Digital Memory of a Neglected Colonial Past: Visual Representation of Danish Colonialism and Slavery in the U.S. Virgin Islands

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Digital Memory of a Neglected Colonial Past: Visual Representation of Danish Colonialism and Slavery in the U.S. Virgin Islands

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Publication 1-year master student thesis
Title Digital Memory of a Neglected Colonial Past: Visual Representation of Danish Colonialism and Slavery in the U.S. Virgin Islands
Author Jayananthan, Diantha
Date 2017
English abstract
This thesis examines how digital mediations of art and performances can contribute to shaping new memories and perceptions about the Danish colonization of the U.S. Virgin Islands. By analyzing six pieces of art and performances that engage critically with Danish colonialism and slavery, this study aims to expand the limits of how Danish colonization is traditionally perceived in Danish authoritative representations. Based on theory about visual art, mediatization and digital memory, this study has found that art as an aesthetic tool can revise and challenge traditional ways of engaging with the past and representing it. Art and performances can promote new ways of understanding the complexity of colonialism and bring attention to underrepresented views and voices. Contemporary media plays a key role in how we socially construct memory, as processes of mediatization have changed traditional methods of retrieving and storing knowledge. It is found that digitizing art and publishing it on the archive of the Internet, creates a foundation for potential dialogue, reflection and reconsideration of Denmark’s former role as a colonial power. The Internet allows for access to various, manifold perspectives and memories of the Danish past. Thus digitizing and publishing works of art and performance online, adds a dimension of shaping a ‘social network memory’ where viewers and artists are involved in processes of sharing and reflection that allow for discussions about Denmark’s colonial past.
Publisher Malmö högskola/Kultur och samhälle
Language eng (iso)
Subject Colonialism
Memory
Representation
Art
U.S. Virgin Islands
Slavery
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/23737 Permalink to this page
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