Advertisement

Animating Feminist Anger: Economies of Race and Gender in Reaction GIFs

  • Rachel KuoEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

GIF use in digital platforms offers community space for humour, play and joy. Focusing on reaction GIFs, this chapter examines how feminist anger can be digitally expressed, represented and circulated by looking at the process of meme-fication within online affective economies of anger. While reaction GIFs can function as performative gestures and rhetorical devices that animate feminist anger, GIFs must also be contextualized within the racial and gendered body politics around “whose” bodies animate anger and whose bodies circulate within the digital visual economy. Taking up Sara Ahmed’s figure of the “feminist killjoy”, I analyse the form and aesthetics of killjoy and “white male tear” GIFs.

References

  1. Agha, A. (2015). Tropes of Slang. Signs and Society, 3(2), 306–330.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Ahmed, S. (2004). Affective Economies. Social Text, 22(2), 117–139.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Ahmed, S. (2006). Orientations: Toward a Queer Phenomenology. GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies, 12(4), 543–574.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Ahmed, S. (2010a). Killing Joy: Feminism and the History of Happiness. Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, 35(3), 571–593.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Ahmed, S. (2010b). Feminist Killjoys (And Other Willful Subjects). The Scholar and Feminist Online, 8(3). Retrieved from http://sfonline.barnard.edu/polyphonic/print_ahmed.htm.
  6. Beckett, C. (2016, October 1). The Rhetoric of the Loop: Animated GIFs and Documentary Film. Flow Journal. Retrieved from http://www.flowjournal.org/2016/10/the-rhetoric-of-the-loop/.
  7. Browne, S. (2015). Dark Matters: On The Surveillance of Blackness. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Calder-Dawe, O. (2015). The Choreography of Everyday Sexism: Reworking Sexism in Interaction. New Formations, 86, 89–105.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Chun, W. H. K. (2012). Race and/as Technology, or How to Do Things to Race. In L. Nakamura & P. Chow-White (Eds.), Race After the Internet (pp. 38–60). New York; London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  10. Chung, N. (2016, January 5). What Goes On Through Your Mind: On Nice Parties and Casual Racism. The Toast. Retrieved from http://the-toast.net/2016/01/05/what-goes-through-your-mind-casual-racism/.
  11. Dean, A. (2016, July 25). Poor Meme, Rich Meme. Real Life Magazine. Retrieved from https://reallifemag.com/poor-meme-rich-meme/.
  12. Fraser, N. (1990). Rethinking the Public Sphere: A Contribution to the Critique of Actually Existing Democracy. Social Text, 25/26, 56–80.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Goffman, E. (1976). Replies and Responses. Language in Society, 5(3), 257–313.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Goffman, E. (1981). Chapter 3: Footing. In Forms of Talk (pp. 124–159). University of Pennsylvania Press.Google Scholar
  15. Hagin, B. (2008). Male Weeping as Performative: The Crying Mossad Assassin in Walk on Water. Camera Obscura, 23(2), 103–139.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Hess, A. (2014, August 8). The Rise of the Ironic Man-Hater. Salon. Retrieved from http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/2014/08/08/ironic_misandry_why_feminists_joke_about_drinking_male_tears_and_banning.html.
  17. hooks, b. (2000). Introduction: Come Closer to Feminism. In Feminism Is for Everybody: Passionate Politics. Cambridge, MA: South End Press, vii-1.Google Scholar
  18. Jackson, L. M. (2014, August 28). Memes and Misogynoir. The Awl. Retrieved from https://www.theawl.com/2014/08/memes-and-misogynoir/.
  19. Jackson, L. M. (2016a, March 28). The Blackness of Meme Movement. Model View Culture. Retrieved from https://modelviewculture.com/pieces/the-blackness-of-meme-movement.
  20. Jackson, L. M. (2016b, June 27). E•MO•JIS. Real Life Magazine. Retrieved from http://reallifemag.com/e-mo-jis/.
  21. Jackson, L. M. (2017, August 2). We Need to Talk About Digital Blackface in Reaction GIFs. Teen Vogue. Retrieved from https://www.teenvogue.com/story/digital-blackface-reaction-gifs.
  22. Kim, D. (2014, June 30). Feminist Killjoys, #TwitterPanic, and AAPI Feminist Digital Disruption. Model View Culture. Retrieved from https://modelviewculture.com/pieces/twitterpanic.
  23. Lorde, A. (1981). The Uses of Anger: Women Responding to Racism. In Sister Outsider (pp. 124–133). Berkeley: Crossing Press.Google Scholar
  24. Lukacs, G. (2011, October 3). The Labor of Cute: Net Idols, Cute Culture and the Social Factory in Contemporary Japan. Talk at Weatherhead East Asian Institute, Columbia University. Cited in Pham, 2015.Google Scholar
  25. Luu, C. (2015a, March 16). All the Feels: The Morphology of Reaction GIFs. JSTOR Daily. Retrieved from http://daily.jstor.org/the-morphology-of-reaction-gifs/.
  26. Luu, C. (2015b, August 10). It’s All a Sign of Something: The Linguistic Morphology of Reaction GIFs. Medium: Just Words. Retrieved from https://medium.com/just-words/it-s-all-a-sign-of-something-the-linguistic-morphology-of-reaction-gifs-6e935eccbb86#.l2bhcd2b2.
  27. Nakamura, L. (2001). Cybertyping and the Work of Race in the Age of Digital Reproduction. In Cybertypes: Race, Ethnicity, and Identity on the Internet (pp. 1–30). Routledge.Google Scholar
  28. Nakamura, L. (2014). ‘I WILL DO EVERYthing That Am Asked’: Scambaiting, Digital Show-Space, and the Racial Violence of Social Media. Journal of Visual Culture, 13(3), 257–274.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Ngai, S. (2005). Animatedness. In Ugly Feelings (pp. 89–125). Duke University Press.Google Scholar
  30. Ngai, S. (2012). Our Aesthetic Categories: Zany, Cute, Interesting. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  31. Noland, C. (2009). Agency and Embodiment: Performing Gestures/Producing Culture. Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  32. Pham, M. (2015). The Taste and Aftertaste for Asian Superbloggers. In Asians Wear Clothes on the Internet (pp. 41–79). Duke University Press.Google Scholar
  33. Reyes, A. (2016). The Voicing of Asian American Figures: Korean Linguistic Styles at an Asian American Cram School. In H. Samy Alim, J. R. Rickford, & A. F. Ball (Eds.), Raciolinguistics: How Language Shapes Our Ideas About Race (p. 313). Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  34. Rodriguez, J. M. (2014). Sexual Futures, Queer Gestures, and Other Latina Longings. New York: NYU Press.Google Scholar
  35. Russ, J. (1972/2000). The New Misandry. In B. Crow (Ed.), Radical Feminism: A Documentary Reader (pp. 167–170). NYU Press.Google Scholar
  36. Silvio, T. (2010). Animation: The New Performance? Journal of Linguistic Anthropology, 20(2), 422–438.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Squires, C. R. (2002). Rethinking the Black Public Sphere: An Alternative Vocabulary for Multiple Public Spheres. Communication Theory, 12(4), 446–468.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Tomlinson, B. (2010). Transforming the Terms of Reading: Ideologies of Argument and the Trope of the Angry Feminist. In Feminism and Affect at the Scene of Argument: Beyond the Trope of the Angry Feminist (pp. 2–30). Temple University Press.Google Scholar
  39. Torres, M. (2016, November 22). Instant Replay. Real Life Magazine. Retrieved from https://reallifemag.com/instant-replay/.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.New York UniversityNew YorkUSA

Personalised recommendations