Performing Borders: Sustaining Culture and Identity, Challenging Global Organization
Margaret Grieco,Stephen Little
During the APROS 2004 colloquium participants who were physically or virtually present collaborated in the logging of a broad and rich set of on-line communication practices adopted by migrant labour moving from the region of Mexico which hosted the conference to the United States (www.geocities.com/archiving_practice/losbraceros.html). These practices represent a cultural infiltration of the remittance stream, they allow a collective performance of identity both sides of the border between developed and less developed locations. Collective performance also generates a record of movement and experience which overturns the orthodox spatial hierarchies of power and resources. A related dynamic was found in communication practices around the recent tsunami disaster. Distributed and collective performance utilising remittance and tourist infrastructures brought powerful images and accounts of the Asian tsunami disaster to the rest of the world. The tourist technologies of digital video cameras and cell phones, and of gap-year weblogs, created a virtual adjacency and also enabled the tracing and tracking of foreign victims. Such exchanges also created a new sense of connection between western tourists and the communities they have visited in the tsunami affected regions of Asia, the forms of adjacency created by such exchanges have transformed 'strangers' into people 'like us'. The paper will explore the challenge presented to the ethical stance of both governments and commercial organizations by such dynamics of electronic coordination and new forms of identity and organization. Reflecting on new terrains of routine migration (the braceros) and critical event (the tsunami) communication practices, the paper will explore the ethics of geographically dispersed collective organization using new communicative practices around the AIDS crisis and the associated campaigns to cut the artificially inflated costs of pharmaceutical products.
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“Performing Borders: Sustaining Culture and Identity, Challenging Global Organization” is a paper by Margaret Grieco Stephen Little published in 2006.You can read and download a PDF Full Text of this paper here.