The Intersection of Audiences and Production in Contemporary Theory – Volume 2
Contributors reflect varied perspectives in their approaches to the spaces formed as a result of rapidly developing and swiftly deploying new communications technologies and social software. They shine multiple spotlights into the intersection of audiences and production, providing a guide toward a nuanced understanding of the interstitial spaces.
Chapter Ten: Staging the Subaltern Self and the Subaltern Other: Digital Labor and Digital Leisure in ICT4D (Radhika Gajjala, Dinah Tetteh, Anca Birzescu)
C H A P T E R T E N Staging the Subaltern Self and the Subaltern Other: Digital Labor and Digital Leisure in ICT4D Radhika Gajjala, Dinah Tetteh, and Anca Birzescu he question of the subaltern and representation raised by postcolonial scholars following Gramsci’s (Hoare & Smith, 1999) use of the term in his Prison Notebooks is reexamined in the context of contemporary Web 2.0 space in attempts to understand issues of access, voice, and staging of the Other. The original questions from the subaltern studies collective were about academic and nationalist representations and involved examining strategies such as writing in reverse as a way to recover unrecorded stories (Beverley, 2004). In the Web 2.0 context, however, the question of the subaltern shifts to an examination of staging and access of economically marginalized populations. In the context of Internet-mediated globalization and financialization of the everyday, with its prevailing rhetoric of inclusivity, participation, and global access, these questions surface through philanthropy and nonprofit and corporate social responsibility groups. As many of us continue to research issues of the digital divide and in- formation and communication technologies for development (ICT4D), we are quick to express excitement at the mere visibility of recognizable difference of any kind represented in online space. We end up celebrating as unproblematic the top-down diffusion of innovation from Global North to Global South. Thus we confuse the idea of subaltern voice with the imposi- tion of structures and technologies that adopt frameworks and design logics developed through neocolonial...
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