Category: Assemblage Brain

A new, modified blurb for A Sleepwalker’s Guide to Social Media

SLEEPWALKER_COVER

 

Social media has taken a dark turn, encompassing both economic and political expropriation of the user experience. Users not only give away ownership of their community relations to big platforms, but the potential for positive change through revolutionary contagion is under threat. What was once the domain of pro-democratic movements has been annexed by the far right.

Tony Sampson focuses on the role social media play in this somewhat abrupt capitulation to the dark refrain of post-truth, fake news and hate speech. Positing online users as “sleepwalkers”, he argues that by understanding their collective behaviour we can identify the different lures that are used to capture them and which, in turn, produce their subjectivities.

Drawing on a wide range of theories, this book offers compelling ways to understand social media at a time when it is more important than ever. It is an important reference for students and scholars of media theory, digital media and social media.

selfother
A New Syntax of the User Experience. Diagram by Mikey B Georgeson

Two Assemblage Brain related articles published in AI and Society

There are two Assemblage Brain related articles published in the current issue of AI & Society journal.

I am more than a little excited about these publications since my school history teacher at an Essex comp in the late 1970s, Richard Ennals, set up AI & Society in 1986.

Firstly, Tero Karppi’s review of the book. See Karppi, T. ‘Tony D. Sampson: The Assemblage Brain. Sense Making in Neuroculture.’ AI & Society (2019) 34: 945. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00146-018-0826-8

And next, the first article I wrote after the book was published in Dec 2016.

See Sampson, T.D. ‘Transitions in human–computer interaction: from data embodiment to experience capitalism.’ AI & Society (2019) 34: 835. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00146-018-0822-z

This one develops on themes from the book, including Experience HCI and Capitalism, as well as many of the subsequent Whiteheadian ventures started in AB and picked up again in my next effort.

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TS 20/10/19

Reworking the Brain at Transmediale, 2019 Berlin

Managed to get through (and survive) my talk at the Transmediale Festival here in Berlin yesterday. This one was with the wonderful Hyphen_Labs talking about their Neurospeculative Afrofuturism project in a session called Reworking the Brain.  We were in the auditorium in the Haus der Kulturen der Welt, which is this absolutely huge venue with one of the largest engaged audiences I’ve ever seen at an event like this.

Highlights from the first day were Jackie Wang’s keynote on Carceral Capitalism including some very affecting poetry. Only realized afterwards that it was Jackie who asked me two really interesting/challenging questions during the Reworking the Brain session.

TransmedialeTranmediale3

HKW1Transmediale2

 

Link to Transmediale Events Schedule

Here’s the link to Transmediale Events Schedule: https://2019.transmediale.de/events/schedule

transmediale
31 Jan – 03 Feb
2019
HKW, Berlin

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transmediale 2019 focuses on how feelings are made into objects of technological design and asks what role emotions and empathy play within digital culture. One of the key questions of the upcoming festival is “What moves you?”, referring not only to an emotional response but also to the infrastructures and aesthetics that govern how affect becomes mobilized as a political force today.

With digital technologies being integrated into the liveness of experience, a new situation for social change and cultural practice has arisen, which currently seems to lead to either political extremes or extreme complacency. How to resist the manipulative and polarizing aspects of affect in the digital public sphere as it is expressed through a deadlock of the politics of feeling on the one side and disengagement on the other? What motivates social engagement and how can new forms of care and solidarity be developed and embodied?

For the first time in many years, the festival does not have a title in order to emphasize the possibility of emergence: In response to a critical time, transmediale wants to focus on live practices and the creation of learning environments rather than close down meaning.

Taking up the challenge of how to understand and work with new technologies of feeling, transmediale recognizes that digital culture has become instrumental for capturing and managing what Raymond Williams once called “structures of feeling”—lived experiences and cultural expressions, distinct from supposedly fixed social products and institutions. Such experiences and expressions now create the affective spaces of social media, form the design imperatives of artificial intelligence applications, and seem to be capable of evoking empathy through virtual reality. In these contexts, social and political issues tend to become emotionalized and get turned into binary choices of for and against. One of the contemporary challenges is how to be critical and affirmative at the same time while avoiding such oversimplifications. For this purpose, transmediale 2019 strives to feature living, and not yet fully formed digital cultures of artistic vision, speculative thinking, activist intervention, and counter-cultural dreaming.

Following its focus on cultural emergence, the 2019 festival aims for a high level of participant and audience engagement through discussion-based and educational formats: Preceding the public festival days, transmediale offers the new Student Forum to create an environment for concentrated, in-depth work and studying. The workshop program is extended and starts on 29 January, too, continuing throughout the festival. Furthermore, the transmediale Study Circles are integrated across the program, zooming in on specific aspects of the festival theme. The Study Circles Affective Infrastructures and Uneasy Alliances consist of working groups in which participants come together before, during, and after the festival and generate various outputs such as workshops, events, and publications.

Find all events in our 2019 schedule.

Reworking the Brain in Berlin

 

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Panel
Fri, 01.02.2019
15:30 to 17:00
Auditorium

What happens when the neurosciences shape culture and promise to assist in overcoming traumas and conflicts? Can technologies like VR foster new ways of understanding? Is it possible to expand the plasticity of the brain? In this panel, Hyphen-Labs present excerpts from their work NeuroSpeculative AfroFeminism. They underline the importance of understanding how synaptic lineages are made, harvested, and experienced and discuss how speculative practices can assist in collectively materializing and (re)imagining memories, experiences, and future scenarios. Tony D Sampson introduces his thesis on neuroculture, which argues that capitalism is increasingly colonizing of our brains. However, the coincidence of capitalism and the neurosciences (neurocapitalism) points as much to what the brain can do, as it reveals what can happen to the brain.

The panel is organized in collaboration with Winchester School of Art.

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Full programme for Beijing conference on Media Philosophy and Cognitive Science announced…

Flying on Thurs to China for the first time. This looks like a really interesting programme.

Media Philosophy, Cognitive Science, and the Future of the Humanities

International Summit Conference: Media Philosophy, Cognitive Science, and the Future of the Humanities

Place: Beijing Normal University, Beijing, China

Time: Oct. 27 to 28, 2018

Since 2013, Beijing Normal University hosts an international conference addressing a theme central to humanistic inquiry.  Interdisciplinary in scope, method, and perspective, the conference seeks to provide a forum for exchanging ideas in the Humanities that will be of significance and interest to academic communities in both China and beyond.  Toward that end in keeping with its established practice, this year’s conference brings together sixteen scholars whose work, ranging from media studies, philosophy, cognitive science, and literary and critical theories, promises to help expand the tradition this conference has established.  The possible topics to be explored include: media, technologies and epistemics, media and philosophers, neuroscience, humanism, non-humanism, and anti-humanism, elements and environment, politics of remediation, and others.

Agenda

会议流程

Round Table Discussion

学术论坛(圆桌讨论)

Time:

October 27, 2018, Saturday: 8:30-17:30  2018年10月27日(周六)8:30-17:30

October 28, 2018, Sunday: 8:30-11:30   2018年10月28日(周日)8:30-11:30

Venue:

Conference Hall No.6, Jingshi Hotel, BNU

北京师范大学京师大厦第六会议厅

Opening Ceremony

开幕典礼

Opening Address

第五届“思想与方法”高端学术论坛开幕致辞

Session I 第一场

October 27, 8:30-11:30 am      10月27日(周六)上午8:30-11:30

Chair: Briankle G. Chang; Discussant: Mary Ann Doane, Shunya Yoshimi

(主持人:张正平;评点人:多恩,吉见俊哉)

Siegfried Zielinski: Generators of Surprise: Diverse Media Thinking

(齐林斯基:惊奇制造者——多样的媒介思想)

Mark Hansen: How Can the Mind Participate in (Artificial) Communication?: An Alternate Path Toward Thinking (with) Machines

(汉森:心灵怎样参与(人工)交流?——(和)机器思考的替代路径)

David Gunkel: Other Things: AI, Robots and Society

(冈克尔:其他的物——人工智能、机器人和社会)

Luo Yuejia: Neural Mechanism for Emotion and Cognitive Function

(罗跃嘉:情绪与认知功能的认知与阿神经基础)

Session II 第二场

October 27: 2:00 – 5:30 pm     10月27日(周六)下午2:00-5:30

Chair: Siegfried Zielinski; Discussant: Sybille Krämer, Tony Sampson

(主持人:齐林斯基;评点人:克莱默,桑普森)

Mary Ann Doane: The Concept of Immersion: Mediated Space and the Location of the Subject

(多恩:沉浸的概念——中介空间和主体位置)

Myung-koo Kang: How a Gaze Can Become Violence: Representations of the North Korean Sports Team to Pyeongchang Olympic

(姜明求:凝视何以成为暴力——平昌冬奥会上朝鲜运动队的再现)

Christina Vagt: Outsourcing the Intellect

(瓦格特:智力外包)

Xu Yingjin: Why Does General Artificial Intelligence Need the Husserlian Notion of “Intentionality”?

(徐英瑾:通用人工智能为何需要胡塞尔的“意向性”理论?)

Jiang Yi: The Fuzzy Boundary of Cognitive Science and Humanities

(江仪:认知科学与人文科学的模糊边界)

Session III 第三场

October 28: 8:30-11:30 am 10月28日上午(周日)8:30-11:30

Chair: Myung-koo Kang; Discussant: Mark Hansen, David J. Gunkel

(主持人:姜明求;评点人:汉森,冈克尔)

Sybille Krämer: Media as Cultural Techniques: From Inscribed Surfaces to Digital Interfaces

(克莱默:作为文化技术的媒介——从书写平面到数字界面)

Shunya Yoshimi: Cultural Sustainability and the Redefinition of Humanities: The Role of University in the 21st century Globalized Society

(吉见俊哉:文化延续与人文科学再定义——21世纪全球化社会中大学的作用)

Liu Chao: Effect of Mortality Salience on Guilt and Shame and Its Neurocognitive Mechanism

(刘超:死亡凸显对内疚和羞耻的影响及其神经机制)

Tony Sampson: Transitions in Human–Computer Interaction: From Data Embodiment to Experience Capitalism

(桑普森:人机交互领域的转变——从数据具身化到经验资本主义)

Briankle G. Chang: Spectral Media

(张正平:幽灵般的媒体)

Workshop Sessions

(工作坊)

Workshop 1.  Stars and Clouds: Literature, Science, and the Media Philosophy of Michel Serres

(第一场:星与云:米歇尔·塞尔的文学、科学和媒介哲学)

Time: October 28, 2018, Sunday: 14:30-17:00

Venue: Conference Hall No.6, Jingshi Hotel, BNU

时间:2018年10月28日(周日)14:30-17:00

地点:北京师范大学京师大厦第六会议厅

Chair: Christina Vagt, Free Talk,

主持:瓦格特,自由讨论

Workshop 2.  Affect and Social Media

(第二场:情动与社会媒介)

Time: October 29, 2018, Monday: 9:00-11:30

Venue: Conference Room 5058, Area C, Main Building, School of Chinese Language

and Literature, BNU

时间:2018年10月29日(周一)9:00-11:30

地点:北京师范大学文学院,主楼C区5058会议室

Chair: Tony D. Sampson, Free Talk

桑普森主持,自由讨论

Media Philosophy, Cognitive Science, and the Future of the Humanities

Taking The Assemblage Brain to China!
International Summit Conference: Media Philosophy, Cognitive Science, and the Future of the Humanities
Place: Beijing Normal University, Beijing, China
Time: Oct. 27 to 28, 2018
Since 2013, Beijing Normal University hosts an international conference addressing a theme central to humanistic inquiry.  Interdisciplinary in scope, method, and perspective, the conference seeks to provide a forum for exchanging ideas in the Humanities that will be of significance and interest to academic communities in both China and beyond.  Toward that end in keeping with its established practice, this year’s conference brings together sixteen scholars whose work, ranging from media studies, philosophy, cognitive science, and literary and critical theories, promises to help expand the tradition this conference has established.  The possible topics to be explored include: media, technologies and epistemics, media and philosophers, neuroscience, humanism, non-humanism, and anti-humanism, elements and environment, politics of remediation, and others.
Participants: 
Briankle G. Chang, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Mary Ann Doane, University of California, Berkeley
Weigui Fang, Beijing Normal University
David Gunkel, Northern Illinois University
Orit Halpern, Concordia University
Yi Jiang, Beijing Normal University
Myungkoo Kang, Seoul National University
Sybille Krämer, Free University of Berlin
Chao Liu, Beijing Normal University
Yuejia Luo, Shenzhen University
Tony D Sampson, University of East London
Peter Szendy, Brown University
Christian Vagt, University of California, Santa Barbara
Joseph Vogl, Humboldt University of Berlin
Yingjin Xu, Fudan University
Shunya Yoshimi, University of Tokyo
Siegfried Zielinski, Berlin University of the Arts

 

Venue for A&SM#4

So this is part of the venue for A&SM#4 – the main lecture theatre in the USS building in Stratford, east London.

I was there last week doing this related talk on the A&SM project, conferences and book in the context of criticality and interdisciplinary research.

Thanks to Andrew Branch for grabbing this image.

Tony D Sampson

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