Zane Griffin Talley Cooper

Zane Cooper at Alchemical Infrastructures exhibit opening
Doctoral Candidate

Zane Griffin Talley Cooper is currently a doctoral candidate at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, and a doctoral fellow at the Center for Advanced Research in Global Communication (CARGC), where he researches the cultural and ecological politics of digital media infrastructures, and how they intersect with regimes of energy production and raw resource extraction. He is primarily focused on understanding the material and logistical spaces of blockchain and high performance computing infrastructure, and how these spaces are influenced by resource politics — specifically rare earth mineral mining. Cooper has done research on the history and future of rare earth mining in the US, China, and Africa, and is currently trying to understand the nascent rare earth industry in Greenland, and its broader impact on ideologies of digitality, futurity, and pan-Arctic politics.

Cooper is also a filmmaker, currently exploring VR and 360-degree video as a method for analyzing and communicating complex infrastructural entanglements. His first VR short film, Alchemical Infrastructures: Making Blockchain in Iceland, is a multi-sited ethnographic study of the blockchain industry in Iceland, and the ecology of nuanced relationships that work to maintain it. It is currently part of a multimedia exhibit at the Annenberg School for Communication, where it will be on display through May of 2020.

He has a B.F.A. in Film Studies from the University of Colorado at Boulder, an M.A. in History from California State University San Marcos, and an M.A. in Communication from the University of Pennsylvania.

Zane Griffin Talley Cooper is a doctoral candidate at the Annenberg School for Communication.

Office Number: 
133

Cooper's Network

  • Jessa Lingel, Ph.D.
  • Culture and Communication
  • Global and Comparative Communication
  • Media Institutions and Systems
  • CAMRA at Penn
  • Center for Advanced Research in Global Communication
  • Center for Experimental Ethnography
  • Media Activism Research Collective
  • Curriculum Vitae