#AoIR2018 has ended
Back To Schedule
Saturday, October 13 • 11:00am - 12:30pm
Digital Critical Race Mixtape

Sign up or log in to save this to your schedule, view media, leave feedback and see who's attending!

In his seminal work _Digital Griots_, Adam Banks (2011) argues for the mixtape as both an epistemological framework and a mode of writing that is particularly suited for multimedia digital environments. Drawing heavily on mixing and remixing, mixtapes represent a communal orientation to knowledge production that differs from that of the academy. Grounded in the synthesis of tradition and innovation, mixtapes foreground existing material in an act of intentional canon formation while simultaneously offering new insights and perspectives. They bring together oral traditions, print literacies, and technology (Banks, 147) in ways that are potentially productive for the contemporary digital landscape. In this experimental session, five scholars of race and technology ask, "What happens when scholars take seriously the mixtape as a framework for knowledge production?"

The session seeks to generate knowledge guided by the structures and characteristics of the mixtape. Just as mixtapes are comprised of tracks that are at once individual texts and seamless components of an integrated whole, participants will present their individual work in progress, weaving those contributions together, aligning and overlapping, drawing on the same "samples" (i.e., citations and quotations), and using preexisting audio, video, and print materials.

We argue that the mixtape framework is both a logical and a useful approach for digital scholars. Marisa Parham (2017) demonstrates that Black culture and experience "reproduce some of the technical structure of what we otherwise call the digital," and therefore, digital technologies "can be productively understood as technically parallel to the complex matters of cultural ownership, transmission, and participation in African American culture." Paul Miller (2004), AKA DJ Spooky, asserts that DJ culture, with its open-source and recombinant approach to creation, was one of the foundations of networked internet culture. Thus, Black epistemological frameworks stand to be illuminating entry points for understanding digital phenomena. In addition to being of interest to digital media scholars for this reason, the mixtape approach also allows opportunities for synthesizing wide ranging, and often conflicting traditions of thought.

Banks, Adam. (2011). _Digital Griots: African American Rhetoric in a Multimedia Age._ Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press.

Miller, Paul. (2004). _Rhythm Science._ Cambridge: MIT Press.

Parham, Marisa. (2017). "Sample, Signal, Strobe." Digital Blackness in the Archive: A DocNow Symposium. Ferguson/St. Louis, MO.

Saturday October 13, 2018 11:00am - 12:30pm EDT
Sheraton - Salon 8