Individual Work

“Changed”, is an electronic literature piece created through the use of html code and java Script by Andy Campbell and Lydia Williams. It depicts a narrative in which one reads/experiences the effects of physical and psychological abuse inflicted upon a girl, whose age and social status are never revealed. The inflictors and situations in which the distress and fear was caused and delivered are left in ambiguity, letting the readers construct their own versions of what might have happened. The audio reinforces the dark and moody atmosphere with various sounds in a continuous loop, the most prominent being raindrops, the occasional rumble of thunder, some synthesised electronic beats and sudden metallic collisions.

When the paragraphs of the story are read, one is presented with semi-lucid memories of the aforementioned girl. The text presents itself when you click on a single sentence floating around, and after twenty seconds, it fades away. As she processes the situations that she has experienced, it is difficult to tell whether they just transpired or happened hours ago. When remembering the scenes of her trauma, the girl’s mind wanders to thoughts of unrelated topics, like for example that her wardrobe is heavily supplied with personal items. Since the events of various horrors in the story are vague the story invites the readers to personally attempt to fill in the blanks with potential scenarios. Hints at personal thoughts by the girl about other places/objects are manifested in the represented environment of a tunnel laden with graffiti, debris earthly filth. It is use as a canvas for the things she imagines like the wallpapers of her home and a lamp to lighten up the imagined room.

The presentation of this story is very linear, one can progress farther into the tunnel without reading anything, but if one does, the tunnel will be completely dark. One can only move to the right or the left, and only the right path will allow progression further into the story. Because the interface is actively trying to obfuscate the work it seems to invite interpretation of a personal nature, changing the story’s implicit meaning.

This entry was drafted by students in Maria Engberg's Language Studies II course, part of the Bachelor of Science program Digital Culture and Communication at Blekinge Institute of Technology (Sweden) during the spring of 2012.