Connecting the peripheries: networks, place and scale in the World Social Forum process

Stephansen, H. 2013. Connecting the peripheries: networks, place and scale in the World Social Forum process. Journal of Postcolonial Writing. 49 (5), pp. 506-518. doi:10.1080/17449855.2013.842773

TitleConnecting the peripheries: networks, place and scale in the World Social Forum process
AuthorsStephansen, H.
Abstract

Communication technologies occupy a central place in contemporary theorizations of transnational social movement networks. Not only does the internet provide the technical infrastructure through which activists communicate and share information, increasing their capacity to introduce oppositional messages into the public realm (Castells); its network architecture is also closely linked to the organizational logic of contemporary social justice movements (Juris). While recognizing the fundamental importance of communication technologies for such movements, this article cautions against overly disembodied conceptions of transnational activist networks and highlights the need to pay attention to issues of place and scale, as well as the importance of affect in the construction of alternative global imaginaries. Through a case study of a small social forum event held in February 2010 in a poor urban community in the south of Brazil as part of the World Social Forum process, the article examines activists’ use of communication technologies to construct transnational networks between different place-based actors. It shows that these practices are not simply concerned with establishing links between already existing places; the creation of networks is also inextricably bound up with particular constructions of place. By engaging in a politics that is simultaneously place-based and global in scope, these actors challenge traditional conceptions of scale as well as dominant epistemological paradigms.

JournalJournal of Postcolonial Writing
Journal citation49 (5), pp. 506-518
ISSN1744-9855
Year2013
PublisherRoutledge
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1080/17449855.2013.842773
Publication dates
Published2013

Related outputs

Practice what you preach? Currents, connections and challenges in theorizing citizen media and practice
Stephansen, H. and Treré, E. 2019. Practice what you preach? Currents, connections and challenges in theorizing citizen media and practice. in: Stephansen, H. and Treré, E. (ed.) Citizen Media and Practice: currents, connections, challenges London Routledge.

Conceptualising the role of knowledge in ‘acting on media’
Stephansen, H. 2019. Conceptualising the role of knowledge in ‘acting on media’. in: Stephansen, H. and Treré, E. (ed.) Citizen Media and Practice Routledge.

Conceptualising a distributed, multi-scalar global public sphere through activist communication practices in the World Social Forum
Stephansen, H. 2019. Conceptualising a distributed, multi-scalar global public sphere through activist communication practices in the World Social Forum. Global Media and Communication. Advanced online publication. doi:10.1177/1742766519872777

Media practices
Stephansen, H. and Treré, E. Media practices. in: Baker, M., Blaagaard, B. and Perez Gonzalez, L. (ed.) Routledge Encyclopedia of Citizen Media London Routledge.

World Social Forum
Stephansen, H. World Social Forum. in: Baker, M., Blaagaard, B. and Perez Gonzales, L. (ed.) Routledge Encyclopedia of Citizen Media London Routledge.

Media Activism as Movement? Collective Identity Formation in the World Forum of Free Media
Stephansen, H.C. 2017. Media Activism as Movement? Collective Identity Formation in the World Forum of Free Media. Media and Communication. 5 (3), pp. 59-66. doi:10.17645/mac.v5i3.1034

Engaging with the public in public engagement with research
Mahony, N and Stephansen, H. 2017. Engaging with the public in public engagement with research. Research For All. 1 (1), pp. 35-51. doi:10.18546/RFA.01.1.04

Understanding citizen media as practice: agents, processes, publics
Stephansen, H. 2016. Understanding citizen media as practice: agents, processes, publics. in: Baker, M. and Blaagaard, B. (ed.) Citizen media and public spaces: diverse expressions of citizenship and dissent London Routledge. pp. 25-41

The frontiers of participatory public engagement
Mahony, N. and Stephansen, H. 2016. The frontiers of participatory public engagement. European Journal of Cultural Studies. 19 (6), pp. 583-597. doi:10.1177/1367549416632007

Constructing a digital storycircle: digital infrastructure and mutual recognition
Couldry, N., MacDonald, R.L., Stephansen, H., Clark, W., Dickens, L. and Fotopoulou, A. 2015. Constructing a digital storycircle: digital infrastructure and mutual recognition. International Journal of Cultural Studies. 18 (5), pp. 501-517. doi:10.1177/1367877913519313

Digital platforms and narrative exchange: hidden constraints, emerging agency
Clark, W., Couldry, N., MacDonald, R.L. and Stephansen, H. 2015. Digital platforms and narrative exchange: hidden constraints, emerging agency. New Media & Society. 17 (6), pp. 919-938. doi:10.1177/1461444813518579

Understanding micro-processes of community building and mutual learning on Twitter: a ‘small data’ approach
Stephansen, H. and Couldry, N. 2014. Understanding micro-processes of community building and mutual learning on Twitter: a ‘small data’ approach. Information, Communication & Society. 17 (10), pp. 1212-1227. doi:10.1080/1369118X.2014.902984

Digital citizenship? Narrative exchange and the changing terms of civic culture
Couldry, N., Stephansen, H., Fotopoulou, A., MacDonald, R.L., Clark, W. and Dickens, L. 2014. Digital citizenship? Narrative exchange and the changing terms of civic culture. Citizenship Studies. 18 (6-7), pp. 615-629. doi:10.1080/13621025.2013.865903

Starting from the Amazon: communication, knowledge and politics of place in the World Social Forum
Stephansen, H. 2013. Starting from the Amazon: communication, knowledge and politics of place in the World Social Forum. Interface: a journal for and about social movements. 5 (1), pp. 102-127.

Permalink - https://westminsterresearch.westminster.ac.uk/item/8z1q0/connecting-the-peripheries-networks-place-and-scale-in-the-world-social-forum-process


Share this
Tweet
Email