CFP –  Machine Communication

communication +1 invites submissions for its upcoming issue, Machine Communication.

Edited by David Gunkel and Zachary McDowell

With this special issue we hope to explore the boundaries of communication beyond the human subject and the restrictions of humanism by considering that which is radically other – the machine. We seek articles that interrogate the opportunities and challenges that emerge around, within, and from interactions and engagements with machines of all types and varieties. By examining the full range of human-machine interactions, machine-machine interactions, or other hitherto unanticipated configurations, we hope to assemble a collection of ground-breaking essays that push the boundaries of our discipline and probe the new social configurations of the 21st century.
Topics may include but are not limited to:

  • Algorithmic Culture – Influence of machines on human or other non-machine culture
  • Automation – Drones, Robots, or other automated systems that exist in the world and take part in a variety of tasks
  • Artificial Intelligence – Either the possibilities of AGI (artificial general intelligence) or more specific smart systems
  • Big Data, Deep Learning, Neural Networks and other recent innovations in computer science
  • The Internet of Things
  • Cybernetics, Bioinformatics, Knowledge Representation, or various applications of Software Theory.

Please submit short proposals of no more than 500 words by December 13th, 2015 to communicationplusone@gmail.com.

Upon invitation, full text submissions will be due April 5th, 2016, with expected publication in September, 2016.

About the Journal

The aim of communication +1 is to promote new approaches to and open new horizons in the study of communication from an interdisciplinary perspective. We are particularly committed to promoting research that seeks to constitute new areas of inquiry and to explore new frontiers of theoretical activities linking the study of communication to both established and emerging research programs in the humanities, social sciences, and arts. Other than the commitment to rigorous scholarship, communication +1 sets no specific agenda. Its primary objective is to create is a space for thoughtful experiments and for communicating these experiments.

communication +1 is an open access journal supported by University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries and the Department of Communication

Editor in Chief: Briankle G. Chang, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Managing Editor: Zachary J. McDowell, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Advisory Board

  • Kuan-Hsing Chen, National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan
  • Bernard Geoghegan, Humboldt-Universität, Germany
  • Lawrence Grossberg, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
  • David Gunkel, Northern Illinois University
  • Catherine Malabou, Kingston University, United Kingdom
  • Jussi Parikka, University of Southampton, United Kingdom
  • John Durham Peters, University of Iowa
  • Johnathan Sterne, McGill University
  • Ted Striphas, University of Colorado, Boulder
  • Greg Wise, Arizona State University

For more information or to participate in the communicationplusone.org project, please email communicationplusone@gmail.com

New Issue: Occult Communications: On Instrumentation, Esotericism, and Epistemology

communication +1 is pleased to present: Occult Communications: On Instrumentation, Esotericism, and Epistemology

* Guest Edited by Bernard Dionysius Geoghegan *

What can the occult, the obscure, and the incommunicable teach us about the history of communications and culture? Occult Communications: On Instrumentation, Esotericism, and Epistemology (ed. Bernard Dionysius Geoghegan), the newly released issue of Communication+1, examines how spiritualism, esotericism, and occultism have shaped the dominant cultures of reason in European and North American contexts from the seventeenth-century until today. Case studies in media archaeology and historical epistemology on issues such as spirit photography, horror films, exorcisms, stage magic, surrealism, and brains-in-vats examine so-called magical thinking and its operations at the heart of modern scientific and technological reason.

Contributors includes Tessel M. Bauduin, Anthony Enns, Bernard Dionysius Geoghegan, Stephan Gregory, Christian Kassung, Petra Löffler, Margarida Medeiros, Simone Natale, Katherina Rein, Laurence Rickels, Erhard Schüttpelz, Jeffrey Sconce, Florian Sprenger, and Ehler Voss.

To the authors we extend our deep gratitude for their contributions. To the readers we extend our invitation for input and suggestions.

The following pages begin a conversation we hope will continue. And it is to those whom have spoken we shall turn.

For free access to the issue, please visit http://scholarworks.umass.edu/cpo/.

communication +1 is an open access journal supported by University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries and the Department of Communication

* Editor in Chief: Briankle G. Chang, University of Massachusetts Amherst

* Managing Editor: Zachary J. McDowell, University of Massachusetts Amherst

*Advisory Board*

Kuan-Hsing Chen, National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan
Bernard Geoghegan, Humboldt-Universität, Germany
Lawrence Grossberg, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
David Gunkel, Northern Illinois University
Catherine Malabou, Kingston University, United Kingdom
Jussi Parikka, University of Southampton, United Kingdom
John Durham Peters, University of Iowa
Johnathan Sterne, McGill University
Ted Striphas, Indiana University
Greg Wise, Arizona State University

New Book Out Now: A Geology of Media by Jussi Parikka

New book out now: “A Geology of Media” by Jussi Parikka.

Media history if millions, even billions, of years old.  That is the premise of Jussi Parikka’s pioneering and provocative book, A Geology of Media, which argues that to adequately understand contemporary media culture we must set out from material realities that precede media themselves – Earth’s history, geological formations, minerals, and energy.

More information about the book on his site here.

More information at Minnesota University Press here.

New issue: Afterlives of Systems

* Guest Edited by Florian Sprenger and Christina Vagt *

Under the impression of today’s global crisis and the rise of ecological thinking, confronted with smart, ubiquitous technosystems and the impression of interconnectedness, there appears a new urge to excavate the remnants of the past. The articles of this issue suggest that in order to understand present technologies, we need to account the systems thinking that fostered their emergence, and that we cannot gain insight into the afterlives of systems without exploring their technologies.

The nine contributions ask how these debates and affective states survive and live on in today’s discussions of media ecologies, environmentalism, object-oriented philosophies, computer simulations, performative art, and communication technologies. In this sense, they take the renaissance of systems thinking in the late 20th and early 21st Century as an effect of various system crisis and explore new media technologies as stabilizing ‘cures’ against the dystopian future scenarios that emerged after World War II. The articles of this issue suggest that in order to understand present technologies, we need to account the systems thinking that fostered their emergence, and that we cannot gain insight into the afterlives of systems without exploring their technologies

To the authors we extend our deep gratitude for their contributions. To the readers we extend our invitation for input and suggestions.

The following pages begin a conversation we hope will continue. And it is to those whom have spoken we shall turn.

To access this issue please visit scholarworks.umass.edu/cpo/

communication +1 is an open access journal supported by University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries and the Department of Communication

New Issue: Communication and New Materialism

communication +1 is pleased to present our second issue: Communication and New Materialism 

Given the recent emergence of new perspectives in critical theories, such as Object-Oriented Ontology, Speculative Realism, Alien Phenomenology, Flat Ontology, and associated research programs, this issue seeks to explore the implications of these perspectives for the study of communication and media. We use the term, New Materialism, broadly to include all the aforementioned as well as other related approaches in the hope to be as inclusive as possible and to encourage diverse voices and analytic angles that focus on the forms and processes of mediation across different fields. We are particularly interested in works that engage with the theoretical underpinnings of New Materialism to challenge the text-centered approaches in media and communication studies.

To the authors we extend our deep gratitude for their contributions.To the readers we extend our invitation for input and suggestions.

The following pages begin a conversation we hope will continue. And it is to those whom have spoken we shall turn.

To access this issue please visit scholarworks.umass.edu/cpo/

Call for Papers: Afterlives of Systems

Call for Papers: Afterlives of Systems
communication+1, Volume 3, 2014
Guest Editors: Christina Vagt, Florian Sprenger

 This issue of communication+1 investigates the afterlives of systems since the early 20th century, following Aby Warburgs and Walter Benjamins historiographical concept of afterlife as the transformations and iterations a concept traverses to become productive at a specific moment in time. Under the impression of todays global crisis phenomena and the rise of an ‘ecological paradigm’ (Erich Hörl), we ask for papers that explore these afterlives from a historical or systematic perspective. We are interested in the promises, plausibilities and argumentative resources of system-oriented thinking, holistic or vitalistic worldviews and mechanistic approaches on different fields of knowledge during the 20th century and their current revival in the 21st century.

When system-oriented thinking emerged within biological contexts in the first half of the 20th century, it came along with universal pretensions: The concepts of ecosystems (Tansley) and general systems theory (von Bertalanffy) were both immersed in longstanding struggles between materialism and holism. From this context stemmed the rise of cybernetics and neocybernetics after the Second World War, which incorporated the principles of feedback and self organization (Maturana/Varela/von Foerster/Luhmann). System-oriented thinking in the once new fields of ecology, cybernetics, or systems theory itself seemed to offer an alternative to the futile opposition of mechanistic or atomistic perspective on the one side and holistic, organicistic or vitalistic perspectives on the other side. Nonetheless, underlying this institutionalization of system-oriented thought were diverse models of the relationship between a system and its parts, and alongside with that a renaissance of holistic concepts, e.g. holocoen (Friedrichs), biosphere (Vernadsky), noosphere (Teilhard de Chardin), synergetics (Buckminster Fuller), or Gaia (Lovelock).

How do these debates and affective states survive and live on in today’s discussions on new materialisms, object-oriented philosophies, media ecologies, or environmentalisms? Was the renaissance of holism in 20th century thought an effect of various system crisis, taking new media technologies such as television, computers, satellites and space shuttles as stabilizing ‘cure’ against dystopian future scenarios after World War II? Or should we understand the afterlives of systems within a broader perspective of new media induced models of subjectivity and agency that still have to be explored? Which role does the figure of the observer play in all this? Are there notions of systems in arts and architecture that are not incorporated in the historical struggles? What does it mean when materialisms today become holistic again? What is systemic in assemblages?

Please submit short proposals of no more than 500 words by November 25th, 2013 to afterlivesofsystems@gmail.com.

Upon invitation, full text submissions will be due March 31st, 2014, with expected publication in July, 2014. Although there is no set word limit, suggested length for the final submission is between 4500 and 7000 words.