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Magdalena Donea

Doctoral student, Science Studies Program

Magdalena Donea is a doctoral student and Eugene V. Cota-Robles Fellow in the Communication and Science Studies program. Her work considers critically the visual culture of trauma and other emotional and embodied states of being of people displaced by disaster, examining the way that the experiences of disaster and displacement are visualized in their unfolding in time, particularly through photographs. Thinking alongside contemporary Critical Disaster Studies scholarship, she engages seriously the proposition that disasters are not ruptures in the fabric of the everyday so much as moments that lay bare the ways that the everyday is already pathological. 

As a 25-year veteran of the Internet, an early web theorist, programmer, writer, and designer – and a Cold War-era political refugee – Ms. Donea’s scholarly and professional concerns extend also to digital privacy and algorithmic surveillance and control, and broadly to the technoscientific propagation of police and carceral logics into ordinary life. Along with Kathryne Metcalf and Stuart Geiger, she co-organizes the Critical Data Studies Working Group at UCSD. Prior to UCSD, she helped found the Washington Prison History Project and contributed restored code and oral history interviews to its archive. She has volunteered her skills to refugee resettlement and assistance organizations, and to community-driven surveillance oversight efforts in both Seattle and San Diego. 

Ms. Donea holds an MA in Cultural Studies from the University of Washington Bothell and a Graduate Certificate in Textual and Digital Studies from the University of Washington Seattle.

PhD Student, Communication and Science Studies
University of California San Diego, 2019-Present

Master of Arts, Cultural Studies
University of Washington Bothell, 2018

Graduate Certificate, Textual and Digital Studies
University of Washington Seattle, 2018

Berger, D., Donea, M., Hattwig, D., & Rowland, D. (2019). A Counter-Archive of Imprisonment: The Washington Prison History Project. Public, 5(2).

Donea, M. (2018). The Warden Game: Lessons in Power and Politics from a Recovered 1980’s Text Adventure. In Media Res.