Integrating Visual and Dialogic Communication TheoriesIntegrering af Teorier om Visuel og Dialogisk Kommunikation
The presentation reviews the interplay of dialogic (Bakhtin, 1981) and multimodal theories on media production practices, with attention to visual communication (Kress and van Leeuwen, 2001, 2006). This theoretical approach aids in reflecting on digital media practices as novel (new) sign systems, which remix older sign systems. Meanings are seen as not produced in a sign, but through dialogic processes within and between multimodal texts, and within the authors and viewers (audience). The evolution of language as a dialogic process is also impacted by a new media ecology and new economy based on collaboration (Benkler, 2006). The shift toward visual modes and digital media practices pose many pedagogical challenges for academics. I want to raise questions on how to teach “dialogically” with and through creative, digital media practices based on my plans for a course in Fall, 2011, where students develop a collaborative digital storytelling showcase for their own digital stories about Roskilde University. This course is intended to bring up reflections on the wider phenomenon of contemporary media practices, such as: YouTube, DIY (do-it-yourself) filmmaking or homemade, garage cinema (Jenkins, 2006, 2009), machinima (machine + cinema + anime, real-time animation captured in games etc.), and the digital storytelling movement. A dialogic perspective on the diversity of digital media practices opens up for understanding the complex evolution of language on socio-historical, cultural and personal levels. The discussion includes pedagogical issues in regards to the upcoming university course, such as: how to encourage dialogic reflection between students as authors and viewers of digital stories, and how to support their application and integration of visual and dialogic communication theories.