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The Qualified SelfSocial Media and the Accounting of Everyday Life$
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Lee Humphreys

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780262037853

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262037853.001.0001

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Performing Identity Work

Performing Identity Work

Chapter:
(p.51) 3 Performing Identity Work
Source:
The Qualified Self
Author(s):

Lee Humphreys

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262037853.003.0003

This chapter explores the role of media accounting in identity performance and work by highlighting how media have always been important outlets for identity expression. It suggests that visual modes of identity representation are means of social interaction. Beginning with a review of the historical role of snapshot photography, it shows the early interconnections between media, the family, and identity. The chapter then reviews the rise of consumer culture and scrapbooks at the turn of the twentieth century, discussing the importance of performance, consumption, and identity on Pinterest. Two important aspects of identity representations are explored. First, it argues that identity is not an individualistic cognition or state, but fundamentally a dynamic and socially enacted process revealed through media accounting. Second, the ways in which people make choices about the small scraps, snapshots, and posts of their media accounting reflect identity work.

Keywords:   media accounting, identify performance, identity work, social media, identity expression, snapshot photography

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