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  • 19
    DEC

    Matilda Tudor: Desire lines: Orientation, Space and Digital Media Use among Queer Men in Contemporary Russia

    90% doctoral seminar arranged by Media and Communication Studies at the School of Culture and Education, Södertörn University.

    Matilda Tudor is a PhD Student in Media and Communication Studies at Södertörn University.
     

    Abstract:

    The main aim of this dissertation is to analyze ways in which digital media use interconnects with senses of queer belonging and orientation in time and space, among same-sex desiring men in contemporary Russia. It discusses how queer digital media co-produce perceptions of space, place and time at different scales,  by e.g. ways of appropriating place, extending beyond the local, and future orientations. It also engages with the role of mobility within senses of belonging and feeling “at home” in time and space. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in urban Russia during 2012-2015, these discussions are related to contemporary situations surrounding queer living in the region.

    Theoretically, the study aims to synthesize a queer media phenomenology, equipped to capture perceptions of queer digital media use, related to grounded experience in divers contexts, and sensitive to what “politics of location” means in the digital age (Sundén, 2006). It does so through a combination of the media phenomenology formulated by Shaun Moores (2012) and the queer phenomenology by Sara Ahmed (2012). While Ahmed’s provides tools for understanding queer habituation in heteronormative space, Moores’ contributes with an accentuation of the dual positioning of the media user in mediated as well as territorial space(es), as key for understanding social experience in contemporary times.

    Particularly outside of the spotlight of LGBTQI-politics within the global West, striving for public recognition through “politics of visibility” (Edenborg, 2017), queer living is often segmented in non-intact but highly conflicting spheres, and relying on strategic concealment. Thus, the multiplying of space due to digital media engagement can serve as an infrastructure to support incompatible investments, but may also produce anxiety and new risks of exposure. Whereas others have argued for the disappearance of media from our active awareness within a mediatized world (Deuze, 2012, Moores, 2014), queer embodiment is often dependent on a calculated management of the situational geography of social life, and as this study reveals, this also includes digital media use.

    Time and place

    When: 19/12/17 at 13:00-15:00

    What: Higher seminar

    Where: Room PC 249, on the second floor in the C-wing, Primus building, Södertörn University, Campus Flemingsberg

    Organiser: Media and Communication Studies at the School of Culture and Education, Södertörn University.

    Event language: English