Fingerprints: towards a multisensory approach to meaning in digital media
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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OriginalversjonNordic Journal of Digital Literacy. 2021, 16 (3-4), 132-143. https://doi.org/10.18261/issn.1891-943x-2021-03-04-04
This paper argues for a multisensory approach to meaning-making in digital environments guided primarily by the sense of touch. Drawing on insights from multimodality, anthropology of the senses, cognitive science and media studies, among other disciplines, the text explores how such an approach can contribute to a more refined understanding of literacy and meaning-making practices in digital media. The paper starts by examining the relationship between meaning, embodiment and the senses, paying particular attention to the sense of touch. The discussion then focuses on the fundamentally tactile properties of digital media and explore their material, sensory and semiotic dimensions. The discussions are supported and complemented by the analysis of two empirical, illustrative examples of how a multisensory approach to meaning can help shed light on literacy practices in the digital age: the reading and interpretation of digital data visualizations and the production of videos using the TikTok app.