What is media praxis? Integrating theory, politics and practice

Alex Juhasz, the keynote speaker of the workshop Queer, Feminist and Social media praxis (University of Sussex, 17 May 2013) has an ongoing project called Media Praxis. The About page states:

MEDIA PRAXIS takes these truths as self-evident:

1. When used within a project of world or self-changing, media production benefits from conversation with media history and theory.

2. Theories of political media gain from a close interaction with media production.

3. The history, aesthetics and theories of media have been led by practices, analyses, and actions focused on social change; we have much to learn from this history.

For the site Alex Juhasz writes:

MEDIA PRAXIS theorizes and makes media towards stated projects of world and self-changing. This ongoing project, as old as cinema itself, links culture, theory, and politics, in the 20th century, through mediation technologies and indebted to Marxist theories. While I name this a radical web-site in that it directly refers to what Marx, in Theses on Feuerbach calls “revolutionary practice,” a project of interpreting and changing the world, this site is equally radical in that it presumes that we are all participants in making history. It asks you to both study and join the tradition of Media Praxis.

The site is organised around ten chronological histories of media praxis – where media is theorized, by someone who is making it, and as a vital component of political struggle. The site archives theoretical writing, video clips, and related web-based activity from ten periods in media history, commencing with the years surrounding the Russian revolution, then moving to the Popular Front in France, Germany and the US in the 1930s, to the beatniks and underground denizens of American bohemia in the New American Cinema of the 40s and 50s, and then to the cinema connected to the decolonization of the third world in the 60s, and in France and the UK in and after 1968, then to feminism and the black Atlantic of the 70s and 80s, AIDS and ethnographic film in the 1980s and 90s, and concluding with media organizing that occurs in and about cyberspace in our time.

For other explorations in media praxis see here and the Media Commons Digital scholarly project here.

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One thought on “What is media praxis? Integrating theory, politics and practice

  1. Pingback: What is media praxis? Integrating theory, politics and practice « Debbie James

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