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September 17 - Graduate Seminar -1-


-Introductory session on how the graduate seminars will work.
-Since this was our first formal session with Lens Based, we introduced ourselves, talked about our work and our interests, what we did during summer, etc.
-There is more info about the seminars on the Graduate Seminar 2020-2021 page.

October 15 - Graduate Seminar -2-

Thesis Outline Draft

In my thesis I want to write about propaganda and freedom of expression in the context of the internet.

Doing work related to censorship and authoritarian regimes during first year made me realize my interest in this issue. I started studying Visual Communication Design as a visual artist but throughout my study I became more interested with the social and political aspects of design, and contexts behind visual languages. After graduating, career choices available to me were very different than what I wanted to do. This is an opportunity for me to explore these interests in depth.

I want to explore the subject chronogically and through the perspective of shared experiences. I want to see how the changes in political, social, economic landscapes affected the way we express ourselves online and how propaganda and censorship forms and reforms in online spaces, reacting to the world we live in, and how we react to them in turn, how do we cope, what do we give up on and what kind of workarounds do we find? One question that was often in my mind doing research about censorship of pop culture in Turkey was "How did we get here?" because I often find it hard to believe in my own memories of early 2000s cultural landscape which was much more liberal compared to the current culture and mainstream media content. The erosion of self expression and moralization of personal freedoms didn't happen overnight, it's a combination of a process that took two decades and exploitation of old scars from the country's shaky political history. It's a process that continuously tests what the public is willing to tolerate in terms of interventions to freedom of expression. Likewise, the rise of the populist right in places like US and the UK is a process of testing the amount of tolerance the public has towards conservative rhethoric, and the goal is always push these limits.