Am I subconsciously thinking of myself as the one capable of administering the blow that brings the other to his senses? I think I always feel more like the target, the one desperately in need of that punch to remind me that things are possible, I am capable, and TMJ notwithstanding I can still grit my teeth. And maybe it’s related to the purpose of this post, that I rely so heavily on narratives as sense-making making devices, as new ways of understanding not only my subject position but also those of others. That I am interested in the semiotics involved in manipulating the cognitive processes that transpire in the space between eye and text object, whether they pertain to our methods of reading and looking or our understandings of visual-verbal combinations: what W. J. T. Mitchell called”image-text” relations–that is, relations between the image and the word: namely, the “imagetext,” or syntheses of visual and verbal elements that accord and/or amplify meaning; the “image/text,” in which the synthesis is dissonant and visual and verbal meanings undermine, contradict, or elide each other (p. 89). This was, after all, my method of analysis in my paper on the simulation of PTSD in the visual-verbal juxtapositions in Gurren Lagann, which in retrospect might have made for a more controlled case study. But I’m getting ahead of myself.Continue reading
My oral defense is on Monday, and because I’m terrified of revisiting my comps answers, I’m (productively?) doing nothing and letting my thoughts about each question settle. I’ve got a few irrelevant problems overwhelming my brain, and I thought I could clear my head by thinking through them here, which will hopefully enable me to face my own writing. First, my theoretical positioning; second, the body as a technical assemblage; third, what the hell am I doing with my life.Continue reading
Bedridden as I’ve been with pain, I’m stuck with a view of my cluttered room to my right and apartment buildings directly in front and to the right. The buildings to the right, however, have been augmented with graffiti. Most of it is written in white spray paint: initials, names, the bubble- and jagged-letter signatures of writers who somehow managed to reach these heights or write upside down. The building owners probably think of it as an eyesore, but I think it’s a gorgeous way. The writing, the positioning, and the size and style reveal aesthetic and political choices. Why these buildings? Why these locations? Why predominantly names?
Is it enough of an answer to say that my neighborhood has been a prime location for gentrification? That young people actively resent the closing of local mom-and-pop shops and what they perceive as the irrevocable alteration of quintessential Harlem? That the chosen placement of the tags heightens their visibility?
tl;dr, ITT I attempt to forge my scattered brain cells into a single unit capable of cogent thought, thereby relate graffiti and graffiti-writing practices as a metaphor for online defacement, and consider the ramifications of such an analogy.Continue reading