continent. maps a topology of unstable confluences and ranges across new thinking, traversing interstices and alternate directions in culture, theory, biopolitics and art.
Issue 4.1 / 2014
Letter from the Editors
Isaac Linder, Jamie Allen, Paul Boshears
Seasons reclaim, communities undergo a molting or two, and web servers need a reboot every now and then. After a brief hiatus, we present you, dear reader, with this our new issue. A bolt of lighting against the black-grey asphalt—a providential, heartening restoration for all. And, as lightning joins the heavens and the earth, take this offering as a solicitous call to reconnect, reboot and reclaim, on and off the continent. Welcome, and enjoy.
Wood(s). On Identification with Lost Causes
Lawrence Rickels
Laurence A. Rickels opens an account of the technical realities and imaginaries of wood, in this striking essay. The accompaniment to a Berlin exhibition, "Wood(s)" — organised by Rickels at the Zwinger Galerie in 2013 — naturalised trauma is surrendered to a lumbering, militarised forest of techne —marching in-step, toward you.
Daniel James Hughes
Identifying the extent to which phenomenology has become “out of fashion,” Dan Hughes re-addresses an address given at Harvard University in June of 2013. The summer occasion in Cambridge was the 37th annual gathering of the International Society of Phenomenology and Literature, this piece inscribes the living subject in the new science of phenomenology.
Taking Up The Challenge Of Space: New Conceptualisations Of Space In The Work Of Peter Sloterdijk And Graham Harman
Marijn Nieuwenhuis
Taking a hammer to the sphere, Marijn Nieuwenhuis stretches out a previously unoccupied Heideggerian expanse. He clears an expanse for two key thinkers of space: Peter Sloterdijk and Graham Harman. Nieuwenhuis asks these contemporary thinkers for the postcode of the house of being, a throws a pizza party there, complete with “floodlights, strobes, confetti, and glitter.”
The Habit of Dramatization
Lev Rubinstein
Proudly presented is the work of Russian poet, librarian and newscaster Lev Rubinstein. Having written his work first on the backs of old library card stock, format is forefronted in his presentation of language and symbols. His delivery is that of the “talking head.” These are missives from the mouth of a newscaster, spoken loudly. Now, QUIET!
Semiosis and the Tragedy of Purity (Plato’s Dilemma)
Donald Preziosi
Tragedy, for Donald Preziozi, begins with purity, acts of artifice, and a stance of belief. The artistic, theatrical, expressive and mimetic dimensions of re-presentation are here re-presented in a text that careens down a winding road toward an uncanny (unheimliches) home (Heim), where tragedy lies somewhere between fact and fiction.
Damnation. Interview with Janice Lee
Feliz Lucia Molina
In this interview with writer Janice Lee, Feliz Lucia Molina gives us insight into the confessional, textual and critical project of ekphrasis. Discussing Janice Lee’s Damnnation, itself a set of responses to the filmic provocations of director Béla Tarr, here are the confessions of a confession; a compulsion to write in front of the screen.
Making AI Philosophical Again: On Philip E. Agre’s Legacy
Jethro Masís
There was a time, not so long ago, when a direct challenge issued forth from the field of applied mathematics called “computer science” that addressed explicitly traditions and philosophies of mind, the self, and being. Software was not a solution, but a question, a dispositif. From Jethro Masís, here an account and critique of one man’s attempt to bring back the fundamentals.
Christine Wertheim
This excerpt of Christine Wertheim’s mUtter-bAbel is graphic and textual poetry of infantile, nascent communiqués from child to mother. (Wertheim’s work, with her twin sister, at the Institute For Figuring in LA was interrupted abruptly in late 2013 due to fire damage. If you’d like to help them get back to work as soon as possible, donations are accepted here.)
Poetics of Homo Economicus
Joseph Vogl
Homo Economicus details Vogl’s main project of betraying the secular theodicy in the contemporary science economics. We are introduced to a new species of man, its origins and future. Prof. Dr. phil. Joseph Vogl is a literary, cultural and media philosopher at Humbolt University in Berlin.