Prudence Layne delivers invited lecture at the University of the Western Cape, South Africa
Associate Professor Prudence Layne in the Department of English delivered a March 18 lecture at the University of the Western Cape in South Africa.
“Hashtag Activism: Its Limitations and Evolving Roles” was delivered to faculty, staff and students from across the university campus at a weekly seminar sponsored by the Department of Linguistics.
In her address to the UWC audience, Layne suggested that hashtag movements have their place in protest, social, advertising and economic campaigns. However, she asked the audience to consider the dangers, limits and roles of hashtags in new, emerging, established and potential democracies throughout the world. In particular, the lecture probed the audience to consider the place hashtag campaigns hold in South Africa, given the country’s maturing technology infrastructure, class gaps, and barriers to access for a large segment of the population.
Layne’s lecture follows the publication of a 2014 article about the role of social media hashtag campaigns in social and protests movements (#ASingleHashtagNeverCreatedLastingChange (available here: http://www.elon.edu/E-Net/Article/97748).
Layne has been invited to discuss the subject in the United Kingdom and South Africa to varied audiences, including computer and data scientists, linguists, curators and literary scholars.