Friday, February 25, 2011

Not Your Mother's VJ

Recently Henry Jenkins has highlighted the work of Egyptian-American Laila Shereen Sakr, otherwise known as VJ Um Amel in a posting called "Media-Making Madness: #Arab Revolutions from the Perspective of Egyptian-American VJ Um Amel (Part One)." Sakr uses certain alienation effects in her video remixes of political crowds that have drawn praise from Alexandra Juhasz:

I'd like to reflect on the differences between the video you made that is a more abstract data visualization and the mix tapes of live "realist" footage. I have written about how viral YouTube videos of protest move quickly because of their simplistic, iconic effect which is often easy to consume and as easy to misunderstand given that it flows without context and because of the strong associations linked to verite images. For this reason, I think your experimentation with non-verite renditions of revolution are really exciting (for communicating across difference, as well as to communicate more complex ideas then, say, "freedom," or "courage," or "arab" that iconic images can reduce themselves to)

(Juhasz was a guest in my online rhetoric class this week, and like me she seems to be struggling to keep up with fast changing social media events in the Middle East and North Africa.)

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OpenID VJ Um Amel said...

Thanks for review. I love the title! I'm assuming you've understood the translation of "Um Amel" or have read the manifesto?

VJ Um Amel

9:21 AM  

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