[iDC] The difference between privacy and anonymity

Sean Cubitt scubitt at unimelb.edu.au
Mon Sep 28 13:56:12 UTC 2009

Hey jodi

Really wd like to reply but as I said to brian offlist I'm off on the great
silver bird back to Oz tomorrow at crack o dawn.

I think I sense a shared lack of excitement about the schiz as The Solution:
not just melting down the cartesian subject but something about how we
rebuild collectively

I rather fear the postautonomist idea of examples and models that escape
capital's organisational command is out of date: capital has evolved and
learned how to use the unusably autonomous - that's why facebook won't
overcome the e-mail list (see current discussion on nettime)

At the same time the Scratch Orchestra of the Mind is still playing its
interminable and unlistenable rave - sometimes we just have to go back.

Apart from Cornelius Cardew and Harvey matuso, we have communally the
possibility of returning to Brazil -- Illich, Freire, and others of that day
_ Flusser of course, Boal . . . - lost wonders of hope . . .. Maybe that is
the sort of place we shd be looking


On 28/09/09 2:11 PM, "Dean, Jodi" <JDEAN at hws.edu> wrote:

> Brian writes:
> But the difficult question is, how exactly
> does a self become a post-individual?
> Doesn't this de-individualization require an effort at least as
> deliberate as that undertaken by the corporations -- and doesn't
> it therefore entail sites, toolkits and processes of
> experimentation, in opposition to the statistically configured,
> profit-driven targeting procedures that characterize control
> environments? These places, toolkits and experimental processes
> form a kind of expanded artistic practice, against the background
> of the society of control. The conundrum is that the shedding of
> the self does not seem to occur through the simple revelation of
> a recognizable and pre-existing commonality, but instead it
> happens as a singularizing event, offering a specific experience
> of intentionality in and through multiplicity. Simply put, you
> transform into a collective singularity. Is it possible to
> recognize a common transformative capacity operating in other
> singular processes -- and to develop broad and effective
> solidarities on the basis of egalitarian struggles for the
> material and cultural conditions that would allow us all to shed
> the capitalist self through singular experiments?
> One way to approach this question is to note that contemporary socio-economic
> conditions have already done much of the work
> of de-individualization. That is, contemporary subjects have much more
> fragile, mutable, unstable identities than, say, the subjects
> of disciplinary society. Some of the work done on this includes Zygmunt Bauman
> and Dany-Robert Dufour (The Art of Shrinking Heads).
> I've worked on these themes via Zizek in terms of the decline of symbolic
> efficiency and the collapse of symbolic identities (as opposed
> to imaginary identities). Yet another approach to the same problem can be
> accessed via Agamben's 'whatever being'. Dominic Pettman
> is very good on this (Love and Other Technologies).
> At any rate, these different approaches don't emphasize shedding the self but
> attend to the different shapings selves are taking (different
> from the mythic subjects 'modern individual' or 'disciplinary subject.'). All
> emphasize that these subjects do not form in terms of stable symbolically
> given identities (in terms of sex, race, ethnicity, sexuality, class) but take
> on more temporary, mobile, identities. For some theorists, this makes them
> more
> vulnerable to the securities offered by fundamentalisms. Other theorists argue
> that this makes contemporary subjects less likely to be co-opted into
> fundamentalisms. And for still other theorists the problem is that such
> subjectivities are too loose to be understood as capable of opposition to or
> solidarity in the face of anything.
> I would be very interested in tool-kits of commonality. I think, though, that
> an emphasis on singularity heightens already present tendencies that
> lead away from collectivity.
> Jodi

Prof Sean Cubitt
scubitt at unimelb.edu.au
Media and Communications Program
Faculty of Arts
Room 127 John Medley East
The University of Melbourne
Parkville VIC 3010

Tel: + 61 3 8344 3667
Fax:+ 61 3 8344 5494
M: 0448 304 004
Skype: seancubitt

Editor-in-Chief Leonardo Book Series

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