Glitch Ontology is an experiment in intermedia art, writing, and performance. In this work, artist, novelist, and theorist Mark Amerika’s live spoken word poetry is transmitted at a distance via Skype and layered over a live in-house screening of his Lake Como Remix video artwork. During the performance, Amerika mashes up theoretical texts and avant-pop literary references while projecting a retro-futurist glitch aesthetics. Sampling from a variety of sources including French post-structuralist theory, technical manuals, gospel scripts, and his own hypertextual fiction, the piece intends to transform personal critical practice into an auto-affective technological delivery system.Glitch Ontology (A Video Performance)
Although the video-essay here implicitly argues against the print-literacy form of an abstract, and that the forms of scholarship available here explicitly demonstrate and argue that we cannot simply translate this type of multimodal scholarship into a textual abstracted message outside of the media forms, this abstract gives access to search engine bots. In that sense, this is primarily an abstract for machine reading search engine bots and not merely for human readers. Key Phrases: Multimodal Scholarship, Open Access, Visceral Scholarship Online, Folk Vine, Digital Humanities, On Revolution, Lynn Tomlinson, Roving Eye Press, Punctum Books, Intimate Bureaucracies, Bob Brown, readies, rovingeyepress.com, Robert Carlton Brown, folkvine.org, redefining, multiple audiences for one message, Beuys, McLuhan, Ulmer, Saper.Disrupting Scholarship
The term “mattering” in Mattering Press comes from science and technology studies (STS), which brings together a growing number social anthropologists, sociologists, human geographers, cultural economists, and many others with the aim of problematizing science’s self-understanding as a disembedded and disembodied undertaking. STS as a field was established in the late 1970s and early 1980s, when the first ethnographic studies of some Western European and North American laboratories were published. Since then, STS scholars have extended their gaze to a wide range of sites, from hospitals through high-tech innovation centres to stock exchange trading rooms, in order to explore how scientific knowledge is being produced and distributed through seemingly trivial material practices—and how it could be produced and distributed differently. Ironically, what’s largely missing from the list of usual sites in STS-inspired works are the institutions that play one of the most important roles in shaping the academic world STS scholars themselves operate in, namely publishers. To address this hiatus, Mattering Press was established in 2012 by a small group of young STS scholars with the aim of better understanding current developments in academic publishing by actively participating in them. In this short paper, I will try to articulate what the politics of such an active participation might be using the case of illegal—samizdat—publishing in the 1970s and 1980s. First, I will briefly recount the history of samizdat production in Central and Eastern Europe in general and in Hungary in particular. Drawing on the insights of samizdat research, I will then identify three dimensions of the politics of self-publishing: materiality, experimentation, and the ethics of openness. Finally, by mobilizing some STS resources, I will discuss how these three dimensions can be simultaneously captured by the term “mattering,” and the publishing practices of Mattering Press.Three Dimensions of the Politics of Self-Publishing
Recently launched, the Post-Digital Publishing Archive (P—DPA) is an online platform that allows users to systematically collect, organize, and keep track of art and design experiences at the intersection of publishing and digital technology. Filling a gap in the discussion, which is generally led by the narrative of innovation, P—DPA focuses on projects that investigate the social, cultural, and economic dynamics of publishing through a DIY approach, custom tools, and the counterintuitive employment of popular platforms. Like every archive, P—DPA embodies a specific attitude that is mainly expressed by the criteria employed to select the works and by the multiple relations among them. How can the materiality of such works be properly defined through a categorization system? What technological, processual, and signifying aspects need to be taken into account? By acting as an inventory of speculative strategies, P—DPA aims to become a reference point for designers and artists interested in publishing and indirectly extend its very notion.The Post-Digital Publishing Archive: An Inventory of Speculative Strategies
Theories of materiality include attention to the literal, forensic, formal, and distributed—to which categories the “performative” adds another dimension, one that is premised on the instantiated and situated experience of an aesthetic work rather assuming its existence as a self-evident, autonomous object defined by inherent properties. The idea of performativity is also crucial to diagrams—drawings that work, that are generative in their activity because of structural features that spatialize semantic relations and make spatial relations semantic. Because diagrams are exemplary—even paradigmatic—they offer a way to reconceptualize approaches to design and reading/viewing aesthetic artifacts across a broad range of artistic works and practices. This paper proposes that the “diagrammatic” and “performative” concepts offer a way to think about aesthetic practice from a theoretical perspective that draws on non-representational and new materialist perspectives that embody crucial principles of humanistic epistemology relevant to the creation of knowledge in the digital environment. Examples from the history of information visualization, poetics, book arts, and digital arts will be used to illustrate these principles.Diagrammatic Form and Performative Materiality
Currently, literary media are changing again with the read-write controlled consumption interfaces of e-books, smart phones, tablets, and web 2.0 reading-writing platforms. In this short talk, I aim to sketch out how we can apply an interface criticism to these changes in order to find out how contemporary literary and cultural interfaces are structured and how they can be explored critically and reflexively in art practice.Ink After Print: Literary Interface Criticism
In a recursive loop that turns around the hyphen that both connects research to creation and keeps them alive in their difference, 10 Propositions for Research-Creation is a manifesto for a thinking-in-action that foregrounds the operative potential of a speculative pragmatism that is capable of creating altereconomies of value.10 Propositions for Research-Creation
My contribution discusses diffractive reading and asks questions about the spatiotemporality of diffractive reading: where and when does diffraction happen in reading processes? Furthering Donna Haraway’s 1992/1997 formulations, Karen Barad practices the reading through one another of texts and/or oeuvres in her 2003 article “Posthumanist Performativity.” Furthermore, Barad is very clear about the distinction between classical and quantum ways of conceptualizing diffraction in Meeting the Universe Halfway (2007). In my contribution I unravel these two ways of reading diffractive reading by discussing my own diffractive readings, published from 2011 onwards. I attempt to come up with a very precise answer to the spatiotemporality of diffractive reading, which is explored at length in the work I have done on Susanne K. Langer’s 1953 Feeling and Form: A Theory of Art Developed from Philosophy in a New Key. I also discuss how this work is in and of itself diffractive.Reading Diffractive Reading: Where and When Does Diffraction Happen?
This paper takes recent methodological innovations and related conceptual developments as an opportunity to reflect on the possibilities of recuperating what may be considered a “humanist” method—oral history—for “more-than-human” research. Oral history, often deployed in the context of subjects of social movements asserting agency and making history, may seem ? to the paradigmatic “humanist method.” Many recent methodological innovations emerge out of what have variously been termed the affective turn, the emergence of posthumanism, animal studies, and the turn to nature and materiality. The paper takes as its departure point Sarah Whatmore’s careful articulation of “the urgent need to supplement humanist methods that rely on generating talk and text, with experimental practices that amplify other sensory, bodily and affective registers and extend the company and modality of what constitutes a research subject” (Whatmore 2006: 606–7). Though Whatmore is not entirely dismissive of humanist methods, I ask whether it makes sense to think of methods as humanist, drawing analogies with feminist reflections on whether there is a “feminist method.” I suggest we reconsider oral history as a practice, and not merely a technique which generates talk and text, and reconceptualize our notions of “human/ist” research subjects. I explore the possibilities of rethinking methods, such as oral history, for more-than-human research, through drawing on my own ethnographic oral history research on women’s environmental activism.Humanist Methods in a “More-than-Human” World?