Remediating politics: feminist and queer formations in digital networks

Fotopoulou, Aristea (2012) Remediating politics: feminist and queer formations in digital networks. Doctoral thesis (DPhil), University of Sussex.

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Abstract

This thesis examines feminist and queer actors emerging in highly mediated
environments and the forms of political organisation and critical knowledge production
they engage in. It indicates that older debates around gender and sexuality are being
reformulated in digital networks and identifies alternative understandings which are
being developed. The study foregrounds a performative conceptualisation and argues
that political realities are produced in dynamic configurations of communication
media, discourses and bodies. It suggests that network technologies constitute sources
of vulnerability and anxiety for feminists and stresses the significance of registering
how embodied subjectivities emerge from these experiences.

To achieve its aims and to map activity happening across different spaces and
scales, the project attended to context-specific processes of mediation at the
intersections of online and offline settings. It employed ethnographic methods,
internet visualisation, in-depth interviewing and textual analysis to produce the
following key outcomes: it registered changing understandings of the political in
relation to new media amongst a network of women's organisations in London; it
investigated the centrality of social media and global connections in the shaping of
local queer political communities in Brighton; it complicated ideas of control, labour
and affect to analyse emerging sexual identities in online spaces like nofauxx.com, and
offline postporn events; finally, it traced feminist actors gathering around new
reproductive technologies, at the crossing fields of grassroots activism and the
academy.

Today, women's groups and queer activists increasingly use networked
communication for mobilisation and information-sharing. In a climate of widespread
scepticism towards both representational politics and traditional media, questions
about the role of digital networks in enabling or limiting political engagement are being
raised. This thesis aims to contribute to these debates by accounting for the ways in
which feminist and queer activists in digital networks reformulate the relationship
between communication media and politics.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: School of Media, Film and Music > Media and Film
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HQ The Family. Marriage. Women > HQ0012 Sexual life > HQ0075 Homosexuality. Lesbianism
H Social Sciences > HQ The Family. Marriage. Women > HQ1101 Women. Feminism
J Political Science
P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics > P0087 Communication. Mass media
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 26 Jun 2012 10:25
Last Modified: 31 Oct 2016 12:04
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/39666

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