Psychic – dentity
Site about the concept of authenticity and virtual identity

In the debate on expatriatism, most feared by the so-called nation state are the satellite dish and the Internet; in other words, any facility aiding the construction of a “virtual identity". The concept of virtual identity is the focus of the multi-media project cast by the Chamber of Public Secrets, implemented by Khaled D. Ramadan in cooperation with several contributors.

The project presents how expatriates become the “authors" of their own identity, and the processes by which they constantly draft and redraft themselves in a virtual/personal logic.

What we are about to explore in the project presented at Minority Report is the dual and tranquil character of post-expatriatism. The project, which takes place in a two-fold space, is concerned with the intimate inner, concealed, human identity. It explores the personal or hidden identity as a notion and how it is constructed, presented and perceived.

Much of the literature on expatriate identity focuses on the construction of so-called false identities, particularly the notion of identity swapping. Such position has been critically analyzed by Edward W. Said in his book Orientalism. According to Said, these other cultures and identities are presented as timeless phantasmatical entities, e.g. archaic, irrational, wild, dangerous, etc.
The paradigm of “the clash of identity", in a world split in differences and conflicts, civilizations and cultures, function only to ensure the civilizational unity of the West and its political and cultural primacy.

The site of Chamber of Public Secrets at Minority Report is a space where the authenticity of “virtual identity" is at scrutiny. The presented works negotiate such quarrel and attempt to re-construct the post-colonial identity and the perception of cultural primacy in the age of networking and mass migration.

Theorist Magdalena Donea discussed the concept of “virtual identity", the (re)construction of identities and how that challenges traditional notions of how we indicate who we are. Assumptions such as physical appearance, accent and mannerism tell us that a person has a fixed identity which is related it to one's sex, geographic location, history and social class. Nonetheless, in the disembodied world of the virtual community, identity is also ambiguous.

The aspiration of the site is to comprehend how a displaced identity is recognized in a virtually mobile community [immigrant community], the site examines the property of such identity including the circumstances that give rise to it.

Khaled D. Ramadan

Between heaven and earth
Berlin – Copenhagen 11.05.04