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Negotiating Identities/Queering Desires: Coming Out Online and the Remediation of the Coming-Out Story

Negotiating Identities/Queering Desires: Coming Out Online and the Remediation of the Coming-Out StoryMary L. GrayIndiana University2009, Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication

OutlineIntroductionObjectiveMethod & DataMedia & TechnologyCritical Youth StudiesQueer RealnessConclusionQ&A/ Discussion

IntroductionAmys case & fictional representationVisibility progay stancesRural places are rarely depicted

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0262985/

Like movies and TV shows, gay characters, increasing visibility does not equate progay stances in the political climates3

Looking (Fictional Representation)

Objectiveonline representations provide rural young people with materials for crafting what it means to come out as LGBTQ or questioning in rural contexts (1165).

This sentence points out three aspects from which we can look further; 5

Method & Data19-month ethnographic studyemail, what else?in situ approachName age region (sexual orientation, race) Amy, age 15, a white teenager living in KYJohn, a 19-year-old white middle class college studentDarrin, a gay-identifying 17-year-old from an agricultural town

Media & TechnologyThese images teach rural youth to look anywhere but homeward for LGBTQ identities (1165).the presumed properties of the technologies themselves to the exclusion of the social contexts that give technologies meaning (1166).

In situ approach, the situation, it is situated in certain social contexts, how it is embedded 7

Media & TechnologyMedia as an escape/ media as spaces: unable to explore how rural queer and questioning youth engage and transform media (1167)online spaces are intimately interwoven with the construction of the offline world (Baym, 2006 [Gray, 2009])

They dont necessarily want to leave their hometowns, the family, the places, the networks8

Gaydar Culturerelationships formed within the exterior gay community lead the users to the interior CMC gay community, where they, in turn, develop new relationships which are nurtured and developed outside the bounds of CMC (Shaw, 1997 [Mowlabocus, 2010]).

Critical Youth StudiesNew Childhood Studies criticizes the developmental paradigm that frames young peoples identity practices as playful experimentation (1169).

No longer centers itself around adults worldview 10

Critical Youth StudiesUrban vs. Rural queer and questioning youth

collective labor: identity as work shared among many

Queer Realness[realness] is the way that people appropriate the real and its effects (Halberstam, 2005 [Gray, 2009])Discursive practices: audience members experiences (Mittell, 2001, [Gray, 2009])people telling stories to each other constructing and negotiating social identity. (Bauman, 1986 [Gray, 2009])

www.gay.com/

www.glhv.org.au/website-link/mogenic

Queer RealnessFamily and reference groups Connect to a larger networkour inevitable alignments with multiple audiences lead us to violate the norms of one reference group no matter what [we] do (Shibutani, 1962 [Gray, 2009])Brandon: queer realness vs. rural racism

ConclusionThese genres of queer realness [online coming-out stories and electronic personal ads] expand their sense of place, home, and belonging within queer social worlds (1182)

Q&A/ DiscussionHow are online and offline interwoven? Some examples you can think of?Can we apply the theories to their online experiences, e.g. participation framework?Is tellership/readership different online?Can we think of it as an act of performativity?

Thank you!