[-empyre-] empyre Digest, Vol 132, Issue 3

Jonathan Schroeder jesgla at rit.edu
Tue Dec 8 04:13:16 AEDT 2015

OK. I am a bit behind here, but I look forward to the discussion. 

I have been studying the intersections of branding and visual culture for awhile now, and have published several papers on the issues of snapshot aesthetics and its relation to strategic communication. In this work, I argued that the use of snapshots, or snapshot-like imagery in advertising, marketing imagery and websites promoted a constructed sense of 'authenticity' for companies.  Within strategic communication snapshots and selfies invoke a realist interpretive frame that supports a range of powerful, positive associations for consumers, while at the same time valorizing a sense of staged spontaneity, in the moment, “authentic” record of consumer experience. The rise of the selfie presents a host of intriguing questions.  For the conference I am organizing in Rochester in April 2016, Selfies, Self-portraits and Social Media, I am thinking about these type of issues: 1) intense interest in social media, co-creation, and participatory consumer culture, 2) a desire to historically contextualize the selfie within art history, identity theory, and photography, 3) positioning the selfie as a distinctive self-performative act, and 4) conceptual and methodological foundations for studying the selfie as a visual communication phenomenon. Goals include exploring current developments, research methods and interdisciplinary research into how social media, self-portraiture and the selfie interact. One particular theme is to develop a series of historical and contemporary examples to trace a visual genealogy of the selfie, following interpretive and historical work in consumer culture theory, photography, and visual culture.

For this discussion, I am particularly interested in how people are studying and thinking about selfies.
Derek Conrad Murray published a nice paper in the journal I edit, "Notes to self: the visual culture of selfies in the age of social media" available here: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10253866.2015.1052967
In my editorial, I wrote:" He contests the simplistic notion that selfies are primarily narcissistic via a critical engagement with a history of feminist representational politics, and he interrogates the suggestion that selfies instead constitute a politically oppositional and aesthetic form of consumer resistance. His article includes a selection of artistic selfies that provide visual material for his analysis."

For this discussion, I have invite colleagues from several disciplines to participate:

Kelly Martin, Assistant Professor of Communication at Rochester Institute  of Technology

She earned her Ph.D. in Communication, Rhetoric and Digital Media at North Carolina State University where she developed a schema that graphically maps hierarchical relationships of visual research methods. Her current research focuses on intersections of visual communication and design and advocates for discipline-specific visual communication instruction in higher education. In addition to her work in visual research methods and visual communication instruction, she has collaborated to develop a theory of visual wellbeing as an alternative to visual pleasure as well as a theory of digital credibility with a focus on public relations blogs and hospital websites.

Joonas Rokka, associate professor of marketing at EMLYON Business School, France. 
He has previously worked as a marketing professor at NEOMA Business School, France, visiting scholar at HEC Paris School of Management, and researcher at Aalto University School of Business, Helsinki, Finland. His research is on branding, consumer experience and culture, digital media, and creative visual research methods. He has received a number of awards including the Sidney J. Levy Award for his dissertation research in 2015, and his work has been published in the Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Business Research, European Journal of Marketing and Journal of Marketing Management. He also has experience working in brand and digital marketing team in a leading marketing organisation in Finland. Currently he is working on brand content management, branded selfies, social media counter-trends, and champagne consumption.

More information of the Kern Conference is here: http://www.rit.edu/cla/kern/about
(the call for papers asks for proposals by January 15, 2016)

----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------

Today's Topics:

   1.  Welcome to the December discussion on -empyre (Derek Murray)


Message: 1
Date: Sat, 5 Dec 2015 18:15:35 -0800
From: Derek Murray <derekconradmurray6719 at gmail.com>
To: soft_skinned_space <empyre at lists.artdesign.unsw.edu.au>
Subject: [-empyre-]  Welcome to the December discussion on -empyre
        <CADi2OJDGsd9+=sBzCQgFhBpPNNatjeOic_iEpqxzNnK9hjxfYA at mail.gmail.com>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=UTF-8

Welcome to our December discussion on ?empyre- soft-skinned space,
Selfies, Self-Portraits, and Social Media. The moderator of this
month?s discussion will be Jonathan Schroeder (United States). We are
thrilled that Jonathan Schroeder?s exciting and timely research on
selfies has been the catalyst for this month?s topic, which highlights
conceptual issues in the relationship between photography,
self-imaging, technology, and consumer-based consumption. Thanks to
you, Jonathan, and each of your guests for joining us this month.

Moderator Bio:

Professor Jonathan Schroeder is the William A. Kern Professor in the
School of Communication at Rochester Institute of Technology. His PhD
is from the University of California-Berkeley. Schroeder is the editor
of the interdisciplinary journal Consumption Markets  & Culture. He is
especially interested in photography and how it works within
advertising, branding, social media, and strategic communication.

We turn the discussion over to you now, Jonathan, to further introduce
us to your topic, your upcoming and highly anticipated conference on
selfie research, and to share the bios of those guests who will be
sharing in the conversation this month.

All best,

Derek Conrad Murray

Soraya Murray

Co-Moderators, -empyre

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