upcoming & recent events

interview

June 12, 2017

Following my comments for Hromadske TV (Ukraine) regarding President Poroshenko’s ban of the Russian social media (VK & Odnoklassniki) as well as Yandex and Mail.ru in Ukraine, Vitalii Atanasov asked to elaborate on some points made for Hromadske. This is a bit shortened version of our dialogue translated in Ukrainian and here is an English version.

And: a fragment from the final part of this conversation:

By implementing this ban, however, Ukraine is not different from other counties. Every government has realized by now that they have got a new animal in the political jungle. This animal reminds of the monstrous Thing from Carpenter’s horror – it is unruly, unpredictable, deadly.

The superior intelligence, it becomes us, learns from us and all about us, by parasiting the delicate network of our invisible relations, and then it absorbs us to nourish its non-human core. This social media monster “moves fast and breaks things” and the governments understand they have to survive in one space with it. They are all calculating now what is more beneficial and less risky for them to do: to burn this monster, tame it somehow, make human scarifies, or use it against the enemy. So, I guess, we will see all these scenarios. One is currently unfolding in Ukraine.

 

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research trips

August 21 – November 27, 2016  |  Ukraine & Georgia

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The chilling beauty of the Cold War architecture: “Chernobyl 2” – the Soviet radar system DUGA aka “the Russian Woodpecker” (1976-1989). October 1, 2016

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Photos by Anna Dolidze, Margret Grebowicz, Valentina Semenikhina, the Center for Urban History and myself.

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Interviewed the legendary 95-year-old pioneer of the Soviet computer technologies Boris Malinovsky. We met in one of the smallest museums I’ve ever seen, the one dedicated to the history of comupetr science in Ukraine, organized and run by Malinosky himself and hosted at the House of Scientists in Kyiv. September 29, 2016

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publications

Interpassive User: Complicity and the Returns of Cybernetics – Fibreculture Journal 25 (2015)

The essay explores the notions of “extension” and “prosthesis” as two different logics of being with technology. I trace the distinction between them to the work of McLuhan influenced by both Norbert Wiener and Buckminster Fuller. I argue that the logic of softwarization (Manovich, 2013) is similar to the logic of extension; while the logic of appification (IDC, 2010) is similar to that of prosthesis. The former is the logic of metonymy, while the latter is the logic of metaphor. I explain why such distinction is useful for reading mobile / social apps and the new practices they enable. I conclude by raising the questions about users’ enthusiasm and complicity within the bio-technological cybernetic assemblage.

Cinema for A Missing People: Gilles Deleuze’s Crystal Image and Alexander Dovzhenko’s Zvenyhora – Harvard Ukrainian Studies 32-33, no. 1-4 (2015)

The essay discusses Dovzhenko’s 1928 film Zvenyhora, which Deleuze uses in a second book of Cinema to illustrate his notion of the crystal-image of time, the only film made before the WW2 among many examples of the time-image that Deleuze generously offers in this volume. I also read Zvenyhora as an instance of minor cinema, with all the potential of the minor attributed to it by Deleuze and Guattari in their work Kafka: Toward a Minor Literature and others text written separately and together.