Kishonna Gray, “Intersectional Tech: Exploring the Black Cultural Production of Gamers Intransmediated Culture”
Thursday, September 17, 2020 at 5:00pm to 6:30pmVirtual Event
With this presentation, Dr. Kishonna Gray illustrates a framework for studying the intersectional development of technological artifacts and systems and their impact on Black cultural production and social processes. Using gaming as the glue that binds this project, she puts forth intersectional tech as a framework to make sense of the visual, textual, and oral engagements of marginalized users, exploring the complexities in which they create, produce, and sustain their practices. Gaming, as a medium often outside conversations on Blackness and digital praxis, is one that is becoming more visible, viable, and legible in making sense of Black technoculture. Intersectional tech implores us to make visible the force of discursive practices that position practices within (dis)orderly social hierarchies and arrangements. The explicit formulations of the normative order are sometimes in disagreement with the concrete human condition as well as inconsistent with the consumption and production practices that constitute Black digital labor. It is, in fact, these practices that inform the theoretical underpinnings of Black performances, cultural production, exploited labor, and resistance strategies inside oppressive technological structures that Black users reside.
Dr. Kishonna L. Gray (@kishonnagray) is an assistant professor in the Department of Communication and Gender and Women’s Studies at the University of Illinois – Chicago. Dr. Gray is an interdisciplinary, intersectional, digital media scholar and digital herstorian whose areas of research include identity, performance and online environments, embodied deviance, cultural production, video games, and Black Cyberfeminism. Dr. Gray’s recent monograph, Intersectional Tech: The Transmediated Praxis of Black Users in Digital Gaming (LSU Press, 2020) explores the visual, textual, and/or oral engagement of the Black body in transmediated spaces, focusing on the critical deconstruction of the exploited, hypervisible, labor of any associated Black performances (online and ‘IRL’).