Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Final paper proposal

For the final paper, I want to bring together Lisa Parks and Anna Tsing. Both deal with the interpretive "global" frameworks placed upon "local" tragedies - Darfur, environmental concerns in Indonesia - but in slightly different ways. I hope to bring the two together to understand the question of political agency. What happens when actors are humans vs. forests? How might media projects (like Google Earth) (un)create or (re)distribute agency, and where does the agency go? What kinds of vision are needed for successful agency ("seeing is believing" logic in Parks, question of single vs. double vision in Tsing)?

My preliminary thesis for this project would be that through the friction that occurs when Parks and Tsing are brought together, one can see a general trend toward affording agency to extra-local actors who subscribe to an ideology of "singular vision," but that a more productive politics of agency could arise from attending to the idea of vision as mobile and multiple.

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