Whether it’s Kim Kardashian uploading picture after picture to Instagram or your roommate posting a mid-vacation shot to Facebook, selfies receive mixed reactions. But are selfies more than, as many critics lament, a symptom of a self-absorbed generation?
Millennial Alicia Eler’s The Selfie Generation is the first book to delve fully into this ubiquitous and much-maligned part of social media, including why people take them in the first place and the ways they can change how we see ourselves. Eler argues that selfies are just one facet of how we can use digital media to create a personal brand in the modern age. More than just a picture, they are an important part of how we live today.
Eler examines all aspects of selfies, online social networks, and the generation that has grown up with them. She looks at how the boundaries between people’s physical and digital lives have blurred with social media; she explores questions of privacy, consent, ownership, and authenticity; and she points out important issues of sexism and double standards wherein women are encouraged to take them but then become subject to criticism and judgment. Alicia discusses the selfie as a paradox—both an image with potential for self-empowerment, yet also a symbol of complacency within surveillance culture The Selfie Generation explores just how much social media has changed the ways that people connect, communicate, and present themselves to the world.