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Intensification, discovery and abandonment: unearthing global ecologies of dis/connection in pandemic times

Trere, Emiliano ORCID: 2021. Intensification, discovery and abandonment: unearthing global ecologies of dis/connection in pandemic times. Convergence 27 (6) , pp. 1663-1677. 10.1177/13548565211036804

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This article explores how people have reconfigured their dis/connective repertoires during COVID-19 pandemic-related lockdowns. Relying on a media ecology approach and on 45 interviews carried out in different parts of the world, it tackles two limitations of the digital disconnection literature, namely social media reductionism and universalism, advancing a theoretical and empirical contribution. Firstly, it explores and unfolds dis/connective practices in relation to an intricate multiplicity of old and new practices, technologies, platforms and formats, foregrounding three key dynamics in the reconfiguration of dis/connective repertoires: intensification, (re)discovery and abandonment. Then, it critically drills down into the uneven power relations, divides and inequalities that traverse these three dynamics. This article demonstrates that dis/connective practices are carried out across variable configurations of devices, formats and platforms and shaped by privileges and imbalances that are particularly severe in the context of the Global South. In doing so, this article complexifies taken-for-granted assumptions regarding the meanings of dis/connection, establishing a dialogue with digital inequality and labour studies, hence unfolding new horizons of inquiry for digital disconnection studies.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Journalism, Media and Culture
Additional Information: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 License (
Publisher: SAGE
ISSN: 1354-8565
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 6 July 2021
Date of Acceptance: 30 June 2021
Last Modified: 09 May 2023 01:51

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