On Tuesday and Thursday I was having fun teaching the LCDM second year's about digital cultures and blogs, on Wednesday I attended a meeting and dealt with a number of practical things, on Thursday evening I met with the Swedish "Library Avatars" (Biblioteksavatarerna) for a long chat in Second Life, but, apart from that, I probably spent every waking moment thinking about — and writing — the paper on avant-garde in online worlds that I've been working on for the last month.
On Wednesday I could feel that I had managed to get most of my thoughts on paper and on Thursday evening (only minutes prior to meeting with the Library Avatars) I sent the 39-page document to professor Jay Bolter. In my paper, I've focused on different kinds of avant-garde and how they manifest in the online worlds Second Life and Twinity. With the help of theorists like Clement Greenberg, Renato Poggioli, Peter Bürger and D.N. Rodowick, I begin by looking at the online worlds as media, continue to explore art, architecture, machinima and music inworld, and then I move on to the issue of subversion, here exemplified by griefers and griefing. The last part of the paper will be presented at the Under the Mask: Perspectives on the Gamer Conference at the University of Bedfordshire in June. I'm really looking forward to hearing Jay's comments and his thoughts on where to go with it all. I hope it will be possible to base a chapter of my dissertation on this.
Now it's time for the next paper, however, which is due at the end of April. It will focus on avatar construction within role-playing communities in Second Life.