Readership
Issue

5.2 / Readership

December 4 2013

Introduction

Studying the quality and practice of readership allows us to consider readers as communities who share an experience of texts or artworks together, not necessarily in proximity to one another. –Deanne Pytlinski

This fall, Art Practical collaborated with the graduate program in Visual and Critical Studies Program (VCS) at California College of the Art (CCA) and the ENGAGE program at CCA’s Center for Art and Public Life to create a project-based learning framework animated by participating students from several disciplines. Throughout the semester, students investigated the terms by which technology defines or situates texts and, by extension, reading publics. They authored several of the essays featured here and solicited additional material for the issue.

The contributors reconsider the modes of encounter by which readers engage with and interpret texts. Here, readership takes on multiple valences: an intellectual orientation, an activity implicated in identity and community formation, a mode of exchange, a site of acculturation, a group of consumers.

We would like to acknowledge the generosity of the scholars and writers from whom we solicited contributions, including Julia Bryan-Wilson, Susan Gevirtz, and N. Katherine Hayles; those who participated in the compilation survey, including Michele Carlson, Glen Helfand, Lauren O’Neill-Butler, and Deanne Pytlinski; Ben Valentine, who responded to our call for contributors; and of Mary Ellen Bartley, Miriam Böhm, Anthony Discenza, Molly Springfield, and Catherine Wagner whose artwork is included in this issue.

Special thanks to the students of Readership—Marion Cousin, Erica Gomez, Felicia Hayes, Emily Holmes, Vanessa Kauffman, Dorothy Santos, and Anton Stuebner—for their extraordinary level of commitment.

      

Features

Net Art in the Wild

Net Art in the Wild

By Ben Valentine

Net-based artworks can be effortlessly taken out of their original context into new arenas, to be read by entirely different audiences.

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Screening Readership

Screening Readership

By Erica C. Gomez

Reading film is an action that extends itself outward, producing new lines of movement through publics and counterpublics.

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Readership: A Survey

Readership: A Survey

By Dorothy Santos, Felicia Hayes, Marion Cousin

If anything, the imagined reader has been a judge sitting on my shoulders whose image I have to shut out if I’m going to get any words down on the page.

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Readership: A Bibliography

Readership: A Bibliography

By Tirza True Latimer, Patricia Maloney

If reading is an activity through which we can share experience and perceive a sense of community, what texts do we have in common?

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