Media Places 2012: Infrastructure | Space | Media

This December I’ll be visiting the HUMnab at the Umeå University in Umeå, Sweden for a symposium entitled “Media Places : Infrastructure | Space | Media.” The list of keynote speakers, panelists, discussants, and participants is incredibly exciting (and intimidating!), and I’m thrilled to have been included with such a stellar line-up of amazing scholars.

As laid out by the organizers of this event, the people invited are “researchers and practitioners at the intersection of media, place and technology, as well as in the digital humanities” and the questions guiding us as we share work and dialog over these three days are as follows:

  1. How is knowledge production shaped by infrastructure (and notions of infrastructure) and vice versa?
  2. How does digital materiality change notions of space and architectural theory, as well as built space itself?

As someone who has been involved in conversations about the Digital Humanities as a developing area/method of study, and a humanities graduate student at the cash-strapped (but momentarily-saved University of California), I am very invested in the topics of this particular gathering. In addition, since my own research examines the cultural texts of and about specific global cities in the contemporary moment (Dubai, Los Angeles, Ho Chi Minh City/Saigon), I look forward to learning how I can apply the different theories and methodologies we’ll be discussing toward my own work on urban areas.

I shall try to blog about the event while there, and provide a summary of the event upon my return. You can be sure that this perspective will be informed by my investment in Asian American, ethnic studies, global studies, and social justice. It will also probably include the observations of a wimpy Southern California girl experiencing winter in Scandinavia for the first time. (Yipes!) But, as Rita Raley said to me, “You might see the Northern Lights!”

And just a side note… I hadn’t noticed until they posted the list of participants with photos, but, oh my goodness, is this event white! It probably has to do with the fact that it’s invitation-only, but it does worry me a little. I’ll try to represent the POC as best I can (when I get over the nerves)! In any case, many thanks to Patrik Svensson for inviting me and to Emma Ewadotter for organizing everything.

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