BOOK DATA Tung-Hui Hu, Digital Lethargy: Dispatches from an Age of Disconnection. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2022. $24.95 hardcover. 288 pages.

The user often figures as the normative subject of media, with technology’s effects measured by its impacts on the thought, attention, and even the body of the user. But as Tung-Hui Hu shows in his brilliant new book, Digital Lethargy: Dispatches from an Age of Disconnection, neither the category of user nor the user’s subjectivity can define the affects of digital capitalism per se. Instead, the digital servant (the human mischaracterized as bot) and its modes of navigation (what Hu calls “digital lethargy”) lie at the center of this book.

Hu has long written from his full self: a celebrated scholar, poet, tech worker. His latest monograph extends this interplay and is now among several new books in media studies to address fatigue through the self—most notably,...

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