Technicity and the Virtual

On the 19th of April I contributed to the ‘virtual space‘ event held by Passenger Films, combining short talks and film screenings that addressed the theme of ‘the virtual’. Passenger Films is a series of public events initiated by Amy Cutler, a cultural geographer at Royal Holloway, and supported by UCL UrbanLab, that combine talks and film screenings. I had the privilege of speaking alongside Rob Kitchin, Director of the National Institute of Regional and Spatial Analysis (Republic of Ireland) and co-author of ‘Code/Space: Software and Everyday Life‘.

Continue reading “Technicity and the Virtual”

Alexander Galloway on Deleuze & computers

I am indebted to @furtherfield for posting a link to the blog communication+1, which has a YouTube video of Alexander Galloway giving a talk, at the at the University of Massachusetts Amherst (December 2nd, 2011), on ‘Deleuze and Computers’.

The inimitable Galloway identifies Deleuze’s “Postscript on the Societies of Control” as a highly significant piece of thinking about life in a digitally mediated society.  The talk is really interesting and I have reproduced below most of the post from communication+1, including the YouTube video:

Could it be? Could it be that Deleuze’s most lasting legacy will lie in his “Postscript on Control Societies,” a mere 2,300 word essay from 1990? Such a strange little text, it bears not the same Deleuzean voice so familiar from his other writings. Cynics will grumble it falls short of the great books of ’68-’69 or the radical collaborations with Félix Guattari during the 1970s. In the “Postscript” he indicts capitalism by name. He raises his wrath against corporations and television shows. Yet his frame includes the culture at large, not just the mode of production. He talks about snakes and surfers and other features of the dawning millennium. He references such figures as Roberto Rossellini, Paul Virilio, Franz Kafka, and most importantly Michel Foucault. He tells us exactly what is wrong with the business sector, as well as with the prisons, schools, and hospitals. It reads almost like a manifesto, the “Manifesto on Control Societies.” In this talk we will investigate the last few years of Deleuze’s life, a period in which he elaborates, however faintly, an image of what it means to live in the information age.

This talk was made possible by the UMass Graduate School, the University Libraries, UMass Free Culture, and the Department of Communication.

Recorded by JC Sawyer, produced by Zach McDowell

Reading Bernard Stiegler

I am slowly but surely working my way through Bernard Stiegler’s writings, and really enjoying doing so. These notes are just a way of distilling some the themes I’ve encountered and I haven’t posted anything for a while on this blog.  My understanding of Stiegler’s work, such as it is(!), is in large part thanks to my colleague Patrick Crogan, with whom I have been convening a Stiegler reading group at UWE.  We have a blog at: – which is worth checking out! Continue reading “Reading Bernard Stiegler”

Escaping Badiou’s metapolitics towards a Tunisian political event?

Clive Barnett recently blogged about an interview with philosopher (and native Tunisian) Mehdi Belhaj Kacem over on a website I find nearly impossible to navigate(!). In the interview Kacem is rather damning of Badiou (whom I believe he previously had worked with):

It’s obvious that Badiou and Zizek, who reacted very late to the first positive event of historical and global scope of the twenty-first century, know absolutely nothing about the situation, although, in Badiou’s case, it’s truly spectacular: almost like Sarkozy he manages to talk about the Tunisian revolution as if it were no more than some “riots.” He says: “maybe some interesting utterances will come out of this, let’s wait and see”¦” He’s completely out of it.

The whole interview is an interesting read and I need to reflect on this a little more before passing serious comment but I wanted to point people towards it: