Mining the Gaps: Twitter Literature, Audience, and Authorship

deadline for submissions: 
January 6, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
Panel Proposal for Electronic Literature Organization Conf 2018
contact email: 

Proposed panel for the Electronic Literature Organization 2018 Conference, August 13-17, Montreal, Quebec, CA.

Mining the Gaps: Twitter Literature, Audience, and Authorship

Given the role that Twitter has played of late in mediating public experiences of literature and authorship, this panel analyzes the use of Twitter by authors to recast their authorships. Carolyn Guertin has called for “new literary and artistic models to understand the burgeoning nature of authorship in electronic works”. Twitter literature provides such a model. Our panel will identify and analyze some of the characteristics of Twitter literature and the literary lives of Twitter. Twitter and the literature it has produced might seem to have relatively discernable boundaries: a single website, a finite number of users, a clearly defined form and format, and a distinct username associated with every utterance produced. On closer, inspection, however, a number of questions arise that trouble the boundaries of authorship and form on and at this site. Which among the millions of users on Twitter can be considered authors? By what criteria, and whose criteria, does a user become an author? For users who might be considered authors, what parts of their digital output can be considered, and read as, literary production? How does the Twitter output of literary authors relate to those authors’ more conventionally conceived literary work? How do we account for collaboration via Twitter? And how do we account for the role of programming and automation (e.g. Twitterbots)? These questions entail an analysis of the boundary conditions of Twitter literature.

 

We are looking for one or two additional panelists working on twitter literature, audience, and/or authorship. Please send a 500-word abstract and brief bio to Leisha Jones (ljj4@psu.edu) by 5 January 2018, 11:59pm.