Gabriella Coleman

Invited Researcher of DEA Programme Stay in France: from March 27 to May 29, 2018

Gabriella (Biella) Coleman holds the Wolfe Chair in Scientific and Technological Literacy at McGill University. Trained as an anthropologist, her scholarship explores the intersection of the cultures of hacking and politics, with a focus on the sociopolitical implications of the free software movement and the digital protest ensemble Anonymous.

She has authored two books, Coding Freedom: The Ethics and Aesthetics of Hacking (Princeton University Press, 2012) and Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy: The Many Faces of Anonymous (Verso, 2014), which was named to Kirkus Reviews’Best Books of 2014 and was awarded the Diana Forsythe Prize by the American Anthropological Association. Her work has been featured in numerous scholarly journals and edited volumes. Committed to public ethnography, she routinely presents her work to diverse audiences, teaches undergraduate and graduate courses, and has written for popular media outlets, including the New York Times, Slate, Wired, MIT Technology Review, Huffington Post, and the Atlantic. She sits on the board of EqualitieThe Tor Projectthe Advisory Board of Data and Society,and the Social Science Advisory Board of the National Center for Women and Information Technology.

The Project

Title: Hacking the Hackers: The French Hacking Scene In its Historical Context


Hackers, digital activism, anthropology

Selected publications


The Participatory Condition. With Christine Ross, Jonathan Sterne, Darin Barney and Tamara Tembeck, eds. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, December 2016.

Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy: The Many Faces of Anonymous. London and New York: Verso, November 2014 (updated paperback version, 2015)

Coding Freedom: The Ethics and Aesthetics of Hacking. Princeton University Press, January 2013. Translation in Serbian.

Edited Journals

Hacks, Leaks, and Breaches. Limn. Gabriella Coleman and Christ Kelty, editors. Issue no. 8.

Articles in Scholarly Journals

How Has the Fight for Anonymity and Privacy Changed? Special Section on online anonymity for Media, Culture & Society. Simone Natale, Mark Monaghan, Thais Sarda and Nikos Sotirakopoulos, eds, forthcoming.

Anonymous and the Politics of Leaking. Limn. Gabriella Coleman and Chris Kelty, eds, February 2017.

From Internet farming to weapons of the geek. Current Anthropology, 58 (S15) 2017: S000-S000.

Ethnographic Approaches to Digital Media. Annual Review of Anthropology, (39)2010: 487-505.

Hacking In-Person: The Ritual Character of Conferences and the Distillation of a Life-World. Anthropological Quarterly, 83 (1)2010: 99-124.

Published at 3 April 2018