Traveling imagery

Young people’s sexualized digital practices

  • Penille Kærsmose Bøegh Rasmussen PhD-student
  • Dorte Marie Søndergaard DPU, Aarhus University
Keywords: Sexting, young people, intimacy, identity, belonging, digital media, imagery, sexuality, gender


How is the sexualized digital imagery that young people engage in enacted and spread? How are negotiations of normativity reshaped by analogue-digital involve- ment? This study travels through shady as well as easily accessible parts of the web, combining insights with analogue research approaches in trying to contemplate these questions in new ways. We use digital ethnography, analogue fieldwork, inter- views, and helpline cases to study how young people’s sexualized imagery moves through and transforms across boundless networks, and also across digital and analogue space. Thinking with new materialist analytics, we show how these move- ments blur the distinction between mundane and abusive practices, and how the opaque and indeterminate character of the material functions as a game changer and affects what it means to be young in gendered communities. Although the effects vary among different young people and among different social groups, in all cases they infiltrate conditions for becoming, positioning, and relating.


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How to Cite
Rasmussen, P., & Søndergaard, D. M. (2020). Traveling imagery. MedieKultur: Journal of Media and Communication Research, 36(67), 076-099.