Förra veckan presenterade jag ett paper på SIEF (Société Internationale d´Ethnologie et de Folklore) 2015, i Zagreb, med den möjligtvis något kryptiska titeln ”The dyophysite nature of internet: negotiating authorities within churches” med följande abstract:
The ”true” nature of internet is contested in similar ways as the nature of Christ. Is He truly divine, or is He divine and human? At the Council of Chalcedon 451 the nature of Christ was debated, and the so-called dyophysite position (emphasizing the double nature of Christ) ”won”. Early internet pundits hailed the liberating nature of internet. Today such position is questioned, pointing at the double nature of internet, originating from the cold war military industry and 1960s counterculture.
The twofold nature of internet shines through also in every day practices, which here will be dealt through a synthesis of four case studies regarding the negotiating of authority within churches. 1) A live streamed American televangelist scrutinized on Twitter by an Swedish online audience, 2) The twitter account of the (fake) Archbishop of Sweden, 3) virtual churches in Second Life, and 4) the use of internet within a technology skeptical Swedish Christian denomination.
In Sweden churches and their representatives regard the use of social media as a means to reach people. Paradoxically the anti-hierarchical nature of internet undermines established structures and new voices are heard.
In these cases, it is noticeable how new groups of actors have an interest in how the Church should relate to digital media, and also how they use digital media to affect how the Church is run. Through being skilled within technology and information, rather than theology, for example information officers, computer aficionados and webmasters rise up in prominence within, and undermine, established structures.
Powerpointen hittas här på Slideshare.