- Kosmoikos: The search for location in a networked age
- Award date
- 28 October 2015
- Number of pages
- Document type
- PhD thesis
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
- Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA)
From fantasies of architectural utopias in the 1960s, to contemporary interface technologies that fetishize the idea of "the local," this dissertation considers a variety of spatial practices as attempts to address the philosophical question of where we are—and in relation to which scale. Departing from media studies discourse concerning the dematerializing effects of technological networks on architectonic space, it considers how historical innovations in economic techniques of governance can be understood as having contributed to the emergence of a networked concept of space as well as to a fundamental transformation in relationship to the concept of "the outside". Contemporary "locative" technologies (e.g. Google Glass) are considered as instances of a gnostic type of epistemology concerned with imagining the subject’s position in relation to a global totality—as exemplified by Fredric Jameson’s call to develop a "cognitive mapping" aesthetic as a remedy to his famed diagnosis of late capitalist spatial disorientation. An alternative approach, associated with Bruno Latour is considered as rejecting aspects of this tradition of thought on methodological grounds, rethinking the global in terms of the cumulative effect of a multiplicity of local aesthetic interventions. Juxtaposed against the 1970s environmentalism of "think globally, act locally," the dissertation finally concludes with a discussion of anthropogenic climate change as the ultimate aesthetic problem concerning the representation of location in a networked age.
- Research conducted at: Universiteit van Amsterdam
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