NARRATING NEW NORMAL

Graduate Student Symposium

MAY 17-18, 2021

 

ROOM 1022, LEE SHAU KEE COMMUNICATION AND VISUAL ARTS BUILDING

HONG KONG BAPTIST UNIVERSITY

KOWLOON TONG, HONG KONG

Sponsored by School of Communication, Hong Kong Baptist University

Hosted by Global Storytelling: Journal of Digital and Moving Images

and

Centre for Film and Moving Image Research, HKBU

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ABOUT NARRATING NEW NORMAL

 

What is “new normal?” As the COVID-19 pandemic sickens millions, isolates billions, and brings economies to a standstill around the globe, the phrase has entered the everyday lexicon of governments, news, and social media, with many regarding the ensuing widespread shift of basic human activities online – school, shopping, work, and socializing – as a “new normal.” Yet, the phrase “new normal” itself is not new. Governments, corporations, and institutions readily deploy “new normal” to legitimize regulations, laws, and policies that ensure organizational survival in crisis, thereby relegating the people whose uncertain livelihoods they normalize as expendable. After the 2008 financial crisis, American economists declared reduced consumer spending due to chronic underemployment as “new normal.” In 2014, PRC President Xi Jinping described steadily diminished GDP growth as a more stable “新常態” — a direct translation of “new normal” that Chinese state media now regularly employ to allay public panic about economic volatility. As a malleable signifier designed to manage expectations, “new normal” weaves itself into visions of a stable post-crisis future as though normalcy requires only minor adjustment to major disasters.

 

Through its widespread circulation and vernacularization, “new normal” normalizes precarity and obfuscates the uncertainties wrought by crises, especially for those who cannot simply adjust. However, everyday netizens also use the narrative of “new normal” to convey their current experiences and imaginations of the future, whether hopeful or pessimistic. Novel articulations of “new normal” emerge as human activities and relationships shift online. Empowered by inexpensive technology and broadcasted to mass audiences through social media networks, ordinary people have become global storytellers with the capacity to weave affecting stories of “new normal” that effect how the concurrent epidemiological and political upheavals will shape human society.

 

We invite graduate students and postdoctoral scholars to present their research on digital and moving image stories and storytelling about “new normal(s).” We ask how internet users, film and media makers, institutions, governments, and other cultural organizations narrate “new normal” as a way of shaping reality, producing knowledge, and making emotional sense of drastic change. What, indeed, is “new normal?” What does it mean for something new to be normal? What stories do people and organizations tell about “new normal”? Who tells these stories, and how are these stories told?

KEYNOTE ADDRESS

Professor Michal Krzyzanowski

Chair in Media and Communication Studies

Uppsala University, Sweden

We will update the abstract soon!

 

PROGRAM - Day 1

MAY 17, 2021

12:30 – 13:00         

Zoom waiting room opens

 

13:00 – 13:15         

Welcome Remarks

Prof. HUANG Yu

Dean, School of Communication, Hong Kong Baptist University

                                   

Prof. Steve GUO

Associate Dean (Postgraduate Studies), School of Communication, HKBU

 

13:15 – 14:45          

PANEL 1: PUBLIC AGENDA AND THE GEOPOLITICS OF NORMALIZATION

Chair: Prof. Daya THUSSU, Department of Journalism, School of Communication, HKBU

Zoom: XXXX-XXX-XXX

 

Storytelling the ‘New Normality’ of Covid-19 through Greece’s Prime Minister on YouTube

Minos-Athanasios KARYOTAKIS

Ph.D. in Communication, Hong Kong Baptist University, HKSAR

 

Is China the New Normal? Analysing Elite Conversations on Sino-African Partnership

Mistura Adebusola SALAUDEEN

Ph.D. in Communication, Hong Kong Baptist University, HKSAR

 

Beating the Pandemic Effect, Inside and Out: Stories of Indian Corporate Women

Srija SANYAL

Affiliated Researcher, Institute for Globally Distributed Open Research and Education (IGDORE)

 

14:45 – 15:00

Break

 

15:00 – 16:00         

KEYNOTE ADDRESS

Prof. Michal KRZYZANOWSKI

Chair in Media and Communications, Uppsala University, Sweden

 

16:00 – 16:15

Break

 

16:15 – 17:45         

PANEL 2: NEGOTIATION OF NORMALITY IN NETWORKED MEDIA SPACES

Chair: Dr Mateja KOVACIC

Assistant Professor, Academy of Film, School of Communication, HKBU

 

Urge to Remember, Rush to Forget: How Short-Video Recuts on Social Media Reshape the Chinese Collective

LAI Yaqian

MA in Art Theory, Central Academy of Fine Arts, People’s Republic of China

LIU Xiaomo

Master of Cinema with Historical and Socio-Cultural Approaches, University of Bordeaux Montaigne, France

 

Amateur Porn, Sex, and COVID-19 Pandemic

Ruepert Jiel Dionisio CAO

Ph.D. in Communication, Hong Kong Baptist University, HKSAR

 

The Online Wailing wall: Collective Memory and Emotional Narratives

ZHENG Qi

MA in Communication Studies, Peking University, People’s Republic of China

 

17:45 – 18:00

RECAP OF FIRST DAY

PROGRAM - Day 2

10:00 – 11:30             

PANEL 3: NARRATIVES OF PRECARITY AND EVERYDAY LIFE UNDER THE NEW NORMAL

Chair: Prof. Cherian GEORGE

Associate Dean (Research), School of Communication, HKBU

 

New Normal’ in New York City 2020: Real NYC Stories as Observed and Experienced by an Immigrant Storyteller

Namrata NAGAR, MS in Communication, Rochester Institute of Technology, USA

 

Examining the concept of online bartering system in Facebook group communities

Joy Hannah PANALIGAN

MA in Communication, De La Salle University

 

11:30 – 11:45         

BREAK

 

11:45 – 12:15

THE LAUNCH OF GLOBAL STORYTELLING: JOURNAL OF FILM AND MOVING IMAGES

 

12:15 – 13:45

PANEL 4: POPULAR CULTURE AND THE NEW NORMAL

Chair:  Dr Dorothy Lau

Assistant Professor, Academy of Film, School of Communication, HKBU

 

Passive Chinese Industrialization:  Jia Zhangke’s Mountains May Depart under the Context of Economic ‘New Normal’

DONG Wei

Ph.D. in Culture Studies, University of Nottingham China Campus, People’s Republic of China

 

A Pandemic Music Library: Sonic Documentation in a Time of Crisis

LIN Shiqi

Ph.D. in Comparative Literature, University of California, Irvine

 

‘I Will Always be Here Waiting for You!’ - Reconfiguring Fan Community of Japanese Idols in the Coronavirus Time

LI Chung Tai, Kris

Research Student, Graduate School of Human Sciences, Osaka University

 

13:45 – 14:00             

CLOSING REMARKS

Prof. Ying ZHU

Founding Editor, Global Storytelling: Journal of Digital and Moving Images

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THE ORGANIZING COMMITTEE

Ph.D. Students and Candidates of School of Communication, Hong Kong Baptist University 

Ruepert Jiel Dionisio CAO

Dongli CHEN

Winnie WU Yanjing

Minos-Athanasios KARYOTAKIS

Mistura Adebusola SALAUDEEN

The Editorial Board of Global Storytelling: Journal of Digital and Moving Images

Prof. Ying ZHU, Founding Editor, Global Storytelling: Journal of Digital and Moving Images

Dr. Dorothy LAU, Assistant Professor, Academy of Film, School of Communication, HKBU

Dr. Jonathan Frome - Assistant Managing Editor, Global Storytelling, Journal of Digital and Moving Images

 

Acknowledgments

Mr. Junqi PENG

Mr. Vincent WONG Pak Hong