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Without you I'm nothing: Performances of the self on Twitter
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Without you I'm nothing: Performances of the self on Twitter

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  • 1. Performances  of  the  Self   on  Twi3er   Zizi  Papacharissi  Professor  and  Head,  Communica<on   University  of  Illinois-­‐Chicago   @zizip  
  • 2.    Performing  is  public  dreaming   (Schechner,  2003,  p.  265)   •  The  theater  of  everyday  life   •  Performing  a  networked  self   •  Imagined  and  actual  audiences  
  • 3. Performance  Studies   Twi3er  Individuals  live  by  performance   Performa<ve  props/spaces   defined  by  scalability,  Performances  are  self  reflexive   persistence,  replicability,   searchability,  and   disclosure  Restored  ac<ons  and  context  produce  performances   Ambient,  always  on  Theatricality  and  “as  if”  element   performa<ve  spaces  that  of  playing  out  behaviors  that  are   heighten  social  awareness  encoded/decoded   Homophily,  in  and  out  Self  satura<on  and  self   group  affilia<on,  self-­‐monitoring  online  invite   affirma<on  performa<ve  strategies  that  underscore    and  poke  fun  at   Steganography,  polysemy,  authen<city  of  performance   redac<on,  play  possible   strategies  –  networked  self  
  • 4. Research  Design:   Content+discourse  analysis  RQ:  How  is  the  self  performed  on  Twi3er?   (content  analysis)  Also:  (discourse  analysis)  In  technosocial  environments  of  social  hypersatura<on,  what  shape  does  performance  of  the  self  take,  and  how  does  it  balance  needs  for  publicity,  privacy,  and  sociality?  What  processes  of  redac<on  are  invoked  so  as  to  permit  an  edi<ng  of  the  self?  How  do  redac<onal  and  other  performa<ve  strategies  enable  performances  that  are  authen<c?  How  are  performances  of  the  self  on  Twi3er  part  of  the  ongoing  storytelling  project    of  the  self,  and  do  they  resemble  ‘public  dreaming’?    1798  tweets,  manually  coded  magnitude  of  performance  play  reordering,  exaggera<on,  fragmenta<on,  repe<<on,   exaggera<on+repe<<on,  incomplete   movements  general  content  characteris<cs  themes,  redundancy  
  • 5. Findings  (content  analysis)    •  The  self,  front  and  center  •  Play  •  Reordering  •  Magnitude  of  performance  and   play  (+  play  strategies)    inversely   related  
  • 6. Findings  (discourse  analysis)  •  Ac<ng  out  and  “as-­‐if”  element   –  Profanity,  vulgarity,  drama  and  shock   value,  private/public  •  Tagging  a  performa<ve  act  •  Affect,  deliberately  improvised  
  • 7. Storytelling  of  the  self  •  Play  in  everyday  life  •  Emo<onal  release/affect  •  Fantasy,  publicity  and  the  everyday  •  Redac<on  +  improvisa<on  =   theatricality  
  • 8. Thank  you!   zizi@uic.edu,  uic.edu/~zizi  This  photo  courtesy  smART  minds,  all  other  images  author’s  own,  available  at  ziziweb.tumblr.com,  cosmograffiI.tumblr.com