College of Communication Master of Arts Theses

Date of Award

Spring 6-2010

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Communication

First Advisor

Dr. Paul Booth

Second Advisor

Dr. Dustin Goltz


A palimpsest is a new inscription on old materials, a form of media offering a hybrid yet hierarchical sense of time. Turning frequently to the writings of Alain Badiou, Roland Barthes, and Walter Benjamin, I examine two zines published in the wake of the death of a Chicago street artist and the confessional postcards of Frank Warren’s PostSecret mail art project to understand the formal traits and claims to truth photographs exhibit when they are transformed into palimpsests. The present intrudes on the past in these media, incompletely erasing or overwriting history to show the gaps in context and what slips from photographic memory.

Included in

Communication Commons