Talks and Events: Germany/Switzerland, June-July 2019

Germany-Switzerland-June-July-2019

This summer, I will be spending a month in Germany, along with a short trip to Switzerland, for a series of talks and other events. Here is the full list:

June 21: “The Algorithmic Nickelodeon” — Screening and presentation at symposium on “Videographic Criticism: Aesthetics and Methods of the Video Essay,” ACUD-Kino Berlin

June 23-28: Stanford-Leuphana Summer Academy 2019: “Against Presentism” — at Stanford Berlin Campus

June 26, 6pm: “Desktop Horror: Screening Fear/Fearing Screens” — Presentation at the JFK Institute for North American Studies, Freie Universität Berlin

June 29: “Discorrelation and Seamfulness” — Presentation at the media-philosophical workshop on “Reflexivity in Digital Media,” Zürcher Hochschule der Künste, Zurich

July 1-19: Research Fellowship at the Institute for Advanced Study on Media Cultures of Computer Simulation — Leuphana University, Lüneburg

July 3: “Images of Discorrelation” — Presentation in the Media Cultures of Computer Simulation/Center for Digital Cultures Evening Colloquium Series, Leuphana University, Lüneburg

July 10: “Post-Cinematic Realism” — Presentation in the Sprache, Migration, und Vielfalt series at the Leibniz Universität Hannover

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“Discorrelation and Seamfulness” at ZHdK, June 29

Discorrelation and Seamfulness

On June 29, 2019, I will be presenting work from my forthcoming book, Discorrelated Images, at the media-philosophical workshop on “Reflexivity in Digital Media” at the Zürcher Hochschule der Künste. Thanks to Katerina Krtilova for organizing, and thanks to Dieter Mersch for the invitation to be a part of this!

“The Algorithmic Nickelodeon” at ACUD-Kino Berlin — Symposium on Videographic Criticism

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Next Friday, June 21, 2019, I am excited to present “The Algorithmic Nickelodeon,” a literally mind-bending EEG-powered videographic experiment, in the context of the symposium on “Videographic Criticism: Aesthetics and Methods of the Video Essay.”

The symposium, organized by Kathleen Loock, will take place at the ACUD-Kino in Berlin, and will bring together lots of leading practitioners of videographic scholarship to screen their work and discuss questions of aesthetics, methods, and theory.

The event is free and open to the public, so come by if you’re in the neighborhood!

Writing at the Speed of Thinking — Miyako Inoue at Digital Aesthetics Workshop

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For our final event of this year’s Digital Aesthetics Workshop (which, we can now confirm, will return next year!), Stanford’s own Miyako Inoue will be presenting her current research on the Japanese typewriter. Her session promises to consider the effects of media on thought, to push technology studies towards the history of empire, and to argue with Friedrich Kittler. Needless to say, we are thrilled to have her!

The event takes place on Tuesday, May 29, from 5-7 in the Board Room of the Stanford Humanities Center.

There is no pre-circulated reading. However, attendees are encouraged to familiarize themselves with Kittler’s “Typewriter” chapter in Gramophone, Film, Typewriter.

RSVP to deacho@stanford.edu

Snacks and wine will be served

Dr. Miyako Inoue

Writing at the Speed of Thinking: The Japanese Kana Typewriter and the Rehabilitation of the Male Hand

Tuesday, May 29, 5:00-7:00

The invention of the Japanese syllabic (kana) typewriter in the beginning of the 20th century was a modular articulation between the Japanese syllabary and the engineered metal body of the English typewriter. With keys and type bars for Japanese syllabaries neatly conjoined with it, the kana typewriter promised Japan’s industrial efficiency and productivity of repetitive inscription labor. While the kana-typewriter was originally used in business and government offices to streamline the production of invoices, order forms, utility bills, and so on, the postwar portable models attracted allies for personal use among male intellectuals, industrialists, scientists, and colonial officers, for whom the kana typewriter meant “the liberation from Chinese characters,” or Japan’s break from “Asia” (and its return as a colonizer), and a renewed connection with Western industrial modernity. Friedrich Kittler argues that the western typewriter led to the de-sexualization of writing, liberating (hand)writing from its organic and exclusive ties with the male hand and allowing women to enter the white-collar workplace as typists. In this presentation, I would like to discuss how the kana-typewriter led, in fact, to the re-sexualization of writing as a masculine enterprise, and to the reunion of the man’s hand with language, as its portability allowed elite Japanese (type)writers in international scientific communities, in colonial administrations and associated overseas business communities to synchronize writing and thinking and to re-enact the western subject-position of auto-affect in writing.

Miyako Inoue is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Stanford University, where she also has a courtesy appointment with the Department of Linguistics. She teaches linguistic anthropology and the anthropology of Japan. Her first book, Vicarious Language: the Political Economy of Gender and Speech in Japan (U. of California Press), examines a phenomenon commonly called “women’s language” in Japanese modern society, and offers a genealogy showing its critical linkage with Japan’s national and capitalist modernity. Professor Inoue is currently working on a book-length project on a social history of “verbatim” in Japanese. She traces the historical development of the Japanese shorthand technique used in the Diet for its proceedings since the late 19th century, and of the stenographic typewriter introduced to the Japanese court for the trial record after WWII. She is interested in learning what it means to be faithful to others by copying their speech, and how the politico-semiotic rationality of such stenographic modes of fidelity can be understood as a technology of a particular form of governance, namely, liberal governance.

Discorrelated Images at University of Toronto, May 16, 2019

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This Thursday, May 16, I will be at the Cinema Studies Institute at the University of Toronto to talk about “Discorrelated Images” — the subject of my forthcoming book by the same title.

The next day, I’ll be speaking at the Spiral Film and Philosophy Conference about the idea of “animation” in a post-cinematic media regime.

Looking forward to being in Toronto and seeing lots of familiar faces!

Resistance is Futile Against Hot Asexuality

Recently, I wondered whether it was time to leave social media and reboot the blog as a space of active thinking and sharing. The jury is still out on whether that is feasible and even desirable. But I would like to use this space to post more than just upcoming talks and publications. In that spirit, I’d like to point out Yvette Granata’s 360-degree video CLONE (2017), which you can see above (but which is better viewed on a smartphone through the YouTube app, and even better with Google Cardboard or similar contraption).

On her website, Granata describes the video thus:

CLONE (HD Video, 2017) is a 360 video essay and a para-sexual design fiction. It narrates a future time after global climate collapse and mass pollution have made sexual reproduction no longer viable. Both sexual reproduction and the networked technology of the 21st century have all melted from the humidity produced by runaway greenhouse gasses. In this speculative future, a Xenofeminist world government has re-purposed the data farms of former tech companies for Mono-auto-sexual cloning clinics — the artificial wombs for the hot asexuality of the future.

I have recently been writing about this remarkable video against the background of big-budget movies about artificial women, including Her (2013), Ex Machina (2014), and Blade Runner 2049 (2017). Those movies, all of which happen to be directed by white men, are interesting meditations on, or parables of, artificial creation in an age of computer-generated imagery. But Granata’s weird video, drawing inspiration from the Xenofeminist Manifesto, goes farther than any of those movies in raising questions about the interface between gender, capital, climate change, and moving-image media.

Here is a brief snippet of what I’ve been writing:

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