Gitelman: "How Users Define New Media: A History of the Amusement Phonograph"

Gitelman, Lisa. “How Users Define New Media: A History of the Amusement Phonograph.” Rethinking Media Change : The Aesthetics of Transition. Ed. David Thorburn & Henry Jenkins. Cambridge  Mass. ;;London: MIT, 2004. 61-79. Print.



Phonographs/sound machines as social constructions. 


Likens to mass media magazines/ circulation. Mass consumption.


"Phonograph records, tapes, CDs, and videocassettes all counter that trend; part of their logic as possessions is repetition and reenactment, rewind and replay" (66).


home phonographs not typically genderized (not a "she") yet the technology was personified (interview the Edison phonograph) (67). Normalized to women''s voices (68). 


Terms like "true," "real," "natural" reemphasized rather than contradicted artificiality of recordings. Mirrored American interest in authenticity/artifice etc. 


Marketed to women, the home-- espousing family values. Divide between public and private space. (71-2).