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Title:'Survival is the True Magic': Exploring Digital Counterspaces and Resistance Amidst Oppressive Contexts
Author(s):Dawson, Danyelle
Abstract:This image of myself and another black graduate student seated in a dilapidated classroom and the accompanying message "#SurvivinglsTheTrueMagic" is an ode to both the resiliency of Black girlhood in the face of broken school systems, and to the everyday acts of resistance that Black Americans engage in as means of survival. The message highlights that the #BlackGirlMagic social media movement is not only an intentional centering of strengths, but also an acknowledgment of systems of oppression that require almost magical efforts to overcome. Hashtags juxtaposed against the dilapidated classroom represent the collision of our digital and physical worlds; here, the contrived image of America as "the most advanced nation in the world" is placed in conversation with the dire state of its most marginalized communities. The constant dehumanization of marginalized communities creates conditions in which communities must engage in efforts to reassert and celebrate their humanity. My research explores how these efforts manifest across our physical and digital worlds, and how Black Americans engage in acts of resistance that foster connection, counternarratives, and survival amidst oppressive contexts. As such, this image and my research are inherently tied, and both function as my own means of resistance and survival.
Issue Date:2020
Description:First Place in the 2020 Image of Research Competition
Rights Information:Copyright 2020 Danyelle Dawson
Date Available in IDEALS:2020-04-13

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