Event Details

  • October 13, 2017
  • 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
  • Free

Venue

  • Frost Library, Amherst College
  • 61 Quadrangle Drive
  • Amherst, MA 01002

Event Description

Akin Adesokan will present his keynote address on “Shifting Margins: Digital Media and New African Textual Practices.” Adesokan is associate professor of comparative literature and of cinema and media studies at the Media School at Indiana University. He has published several books and his writings have appeared in publications like AGNI, Screen, and Research in African Literatures. This lecture undertakes a preliminary discussion of ways to conceptualize the evolving reconfiguration of African literary studies in the context of digital media. Adesokan shall make a case for the historicity of form in relation to critiques of technology as a phenomenon and thus address the standard distinction between “literature” and “other arts.” The notion of literature as well as its relationship to other artistic media is undergoing unprecedented changes. Without underestimating persistent forms of unequal exchange, and without presuming an irreducibly antagonistic relationship between old and new modes of production and communication, he argues that digital media are an opportune mode of reconstituting textuality. For scholarship invested in African artistic practices, this mode can be productively understood in terms of concepts like diachronicity and mediation, which have been neglected in current discussions of “world” or “global” literature. Adesokan gives the second keynote address of the Digital Africa Symposium, addressing how 21st century sub-Saharan African writers use and respond to digital technologies. More information on the symposium can be found here.

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