Joel Burges and Wayne Marshall, MIT’s Mellon Fellows in the Humanities (2009-11), will contribute to the rethinking of media studies at MIT by taking up the shared metaphor of fashion—the fashionable, the old-fashioned, the re-fashioned. Burges will talk about the turn away from the digital in contemporary cinema, particularly the case of Fantastic Mr. Fox, in an attempt to think about the uneven development of media over time. Marshall will discuss how popular but privatized platforms like Facebook and YouTube, pop culture fashion—and the negotiable refashionability of both—present crucial challenges to the study of media today.
Joel Burges works at the intersection of literary studies, critical studies, and media studies. His first book, which is in progress, is entitled The Uses of Obsolescence; it considers the fate of historical thinking in the media of late modernity, especially literature and cinema. His second book, in its very early stages, is called Fiction after TV; it considers how a major mode of imaginative processing—fiction—is altered by the introduction of TV to post-1945 mediascapes.
Wayne Marshall is an ethnomusicologist, blogger (wayneandwax.com), and DJ, specializing in the musical and cultural production of the Caribbean and the Americas, and their circulation in the wider world. Currently a Mellon Fellow at MIT, he’s writing a book on music, social media, and digital youth culture. He co-edited and contributed to Reggaeton (Duke 2009) and has published in journals such as Popular Music and Callaloo while writing for popular outlets like XLR8R, The Wire, and the Boston Phoenix.