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Making the invisible visible: Sproutflix as a Subaltern Counterpublic to an Exclusionary Public Sphere

Author:

Lesley Verbeek

University of Groningen, NL
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Abstract

In this paper, the American non-profit organization Sprout, which works with people with IDD (Intellectual Developmental Disabilities) to create (short) films ranging from documentaries to music videos, is established as an empowering subaltern counterpublic to the hegemonic Habermasian public sphere in which people with a disability are marginalized. This is done by examining alternatives to those aspects that make the hegemonic public sphere exclusionary, as proposed by Stacy Clifford and Nancy Fraser: Clifford’s notions of embodiment and collaborative speech, which are exemplified through analyses of several Sprout films, challenge the primacy of intellectual language and coherent speech, and Fraser’s definition of the subaltern counterpublic argues for the importance of an alternative public sphere that contests the dominant public sphere and that holds space for such alternative manners of communication in addition to rational speech.

How to Cite: Verbeek, L., 2020. Making the invisible visible: Sproutflix as a Subaltern Counterpublic to an Exclusionary Public Sphere. Junctions: Graduate Journal of the Humanities, 5(1), pp.102–115. DOI: http://doi.org/10.33391/jgjh.87
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Published on 06 Aug 2020.
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