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[liberationtech] New Book: Critical Theory and the Digital

Andrés Leopoldo Pacheco Sanfuentes alps6085 at gmail.com
Tue Feb 25 13:25:47 PST 2014


salad is VERY GOOD FOOD. BETTER THAN BBQ or EMPIRICISM

Best Regards | Cordiales Saludos | Grato,

Andrés L. Pacheco Sanfuentes
<alps at acm.org>
+1 (817) 271-9619


On Tue, Feb 25, 2014 at 3:24 PM, Andrés Leopoldo Pacheco Sanfuentes
<alps6085 at gmail.com> wrote:
> David,
>
> It is just so ironic that your book on what I gather is a perspective
> inspired on the Frankfurt School's Critical Theory to the modern
> digital world is published primarily by print media, and at a cost
> that makes it prohibitive to the very people that can benefit "through
> its discussion of how the digital can be transformed by political
> action and the organisation of digital resistance." -  Christian De
> Cock, University of Essex, UK
>
> Best Regards | Cordiales Saludos | Grato,
>
> Andrés L. Pacheco Sanfuentes
> <alps at acm.org>
> +1 (817) 271-9619
>
>
> On Tue, Feb 25, 2014 at 10:37 AM, David Berry <dmberry at gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>> I apologise in advance for my use of words. The publishers are very tiresome
>> in requiring not only words, but also sentences, paragraphs and so forth.
>> There is also an argument in the book. Made up of words. That are actually
>> connected together. At least I hope so. One never knows after having been
>> though the copyediting/proofing process.
>>
>> For those who prefer books in hexadecimal, I plan a forthcoming version,
>> Critical Theory and the Hexadecimal, which will be encrypted using the NSA
>> backdoored random number generator (Dual_EC_DRBG), weak public key
>> cryptography (896bit RSA, no padding, no signatures, no authenticity), the
>> worst cryptographic hash function possible as a KDF (MD2), and XOR as a
>> cipher.* This will be an ironic gesture.
>>
>> :-)
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> * Thanks to Moxie Marlinspike for the text inspiration.
>>
>>
>> On Tue Feb 25 07:25:53 PST 2014, Reed Black reed at unsafeword.org wrote:
>>
>> word salad and the digital
>>
>> On Tue, Feb 25, 2014 at 4:05 AM, David Berry <dmberry at gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>>>
>>> Hi
>>>
>>> I hope you don't mind my announcing my new book *Critical Theory and the
>>> Digital* which explores the contemporary landscape related to
>>> computational technology and argues for an approach that revitalises
>>> critical theory in light of current questions over cryptography, critical
>>> technical practice and related notions of critical digital humanities and
>>> code work. I think that some of the subscribers to this list might find
>>> the
>>> arguments articulated in the book of some interest.
>>>
>>>
>>> http://www.bloomsbury.com/us/critical-theory-and-the-digital-9781441166395/
>>>
>>> This Critical Theory and Contemporary Society volume offers an original
>>> analysis of the role of the digital in today's society. It rearticulates
>>> critical theory by engaging it with the challenges of the digital
>>> revolution to show how the digital is changing the ways in which we lead
>>> our politics, societies, economies, media, and even private lives. In
>>> particular, the work examines how the enlightenment values embedded within
>>> the culture and materiality of digital technology can be used to explain
>>> the changes that are occurring across society.
>>>
>>> Critical Theory and the Digital draws from the critical concepts developed
>>> by critical theorists to demonstrate how the digital needs to be
>>> understood
>>> within a dialectic of potentially democratizing and totalizing technical
>>> power. By relating critical theory to aspects of a code-based digital
>>> world
>>> and the political economy that it leads to, the book introduces the
>>> importance of the digital code in the contemporary world to researchers in
>>> the field of politics, sociology, globalization and media studies.
>>>
>>> Some blurb:
>>>
>>> "'Adorno will not be your Facebook friend.' Instead of lamenting the
>>> cultural elitism of the Frankfurt School, David Berry reopens critical
>>> theory's conceptual toolbox with a renewed curiosity. These days the
>>> theorist is no longer a prophet who ponders the world divorced from the
>>> materiality of communication. It is not enough to merely explore the
>>> technosphere, there is an urgency to radically question digital
>>> technologies. In this age of conflict, the neoliberal consensus culture is
>>> taken to task by critical theory David-Berry-style. In line with the
>>> info-activism of Wikileaks and Snowden, Berry instructs us how to read the
>>> black box that dominates our everyday lives and helps us to develop a new
>>> vocabulary amidst all the crazes, from speculative realism to digital
>>> humanities." -  Geert Lovink, Media Theorist, Amsterdam
>>>
>>> "Berry's timely book engages with a broad range of topics that define our
>>> digital culture. It guides us to the political materiality of software
>>> culture with excellent insights. Importantly, this book updates critical
>>> theory for the digital age." -  Dr Jussi Parikka, Winchester School of
>>> Art,
>>> author of What is Media Archaeology? (2012)
>>>
>>> "In this lucid, learned and highly original book Berry confronts the
>>> nature of digital knowledge in society through the re-invigorated lens of
>>> Critical Theory asking how we can regain control of the knowledge
>>> structures embedded in the digital technologies that we increasingly rely
>>> upon in daily life." -  Michael Bull, author of Sound Moves: iPod Culture
>>> and Urban Experience
>>>
>>> "Critical Theory and the Digital offers an important new addition to
>>> critical theory that explores questions raised by the digital in light of
>>> the work of the Frankfurt school. Providing an accessible and critical
>>> appraisal of the digital world we live in today, the book argues that
>>> critical praxis must today be rethought in light of digital technologies
>>> and the affordances that are made available to state, corporate and civil
>>> society actors. The book offers both a theoretical and a political
>>> contribution: the former through its exploration of how the digital can be
>>> read, written, and hacked critically; the latter through its discussion of
>>> how the digital can be transformed by political action and the
>>> organisation
>>> of digital resistance." -  Christian De Cock, University of Essex, UK
>>>
>>> "Unlike many media studies scholars who refer to the Frankfurt School's
>>> critique of the cultural industries only to show its inapplicability to
>>> the
>>> open source world of the digital age, David Berry accomplishes the
>>> remarkable feat of re-instating that critique for the new brave world that
>>> is afforded by digital technology. Easily moving between Heidegger, Adorno
>>> and Stiegler, Berry mobilizes a formidable array of theoretical resources
>>> in aid of what he calls 'iteracy', an emerging competence in tracking the
>>> contexts in which 'being digital' is continually formed and re-formed. The
>>> result is a milestone in both critical theory and the digital humanities."
>>> -  Steve Fuller, Auguste Comte Chair in Social Epistemology, Department of
>>> Sociology, University of Warwick, UK
>>>
>>> "Bringing dialectical critique to digital culture, David Berry replenishes
>>> the legacy of the Frankfurt School in order to devise strategies to live
>>> within and against the real-time streams of computational capitalism.
>>> Fusing critical theory with the political economy of social media (think
>>> Facebook and Twitter), the surveillance paranoia of NSA, the wild party of
>>> Hacklabs, the secret autonomy of cryptography, and the accelerated economy
>>> of algorithmic trading, Berry registers the contours of the black box that
>>> defines digital labour and life." -  Ned Rossiter, Institute for Culture
>>> and Society, University of Western Sydney, Australia
>>>
>>> Best
>>>
>>> David
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> ---
>>>
>>> Dr. David M. Berry
>>> Reader
>>>
>>> Silverstone 316
>>>
>>> School of Media, Film and Music
>>> University of Sussex,
>>> Falmer,
>>> East Sussex. BN1 8PP
>>>
>>> http://www.sussex.ac.uk/profiles/125219
>>>
>>
>>
>> ---
>>
>> Dr. David M. Berry
>> Reader
>>
>> Silverstone 316
>>
>> School of Media, Film and Music
>> University of Sussex,
>> Falmer,
>> East Sussex. BN1 8PP
>>
>> http://www.sussex.ac.uk/profiles/125219
>>
>>
>> --
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