Postcolonial Publics: Art and Citizen Media in Europe

Sandra Ponzanesi et al.

Omslag van het boek 'Postcolonial Publics' (2023)

Professor of Media, Gender and Postcolonial Studies Sandra Ponzanesi recently published the book ‘Postcolonial Publics: Art and Citizen Media in Europe’, which she edited with Bolette Blaagaard (Aalborg Universitet), Sabrina Marchetti and Shaul Bassi (both Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia). ‘Postcolonial Publics’ explores how migrants, refugees, and citizens express and share their political and social causes and experiences through art and media.

‘Citizen media’

The studies in this volume explore the different ways in which previously excluded social groups regain a public voice thanks to the ‘citizen media’. They seek to better understand the struggles of migrants, refugees, and citizens against increasingly harsh European politics.

Citizen media form the basis for case studies into ‘activistic art’ or ‘artivism’ (Trandafoiu, Ruffini, Cazzato & Taronna, Koobak & Tali, Negrón-Muntaner), activism through different kinds of technological media (Chouliaraki and Al-Ghazzi, Jedlowski), such as documentaries and film (Denić), podcasts, music and soundscapes (Romeo and Fabbri, Western, Lazzari, Huggan), and activisms through writings from journalism to fiction (Longhi, Concilio, Festa, De Capitani).

Postcolonial critique

The volume argues that citizen media go hand in hand with postcolonial critique because of their shared focus on the deconstruction and decolonisation of Western logics and narratives. Moreover, both question the concept of citizen and of citizenship as they relate to the nation-state and explores the power of media as a tool for participation as well as an instrument of political strength. The book forwards postcolonial artivism and citizen media as a critical framework to understand the refugee and migrant situations in contemporary Europe.