By Griselda Pollock, Anthony Bryant

If virtuality is being celebrated as heralding a noticeably new period, wealthy with new probabilities and futures hitherto unimagined via cybernetics, networking and digitalizaton, such claims also are being considered with deep skepticism and countered by way of renewed curiosity within the groundedness and referentiality of the idea that of the index. 

In this transdisciplinary ebook, significant artists, filmmakers, movie theorists, philosophers, literary critics, details theorists and cultural  analysts research the twists and turns of  the contesting phrases of virtuality and indexicality in modern cultural conception when it comes to heritage, trauma, sexuality, textuality, nervousness, simulated lives, code, electronic cinema, technological know-how fiction, and modern paintings. Antony Bryant, Juli Carson, N. Katherine Hayles, Anna Johnson, Mary Kelly, Brian Massumi, Claire Pajaczkowska, Griselda Pollock, Adrian Rifkin, Martha Rosler, Alison Rowley, Trinh T. Minha, Samuel Weber, and Paul Willemen draw on concrete practices, starting from movie, video and chatrooms to airport areas, conceptual paintings and textiles, to provide seriously engaged, occasionally skeptical, analyses of latest picture worlds within the gentle of a continuous allegiance to grounded histories and important practice.

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Additional resources for Digital and Other Virtualities: Renegotiating the Image (New Encounters: Arts, Cultures, Concepts)

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I type a URL into the browser and am taken to a destination I do not expect. These familiar experiences make us aware that our conscious intentions do 1. Hayles 14/03/2010 17:12 Page 24 24 DIGITAL AND OTHER VIRTUALITIES not entirely control how our language operates. Just as the unconscious surfaces through significant puns, slips, and metonymic splices, so the underlying code surfaces at those moments when the program makes decisions we have not consciously initiated. This phenomenon suggests the following analogy: as the unconscious is to the conscious, so computer code is to language.

Occasioned by a news photograph and the sound environment of television and radio reportage, Kelly’s work an-iconically replays cinematic narrative by linking words (and in performance, voice and music) and a material support. She materializes the virtualized world that comes into our homes through modern communication technologies to focus momentary attention on the ‘real’ of subjectivity. Conclusion In this collection, the project seeks to allow the play of concepts of virtuality and indexicality within the transdisciplinary realm of cultural analysis, theory and history, and there to shape a range of provisional intellectual examinations of the complexity of our current cultural situation and foundations for knowledge with regard to what is happening to us by replacing reductive opposition with interfacing complexity.

Moreover, the claims for a great deal of this technology turn out to be grossly over-stated—virtual in the sense of not really existing. Transdisciplinary encounters such as the conferences that generated this collection are an important act of resistance to this tendency. It is vital that technologists engage with the idea that technology is not simply the stuff you can kick—or spill coffee over—but is a form of social practice not only shaped in structural relations of contemporary production but also inflected by pre-existing imaginings and projections as well as projected fantasies.

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