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Title: Making media with refugee youth in the UK and Lebanon : a practice-based enquiry into co-creation
Author: Mitchell, Mary
ISNI:       0000 0004 8500 9206
Awarding Body: Royal Holloway, University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 2019
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An inequality of global resources has resulted in what communications theorist Nick Couldry describes as a crisis of voice (Couldry, 2010), one particularly acute for refugees (Malkki, 1996; Turton, 2003). This practice-based enquiry works with young refugees in both the UK and Lebanon to investigate the process of media production with others through the lens of co-creation (Cizek et al. 2019). Co-creation invites us to consider all of the relationships inherent in the media making process, seeking to offer alternatives to a single-author vision through evolving processes within communities and alongside others. The thesis aims to understand how a collaborative process of storytelling can be met with listening (Couldry, 2010, Macnamara, 2013), to identify the forms taken by cocreation in online networks, to contrast what the outputs themselves tell us about the refugee experience vis-à-vis traditional representations of refugees, and to provide initial findings about how young people in Rashidieh camp are using social media to express themselves online. Through three practice projects using different collaborative methods of production the research offers three key observations. Firstly, in investigating the communicative ecology (cf. Hearn et. al. 2009) of Rashidieh camp, the research sheds light on how communications practices have transformed since the widespread adoption of social media and increased connectivity. Secondly, the thesis identifies the emergence of the networked narrative (Page et al., 2013) on social media as a site for the shaping of identity and the building of community and argues that this network contributes an additional layer to the model for participatory filmmaking described as horizontal learning and vertical communication by Snowden in the Fogo Process (Snowden, 1983). Finally, the creative outputs themselves are found to be different from dominant modes of refugee representation, covering a vast expanse of personal experience and representing the moments of everyday survival alongside moments of crisis. The thesis proposes that future research take into consideration the ways in which nonhuman actors shape the process, of co-creation investigating the architecture of social media platforms and the way their algorithms and moderation mediates what content is viewed (Tufekci, 2017).
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available