Doing Experimental Media Archaeology: Theory & Practice


CALL: 2018

DOMAIN: SC - Education and Learning


LAST NAME: Fickers



HOST INSTITUTION: University of Luxembourg

KEYWORDS: Media Archaeology, Media History, History of Technology, Experimental History, Experimental Media Archaeology

START: 2019-01-01



Submitted Abstract

Doing Experimental Media Archaeology: Theory & Practice (DEMA) aims at offering new hands-on perspectives to a better historical understanding of past media practices. Doing re-enactments with old media technologies in an experimental media-archaeology lab will produce new historical, ethnographic and empirical knowledge about past user practices and media experiences. DEMA will advance our classical repertoire of sources generally used to study past user generations by the co-production of experimental data and ethnographic observations. DEMA will combine historical research with innovative methodological and theoretical perspectives to broaden our fundamental knowledge about media practices in education and learning, and the historical knowledge about the social mechanisms behind the appropriation of new media technologies. It will provide new insights in the sense of time and temporality inscribed in the materiality of media technologies; enhance awareness of the spatial and topographical information inscribed in media practices (both of production and consumption); enable a better understanding of the “constructivist nature” of media technology products as historical sources; make scholars of past media technologies “experience” rather than intellectually appropriate the acts of making and performing as social and cultural practices. In reconstructing and re-enacting two idealized “how-to” user scenarios, the experimental media archaeologists will be able to analyse and experience the differences between the social dynamics of media usages (ensemble play), and performing practices (collective viewing, hearing, or commentating) and their idealized discursive narratives and commercial staging. DEMA’s focus will be on the development of new methodologies for doing experimental historical research and on developing new digital tools and techniques to foster media literacy and digital literacy in higher education in Luxembourg and thereby perfectly fits into the FNR Research Priority on Education and Learning.

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