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Preservation, Digital Technology & Culture (PDT&C)

Editor-in-Chief: Gibbons, Leisa / Gracy, Karen F.

CiteScore 2018: 0.23

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Making a Killing: On Race, Ritual, and (Re)Membering in Digital Culture

Tonia Sutherland
  • Corresponding author
  • Assistant Professor, School of Library and Information Studies, University of Alabama, Box 870252, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487 United States of America
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Published Online: 2017-04-28 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/pdtc-2017-0025


This paper investigates cultural, social, and technological issues created by the increasingly widespread circulation of digital records documenting the deaths of black Americans in the United States. This research takes as its foundation questions about ritual, embodiment, memorialization, and oblivion in digital spaces. Further, it examines the interplay between the permanence of the digital sphere and the international human rights concept of the “right to be forgotten,” paying particular attention to black and brown bodies as records and as evidence. Methodologically, the work engages critical race theory, performance studies, archival studies, and digital culture studies, asking how existing technologies reflect the wider social world offline, how they create new cultural interactions, and how those new interactions reshape the real (non-virtual) world.

Keywords: digital culture; digital records and social justice; international human rights; African Americans; racism; the right to be forgotten


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About the article

Published Online: 2017-04-28

Citation Information: Preservation, Digital Technology & Culture, Volume 46, Issue 1, Pages 32–40, ISSN (Online) 2195-2965, ISSN (Print) 2195-2957, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/pdtc-2017-0025.

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