Chapter 23: Visibility and visualities: ‘ways of seeing’ politics in the digital media environment
This chapter addresses concerns about visibility and visuality in political communication and political culture, with a particular focus on digital media images. I trace the tensions and anxieties associated with the visual and symbolic in politics, and the ways in which emergent technologies are often viewed as disruptive or corrupting influences. The chapter brings together insights from visual culture, political communication and social movement studies to explore our ‘ways of seeing’ politics in the digital era. I suggest that rather than bemoaning the spectacle of mediated politics, detailed attention to the practices and forms of visually striking performances allows us to assess their contribution to political life.
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