Wolfe Chair in Scientific and Technological Literacy

Gabriella Coleman


Professor Gabriella Coleman holds the Wolfe Chair in Scientific and Technological Literacy in the Department of Art History and Communication Studies at McGill University.  Trained as an anthropologist, Gabriella Coleman teaches, writes, and researchers on the politics of digital media with a focus on hackers, scholarly access, privacy, and surveillance.


The mandate of the Wolfe Chair is to conduct research, teach and perform public outreach regarding the intellectual foundations, nature and methods of scientific and technological innovation and to provide support to well-rounded students capable of making constructive contributions to debates surrounding science, technology and society.

The Chair is devoted to research that advances understanding of key scientific and technological concepts and examines the relationships among science, technology, and a broad range of social, ethical, political, and economic issues, practices and conditions.

You can learn more about her work here.

Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy has been translated into French by Nicolas Calvé and published by LUXÉditeur as Anonymous – hacker, activiste, faussaire, mouchard, lanceur d’alerte. Read the reviews in Le Monde and Le Devoir and an interview with Professor Coleman in Le Journal Metro.

ANONYMOUS HAS CHANGED THE WAY WE THINK ABOUT ANONYMITY. For Guy Fawkes Day on November 5, 2015 Professor Coleman published a new chapter to her book, Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy on the state of Anonymous, its use of doxxing, and accountability:
“More than any other political movement, past or present, Anonymous provides the ideal case study through which to probe the workings, benefits, contradictions, and limitations of applied anonymity-in-action. And as this privacy movement coalesces, I have observed a distinct tension among those who believe in anonymity as a politically useful tool. Even as many leftist and liberal advocates unequivocally support a right to encryption, they also sometimes express a deep discomfort about the use of secrecy among activists, the role of anonymity in general, and the function of Anonymous in particular.”

Read the full excerpt reprinted by Motherboard with the permission of Verso Books.

Professor Coleman has won the 2015 Diana Forsythe Prize for her book, Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy. Learn more.

The Increasingly Political, Ever Lulzy, Richly Cultural World of Hackers. Read Hans Rollmann's interview with Gabriella Coleman on her latest book and work on Anonymous for popMatters.

Meet the McGill professor who got inside Anonymous in The Toronto Star, Sunday, September 14, 2014. Learn more.

Professor Coleman is featured in Hacking the World: An anthropologist in the midst of a geek insurgency, in the April 1, 2013 issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education. Read more.

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