With one week left before the early bird deadline expires (March 18), we now start with publishing the abstracts for our conference key notes over the next couple of weeks. First up: Joke Hermes, who invites us to think about the everyday media use of celebrities in relation to our main conference topic, ‘authenticating celebrity’.
Excited yet? We are! #celebstudies #AmsterdamCelebrityCity2016 #authenticatingcelebrity
Why we need celebrities
Joke Hermes, U. of Amsterdam and Inholland University
“We live in cynical times. Two and a half decades of media literacy education has taught us not to trust anything we see, read or hear; neo-liberal governance tells us to be entrepreneurs of the self; the vast spread of control culture needs outcome to be guaranteed before a project may start: what Habermas called the colonization of the lifeworld appears to be near completion. Money and power define who we are and what we do to a much greater extent than is comfortable. Celebrity culture can be understood as both lifeworld colonization’s effect and as its foil. Celebrity culture allows us to study individuals that are both extraordinary and exemplary. Celebrity culture makes room for authenticity and sincerity. It reclaims media culture for everyday use. Whether it is successful in doing so is hard to say and perhaps is a moot point. The value of the everyday media ‘use’ of celebrities and celebrity culture is in the doing rather than in the results. A report on ‘authenticating celebrity’ from the perspective of audiences.”