Personal Narrative in the Digital Age

Yesterday I participated in an online discussion with Anna Poletti, as part of the 2014 Digital Writers Festival.

Our discussion panel was entitled “Personal Narrative in the Digital Age”, and was archived on Youtube. You can watch it here or here.

We spoke about autobiography and its relationship to blogging and micro-blogging platforms. One of the interesting ideas coming from Anna’s work is that autobiography doesn’t need to be “written” or even “narrative” – it can be constructed unintentionally via a fragmentary collage of phatic publishing events (like “pokes” in facebook, or the curated uploading of bio-images and other professional data).

We also talked about the current craving for “authenticity” and coherence, which may be the flipside of this more fragmented kind of identity formation process.

I enjoyed the online discussion format – and I hope that more conferences can be run this way in the future – definitely less travel per unit of discourse!

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