P02b


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Crisis, creativity and ethics: reflexive practices and critical engagements with "others" in times of uncertainty 
Convenors:
Timothy Cooper (University of Cambridge)
Till J F Trojer (School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS))
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Format:
Panel Discussion
Start time:
20 March, 2021 at 14:00 (UTC+0)
Session slots:
1

Short Abstract:

This panel explores how creative responses to the COVID-19 pandemic have called for a reconsideration of existing ethical orientations to media, technology, and practice.

Long Abstract

This panel invites papers that explore how creative responses to the uncertainties of the COVID-19 pandemic have called for a reconsideration of existing ethical orientations to media, technology, and practice. Focusing on the relationship between creativity, crisis, and their technological mediation requires considering ethics as a reflexive process forged in correspondence with those usually viewed as "other", rather than as the domain of individuality or self-cultivation.

Take, for example, ethnographic filmmakers whose practices are enmeshed in a triangular relationship with their viewers and interlocutors. During the pandemic, streaming services like Vimeo and YouTube have allowed multiple interlocutors to participate in post-production processes despite physical distances in ways which collapse the distinction between participant and audience. Similarly, during lockdowns many social, religious, and life events have had to rely upon other technologies that simulate co-presence, causing many to reconsider the place of social media in ritual practice and to question what constitutes the "being there" of participation and presence.

These are just two examples of the myriad ways in which the ethics of ethnographic representation, collaboration, and participation have been propelled to the forefront of creative and mediated practices by the uncertainties introduced by COVID-19. This panel welcomes papers that foreground reflexive engagements on the relationship between face-to-face practice and its digital mediation and how the pandemic has transformed notions of presence and co-presence. Together we hope to find ways of thinking differently about the place of agency, ethics, and crisis and discuss innovative and creative ways of doing anthropology.

Accepted papers: