Cronenberg’s Videodrome: the Catastrophe of Desire

My first viewing of David Cronenberg’s Videodrome (1983) was shattering. I was upended by its dislocated narrative rather than the body horror of its denouement, – where image extrudes into reality and bodies develop erogenous control surfaces or explode into cancerous larvae. I could not see how this unreality emerged from the film it initially […]

Note on Machine Phenomenology and the Politics of Sounds

The ontological question: What is sound? is typically inflected in a Platonic fashion. It asks after the unitary nature of audibilia. Main Kinds of Auditory Ontology Proximal – sounds are private, non-representational sensations or qualia Medial – ‘sounds are compressive waves in an elastic medium’ (Locke) Locative – sounds are ‘found where they are heard’ […]

Reza Negarestani’s Complexity Critique of Unbounded Posthumanism

Some initial thoughts about Reza Negerastani’s complexity critique of the Disconnection Thesis made during a recent New Centre Seminar: ‘The Future of Intelligence in the Age of Intellectual Scarcity’: The critique hinges on the claim that unbounded posthumanism depends on an instability analysis of complex systems. To wit, that in a dynamic system characterized by […]

Fragment on Biomorphic Posthumanism

  Biomorphs are always speculative or ‘critical bodies’, experiments in unliving. Posthumanism, unbound, provides a speculative deployment of life without limiting it with any vitalist distinction between life and matter or mechanism. It is a conceptual abattoir. Perhaps, some will remark that my use of ‘speculation’ here is disturbingly reminiscent of its financial sense. Perhaps […]

Mr Amplitude

During the final years of the Institute my father was able to take over a third unit on the Docks. U3 was nicknamed the ‘The Overflow’ and reserved for the specialty suicides, the ones that had become refractory, distracted. They were true agents of decay, without appurtenance to time. I suppose that is his favored […]