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Instatoon, the Daily Life of Affective Authenticity

  • Journal of Popular Narrative
  • 2022, 28(3), pp.139-172
  • DOI : 10.18856/jpn.2022.28.3.004
  • Publisher : The Association of Popular Narrative
  • Research Area : Interdisciplinary Studies > Interdisciplinary Research
  • Received : September 26, 2022
  • Accepted : October 11, 2022
  • Published : October 30, 2022

Choi, Min-Ji 1

1서울대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This paper aims to reveal the aesthetics and political potential of Instatoon by capturing the core mechanism of Instatoon as authenticity, and conceptualizing it as affects. This becomes possible when the media characteristics of Instatoon and the phenomena they create are noted in a comprehensive view, not the quality of individual Instatoons. Instatoon is an SNStoon published in a series on Instagram. It has a strong characteristic of Dailytoon in that it takes topics from daily life and also is appreciated in daily circumstances. Because of the active exposures of an artist of Instatoon, a strong identification between the character in it and the artist occurs. The character is regarded as a mask representing the artist, and the narrative of Instatoon is presented as the artist's autobiographical story to the viewers. Due to these media characteristics, authenticity appears as a core value in Instatoon. Authenticity of Instatoon is not limited to individuals, but works as collective affect that is related to everyone who composes the field of Instatoon. Authenticity accumulates by cycling between the posts and comments for Intstatoons, and affects multidirectionally and dynamically. Furthermore, affects of authenticity precedes individual Instatoons, making the genre of Instatoon itself a space where authenticity unfolds. Affects of authenticity allows frank speaking of daily life in Instatoon, and produce an effect of visualizing the personal experiences that have been previously invisible, and thus making them problematic. For example, Instatoons dealing with female experiences of pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting, convey that they are not problems limited to an individual female alone, and others dealing with experiences of eating disorders and mood disorders, show that these are problems that require specialized medical treatments. On the other hand, however, Instatoon faces a dilemma of advertising toon, the main source of artist’s incomes, damages the authenticity. The various strategies taken to prevent it happen, once again, prove that authenticity is an important value in Instatoon. Paying attention to affects of authenticity, the feature of Instatoon, which have been regarded as limitations until now, such as simple narrative, daily topics, and simple drawing styles, could rather be considered as causing affects of authenticity more easily. The future of Instatoon is depend on actively affirming these characteristics and colorfully creating affects of authenticity.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.