MachineMachine /stream - search for culture en-us LifePress <![CDATA[PhD Thesis: The Practice of Posthumanism]]>

Post-humanism is best understood as several overlapping and interrelated fields coming out of the traditions of anti-humanism, post-colonialism, and feminist discourse. But the term remains contested, both by those who wish to overturn, or even destroy, the ‘humanism’ after that decisive hyphen (post-humanists), and those engaged in the project of maximising their chance of merging with technologies, and reaching a supposed point of transition, when the current ‘human’ has been augmented, upgraded, and surpassed (transhumanists). For both those who wish to move beyond ‘humanism’, and those who wish to transcend ‘the human’, there remains a significant, shared, problem: the supposed originary separations, between information and matter, culture and nature, mankind and machine, singular and plural, that post-humanism seeks to problematise, and transhumanism often problematically ignores, lead to the delineation of ‘the human’ as a single, universalised figure. This universalism erases the pattern of difference, which post-humanists see as both the solution to, and the problem of, the human paradigm. This thesis recognises this problem as an ongoing one, and one which – for those who seek to establish posthumanism as a critical field of enquiry – can never be claimed to be finally overcome, lest the same problem of universalism rear its head again.

To tackle this problem, this thesis also enters into the complex liminal space where the terms ‘human’ and ‘humanism’ confuse and interrupt one another, but rather than delineate the same boundaries (as transhumanists have done), or lay claim over certain territories of the discourse (as post-humanists have done), this thesis implicates itself, myself, and yourself in the relational becoming posthuman of which we, and it, are co-constituted. My claim being, that critical posthumanism must be the action it infers onto the world of which it is not only part, but in mutual co-constitution with.The Practice of Posthumanism claims that critical posthumanism must be enacted in practice, and stages itself as an example of that process, through a hybrid theoretical and practice-based becoming. It argues that posthumanism is necessarily a vibrant, lively process being undergone, and as such, that it cannot be narrativized or referred to discursively without collapsing that process back into a static, universalised delineation once again. It must remain in practice, and as such, this thesis enacts the process of which it itself is a principle paradigm.After establishing the critical field termed ‘posthumanism’ through analyses of associated discourses such as humanism and transhumanism, each of the four written chapters and hybrid conclusion/portfolio of work is enacted through a ‘figure’ which speaks to certain monstrous dilemmas posed by thinkers of the posthuman. These five figures are: The Phantom Zone, Crusoe’s Island, The Thing, The Collapse of The Hoard, and The 3D Printer (#Additivism). Each figure – echoing Donna Haraway – ‘resets the stage for possible pasts and futures’ by calling into question the fictional/theoretical ground upon which it is predicated. Considered together, the dissertation and conclusion/portfolio of work, position critical posthumanism as a hybrid ‘other’, my claim being that only through representing the human as and through an ongoing process (ontogenesis rather than ontology) can posthumanism re-conceptualise the ‘norms’ deeply embedded within the fields it confronts.The practice of critical posthumanism this thesis undertakes is inherently a political project, displacing and disrupting the power dynamics which are co-opted in the hierarchical structuring of individuals within ‘society’, of categories within ‘nature’, of differences which are universalised in the name of the ‘human’, as well as the ways in which theory delineates itself into rigid fields of study. By confounding articulations of the human in fiction, theory, science, media, and art, this practice in practice enacts its own ongoing, ontogenetic becoming; the continual changing of itself, necessary to avoid a collapse into new absolutes and universals.

Thu, 08 Aug 2019 05:56:23 -0700
<![CDATA[Hyperrhiz: New Media Cultures | ISSN 1555-9351]]>

Citation: Hanna, Julian. ““Future Shock”: Manifestos in the Digital Age.” Hyperrhiz: New Media Cultures no. 20, 2019. doi:10.20415/hyp/020.ex02 Abstract: The manifesto is currently one of most useful and vital online forms.

Tue, 28 May 2019 23:03:14 -0700
<![CDATA[Daniel Rourke - “We're trying to have the non-weird future get here as fast as possible.”]]>

Goldsmiths College Department of Art MFA Lectures 2018 - 2019

Series 1.1: Offence is the Best Defence: On the Success of Social Media Toxicity

8 Oct 2018 — Daniel Rourke (Goldsmiths): “We're trying to have the non-weird future get here as fast as possible.” 15 Oct 2018 — Isobelle Clarke (Birmingham): "Poor little snowflake, are you 'grossly' offended?": Quantifying Communicative Styles of Twitter Trolling 22 Oct 2018 — Zeena Feldman (Kings College, London): Beyond Time: On Quitting Social Media 29 Oct 2018 — William Davies (Goldsmiths): War of Words: Embodiment and Rhetoric in Online Combat

Daniel Rourke 8th October 2018 “We're trying to have the non-weird future get here as fast as possible.”

From the Latin ‘aequivocare’, for ‘called by the same name’, to equivocate is to use language ambiguously to conceal a truth or avoid commitment to a single meaning. In this talk Daniel Rourke will consider equivocation in the performative (social media) speech acts of figures such as Donald Trump, Elon Musk, and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.

How their speech acts exposit a 'shared' future, or a means of ‘escaping’ our present conditions, has much to tell us about how the very idea of the ‘true’ or the ‘false’ has shifted in the era of algorithmic governance, and social media campaigns such as #MeToo.

Turning to Homi K. Bhabha's theories of postcolonial discourse, as well as introducing the project The 3D Additivist Manifesto – co-created with Morehshin Allahyari – Daniel will end by trying to reaffirm the equivocal act, pointing out a way to generate and move toward non-determinate futures without imperialising them.

BIO: Dr. Daniel Rourke is a writer/artist and co-convener of Digital Media (MA) at Goldsmiths. In his work Daniel creates collaborative frameworks and theoretical toolsets for exploring the intersection of digital materiality, the arts, and posthumanism. These frameworks often hinge on speculative elements taken from science fiction and pop culture: fictional figures and fabulations that might offer a glimpse of a radical ‘outside’ to the human(ities). His writing and artistic profile includes work with AND Festival, The V&A, FACT Liverpool, Arebyte gallery, Centre Pompidou, Transmediale, Tate Modern, Sonic Acts Festival, as well as recent artistic collaborations with a cast of hundreds... web:

Presented by the Art Department, Goldsmiths.

Fri, 08 Feb 2019 06:24:18 -0800
<![CDATA[Crapularity Aesthetics | Making & Breaking]]>

In 2011, a loose group of “grumpy futurists” wrote up an extensive list of “Alternatives to the Singularity” in a collaborative Google Document. “The Singularity”, in popular culture and para-religious belief, refers to the point where machine intelligence leaves humans behind.

Thu, 07 Feb 2019 05:01:08 -0800
<![CDATA[Digital Bibliography]]>

AN EVALUATIVE BIBLIOGRAPHY: DIGITAL CULTURE, INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY, THE INTERNET, THE WEB By David Abrahamson Northwestern University Prefatory Note: What follows is a discursive compilation of more that four-hundred-and-fifty items, most of fairly recent authorship, united by a common -- though ve

Tue, 29 Jan 2019 10:38:21 -0800
<![CDATA[AI & Culture: Buildings, Cities (and Infrastructures, and Beyond…)]]>

We’ve long heard a lot about smart: smart homes, smart cities, smart grids, and more. It’s blowing up even more, with a lot of talk about AI these days. It’s all over pop culture, whether in tv, film, books, sci-fi, music, games, and internet memes.

Sun, 21 Oct 2018 10:09:46 -0700
<![CDATA[Compression Aesthetics: Glitch From the Avant-Garde to Kanye West – InVisible Culture]]>

Carolyn L. Kane In a world that esteems technological efficiency, immediacy, and control, the advent of technical noise, glitch, and failure—no matter how colorful or disturbingly beautiful—are avoided at great costs.

Tue, 09 Oct 2018 09:50:47 -0700

A surgeon and his assistant wheel a bed with a panda on it into the operating room of a large hospital in Sweden. This is not a flesh-and-blood panda, however, but a mechanical toy. With great concentration, the surgeon starts to operate, painstakingly removing layer after layer of the furry covering followed by the soft filling. While the surgeon searches for the plastic core in the operational innards, the panda doggedly resists its deconstruction. The noises it emits sound more animal than machine-made, reinforcing the absurd nature of this clash between a living being and a machine. The film's calm, serious, observational style invites us to consider a number of current cultural issues. What is the difference between man and the technology he designs? To what extent are our flesh-and-blood bodies becoming technological bodies? And if, at some point in the future, we all have a technological body, will the operations of the future be like this one, on this pitiably whimpering panda? These are questions artist Tove Kjellmark also addresses in her other work./IDFACast: Tove KjellmarkTags: naked, skinned, art, sculture, toy, toys, panda, operation, another nature and idfa

Sun, 19 Aug 2018 10:22:02 -0700
<![CDATA[*slaps roof of late 20th century pop culture* this bad boy can fit so many fucking references to found my cognitive dissonances on]]> ]]> Sat, 04 Aug 2018 14:58:34 -0700 <![CDATA[In Portuguese, ‘atropelar’ is the act of running over something or someone - often in an act of silencing that is gendered or racialized; in Brazilian graffiti culture, the term is used to describe the act of running over someone else’s visual intervention by spraying on top of it. #Atropelos is a collaboration with @luizap for @walktalkazores festival, curated by @daniadmiss for the 'Assembling a Moving Island' public art circuit. The project took us to several locations on the island of São Miguel, pasting up posters that highlight or question some of the complex colonial narratives associated with Azores (between Portugal and Brasil). We ran over our own interventions with each iteration, a sequence which will be continued by 20+ invited artists through 2018 at <a href="" rel="external"></a>, in collaboration with @Arebyte gallery London.]]> ]]> Sat, 30 Jun 2018 10:02:36 -0700 <![CDATA[Podcast 13: Imaginary Futures, Media Theory and the Cold War Origins of the Internet. An Interview with Richard Barbrook - Exploding Appendix]]>

Ideas and Culture with Guts

Tue, 17 Apr 2018 02:55:49 -0700
<![CDATA[Why Feminists Need to Seize the Memes of Production | Novara Media]]>

Culture matters. Mainstream culture reflects and shapes the dominant ideas and behaviours of our society.

Sun, 15 Apr 2018 10:25:24 -0700
<![CDATA[Glitch Feminism: An Interview With Legacy Russell]]>

Legacy Russell is a writer, artist and cultural producer. Her first book Glitch Feminism is forthcoming from Verso. A version of this interview first appeared in the chapter “Distracted to Attention: On Digital Reading” in The Digital Critic: Literary Culture Online (OR Books, 2017).

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 08:03:11 -0700
<![CDATA[The World of Wakanda - Open Source with Christopher Lydon]]>

The World of Wakanda

Black Panther, the movie, is heading toward $1-billion at the box office on just its third weekend. Already it seems that commercial success is likely not what Black Panther will be remembered for. It is a grand coming-together of African-American cultural production. The story in it is a mix of myth and magic in the made-up African nation of Wakanda.  It’s a technologically advanced society in a land that was never got colonized; and it holds the world’s only big deposits of an all-powerful mineral element, vibranium. 

Wakanda is an immense showcase of black agency and so is the movie Black Panther, in all the arts: writers and actors working off fact and fantasy, imagination and history and tough-minded politics, too. In the stunned aftermath, not least of the marvels about this movie is realizing that Black Panther, the character—and a lot of his immense fan base—is built on the culture of comic books that lots of us have never read. So this hour’s inventory of Black Panther first impressions begins with those drawings going back even before the Marvel Comics series began in the 1960s.  

John Jennings leads the way. Prolific in comic books and illustrated novels—like Octavia Butler’s Kindred, for example—Jennings grew up drawing in Mississippi. He’s Professor of Media Studies now at the University of California, Riverside. He’s dedicated his new anthology, Black Comix Returns, “to all the little black boys and girls who never have to know what it’s like NOT to see yourself as a hero, as subject, as vital to the society you live in.”

Ytasha Womack joins us from Chicago. She is a dancer, filmmaker, and futurist, who describes herself as a “champion of humanity and imagination.” She also wrote the book on Afrofuturism—the cultural aesthetic which links T’Challa, King of Wakanda, to the great jazz eccentric from Alabama, Sun Ra.

Harvey Young is our resident theater critic as well as the new dean of the College of Fine Arts at Boston University.  He’s written a lot about black performance, most notably in his Chicago oral history, Black Theater is Black Life.  

Brooke Obie is a a full-time writer and novelist who’s seen Black Panther five times so far. In her review of the movie for the black cinema site Shadow & Act—she puts forward a strong defense of “Eric Killmonger and the lost children of Wakanda.”

Olúfẹ́mi O. Táíwò grew up in the north suburbs of Cincinnati as the child of Nigerian immigrants He’s now a PhD candidate at UCLA and will soon be an assistant professor of philosophy at Georgetown. His family history makes him still wary of the warrior class represented by Killmonger in the film. 

Evan Narcisse, the lead writer for Marvel’s “Rise of the Black Panther” series, was born in Brooklyn of Haitian parents. He grew up with the legend of Toussaint Louverture, who led a slave rebellion against French colonists and finally beat Napoleon’s Army to liberate Haiti—the only time ex-slaves defeated a great power for their freedom, for which Haitians paid a terrible price. That too is part of what Evan Narcisse brings to his work on Black Panther.

Douglas Wolk of Austin, Texax is our unofficial “dean of American comic book critics.” He has made it his life’s mission to read “all of the Marvels” and will soon write about them. This week, he gave us the short form on what they all mean.

Fri, 02 Mar 2018 05:21:22 -0800
<![CDATA[The Google Arts & Culture App and the Rise of the “Coded Gaze”]]>

A few days ago, I came across an old post on the Web site Bored Panda called “10+ Times People Accidentally Found Their Doppelgängers in Museums and Couldn’t Believe Their Eyes.” The post consisted of around thirty photos of people posing with portraits whose subjects looked eerily like them.

Tue, 30 Jan 2018 17:43:21 -0800
<![CDATA[Why We Need to Challenge the Culture of Monogamy - VICE]]>

As someone who identifies as poly, I've often experienced negativity from those who don't think outside of how their relationships function. At times, this judgment has come from those close to me.

Sun, 26 Nov 2017 07:31:03 -0800
<![CDATA[Resisting Reduction Manifesto: against the Singularity, for a "culture of flourishing" / Boing Boing]]>

Joi Ito's Resisting Reduction manifesto rejects the idea of reducing the world to a series of computable relationships that will eventually be overtaken by our ability to manipulate them with computers ("the Singularity") and instead to view the world as full of irreducible complexities and "to d

Sun, 26 Nov 2017 07:30:54 -0800
<![CDATA[Why We Need to Challenge the Culture of Monogamy - VICE]]>

As someone who identifies as poly, I've often experienced negativity from those who don't think outside of how their relationships function. At times, this judgment has come from those close to me.

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 09:51:03 -0800
<![CDATA[Resisting Reduction Manifesto: against the Singularity, for a "culture of flourishing" / Boing Boing]]>

Joi Ito's Resisting Reduction manifesto rejects the idea of reducing the world to a series of computable relationships that will eventually be overtaken by our ability to manipulate them with computers ("the Singularity") and instead to view the world as full of irreducible complexities and "to d

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 09:50:54 -0800
<![CDATA[Digital Selves]]>

David Berry/ Legacy Russell/ Laurence Scott

How does our ubiquitous digital culture affect our sense of self? Is the self distorted, or do we now possess an invigorating digital selfdom? Should we revise our philosophical conceptions of the self in the light of social media? Our panel of writers, artists, and political theorists explore what happens to memory, emotion, and thought in the age of Google.


David Berry, Professor of Digital Humanities and Co-director of the Sussex Digital Humanities Lab, University of Sussex

Legacy Russell, writer, artist, and founding theorist of Glitch Feminism

Laurence Scott, Senior Lecturer English and Creative Writing, Arcadia University; author of Four-Dimensional Human


Shahidha Bari, Fellow, The Forum; Senior Lecturer in Romanticism in the Department of English, Queen Mary, University of London

**Watch Legacy Russell's presentation here:**

More info:

Recorded 17 October 2017 at the LSE

Thu, 19 Oct 2017 08:22:05 -0700