About this Event
Session 2 of the Speakers' Series features Kishonna Gray. Her talk, From Techno-Cultures to Techno-Critique: Gaming as Hybrid Spaces for Public Infrastructure and Community Building, examines the role of transmedia in helping to create worlds and public infrastructures and sustain communities to foster identity development in both physical and digital contexts.
While public discussions around gaming culture focus on the toxic elements, there are thriving groups utilizing online environments and their related tools to sustain their communities. While trolls and other toxic actors (and resistance practices) may dominate the conversation, we must begin to center the communities that marginalized bodies create and sustain despite the toxicity (Banet-Weiser and Miltner, 2016; Gray, Buyukozturk, and Hill, 2017; Salter, 2017).
Additionally, gaming is also the inspiration for much of our innovative and contemporary world building (i.e. meta-verse). As such, the purpose of this talk is to explore these hybrid communities examining the role of transmedia in helping to create worlds and public infrastructures and sustain communities to foster identity development in both physical and digital contexts.
The hybrid spaces within gaming culture that many marginalized groups inhabit are the few spaces that value the articulation of marginalized interests and viewpoints. As Anderson (2006) outlines, “cases such as these make it clear that ‘virtual’ worlds are only virtual in a limited sense; real-world issues can and do impinge on the fantasy landscape of games…” (as cited in Pulos, 2013). The hybrid conditions lead to a focus on “transmediated” reality to engage what Goran Bolin (2007) calls “textual production that travels over technologies” (243). The transmedia text involves intricate multi-platform narrative webs that, according to Henry Jenkins (2006), capitalize on the affordances of digital media convergence. The transmedia text, thus, requires cultural synergy of a multitude of mediated formats. The visual of this mapping creates an intricate nexus of analyzing what identity and digital identity development means for marginalized users across platforms.
Dr. Kishonna L. Gray is an Associate Professor in Writing, Rhetoric, & Digital Studies and Africana Studies at the University of Kentucky. She is an interdisciplinary, intersectional, digital media scholar whose areas of research include identity, performance and online environments, embodied deviance, cultural production, video games, and Black Cyberfeminism.
Dr. Gray is the author of Intersectional Tech: Black Users in Digital Gaming (LSU Press, 2020). She is also the author of Race, Gender, & Deviance in Xbox Live (Routledge, 2014), and the co-editor of two volumes on culture and gaming: Feminism in Play (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2018) and Woke Gaming (University of Washington Press, 2018). Dr. Gray has published in a variety of outlets across disciplines and has also featured in public outlets such as The Guardian, The Telegraph, and The New York Times.
Event Venue & Nearby Stays
SFU Harbour Centre, 515 W Hastings St, Vancouver, Canada