New Media Literacies and the Animation Medium

More than seven years ago, while I was working as a Research Assistant at the Project New Media Literacy at MIT, I co-produced a series of web videos about DJ Culture and Animation. The videos became part of a library of curriculum and multimedia materials for supporting the development of new media literacies among children, youth, and teachers. Henry Jenkins (Principal Investigator) and other members of our team, described 11 different new media literacies (e.g. play, transmedia storytelling, performance, appropriation) in Confronting the Challenges of Participatory Culture. Those literacies were understood as the sociocultural practices and competencies needed to participate in a rapidly changing and increasingly mediated culture and society. The videos were intended to serve as source of inspiration, discussion, and reflection about the possibilities of participatory culture.

The making of these videos was a formative experience for me. It allowed me to learn and practice video editing, cinematography, interviewing, and digital storytelling. Moreover, it gave me the opportunity to learn a lot about two media arts I am passionate about. For the animation videos I interviewed several animators who shared with us their experience and helped us to understand how new media literacy skills such as simulation, play, performance, and transmedia storytelling, were applied in the animation practice. Below you can watch the collection of 9 videos that we created for the theme of Animation. Each of them focuses on different topics as varied as the history of animation, stereotypes, the making of a short story, and computer animation. They can be watched in any order and are intended to come together as a sort of mini documentary and educational resource.

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