Frankenstein@200: International Health Humanities Consortium Conference

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The 2018 International Health Humanities Consortium Conference will be held at Stanford University from April 20-22, 2018. The keynote speakers are:

Alexander Nemerov
Professor, Art and Art History at Stanford University

Lester Friedman
Professor, Media and Society at Hobart and William Smith Colleges

Alvan Ikoku
Assistant Professor, Comparative Literature and Medicine at Stanford University

Catherine Belling
Associate Professor, Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University

In addition, there will be a number of great events around campus. You can find more information here.

I will be participating in the conference in two ways:

First, on Friday, April 20 (2:30-3:30pm in McMurtry 115) I will be presenting a screening session of videographic works related to “Frankenstein & Film.” I will be showing a few of my own pieces (which you can see here and here), as well as works by video essayists like Allison de Fren, alongside commercial “making of” videos, art film reimaginations, and other moving-image forms that treat the history of Frankenstein films from Thomas Edison’s 1910 production up to the present day.

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Second, on Sunday, April 22 (11:15am), I will be presenting a paper titled “Frankenstein and Bioethics Beyond Chance and Choice.” The paper draws upon and rethinks ideas that I put forward in one of my very first publications: “Frankenstein, Bioethics, and Technological Irreversibility.” That paper, published in 2007, can be found here.

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Psychedelic Space and Anachronic Time: Elizabeth Kessler at Digital Aesthetics Workshop

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On Tuesday, April 10 (4-6pm in the Board Room of the Stanford Humanities Center), Elizabeth Kessler (Stanford, American Studies) will deliver a talk, titled “Psychedelic Space and Anachronic Time: Photography and the Voyager’s Tour of the Solar System,” in the context of the Digital Aesthetics Workshop.

Elizabeth Kessler’s research and teaching focus on 20th and 21st century American visual culture. Her diverse interests include: the role of aesthetics, visual culture, and media in modern and contemporary science, especially astronomy; the interchange between technology and ways of seeing and representing; the history of photography; and the representation of fashion in different media. Her first book, Picturing the Cosmos: Hubble Space Telescope Images and the Astronomical Sublime, on the aesthetics of deep space images, was published in 2012. She’s currently writing on book on extraterrestrial time capsules, as well as developing a new project on fashion photography.

See here for more information.

Discorrelated Images — Digital Aesthetics Workshop, April 3

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On Tuesday, April 3, 2018 (4:00-6:00pm), I will be giving a talk titled “Discorrelated Images” in the context of the Digital Aesthetics Workshop at the Stanford Humanities Center. The talk draws on my current book project of the same title and will address primarily temporal and affective relations and transformations occasioned by digital images.

Participants are encouraged (but not required) to read my chapter “Crazy Cameras, Discorrelated Images, and the Post-Perceptual Mediation of Post-Cinematic Affect” prior to the event.

Twenty-First Century Mediations of Subjectivity, ACLA 2018 #ACLA2018

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At this year’s conference of the American Comparative Literature Association, taking place March 29 – April 1, 2018 in Los Angeles, I will be participating in a great seminar/panel stream on “Twenty-First Century Mediations of Subjectivity,” organized by Jim Hodge of Northwestern University.

I’m looking forward to all of the talks, on such a rich set of topics. Here is the abstract for my talk:

Post-Cinema and the Phenomenology of External Time-Consciousness

Shane Denson

Something about the temporality of media has changed, and with it the relation of media to the temporality of subjective experience. In Technics and Time, Bernard Stiegler famously argued for just such a change, which he located in the advent of “tertiary memories” – externalized, reproducible experiences stored by industrial media objects. Using the term “cinema” to designate not only a specific apparatus but also the broad media regime or epoch instituted by recording technologies from photography and phonography to television and digital technologies, Stiegler identifies a threat to our subjective experience – exacerbated with the advent of live media in “the televisual epoch of cinema” – whereby media colonize consciousness by pre-formatting our immediate awareness (primary retention) with the images of tertiary retention. One thing Stiegler’s argument fails to account for, however, is the emergence of a protentional dimension that distinguishes computational media as decidedly “post-cinematic.” No longer simply memorial or mnemotechnical, post-cinema’s protentional images are generated on the fly according to compression algorithms rather than photochemical processes, thus disrupting the stability of tertiary memory while producing an external homologue to internal time-consciousness. This paper seeks to trace the impact of post-cinematic temporality on the production of subjective experience.

Stanford Film & Media Studies 2018 Symposium: “Pieces”

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The inaugural Stanford Film and Media Studies Symposium takes place on Friday April 13, 2018 in Oshman Hall. The theme of the conference is “Pieces” and talks will address questions concerning how bits of film and media make us rethink the relation of part to whole and what methods artists use to make discrete pieces—temporal, spatial, material, performative—that may or may not fit into larger collaborative works.

The keynote speakers are Lotte Hoek (University of Edinburgh) on “Anthropology and the Cinematic Fragment in South Asia” and Steven Shaviro (Wayne State University) on “Speculative Time.” In addition, there will be two panels. The first will feature an artist’s talk by Srdan Keca (Documentary Film and Video); Daniel Cohen (Art & Art History) on “Chinese Comedy and the Postsocialist Art of Deflation”; Heather Rastovac Akbarzadeh (Dance Studies) on “Sensorial Performativity of the ‘Veil’ in Aisan Hoss’s Dance-Theater The Pleasant Pain”; and Dustin Condren (Slavic) on Sergei Eisenstein’s film scenario MMM. Terry Berlier (Art Practice) will deliver an artist’s talk on the second panel, followed by Tiffany Naiman (Thinking Matters) on “Memory, Meaning, and Fragmentation in David Bowie’s ‘Blackstar’; Henry Rownd (Art & Art History) on the marked disjuncture between widescreen and pan-and-scan in Otto Preminger’s late work Skidoo (1968); and Max Suechting (Modern Thought and Literature) on “Fragments and Wholes in J Dilla’s Donuts.”

9:30am – Welcome
9:50am – Opening Remarks
10:00am – Keynote Speaker
11:30am – Panel 1
2:30pm – Panel 2
4:30pm – Keynote Speaker
5:45 pm – Closing Remarks

Department of Art & Art History, Film & Media Studies, thanks their sponsors: Center for South Asia, Office of the Vice President for the Arts, CREEES Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, Stanford Global Studies Division, Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, Iranian Studies, The Program in Modern Thought & Literature, Department of Communication, Thinking Matters.

See also the official announcement here: https://art.stanford.edu/events/stanford-film-and-media-studies-symposium-pieces

Review of Post-Cinema: Theorizing 21st-Century Film, Screen 59:1 (2018)

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Lisa Åkervall has a review out in the latest issue of Screen, covering three works on post-cinema: 1) the open-access volume that I edited with Julia Leyda, Post-Cinema: Theorizing 21st-Century Film; 2) the special issue of Cinéma & Cie (16:26-27, 2016), titled ‘Post-what? Post-when? Thinking moving images beyond the post-medium/post-cinema condition,’ edited by Miriam de Rosa and Vinzenz Hediger (which also includes my article on “Speculation, Transition, and the Passing of Post-Cinema”); and 3) Malte Hagener, Vinzenz Hediger, and Alena Strohmeier’s edited collection The State of Post-Cinema: Tracing the Moving Image in the Age of Digital Dissemination

About the collection I co-edited with Julia Leyda, Åkervall writes:

“Shane Denson and Julia Leyda’s comprehensive volume Post-Cinema: Theorizing 21st-Century Film, an open access online publication by Reframe Books, presents a multifaceted compendium. […] The editors’ framing in Post-Cinema is precise and penetrating, flexible enough to accommodate enduring themes in film and media studies while also making allowances for new questions associated with topics such as digital media aesthetics, media archaeology and environmental studies. Their volume rejects the idea that postcinema is merely a successor to cinema or a step in the teleological digitalization of all media, instead identifying it with competing perspectives on a changing media situation that bears on cinema as an institution, a practice and a medium. In this respect the volume admirably addresses our changing media landscape.”

Read the full review here.