“Performing Different Ages”: the second session of “a cross-cultural approach to mobile media”

The second presentation session of “A cross-cultural approach to mobile media”, a summer-semester class for research students of Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Information Studies, took place on July 22. The class was designed to seek an alternative framework to grasp the mobile media as a cultural artifact through cultural comparative approaches.
Following to the first-half activities, students were assigned to make a set of two short skits in relation to the mobile media, but in the different contexts; one presenting Tokyo in 1995 , and the other in 2009. At this time, no guiding frameworks were given. But students knew how to tackle the object, and were confident enough to decide promptly what to investigate. All the groups pointed out a pokebel(pager or beeper) as a representative mobile media in Tokyo in 1995, and tried to translate the contexts of pokebels in the past, forward the current situation of the mobile media phenomenon.
performing2.jpgConsequently, two out of three groups presented skits plotted out into the scene of a high school, and the last group presented the scene of a private academy for elementary kids. In their performances, students tried to reveal not only what had changed but also what had not changed in everyday use of mobile media.
On the whole, the repeated implementation of envisioning the media in different cultures or ages seemed to be helpful to induce a reflection on the fundamental layer of mobile culture. It also suggests the possibility of media literacy program utilizing a methodology of performance or performing ethnography.
(The class is being supervised by Mizukoshi Shin, the leading member of MoDe ; reported by Yonnie Kim)

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