Non-Media-Centric Media Studies and Non-Representational Theories of Practice
Might it be possible to rearticulate the term digital in digital media, so that it refers at least as much to the deft movements or orientations of hands and fingers (of digits) as it does to the new media technologies themselves? What if digital media are understood as manual media?
Has the academic field of media studies tended to focus too much on media, and not enough on the practices and experiences of daily living that help to give media their meaningfulness? What if media researchers were to pay more attention to knowledge-in-movement or to matters of orientation and habitation, and rather less to those of symbolic representation and cognitive interpretation?
Digital Orientations is a bold call for non-media-centric media studies (and ultimately for everyday-life studies) with a non-representational theoretical emphasis. The author engages here with a broad range of work from across the humanities and social sciences, drawing on Merleau-Ponty’s phenomenological philosophy, Ingold’s anthropology, the geographies of Massey, Seamon and Thrift, and the sociologies of Bourdieu, Sudnow and Urry.
Chapter 7. Non-Media-Centric Media Studies: A Cross-Generational Conversation (with Zlatan Krajina and David Morley)
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NON-MEDIA-CENTRIC MEDIA STUDIES
A Cross-Generational Conversation (with Zlatan Krajina and David Morley)
As explained in the acknowledgements near the beginning of this book, the present chapter is based on a live conversation with Zlatan Krajina (ZK) and David Morley (DM), which we conducted in front of an audience of staff and students at the University of Zagreb in Croatia. What appears here is a reshaped version of the transcript of our discussion at that event, where the talk between us revolved around the notion of non-media-centric media studies.1
Ways in and through
ZK: I’d like to start by inviting David and Shaun to reflect on their respective ways into media studies, and by asking them to say just a little at this stage about how they came to argue explicitly for a non-media-centric perspective (see Moores, 2012, pp. 103–110; Morley, 2007, 2009). First, David, could you explain what helped to shape your initial interest in media and also something about the development of your research over the years, which has led you to state that it’s now necessary to de-centre the media in our analytical framework (Morley, 2007, p. 200), in order to see better how media and everyday life are interwoven? ← 141 | 142 →
DM: Well, I was very much a child of the television generation. Media, and television in particular, were initially important to me in that everyday sense. It had...
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