Meson Press

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PublisherMeson Press2015
In 1985, the French philosopher Jean-François Lyotard curated a groundbreaking exhibition called Les Immatériaux at the Centre Pompidou in Paris. The exhibition showed how telecommunication technologies were beginning to impact every aspect of life. At the same time, it was a material demonstration of what Lyotard called the post-modern condition. This book features a previously unpublished report by Jean-François Lyotard on the conception of Les Immatériaux and its relation to postmodernity. Reviewing the historical significance of the exhibition, his text is accompanied by twelve contemporary meditations. The philosophers, art historians, and artists analyse this important moment in the history of media and theory, and reflect on the new material conditions brought ...
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PublisherMeson Press2020
The mediality of transmission and the materiality of communication result today more than ever in “acting at a distance” – an action whose agency lies in a medium. This book provides an overview into this crucial phenomenon, thereby introducing urgent questions of human interaction, the binding and breaking of time and space, and the entanglement of the material and the immaterial. Three vivid inquiries deal with histories and theories of mediality and materiality.
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PublisherMeson Press2020
The Affective Turn has lost its former innocence and euphoria. Affect Studies and its adjacent disciplines have now to prove that they can cope with the return of the affective real that technology, economy, and politics entail. Two seemingly contradictory developments serve as starting points for this volume. First, technological innovations such as affective computing, mood tracking, sentiment analysis, and social robotics all share a focus on the recognition and modulation of human affectivity. Affect gets measured, calculated, controlled. Secondly, recent developments in politics, social media usage, and right-wing journalism have contributed to a conspicuous rise of hate speech, cybermobbing, public ...
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PublisherMeson Press2015
What does thinking mean in the age of Artificial Intelligence? How is big-scale computation transforming the way our brains function? This collection discusses these pressing questions by looking beyond instrumental rationality. Exploring recent developments as well as examples from the history of cybernetics, the book uncovers the positive role played by errors and traumas in the construction of our contemporary technological minds. With texts by Benjamin Bratton, Orit Halpern, Adrian Lahoud, Jon Lindblom, Catherine Malabou, Reza Negarestani, Luciana Parisi, Matteo Pasquinelli, Ana Teixeira Pinto, Michael Wheeler, Charles Wolfe, and Ben Woodard.
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PublisherMeson Press2019
Archives have become a nexus in the wake of the digital turn. This book sets out to show how expanded archival practices can challenge contemporary conceptions and inform the redistribution of power and resources. Calling for the necessity to reimagine the potentials of archives in practice, the three contributions ask: Can archives fulfill their paradoxical potential as utopian sites in which the analog and the digital, the past and future, and remembrance and forgetting commingle?
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PublisherMeson Press2019
In the wake of the so-called digital revolution numerous attempts have been made to rethink and redesign what scholarly publications can or should be. Beyond the Flow examines the technologies as well as narratives driving this unfolding transformation. However, facing challenges such as the serial crisis, knowledge burying or sudoku research the discourses and practices of scholarly publishing today are mainly shaped by confusion, heterogeneity and uncertainty. By critically interrogating the current state of digital publishing in academia the book asks for how a sustainable post-digital publishing ecology can be imagined.
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PublisherMeson Press2019
Today, communication unfolds merely between two or more conscious entities but often includes an invisible third party. Inspired by this drastic shift, this volume uncovers new meanings of what it means “to communicate.”
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PublisherMeson Press2015
The early days when digital games were new, harmless and niche are long gone. Today’s games can simulate battlefields, predict disaster, and crash markets. We are faced with a diversity of play and the ubiquity of games, making them not only a popular medium, but the leading medium of contemporary society. Based on the keynote lectures held at DiGRA2015, Diversity of Play provides a critical view on the current state of digital games from theoretical, artistic, and practical perspectives. With an interview with Karen Palmer and essays by Astrid Ensslin, Mathias Fuchs, Tanya Krzywinska, and Markus Rautzenberg, Diversity of Play explores the uncanny in games, ...
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PublisherMeson Press2017
The way we conceive the human today is particularly affected by the shifts in media technology during the 20th century. Affect emerges as the new liminal concept that renders the body compatible in novel ways with the technology and politics of media. By ways of a relational reorganization the organic end technological life is condensed in a new, intense way to an ecology of affects.
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PublisherMeson Press2018
Contemporary power manifests in the algorithmic. And yet this power seems incomprehensible: understood as code, it becomes apolitical; understood as a totality, it becomes overwhelming. This book takes an alternate approach, using it to unravel the operations of Uber and Palantir, Airbnb and Amazon Alexa. Moving off the whiteboard and into the world, the algorithmic must negotiate with frictions—the ‘merely’ technical routines of distributing data and running tasks coming together into broader social forces that shape subjectivities, steer bodies, and calibrate relationships. Driven by the imperatives of capital, the algorithmic exhausts subjects and spaces, a double move seeking to both ...
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PublisherMeson Press2020
From TIFF files to TED talks, from book sizes to blues stations—the term “format” circulates in a staggering array of contexts and applies to entirely dissimilar objects and practices. How can such a pliable notion meaningfully function as an instrument of classification in so many industries and scientific communities? Comprising a wide range of case studies on the standards, practices, and politics of formats from scholars of photography, film, radio, television, and the Internet, Format Matters charts the many ways in which formats shape and are shaped by past and present media cultures. This volume represents the first sustained collaborative effort ...
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This book is addressed to everyone who is struggling and experimenting today, to everyone who is a true contemporary of what Stengers dares to call “the intrusion of Gaia,” this “nature” that has left behind its traditional role and now has the power to question us all. In Catastrophic Times is neither a book of prophecy nor a survival guide. Here, Stengers reminds us that it falls to us to experiment with the apparatuses that make us capable of surviving without sinking into barbarism, to create what nourishes trust where panicked impotence threatens.

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