuel Castells in the first part of his trilogy The Information Age (1996). ... There are three main interpretations of the idea of a welfare state: the provision of welfare services by the state. ... Pekka Himanen (born October 19, 1973) is a Finnish philosopher. ...

  • Social Uses of Wireless Communications: The Mobile Information Society, paper prepared for the International Workshop on Wireless Communication Policies and Prospects: A Global Perspective, USC, October 8-9, 2004 (co-author)

Books on Manuel Castells

  • Susser, Ida. The Castells Reader on Cities and Social Theory. Oxford, Blackwell (2002)
  • Castells, Manuel; Ince, Martin. Conversations with Manuel Castells. Oxford, Polity Press (2003)
  • Stalder, Felix. Manuel Castells and the Theory of the Network Society. Oxford, Polity Press (2006)

Online resources

  Results from FactBites:
Manuel Castells - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (799 words)
Raised primarily in Barcelona as part of a conservative family, Castells became politically active in the student anti-Franco movement as a teenager.
Castells is also a member of the Annenberg Research Network on International Communication.
Castells lives in Barcelona and Santa Monica, California and is married to Emma Kiselyova.
  More results at FactBites »



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