Introduction

This is the blog for the public seminars for the School of Arts and Communication (K3) at Malmö University. K3 consists of several disciplines, including Communication for Development, English Studies, Graphic Design, Interaction Design, Media and Communication Studies, Product Design, and Visual Communication, which make it helpful to share a platform aiming at generating discussions across these various practices. The seminars are opportunities for both K3-based researchers and external guests to present and discuss their works.

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Solveig Daugaard: Media ecologies of literature in a digital age. Affective interfaces and alternative infrastructures

Welcome to a K3 seminar with Solveig Daugaard, Visiting Comparative Literature Researcher at K3. The title of her talk is:

Media ecologies of literature in a digital age: affective interfaces and alternative infrastructures

The talk will take place on Wednesday, March 20, at 10.15-12.00 in The K3 Open Studio, NIC 0541, Niagara.

Below you will find an abstract for the talk:

At the K3 Seminar, I will present my current postdoctoral research project (titled: Media ecologies of literature in a digital age: affective interfaces and alternative infrastructures) and give a little background upon my previous research on the aesthetic reception of American avant-garde writer and feminist and queer icon Gertrude Stein where I have developed the methodological framework of media ecologies, interfaces and infrastructures that I intend to develop further in the new project.

In a Scandinavian context, my project explores the changed conditions of print literature in an age of digital media. With new materials and media platforms the production, distribution and reception of literary works and the author’s persona as an assemblage of different material elements have challenged the printed page as the primary interface for readers’ engagement with literature. The project approaches this in two different ways: First, it examines examples of innovative writing (Hagen, Börjel, Farrokzad, Aburas) that all criticize this interface, and challenge its illusory naturalization as a direct product of an embodied, empirical author. Second, it analyzes the emergence of new collaborative writing and publishing communities (OEI, Laboratory of Aesthetics and Ecology, Antipyrine) that break the dominance of this authorial interface by establishing independent infrastructures for literature less dependent upon the idea of literature as an autonomous, individually authored art form and attempt to integrate writing and publishing with other social, political/activist or scholarly practices. The project departs from the substantial divide between textual scholarship and the highly affective responses to and political uses of literature that have engaged many writers and readers in recent years. It sets out to update the definitions and terminology of literary scholarship to understand the changed interfaces and infrastructures of literature as consequences of a digital media environment to make literary scholarship better equipped to understand and analyze the affective impact and the socio-political potential of literature in today’s Scandinavian societies.

In my presentation for the seminar I will focus on the first part of the project, concerned with the persona as affective interface, and establish this phenomenon from Gertrude Stein to contemporary Danish authors Lone Aburas and Christina Hagen, and discuss possible connections to ideas of affective infrastructuring.

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