Media and the Limits of Transnational Solidarity

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    • 00:00

      JOHN BUDARICK: My name is Dr. John Budarick.I'm a lecturer in the Department of Mediaat the University of Adelaide.I'll talk a little bit today about my publication titled"Media and the limits of transnational solidarity--unanswered questions in the relationship between diaspora,communication and community."Published in Global Media and Communication in 2014.

    • 00:26

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: The article is essentially about the roleof media and understandings and conceptualizations of diaspora.I've noticed through a lot of readingthat conceptualizations, definitions of diasporahave shifted from those based on ethnicity or an adherence

    • 00:52

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: to the homeland to more contemporary definitions basedon experience with diaspora.Fluid and shifting identities-- not necessarily anchoredin any sort of ethnicity.And also the idea of diaspora as beingtransnational communities, which aren't so much held together

    • 01:15

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: by ethnicity or belonging to a homeland,but rather through the exchange of cultural goodsand narratives, experiences whichreally exist in a sort of transnational space.With that then, media becomes verycentral to conceptualizations of diaspora-- particularly

    • 01:37

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: transnational and diasporic media.In essence, all sorts of media becomesvery important to contemporary conceptualizationsand how we understand diasporas as transnational communities.The paper is largely theoretical and conceptual,so it's dealing with a concept-- critical

    • 01:59

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: engaging with how that concept works.But it also does draw on some work and some data that'sbeen drawn from different studies,including my research with migrant diasporic groups.My essential key argument is that because of the key role

    • 02:23

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: now of media and communication and how we understand diaspora,we need to pay much more attention to the precise roleor function of media amongst diasporic or migrantcommunities.And there's essentially two arguments that I make.One is that when we examine the use of transnational media

    • 02:46

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: and diasporic media amongst diasporic groups,we need to look at those examples whichdon't necessarily fit with our typical understandingsof the role of these media.So we need to look at the examples and the instanceswhere transnational and diasporic media createdivisions rather than solidarities.

    • 03:08

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: Whereby they allow for the imagining of solidaritiesbeyond or outside of the transnational diasporiccommunity.And I think here it's important to remember that even diasporicand transnational media are produced in a specific locationand consumed in a specific location.

    • 03:29

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: So it's important not to ignore the differencesbetween different groups in different citiesand different countries and different political, economic,and cultural context around the world.And how and why they produce media,and how and why they consume it.And this can often be as much to divisionsas it can to solidarities.

    • 03:50

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: So it can lead not only to the sharingof an imagined transnational community,but also to feelings of divisions of belonging moreto a local community.Or belonging to a specific political or cultural orlinguistic community rather than any broader sortof diasporic transnational group.

    • 04:13

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: The second aspect is as well as looking at those examples,we also have to look at the more mundane examplesand instances of media use amongst moderate groups.It's often these more everyday types of media usethat are overlooked when we look at diasporic media.

    • 04:33

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: We tend to focus on specific types of transnational media.And yet a lot of the literature in the evidencesuggests that migrants-- diasporas-- use media justlike everyone else.They use the local media of their country of settlement.So the media produced in certain towns, suburbs.

    • 04:54

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: These media-- the national media of their countriesof settlement, and of course they use, like everyone else,media produced by large media corporations,whether it's watching Hollywood movies or Bollywood moviesor whatever it is.And again, these instances of media use

    • 05:16

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: can sometimes contradict the ideaof a transnational community or transnational solidarity.Using local media may lead to feelings of belongingto a local community.Of sharing more in common with their neighborthan with someone else in a different country who

    • 05:37

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: happened to have been born in the same country they were.Using the national media, again, may bring upfeelings of belonging to a completelydifferent national community-- imagined national community.Or they may simply feel themselvesas part of a global media audiencewhen watching the latest Hollywood blockbuster.So by expanding the analysis to different examples

    • 06:01

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: of transnational media, and also different types of media--both the very local and the very global-- the pictureof the diasporic transnational communityhas been maintained through media and through culturalexchange becomes a little more complicated.Because we realize that there's just as manyinstances where media can create divisions and antagonisms.

    • 06:26

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: And actually facilitating feelingsof belonging to different types of communitiesat different times, whether they be local,whether they be based on gender or politics,whether they be global.And so it's important to actually look at those details.The article will be interesting to anyone interested

    • 06:48

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: in diaspora, particularly how it'sconceputalized and understood.And also the role of media amongsttransnational communities and diaspora communities.To anyone reading, I would suggesttrying to think as broadly as possibleabout the types of media that we needto consider when discussing transnational audiences.

    • 07:11

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: So not simply assume that diasporasand transnational audiences only use a specific type of media,but to also consider the more every day and somewhat mundaneuse of the local town newspaper or the local radio stationand the national TV network of their place of settlement.

    • 07:32

      JOHN BUDARICK [continued]: And to think about how that mightaffect the idea of a transnational community,and also bring into light the possibilityof other solidarities-- other relationships thatco-exist through different types of media use.Thank you.

Media and the Limits of Transnational Solidarity

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Dr. John Budarick explores media use by diaspora members, the roles of various media, and how consumption of different media can affect communities and individual identities.

Media and the Limits of Transnational Solidarity

Dr. John Budarick explores media use by diaspora members, the roles of various media, and how consumption of different media can affect communities and individual identities.

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