Monday, January 11, 2010

Digital Storytelling Forum...

A rising cyber-phenomenon has been the art of Digital Storytelling, and it has gained enough traction in academic circles to warrant its own scholarly forum, created by HASTAC.

Depending on the context in which it is invoked, the term "digital storytelling" can refer to a disparate range of practices, theories, and issues -- from performance works staged in Second Life to questions about the implications of undocumented immigrants sharing their stories via cell phones. In this forum, scholars reclaim digital storytelling's richness of meaning via the work of a diverse group of scholars...

  • Digital Storytelling: Community Empowerment (Ana Boa-Ventura, University of Texas - Austin)

  • Digital Storytelling: Re-Defining the Role of the Academic Library (Sherry Tuffin, Wayne State University)

  • Digital Storytelling: Purpose, Practice, and Potential (Jeff Watson, USC School of Cinematic Arts)

The Scholars ask questions such as:

  • What is digital storytelling and how is it different than non-digital storytelling?

  • Can mobile and ubiquitous computing change the game when it comes to who gets to tell stories and who doesn't? How does it change storytelling itself?

  • How can librarians best archive and present digital stories and storytelling technologies? How are librarians both gatekeepers of stories, as well as storytellers?

  • How does an archive also produce a story? What does it mean for a librarian, museum curator, graphic artist, or blogger to be a storyteller?

Most fascinating to me is the idea of digital storytelling as a separate art form. Years back, comic books were suddenly recognised as being a similarly separate type of narrative work, and it's interesting that the same is now true of digital works like "undocumented immigrants sharing their stories via cell phones" and through text messages. This new forum ought to make for some great conversation-fodder reading.


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