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Teaching and Learning Multimodal Communications

Alyssa Arbuckle, Alison Hedley, Shaun Macpherson, Alyssa McLeod, Jana Millar Usiskin, Daniel Powell, Jentery Sayers, Emily Smith, Michael Stevens, Authors

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in absentia: Media Relationalities as E-Narrative

Place in in absentia becomes tied to narrative in that annotations of various classified pins often describe space in terms of event. For example, one of the classified ads states that “someone has to pay for urban renewal. I put down a deposit I'll never get back. To whoever buys up my view of beautiful new Bernard Street: you owe me two summers and one bone china teacup.”

In absentia, via its refutation of erasure, challenges the notion of the urban milieu as a site of progress. The map and text work against one another, as the former offers an updated landscape, and the latter imposes a historiography over this shifting terrain. The reader is forced to make a decision over how to ascribe an ecological ontology to the milieu: is such an ontology privileged by the spatial, or by the temporal? Or is the notion of hierarchy irrelevant? Carpenter's project addresses these questions and effectively challenges the privileging of the spatial as the marker of both home and identity. In absentia thus delineates a possibility for an inhabited space that exists somewhere between personal archaeology and cultural obscurity.

Author: Shaun Macpherson
Word Count: 195
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