Informatics Guest Speaker Series
Fall Quarter 2019

Friday, October 18, 2019

“Staying in Place, Surviving Networks: Coalition and Collaboration in Communities of Feminist Digital Media”

Veronica Paredes, Ph.D.
Assistant professor, School of Theater, Film, and Television
UCLA

Abstract:
The rise of political movements associated with social media hashtags (like #Occupy, #BlackLivesMatter, and #MeToo) over the past decade has expanded both popular and academic understandings of digital media activism, demonstrating possibilities of movement building online beyond clichés of ineffectual clicktivist campaigns. These movements show how digital media organizing can affect and amplify political actions that take place not only on computer screens but also on city streets, in the homes and community spaces of citizens, artists, and media practitioners. While scholars in the social sciences have long been interested in how social movements are shaped by networked technologies and in how they resist and respond to globalization, their research questions have been less attentive to the actual networked or time-based media texts social movements have produced and to their practices of collaboration in media production. This talk will review recent scholarship from digital feminist scholars that de-emphasizes traditional social science research questions around values, globalization, and identity, instead prioritizing practices of media- and scholarship- making, and community-building in online networks and collectives. How do online feminist political and cultural movements represent themselves through the different modalities of networked media they produce? This talk will explore the intimate media archives of collective decision-making by analyzing the media texts both intentionally and unintentionally created in community and movement building, with a particular focus on practices of resilience required to sustain feminist and queer media activist and media art networks.

Bio:
Veronica Paredes is an assistant professor in the Department of Film, Television and Digital Media at the University of California, Los Angeles. Her research interests include reconfigured urban media spaces, feminist digital practices in pedagogy and collective organizing. She is currently working on a born-digital book project about movie theater use, reuse, and representation in urban space, focusing on how intermedial connections and social, racial and cultural dimensions of moviegoing can disrupt popular understandings of vintage movie theaters. She is also an active member of the networked feminist collective FemTechNet and Situated Critical Race + Media (SCR&M). Her work has been published in Amodern, and work she has collaboratively written are have been published in Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies, and in a recent volume of the Debates in Digital Humanities series, Bodies of Information (edited by Elizabeth Losh and Jacqueline Wernimont). Paredes formerly held the rank of assistant professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with an affiliation at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications. She has also previously taught at The New School and New York University. She received her doctorate from the Media Arts + Practice program at the University of Southern California.

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