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Suite on "Spiritus Silvestre": For Symphony

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ISBN: 9780615747101 Year: Pages: 44 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0020.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Music
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:45
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Charles D. Keeling, climate science, oceanography, music

Vital Reenchantments: Biophilia, Gaia, Cosmos, and the Affectively Ecological

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ISBN: 9781950192076 9781950192083 Year: Pages: 276 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0240.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2019-03-26 11:21:03
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Not all charms fly at the touch of cold philosophy. Vital Reenchantments examines so-called cold philosophy, or science, that does precisely the opposite — rather than mercilessly emptying out and unweaving, it operates as a philosophy that animates. More specifically, Greyson closely examines how a specific group of “poet-in-scientists” of the late 1970s and 1980s directed attention to the “wondrous” unfolding of life, at a time when the counter-culture in particular had made the institution of science synonymous with technologies of alienation and destruction. In this vein, Vital Reenchantments takes up E.O. Wilson’s Biophilia (1984), James Lovelock’s Gaia (1979), and Carl Sagan’s Cosmos (1980), in order to show how each work fleshes out scientific concepts with a unique attention to “affective wonder,” understood as the experience of and attunement to novel effects. What is so unique about these works is that they reenchant the scientific world without pandering to what Richard Dawkins will later term “cosmic sentimentality.” Carl Sagan may have said “We are made of starstuff,” but he would never insist, as Joni Mitchell did in 1969, that “we’ve got to get ourselves back to the garden.” Instead, they insist on a third way that does not rely on the idea of an ecological Eden — a vigorously vital materialism in which the affective trumps the sentimental. Further, the historical emergence of these works, all published within 5 years of each other, was no accident: each book responded to an ever deepening sense of environmental crisis, certainly, but along with it they responded to, perhaps more than marginally related, narratives of the large-scale disenchantment brought on by modernity or science, and more often than not a mixture of the two. Greyson argues that the persistence of these works and their affectively-charged scientific concepts in contemporary popular culture and ecological thought is no accident. As such, these works deserve recognition as far more than “popular science” and can be seen as essential contributions to more contemporary vital materialist thought and ecological theory. No doubt this talk of enchantment and wonder, so tied to immediate experience, can seem trivial in the face of any number of environmental crises (global warming first among these) that do not just appear ominously on the horizon, but loom as never before. The first task of this book thus to pose the same question that Jane Bennett does at the end of her own work on enchantment: “How can someone write a book about enchantment in such a world?” Does this approach really provide, as Latour phrases it, “a way to bridge the distance between the scale of the phenomena we hear about and the tiny Umwelt inside which we witness, as if it were a fish inside its bowl, an ocean of catastrophes that are supposed to unfold”? Ultimately, Vital Reenchantments argues that affective ecologies, properly attended to, point toward an open present, one that broadens the horizons of the “fish bowl” and allows us to imagine engendering futures that are neither naively hopeful nor hopelessly apocalyptic.

Hack the Experience: Tools for Artists from Cognitive Science

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ISBN: 9781947447653 9781947447660 Year: Pages: 164 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0206.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: History
Added to DOAB on : 2019-03-26 11:21:04
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Hack The Experience will reframe your perspective on how your audience engages your work. This will happen as you learn how to control attention through spatial and time-based techniques that you can harness as you build immersive installations or as you think about how to best arrange your work in an exhibition. You’ll learn things about the senses and how they interface with attention so that you can build in visceral forms of interactivity, engage people’s empathetic responses, and frame their moods. This book is a dense bouillon-cube of techniques that you can adapt and apply to your personal practice, and it’s a book that will walk you step-by-step through skill sets from ethnography, cognitive science, and multi-modal metaphors. The core argument of this book is that art is a form of cognitive engineering and that the physical environment (or objects in the physical environment) can be shaped to maximize emotional and sensory experience. Many types of art will benefit from this handbook (because cognition is pervasive in our experience of art), but it is particularly relevant to immersive experiential works such as installations, participatory/interactive environments, performance art, curatorial practice, architecture and landscape architecture, complex durational works, and works requiring new models of documentation. These types of work benefit from the empirical findings of cognitive science because intentionally leveraging basic human cognition in artworks can give participants new ways of seeing the world that are cognitively relevant. This leveraging process provides a new layer in the construction of conceptually grounded works.

Photography in the Middle: Dispatches on Media Ecologies and Aesthetics

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ISBN: 9780998237510 Year: Pages: 176 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0154.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Media and communication
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:35
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It’s easy to forget there’s a war on when the front line is everywhere encrypted in plain sight. Gathered in this book’s several chapters are dispatches on the role of photography in a War Universe, a space and time in which photographers such as Hilla Becher, Don McCullin and Eadweard Muybridge exist only insofar as they are a mark of possession, in the sway of larger forces. These photographers are conceptual personae that collectively fabulate a different kind of photography, a paraphotography in which the camera produces negative abyssal flashes or ‘endarkenment.’ In his Vietnam War memoir, Dispatches, Michael Herr imagines a ‘dropped camera’ receiving ‘jumping and falling’ images, images which capture the weird indivisibility of medium and mediated in a time of war. The movies and the war, the photographs and the torn bodies, fused and exchanged. Reporting from the chaos at the middle of things, Herr invokes a kind of writing attuned to this experience. Photography in the Middle, eschewing a high theoretical mode, seeks to exploit the bag of tricks that is the dispatch. The dispatch makes no grand statement about the progress of the war. Cultivating the most perverse implications of its sources, it tries to express what the daily briefing never can. Ports of entry in the script we’re given, odd and hasty little glyphs, unhelpful rips in the cover story, dispatches are futile, dark intuitions, an expeditious inefficacy. They are bleak but necessary responses to an indifferent world in which any action whatever has little noticeable effect.

Knocking the Hustle: Against the Neoliberal Turn in Black Politics

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ISBN: 9780692540794 Year: Pages: 190 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0121.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Social Sciences
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:37
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Over the past several years scholars, activists, and analysts have begun to examine the growing divide between the wealthy and the rest of us, suggesting that the divide can be traced to the neoliberal turn. “I’m not a business man; I’m a business, man.” Perhaps no better statement gets at the heart of this turn. Increasingly we’re being forced to think of ourselves in entrepreneurial terms, forced to take more and more responsibility for developing our “human capital.” Furthermore a range of institutions from churches to schools to entire cities have been remade, restructured to in order to perform like businesses. Finally, even political concepts like freedom, and democracy have been significantly altered. As a result we face higher levels of inequality than any other time over the last century. In Knocking the Hustle: Against the Neoliberal Turn in Black Politics, Lester K. Spence writes the first book length effort to chart the effects of this transformation on African American communities, in an attempt to revitalize the black political imagination. Rather than asking black men and women to “hustle harder” Spence criticizes the act of hustling itself as a tactic used to demobilize and disempower the communities most in need of empowerment.

The Funambulist Pamphlets 9: Science Fiction

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ISBN: 9780615987835 Year: Pages: 108 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0069.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Architecture
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:41
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The Funambulist Pamphlets is a series of small books archiving articles published on The Funambulist, collected according to specific themes. These volumes propose a different articulation of texts than the usual chronological one. The eleven volumes are respectively dedicated to Spinoza, Foucault, Deleuze, Legal Theory, Occupy Wall Street, Palestine, Cruel Designs, Arakawa + Madeline Gins, Science Fiction, Literature, and Cinema.

On an Ungrounded Earth: Towards a New Geophilosophy

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ISBN: 9780615785387 Year: Pages: 118 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0025.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Philosophy
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:45
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For too long, the Earth has been used to ground thought instead of bending it; such grounding leaves the planet as nothing but a stage for phenomenology, deconstruction, or other forms of anthropocentric philosophy. In far too much continental philosophy, the Earth is a cold, dead place enlivened only by human thought—either as a thing to be exploited, or as an object of nostalgia. Geophilosophy seeks instead to question the ground of thinking itself, the relation of the inorganic to the capacities and limits of thought. This book constructs an eclectic variant of geophilosophy through engagements with digging machines, nuclear waste, cyclones and volcanoes, giant worms, secret vessels, decay, subterranean cities, hell, demon souls, black suns, and xenoarcheaology, via continental theory (Nietzsche, Schelling, Deleuze, et alia) and various cultural objects such as horror films, videogames, and weird Lovecraftian fictions, with special attention to Speculative Realism and the work of Reza Negarestani. In a time where the earth as a whole is threatened by ecological collapse, On an Ungrounded Earth generates a perversely realist account of the earth as a dynamic engine materially invading and upsetting our attempts to reduce it to merely the ground beneath our feet.

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