February through May, I’ll be visiting scholar at MIT’s Comparative Media Studies and consulting researcher with Microsoft Research New England’s Social Media Collective. Very much looking forward to working with fabulous people, on a same time zone with them for a change.
Category Archives: media studies
There’s something quite virtual about academic publishing, with its slow tempos of putting things together, seeing books and journal issues slowly materialise and, in the best case scenario, having someone eventually read the thing. It’s therefore a thrill to have our Networked Affect, co-edited with Ken Hillis and Michael Petit, which only came out in the spring, being reviewed: by Sean McBean for New Formations. We have a reader.
Based on Silja Nielsen’s excellent MA research involving a survey with 1269 Finnish female respondents aged 11–18, our article, “Pervy role-play and such*: Girls’ experiences of sexual messaging online, co-authored with Silja and Sanna Spisak, is now out with the Sex Education journal (online before print), as part of a special issue on the evolving role of media in sex education, edited by Alan McKee, Sara Bragg and Tristan Taormino. While providing an overview of the survey findings in general, the article is more focused on girls’ positive accounts of sexual role-play and messaging.
The outcomes of our porn memory work project are finally materializing. In 2012, we asked together with the Folklore archives of the Finnish Literature Society for Finns of different ages to write to us about what they understand with porn and what kinds of materials, encounters with and experiences of porn they remember. Since the project never got funded, writing it up has not been speedy. But now! ‘We hid porn magazines in the nearby woods’: Memory-work and pornography consumption in Finland, written with Katariina Kyrölä, Kaarina Nikunen and Laura Saarenmaa and looking at the general methodology and findings, is available online before print with Sexualities. And that is not all: Glimmers of the forbidden fruit: Reminiscing pornography, conceptualizing the archive, written with the wonderful Katariina and exploring the different possibilities of archive as a concept in studies of porn use, is freshly accessible with the International Journal of Cultural Studies.
Based on a series of workshops at the 2011 Association of Internet Researchers conference in Seattle, Networked Affect is now out from MIT Press. Edited by Ken Hillis, Michael Petit and myself, it also includes essays by James Ash, Alex Cho, Jodi Dean, Melissa Gregg, Kylie Jarrett, Tero Karppi, Stephen Maddison, Jussi Parikka, Jennifer Pybus, Jenny Sundén and Veronika Tzankova. The book explores the intersections of internet research and theories of affect from a range of perspectives — from the queer reverbs of Tumblr to the gift economies of Facebook, nonhuman agencies of code, digital materialities of Steampunk and the political affect of Turkish sexual confession sites. So glad it’s finally out.
Digging into my hard drive, there was the PDF of the proceedings for Affective Encounters: Rethinking Embodiment in Feminist Media Studies conference, held in University of Turku on 2001, coedited with Anu Koivunen. These went offline as the university once more redesigned their site – but are back now, here: proceedings.pdf.
For three years now, I’ve been asking my students to write a small essay on their experiences of media and communication technology failing – just describing how it feels – in order to address our mundane dependencies on technological devices and networks of different kinds. This tends to be a favorite assignment (these feelings can be stark) and makes teaching the basic ideas of ANT a little smoother in a humanities media studies classroom. The plan is to develop this line of investigation toward the affective underpinnings of network media more generally, with an emphasis on distraction, boredom and other similar happy states. But before I get that far (looking forward to the sabbatical next academic year!), an article of mine exploring some of these essays is freshly online with Television & New Media as “As networks fail: Affect, technology, and the notion of the user.” One of the most enjoyable experiences of working with an academic journal ever! Special thanks to Ken Hillis and Michael Petit for their thoughtful comments and feedback. To be continued.
The dialogue I did with Paul Morris of Treasure Island Media, titled “Risk and Utopia” is freshly out with GLQ. An earlier, shorter article version appeared in the Oxford Handbook of Sound and Image in Digital Media edited by Carol Vernallis, Amy Herzog, and John Richardson last year as “Coming to Mind.” Working with Paul has been a special treat and I’ve began to think that a dialogue is currently an undervalued format in academic writing. A dialogue includes several voices and often goes against the conventional format of a journal article that necessitates uniform argumentation, it’s difficult to handle in terms of peer review and is easily interpreted as an interview. But there is so much to be done with dialogue as a form of exchange and co-thinking. Maybe one day I can do a book of dialogues. For now, I’m taking pleasure in this one.
5-6 June at University of Turku, with Melissa Gregg and Tony D. Sampson as keynotes:
The idea of this two-day symposium is to bring together researchers and thinkers to discuss different areas of affective capitalism. We want to challenge affective capitalism on its own ground. To do this we will analyse specific examples of affective capitalism at work and map its defining factors. We are seeking new ways to understand affective capitalism through its ambivalences and complexities. At the same time, we ask how we could resist it and develop alternatives for it.
Program will soon be available at http://affectivecapitalism.wordpress.com/