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Pixelating the Self: Digital Feminist Memoirs


You have many options for what your first project might look like. The purpose of today’s task (Links to an external site.) is to get a feel for what those might be.

It’s important to note the differences between what you’re looking over today and what you’ll be doing, yourself. This is a set of narratives completed by graduate students in a course taught by Professor Alexandra Hidalgo.

 It is, however, the same general type of work, in the sense of being an introspective digital creation with ties to scholarship. The different students took different approaches, and these approaches should give you an idea for how you might take on your own project.

One specific point I want you to notice is how these students tie their own experiences in with others’ scholarship. Take a look, for example, at Chapter 2, written by Les Hutchinson. The second paragraph begins, “In their digital book Techne: Queer Meditations on Writing the Self, Jacqueline Rhodes and Jonathan Alexander theorize ways ‘to provoke visceral awareness of the interimbrication of bodies and technologies, orienting and reorienting one another’ (‘Introduction’). My multimodal memoir attempts such provocation ….” Note what Hutchinson is doing here. She is taking the work from Rhodes and Alexander and using it as a foundation for her own work, and she is making the connection explicit as she does so.

That is not the only way you can connect your writing with previous scholarship. But it is a way. You should be looking for others as you read the tasks for this week.

Here is what I’d like you to do.

  1. Watch the introduction(Links to an external site.), by Professor Hidalgo.
  2. Click through the chapters to get a feel for how these memoirs are presented.
  3. Choose one of the chapters to examine in detail.
  4. Offer some general comments on the task as a whole. What strikes you as interesting or challenging about it?
  5. Offer some more focused comments on the chapter you chose. What do you think the student did well? What might they have done better?

Link to the video:

Here’s the link to the chapters, just click on the polaroids, each polaroid represents a chapter: