Visibility, Media Events and Convergence Culture: Struggles for the Meaning of 9/11

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4 Citations (Scopus)


Media events have become important sites of political activity, affective engagement and cultural struggle. They involve (often spectacular) visibility, the articulation and circulation of meaning, and the formation of powerful discourses and counterdiscourses. The imaging technologies at the heart of media events shape our encounters with place and our geopolitical imaginaries. This chapter explores the realm of visual media events through the lens of the attacks of September 11, 2001. These attacks were profoundly mediated, and they generated complex reactions and ongoing political contestation across a diverse array of media realms. I aim to use this event to demonstrate the complicated and contingent politics of visual media at a time when media apparatuses have multiplied and saturated the world as never before. In the age of global visual cultures and media convergence, images and discourses spill interactively across digitalized, networked platforms and a multitude of screens including televisions, computers, tablets and smart phones. The new media geographies to which they give shape become invested with affects and meanings as different groups and agents struggle to promote particular modes of sensemaking and political interests. These geographies define a terrain upon which dominant forces and interests work to establish and stabilize discursive control, but encounter image insurgencies and alternative knowledges that disrupt and contest such control through the disarticulation and rearticulation of its visual and narrative elements.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMediated Geographies and Geographies of Media
EditorsSusan P. Mains, Julie Cupples, Chris Lukinbeal
ISBN (Electronic)978-94-017-9969-0
ISBN (Print)978-94-017-9968-3
Publication statusPublished - 2015


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