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Leonard Suryajaya: Homeland Security (Detail)
  • general relativity
  • young readers
  • physics
  • light
  • discovery
»The camera is my »exosomatic extension‹.«
  • mediality
  • exhibition
  • fiction
  • contemporary art
  • Allan Sekula
  • realism
  • conversation
  • photography
  • globalization
  • testimony
  • Poland
  • memory
MERRY XENOTISM!
  • postcolonialism
  • exotism
  • film
  • contemporary culture
  • contemporary literature
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Current Texts

Ute Holl

Dream, Clouds, Off, Exile

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  • communism
  • monotheism
  • film
  • Karl Marx
  • exile
Art in a False Present
Art in a False Present

Anselm Franke (ed.), Tom Holert (ed.)

Neolithic Childhood

The impression that “Neolithic Childhood” is a monographic project, dedicated to a single personality from history, is deceptive. Einstein himself was deeply wary of the monograph genre. In the early 1930s, he wrote that it served the “normalization” of art, because it ensured that “a person and their work are too sharply separated and that both are removed from significative relations.” 1 He emphatically shifted those “significative relations”—the social, political, economic, religious, epistemological, anthropological, and psychological contexts that determine a...
  • art history
  • 1930s
  • ethnology
  • avant-garde
Born too late to see the war, too soon to forget it.
Born too late to see the war, too soon to forget it.

Reiner Schürmann

Origins

"This is a book about the power that a past War holds over a German growing up in the 1950s and 1960s: born too late to see that war and too early to forget it. The narrative shows how painfully public events — the shadows, rather, of events gone by — intrude upon a life and shape it. The English translation appears at a moment when most of the key issues have radically changed. Germany has signed what amounts to a...
  • 1968
  • autobiography
  • emigration
  • memory
  • homosexuality
Fiction

Maël Renouard

On Memory Atrophy

Externalized memory had always proceeded by contractions, summaries, reductions, selections, breaks in flow, as well as by organization, classification, boiling down. Card catalogues reduced thousands of works to a few key notions; tables of contents contracted the hundreds of pages in a given book. The sign itself was the first abbreviation of experience. An epic stitched of words was an abbreviation of the war, the long years of which were reduced to a few nights of recitation; the written text that recorded the epic was a contraction of the oral narration which pushed aside its sensory richness, melody, life in a thousand details. In accumulating, every level of abbreviation reconstituted an infinite flow, a new dilation that would be contracted in its turn. From the plurality of pages to the index and the table of contents; from the plurality of books to card catalogues.

The abbreviated elements were further arranged, situated...

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Fiction

Diane Williams

How about some string?

I said “Would you like a rope? You know that haul you have is not secured properly.”
“No,” he said, “but I see you have string!”
“If this comes into motion—” I said, “you should use a rope.”
“Any poison ivy on that? ” he asked me, and I told him my rope had been in the barn peacefully for years.
He took a length of it to the bedside table. He had no concept for what wood could endure.
“Table must have broken when I lashed it onto the truck,” he said.
And, when he was moving the sewing machine, he let the cast iron wheels—bang, bang on the stair.
I had settled down to pack up the flamingo cookie jar, the cutlery, and the cookware, but stopped briefly, for how many times do you catch sudden sight of something heartfelt?
I saw our milk cows in their slow...

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An immodest proposal
An immodest proposal

Stephen Barber

A War of Fragments: World Versus America

J.G. Ballard’s self-declared ‘Immodest Proposal’ for a global war-­alliance to exact the destruction of America demonstrates the provocatory zeal of his last fiction plans, as well as their enduring prescience. As Ballard emphasises several times in the World Versus America notebooks, he is utterly serious in his concerns and visions. Although the Ballard ­estate declined permission for any images of pages from the World Versus America archival notebooks to accompany this essay, any member of the general public interested to do...
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Discourse
From xenolinguistics to cephalo­pods

From xenolinguistics to cephalo­pods

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  • utopia
  • communication media
  • communication
  • semiotics and semiology
  • science fiction
  • linguistics
Discourse

Marcus Quent

Belief in the world is what we most lack.

It was Gilles Deleuze who in various contexts underlined that what we most lacked was “belief in the world.” The odd remark appears, for example, in a conversation in 1990 with the Italian Marxist Antonio Negri about revolutionary emergence and the political force of minorities. In this dialogue Negri examines his interlocutor’s thought in the light of the “problem of the political,” which connects the various stages of the philosopher’s intellectual biography. Deleuze’s remark here is the reprise of a motif that would be familiar to readers of his second book on cinema, which appeared in 1985, in which Deleuze contends that the “power of modern cinema” is based on its ability to “give us back” our lost “belief in the world.”

At the end of the conversation Negri asks his dialogue partner about the possibility of present-day processes of subjectivization. After initially emphasizing the “rebellious spontaneity” of such processes, Deleuze...

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Digital disrupture
Digital disrupture

Dieter Mersch

Digital Criticism

We really need an analysis of algorithmic conditions and their paradoxes and ambiguities that gives them an adequate framework and horizon. But instead we currently seem to be finding an algorithmic solution of the algorithmic, much as digital solutions are being offered for the problems of the digital public sphere, in the way that IT corporations, for example, use exclusively mathematical procedures to evaluate and delete “fake news,” inappropriate portrayals, or the violation of personal rights. This tends to result...
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Humanities
Humanity is a metahuman concept.

Rolf Bossart, Milo Rau

Humanity is a metahuman concept.

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  • transhumanism
  • artistic practice
  • postmodernism
  • art theory
  • re-enactment
  • realism
Humanities

Alexander García Düttmann

What is the Contemporary?

The contemporary seems to be a rare animal that can rotate on its own neck and exhibit different faces, depending on whether we think of it as a given or an uncertain achievement, as an empty, abstract, deceptive present or a springboard into the past and the untimeliness of creation. But if the contemporary is indeed Janus-faced, even the sadness of an encounter with its emptiness, with the semblance of radicalism, must still relate to the excitement of leaping into “now time” or starting to write. Is the present not necessarily empty and therefore always a cause for sadness, also in the case when, in acquiring the sense, or developing the instinct, that is required to venture into the past’s “now time,” we begin to depart from it? In one of his last letters to a young poet, dating from 1904, Rilke distinguishes between two forms of sadness, or rather...

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  • poetry
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  • contemporary art
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