Blog Post

Michele White, FSDW Intro

I look forward to communicating with other members of the Feminist Scholars Digital Workshop. I am a full professor in the department of Communication at Tulane University. My field is media and Internet studies, with a research emphasis on the theoretical models and critical questions that can be used to analyze Internet and computer-facilitated representations and identity positions.

 

I will be sharing a draft of “‘How Do You “Do” Bokeh?’: Photographers’ How-to YouTube Videos and the Aesthetics of Background Blur.” In this article, I interrogate the ways producers of videos disrupt their aesthetic interest in photographic backgrounds, blurriness, and less normative viewpoints by inserting erotic images of women into their images.

 

Through book-length projects, I have proposed theoretical models that can be used to study Internet settings. In The Body and the Screen: Theories of Internet Spectatorship (MIT Press, 2006), I use film and media theory and critical considerations of reading and viewing to indicate how individuals are addressed as white heterosexual users and how we might acknowledge the practices of other individuals. Buy It Now: Lessons from eBay (Duke University Press, 2012) continues these areas of critical analysis. I examine how eBay promises a profusion of goods and tolerance but regulates the kinds of items and sexual identities that can be seen and marketed. This project also combines concepts from science and technology studies, business, and media studies as a means of conceptualizing ecommerce and other Internet engagements. With Producing Women: The Internet, Traditional Femininity, Queerness, and Creativity (Routledge, 2015), I consider how women employ traditional femininity to foreground, profit from, and challenge their positions. I use the term “producing” to emphasize the interconnected ways women and femininity are constructed and should be studied. I concentrate on the social construction of mothers, brides, and cosmetic cultures because these are some of the key practices through which women and femininity are produced.

 

 

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