CRG Research Working Group, 2013-2014
The objects and spaces of new media are often perceived as predominantly white: costly, originating in the Global North, created by mostly-white professionals in the fields of engineering, programming, and design, and used most intensively by the mostly-white economic elite and their children. This working group will promote the design and execution of research and scholarship that focuses on the non-white and/or non-North American/European users and makers of new media. Graduate students and faculty members who participate will be encouraged to share work with the group that takes humanistic approaches to studying, surfacing, and generating theories and histories of digital culture that pertain to racial and ethnic minoritarianism, transnationalism, the “digital divide,” the Global South, and hybrid identities. We will also very much welcome scholarly projects on new media that attend to intersections of race and ethnicity, nation, class, and/or gender.
Scholarly investigations of the role that race and ethnicity have played in the development of new media—such as histories of non-white technological pioneers in the creative and cultural industries, the stereotypes of “techno-Orientalism,” the culture and politics of “Afro-futurism,” speculative fiction written by people of color and by people from and in the Global South, and the development of high-tech industries and services in Latin America, South and Southeast Asia, and Africa—are rarely placed at the center of studies of new media, since the stories of the evolution of the Internet, mobile devices, video games, and online education are often framed as emerging exclusively from white male inventors and consumed by white audiences.