Detail from Sudhir Patwardhan,’Tree’, 1995

SubVersions | Volume 4. Issue 1. 2016

This issue of SubVersions brings together work presented at the three-day international seminar DigiNaka: Where the Local Meets the Digital organised by the School of Media and Cultural Studies in January 2016. The advent of the digital and growing access to the Internet in India, along with the availability of cheap devices such as mobile phones has brought about an explosion of user-mediated creativity across various platforms. Simultaneously, the digital divide reproduces and intensifies various social hierarchies of gender, caste, class and region. The papers in this issue explore these fractures in myriad ways – from a critical examination of the idea of jugaad (“pragmatic workaround” (Rai 2012)), to a subversive reading of the figure of the pirate; and the ways in which the spaces of social networking are deployed variously, to recreate tradition in the modern market, to negotiate an alternate understanding of women’s bodies and allow complex articulations of selfhood.

Rai, A. (2012). On the Jugaad Image: Embodying the Mobile Phone in India. Postmodern Culture, Volume 23, No. 1, September 2012.