The Body and the Screen: Theories of Internet Spectatorship (Hardcover)

Michele White

  • 出版商: MIT
  • 出版日期: 2006-06-09
  • 定價: $1,090
  • 售價: 1.8$199
  • 語言: 英文
  • 頁數: 280
  • 裝訂: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 0262232499
  • ISBN-13: 9780262232494
  • 立即出貨(限量) (庫存=1)




Internet and computer users are often represented onscreen as active and empowered--as in AOL's striding yellow figure and the interface hand that appears to manipulate software and hypertext links. In The Body and the Screen Michele White suggests that users can more properly be understood as spectators rendered and regulated by technologies and representations, for whom looking and the mediation of the screen are significant aspects of engagement. Drawing on apparatus and feminist psychoanalytic film theories, art history, gender studies, queer theory, critical race and postcolonial studies, and other theories of cultural production, White conceptualizes Internet and computer spectatorship and provides theoretical models that can be employed in other analyses. She offers case studies and close visual and textual analysis of the construction of spectatorship in different settings.

White shows that despite the onscreen promise of empowerment and coherence (through depictions of materiality that structure the experience), fragmentation and confusion are constant aspects of Internet spectatorship. She analyzes spectatorship in multi-user object-oriented settings (MOOs) by examining the textual process of looking and gazing, contrasts the experiences of the women's webcam spectator and operator, describes intentional technological failures in net art, and considers ways in which traditional conceptions of artistry, authorship, and production techniques persist in Internet and computer settings (as seen in the creation of virtual environment avatars and in digital imaging art). Finally, she analyzes the physical and psychic pain described by male programmers in Internet forums as another counternarrative to the common tale of the empowered user. Spectatorship, White argues, not only affects the way specific interfaces are understood but also helps shape larger conceptions of self and society.


Table of Contents

 List of Illustrations ix
 The Body, the Screen, and Representations: An Introduction to Theories of Internet Spectatorship  1
1. Making Internet and Computer Spectators 17
 Rendering Liveness, Materiality, and Space 
 Notions of the Empowered User 
 Addressing the Spectator 
 Stabilizing Identity 
 Erasing the Interface 
 Conclusion: Active Users by Design 
2. Visual Pleasure through Textual Passages: Gazing in Multi-user Object-oriented Settings (MOOs) 35
 The Look and the Gaze 
 Character Creation and Attributes in MOOs 
 The Look and the Gaze in MOOs 
 Gendered Gazing in MOOs 
 Graphical MOOs 
 Conclusion: Between Multiple and Coherent Identity 
3. Too Close to See, Too Intimate a Screen: Men, Women, and Webcams 57
 Feminism and Spectatorship 
 Critical and Journalistic Considerations of Webcams 
 Women and Webcams 
 Regulating the Spectator 
 Women Webcam Operators and Authority 
 Visibility and Webcams 
 Making Texts Real 
 Some Problems with Webcam Viewing 
 Just a Guy 
 Conclusion: The Politics of Being Seen 
4. The Aesthetic of Failure: Confusing Spectators with Net Art Gone Wrong 85
 Aesthetics and Net Art 
 Net Art 
 An Aesthetic of Failure 
 Peter Luining 
 Michaël Samyn 
 Conclusion: The Limits of Failure and Repetition 
5. Can You Read Me? Setting-specific Meaning in Virtual Places (VP) 115
 Virtual Places 
 Painters and Avatar Galleries 
 Owning Texts 
 Criteria for Originality 
 Theories of Internet Authorship 
 Gender, Race, Sexuality, and the Avatar 
 Making Differences in Virtual Places 
 Conclusion: Authorship in Other Internet Settings 
6. This Is Not Photography, This Is Not a Cohesive View: Computer-facilitated Imaging and Fragmented Spectatorship 147
 Making the Digital Imaging Spectator 
 Digital or Post-photography 
 The Scanner as Camera 
 Carol Selter's Animalia and Punctum 
 Susan Silton's Self Portraits and Images of the Partial Self 
 Ken Gonzales-Day's Skin Series and the Cut 
 The New Media Grid 
 Conclusion: The Morphed Spectator 
The Flat and the Fold: A Consideration of Embodied Spectatorship  177
 Carol Selter, Susan Silton, Ken Gonzales-Day, and the Fold 
 The Body Folded and Evacuated 
 Hierarchy and Control 
 The Spectator in Pain 
 The Fat and the Fold 
 Men and the Weight Loss "Challenge" 
 Erotic Folding 
 Conclusion: A Technology of Waste 
 Acknowledgments  199
 Notes 205
 Selected Bibliography 273
 Index  297