Tag Archives: queer online

Searching ‘digital’+’networks’+’feminist’ OR ‘queer’

I’ve been looking around a bit for other projects around feminist & queer politics and digital networks. Meanwhile I’m preparing a digital storytelling workshop for women (cis or trans) – a hands on digital media technologies in everyday feminist (and perhaps queer) politics – I’ll say more about this when practicalities are sorted out.

So I came across the US-based Digital Sisterhood project which seems interesting – and features various feminist voices on a web site, online radio show, Twitter page, and Tweetchats – and even organised events like an online yoga session. I also came across the article Class, the Digital and (Immaterial) Feminism by Jennifer Cotter in THE RED CRITIQUE 13 (Fall/Winter 2008) – which basically builds its entire critique around a reading of Judy Wajcman’s TechnoFeminism, and argues that within digital capitalist conditions

“women are not freed from deepening exploitation and the deterioration of their economic conditions of life in transnational capitalism, even when some become techno-managers”.

and brutally that

“Immaterial feminism is liberal feminism, and liberal feminism is an ally of transnational capitalism, not of exploited women”.

A bit abrasive, but never mind. Then I also found this Queer & Feminist New Media Spaces post in the HASTAC site (which I admittedly visit too often lately for postdoc announcements on the other side of the Atlantic), which gives a review and lists some interesting questions in the end. I run across this older Montreal based Feminist interventions – Locative media project by Andrea Zeffiro (a doctoral candidate in Communication at Concordia University in 2008 when the post was written) which, in a reflection, concludes that

“A critical pedagogical approach – in which social, political and economic factors are made apparent prior to production – will sharpen the necessary tools, enabling feminist curiosities to excavate locative media”.

Luckily, I also found something which is forthcoming (17th of November) – the DIGITAL SITES/QUEER CIRCULATIONS: TRACING ONLINE SOCIAL NETWORKS AND GLBTQ COMMUNITIES organised by Mary L Gray (Indiana University) – and I’ll check back for the abstracts.

Remediation & genderqueer online at the Staging Illusion conference

Registration is now open for the Staging Illusion: Digital and Cultural Fantasy conference, which is organised by my colleague Russell Pearce and others in the Sussex Centre for Cultural Studies & the Centre for Material Digital Culture at Sussex Uni.

I’ll be giving a paper on the The remediation of real bodies in genderqueer online porn: politics, control and affective labour. See abstract below and the conference tumblr blog here:

Abstract :

Online environments and web 2.0 platforms today appear as sites of experimentation and as opportunities to construct brand new sexual identities. The websites of queer alternative porn production companies increasingly employ the language of ‘real’ bodies. This opens up questions about the mediation of social meanings about queer and women in these sites. What kinds of publics are forming around this mediation?

Recent studies of online queer porn production have focused on questions of user authenticity (Attwood, 2010; Mowlabocus, 2010). These are concerned with the incompatibility between embodied actuality and ideal fluid cybersubjectivity (Wakeford, 2002; O’Riordan, 2007). However apart from user control, issues of authenticity in online queer alternative porn can be fruitfully thought as forms of labour.

This paper analyses discourses of authenticity in the websites nofauxxx.com and Furry Girl, two production companies from the field of genderqueer porn, which incorporate sexual and feminist politics in some way. The first component of my argument is that, in ‘real body discourses, this kind of porn production appears un-mediated. The mediation aspects of digital culture are in this process occluded. Secondly, I suggest that through this emphasis on queer visibility and authenticity, sexuality is constructed both as a disciplinary site and a site for value extraction. In particular, as ‘real’ bodies in these cases translate into diverse, inclusive and multiple, they create new needs and desires for politically sensitive lesbian consumers in neoliberal societies.

UPDATE: My article entitled ‘Remediating queer politics in online porn: Brand(ed) new sexualities and real bodies’, will be published in the special issue ‘Revolting Bodies: Desiring Lesbians’, in the Journal of Lesbian Studies (Forthcoming).

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