Carrie Smith-Prei

Digital Storytelling of Black German Feminism

German scholar-activist Noah Sow works at the intersection of digital art, critical media analysis, Black German history, and feminist activism. In her artistic production, she utilizes the capabilities of the digital medium not only as a means of creation and distribution, but also as a manner of performing “historiography through storytelling,” as she writes on her website (noahsow.de). Sow’s artistic historiography tells the story of Black German identity and Afro-Feminist knowledge production. This talk will briefly address four pieces by Sow (Rest, Rooms – Moment Griotage 2013, Acts of Wellness 2014, Readymade Spirituality Remix 2014, Radio Meta 2015) that differently expose and mobilize the capabilities of the digital medium for just such storytelling – these include photofilm, interactive objects, sound installations, and live performance – to pursue the relationship among feminist activism, art as social practice, and digital creation. The talk will ask after the specific possibilities of digital narrativity for shaping antiracist and antidiscrimination discourse in Europe as well as the political importance of visual storytelling for Black German feminist cultural production.

Dr. Carrie Smith-Prei is Associate Chair Graduate (MLCS) and Associate Professor of German Studies with interests in digital feminisms, just futures, art activism, and affective publics. She is the author of Awkward Politics: Technologies of Popfeminist Activism (with Maria Stehle, 2016) and Revolting Families: Toxic Intimacy, Private Politics, and Literary Realism in the German Sixties (2013) as well as numerous articles on contemporary feminisms and German culture. She has coedited five peer-reviewed collections, most recently a special issue of Feminist Media Studies on digital feminist activism (2016), and three international journals. She has received awards for research and teaching.