"Though both are bound in the spiral dance, I would rather be a cyborg than a goddess." – Donna Haraway

Posts tagged ‘race’

Ada Initiative Fellowships to attend Open Hardware Summit

10 fellowships for women to attend the Open Hardware Summit, applications close August 18th | The Ada Initiative.

Deadline to apply is end of the day on August 18th.

The summit has quite a few speakers on topics related to my interests though I do find myself hesitating. It is frustrating that there are no speaker bios or images. As I was looking through the names of the speakers, I noticed that while there are some women among the speakers, the numbers are far from gender-balanced. Also, of the names with which I am familiar, they were all white women.

So I did some digging. I am going to tell you right up front: this is far from perfect or definitive. I am going off appearances in photos, which can be misleading and personal identification of racial identity is a tricky thing. Not to mention all of the problems with defining whiteness.

Based on an admittedly imperfect methodology, I found:

(more…)

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CFP of Interest – Hip hop and punk feminisms

CALL FOR PROPOSALS – Hip hop and punk feminisms.

This CFP came across the FemTechNet listserv last night or this morning.

Proposals due in August and conference is in December. I love the potential here. If MLA weren’t only a month later I would be trying to work up something to apply!

Note that papers at the conference will be considered for publication in an edited anthology.

 

CFP of Interest: Race, Gender, and Sexuality in Video Game Studies

http://hastac.org/opportunities/cfp-race-gender-and-sexuality-video-game-studies

This edited collection is interested in rethinking the role of race, gender, and sexuality in video game studies beyond typically reductive or divisive debates. Abstracts are due July 15, 2013 with full papers in October.

RE-blog: Bollywood Primetime: Can One Big Dance Number Smash Racism? | Racialicious – the intersection of race and pop culture

Bollywood Primetime: Can One Big Dance Number Smash Racism? | Racialicious – the intersection of race and pop culture.

I don’t watch Smash, but I found Sayatani DasGupta’s post on Racialicious really interesting nonetheless.

She reflects on depictions of Indian culture in U.S. mainstream media and the influence of Bollywood on Western perceptions of India. Through multiple missteps, the makers of Smash flubbed an opportunity to portray Indian culture in a nuanced way.

It’s a really smart piece.

Ken Jeong Photobombs Kate Upton’s GQ Photoshoot

I originally blogged this over at Fashioning Circuits, but I think it also fits here:

 

As a result of this project, I have been thinking a lot about fashion magazines, including men’s magazines. So when someone on Facebook shared this video, it immediately caught my eye. It is a GQ.com post about Ken Jeong photobombing Kate Upton. Before I’ve even had my morning coffee, I find myself contemplating raced and aged bodies, the artificiality of photoshoots, and all sorts of other things.

http://www.gq.com/video/videos/ken-jeong-kate-upton-photobomb-video

Jeong is clearly leading us on, asking us to believe that he was not invited. In fact, the multiple takes of his jump into the pool, wearing different shorts each time, suggest that the folks at GQ are having a laugh.

But what is it about the video that makes it funny? Pulling from Naomi Woolf’s The Beauty Myth, the main source of yuks is that Jeong is intruding into the creation of beauty pornography, causing a humorous disjunction. He is not supposed to be there. But why does his intrusion cause laughs rather than ramping up the sexual tension? For instance, even when Jeong is in bed with the couple, the viewer is never led to believe that this could turn into a menage à trois. If you think I am making too much of it, consider how the screen capture below would be different if it were the male model posing as Jeong does

Image of Jeong with Upton

Ken Jeong Photobombs Kate Upton

There are two factors that account for the humor in the video. The first, and less insidious of the two, is that he calls our attention to the absurdity of this type of image. Note the moment at around 01:00 when Jeong playfully bites his own bra strap. It looks ridiculous on him, but it is not at all inconceivable that we might see a shot of a woman doing this in any number of men’s or fashion magazines (commentary about a woman consuming the accoutrements of her own sexuality will have to be saved for another post). (more…)

CFP of Interest: Theorizing Robots

Theorizing Robots (11/01/11; ACCUTE, 05/28/12- 05/31/12) | cfp.english.upenn.edu.

(11/01/11; ACCUTE, 05/28/12- 05/31/12)

This call seems to allow for all sorts of possibilities: from the representational to the robot actualized in our media ecology.

Hotties in the Library: YouTube’s Response to Alexandra Wallace’s Cleavage

02:52. That is all the time it takes for UCLA political science major Alexandra Wallace to alienate and offend, expose her own ignorance, and pretty much put an end to her prestigious UCLA education. Wallace accomplishes all of this in her video “Asians in the Library,” initially posted to YouTube on March 11, 2011. The video is commonly labeled a “racist rant” which suggests that she turned on her webcam and, in the heat of the moment, let the hate flow. However, there is clear evidence that someone took the time to edit the video and an article from The Sacramento Bee quotes her father as saying that she was planning to purchase a domain name to support the video’s distribution [1]. While this does not mean that the video isn’t technically a rant, it is important to recognize that this was not the rash outburst of a young woman with no sense of how the internet and publicity operate. Wallace did not assume she was safely anonymous among the noise of the Internet. Rather, if her father is to be believed, she sought publicity and intended to use the video to launch her career. In my opinion, the evidence of forethought and planning makes the video even more egregious.

What she clearly did not plan was the overwhelmingly negative response. Dreaming of a career as a video blogger, she expected neither death threats, nor the exposure of her personal information, nor to be ostracized on campus. Her official apology, printed in The Daily Bruin on March 14, indicates that if she could take the video back, she would. Questions of her sincerity aside, it is clear that the Internet remains unsatisfied. New video responses continue to appear on YouTube almost three weeks after her official apology.

As a researcher who is writing about viral structures, and an educator in a program in Emerging Media and Communication at UT Dallas, I have been watching the debacle with interest. The video provides a valuable opening to discuss ongoing issues of racism and the insufficiency of strategies of “color blindness” in U.S. culture. It is also a concrete lesson on the uncontrollable and long term consequences of our online actions.

But there is one more lesson to be gleaned from the video and the responses to it. What follows is in no way intended to condone Wallace’s ideas, nor her actions. I find her ignorant and offensive. However, I do feel compelled to focus the discussion here, if just for a very brief moment. (more…)

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