Lecture-Bronwyn T. Williams
Feb 27, 2009
from 03:00 pm to 05:00 pm
|Where||Chao Auditorium, Ekstrom Library|
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"Collages of Identity: Popular Culture and Online Literacy Practices"
It is not difficult to find evidence that popular culture is a central part of many online multimodal literacy practices. On personal webspaces such as Myspace and Facebook people use popular culture images, catch phrases, and music as ways of performing identities, rather than expository, written personal statements. Online sites about movies and television and video games are filled with pages and pages of written reviews, analysis, and discussion, often connected to images as well. Not only is popular culture changing how people are reading and writing, such shifts in reading and writing online are changing popular culture.
In this presentation, drawn from research from my forthcoming book Shimmering Literacies: Popular Culture and Reading and Writing Online, I discuss how participatory popular culture is altering the conception of texts for students. Rather than experiencing texts as autonomous written products, in participatory popular culture texts are flexible and impermanent collages that are only one link in a larger network. Interviews with students illustrate how writing and reading practices in the much-discussed "sampling culture" of contemporary popular culture have changed their ideas about audience, genre, and authorship. By creating potentially global audiences for any web page, these online technologies have changed the relationship of the popular culture audience members and their peers. The intertextual nature of popular culture texts creates opportunities for multiple readings of social networking web pages in ways that destabilize the identities students believe they have created.