Week seven: Researching communities…interactions between entities or entangled intra-relations?

As we conclude our block on community cultures, and I post my micro-ethnography artefact Entangled Communities, many questions/issues have been raised.

Inspired by David Yeats’ artefact grappling with a community apparently “present” but “hidden”, I pondered on how/whether this might be tracked and issues of surveillance that link to our next algorithmic cultures block. His artefact also asks ‘what is community?‘, and I wondered how we might define it…

  • a ‘creative “gathering”‘ (Bayne 2015b: 456) around a ‘shared domain of interest’ (Wenger 1998; Lave and Wenger 1991)?
  • a feeling ‘produced by more-than-human assemblages’ (Hickey and Moody 2019: 2)?

While researching, should we focus on a network of ‘connections between entities’ (Siemens 2005) or on agential relations and ‘intra-actions’ where agency is co-constitued (Barad 2007; Hickey and Moody 2019: 4-5)?

As I constructed/traversed a network of connections (Downes 2017) in the connectivist-informed ds106, “I” and “my study” (including my field notes) became “entangled” in the course/community I was studying and my artefact itself appeared increasingly like a tangled network map of connectionsI noted the course/community boundaries blurring and the traditional MOOC form questioned.

Entangled Communities
Entangled Communities

Questioning my research methods, I explored various approaches including the speculative method (Ross 2017)

…rather than an “observer” collecting data about something “out there”, are researchers entangled with the “object” of research where data generated/collected ‘is co-created by the fieldwork assemblage’ (Hickey-Moody and Willcox 2019: 5)?

Finally, as I listened to ds106 radiois sound a ‘vibrational event’, and listening an embodied experience (Ceraso 2018)?

On that note, I’m experimenting with a short audio snippet to conclude:

View references

Michael saved in Pocket: ‘Sounding Composition’ (Ceraso 2018)


In Sounding Composition Steph Ceraso reimagines listening education to account for twenty-first century sonic practices and experiences. Sonic technologies such as audio editing platforms and music software allow students to control sound in ways that were not always possible for the average listener. While digital technologies have presented new opportunities for teaching listening in relation to composing, they also have resulted in a limited understanding of how sound works in the world at large. Ceraso offers an expansive approach to sonic pedagogy through the concept of multimodal listening—a practice that involves developing an awareness of how sound shapes and is shaped by different contexts, material objects, and bodily, multisensory experiences. Through a mix of case studies and pedagogical materials, she demonstrates how multimodal listening enables students to become more savvy consumers and producers of sound in relation to composing digital media, and in their everyday lives.

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This book is particularly of interest as I explore the audio assignments and ds106 radio as part of my micro-ethnography.

Michael saved in Pocket: ‘The Sounds of Science’


We’ve had three great evenings of live tweeting ds106radio. The point of this was to analyze, together, how sounds can paint pictures and drive stories. My favorite thing about this exercise is that the idea for it came from a class a few years ago. The students suggested it, and it was brilliant. This week, we’ve been listening to ESC: Sonic Adventure in the Anthropocene. We heard episodes 3, 4 and 6 so far.

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Michael saved in Pocket: ‘Community Radio Broadcasting and Adult Education: Case Study-Using Community Radio for Non-Formal Education’ by Ramon Mangion


Radio has been, is and for sure will remain a fundamental medium for the transmission of information. It is also widely accepted that radio stations have a fundamental role in society in terms of the potential for the provision of education, particularly adult education. Although many tend to put radio stations under one umbrella, a number of communities successfully benefit from radio stations which operate within the community and are explicitly targeted at that same community. These are referred to as Community Radio Stations. My interest to choose community radio as a topic for this article stems from my involvement in radio broadcasting for the past 15 years. I started my career in a community radio and although I now produce programmes at a national radio station, I still do occasional programmes in a number of community radio stations. Community radio broadcasting in Malta has continued to develop and is now a common aspect within the local broadcasting spectrum. An important aspect of community radios in Malta is that all those involved mostly contribute on a voluntary basis.

Whilst considering certain limitations, I firmly believe in the potential that radio broadcasting has for adult education. In this regard this article is aimed at discussing the educational potential of community radios as sites of adult education. I will also be presenting a case study from a community radio located in Cospicua, Malta. In view that this is an online article, I attempted to be as concise as possible, at the expense of portraying a ‘superficial’ approach to the subject.

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Michael saved in Pocket: ‘Audio Ethnography: Listening to Cultures & Communities’ by Catherine C. Braun


The theme of my 109.01 course in the fall of 2005 was “reading cultures and communities,” and the class was focused on ethnographic writing. The texts for the course were Sunstein and Chiseri-Strater’s Fieldworking, SoundPortraits.org, Transom.org, and NPR’s “This American Life” web site of streaming audio versions of their radio programs. The major assignment of the course was to conduct an ethnographic study of a community, with the final “report” composed as an audio essay. In addition, students turned in a portfolio of writing that comprised their ethnographic process over the quarter: all field notes, three field note analyses, a midterm progress report, a detailed plan for their final audio project, and a reflective essay.

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