Re: [-empyre-] skills for participatory culture, response-translation of Aliette's text

well part of it is, that I've become somewhat attuned to Aliette's voice and poetics so I can get a sense of what she's after. Her syntax and ideas are, even in French, very elliptical.

thanks, glad you enjoyed it.


On Jan 18, 2007, at 9:49 AM, Christiane Robbins wrote:

Christina -

Thanks so much for this translation as the one available through the Google Translator offers no resemblance whatsoever to the text below ( is this a metaphor?!)

On Jan 18, 2007, at 12:44 AM, Christina McPhee wrote:

hi LIst,

There's been interest in a translation into more colloquial English of Aliette's recent post. This is a rough cut. Apologies for any gross malaprops, mistakes, and nonsense (or, have fun with it)


Aliette writes,

"dear Art Gallery,

Trebor's imaginatively organized purview ( happily, within the practice of the IDC (Institute for Distributed Creativity) list, alterity is much more openly engaged than it appeared that it would be when it was organized....), even so doesn't allow us to imagine freedom from the pressure of education during periods of greatest intimacy.....

I think that the citation from Trebor, unless it is simply a romantic bagatelle, should be considered within the context of a thematic thread of content we've already discussed, an environment without which his model lacks pertinence.

Such that, taken out of context, this model would instantiate a framework and a flow system, without defined content, simply an 'envelope' of presuppositions, a case study; then again, surely we'll all agreethat elliptical content may be implied, whatever our culture--our beliefs--our conceptions of life-- our philosophical ideas; when I intend to speak of aesthetics I fall into reverse, into that which I both doubt and understand (as if these two come from a single inspiration). Content ought normally to precede the flow chart, in order that the flow chart is vital [relevant]...

In an age of supergravity, wherein the construction of an hypothesis about materiality rests on a fiction, the Higgs boson ( see ) , and mathematical topologies occupy non-euclidean spaces, within which the 'field' is applied to Physics, we could construct out belief systems around a return to the periodic tables of Mendeleief (and thus, back to Aristotle).

Of what ethical dimension might this turn consist? From what basis, such as been presented, may we just as easily find ourselves in an framework of education and a compartmentalization as in a laboratory inside a society dominated by Big Brother?

This is a real problem, and it demands some kind of response.

Wasn't it Matisse, who initally studied to become a notary in the village academy before a late start in painting, who said, "one who does not imitate, in his youth, will imitate all his life?"; and of course, imitate himself in the process :).

Elsewhere, in Huysmann's Á Rebours, there's an excellent critique of education in the technical schools of the post-Napoleonic period in light of Jesuit models. Here a contact with the great works of Greek and Latin antiquity, of the greatest difficulty, was imposed upon adolescents in their colleges, from which followed an effort, at length, to interest students deeply in discourse about these works during extended promenades in natural settings and gardens :).

Then too, we must not forget the terrible quarrels that divided the socialists, anarchists, and communists on the issue of childhood education and child labor.

If school is not elsewhere than in the contingencies of life, meanwhile what can it bring to life? As for dreams, I do not see where they may be found. Perhaps in the education of the parents?"

Dear Art gallery,

Here can be the very example of a piece outside of its context so cannot
being a philosophy:))

Tout ce dispositif organisé imaginé et proposé par Trébor, (qui heureusement
dans la pratique de iDC est bien plus ouvert à l'altérité qu'il n'y paraît
quand il se met à formaliser...) ne laisse même pas imaginer qu'on puisse
être libre de la pression de l'éducation pendant les moments les plus

Je pense que cette citation de Trebor sauf si elle est un morceau
romanesque, devait se situer dans le contexte d'un fil thématique de
contenus déjà discutés, environnement sans lequel ce modèle ne pourrait être

Tel quel, hors contexte, ce modèle installe un cadre et des organigrammes
sans contenus défini, juste présupposés par leur "enveloppe" et leur case :
mais alors nous serions tous d'accord sur les contenus implicites en
ellipse, quelle que soit notre culture nos croyances et nos conceptions de
vivre, nos idées philosophiques - quand j'entends parler d'esthétique des
médias je tombe à la renverse - ce dont je doute y compris dans le même côté
d'inspiration. Contenus qui devraient normalement précéder l'organigramme
pour que l'organigramme soit vital...

A l'âge de la supergravité où l'on construit l'hypothèse de la matière sur
une fiction du boson de Higgs et la topologie mathématique s'occupant
d'espaces non euclidiens dont le champ s'applique en Physique, on se
croirait soudain revenus au tableau de Mendeleief (donc à Aristote).

De quelle éthique s'agit-il ? Sur cette base telle qu'elle nous est
présentée on pourrait aussi bien se trouver dans un cadre d'éducation et de
comportements de laboratoire, que dans la société de Big Brother.

Il y a un vrai problème de la demande et de la réponse, là...

N'était-ce pas Matisse, d'abord clerc de notaire apprenant tardivement
la peinture dans une académie de village (ou de quartier) qui dit "celui qui
n'imite pas dans sa jeunesse imitera toute sa vie" ? et bien sûr imité
lui-même par la suite:)

Il y a d'autre part dans A rebours de Huysmans une excellente critique de
l'éducation de l'école technique post napoléonienne par le modèle des
jésuites, quand ils imposent le contact direct avec les grandes oeuvres
grecques et latines les plus difficiles, aux adolescents de leurs collèges,
à partir desquelles ensuite ils devisent avec eux pour les passionner, lors
de promenades dans les jardins ou la nature:))

Et puis ne pas oublier la querelle terrible qui divisa les socialistes les
anarchistes et les communistes sur l'éducation et le travail des enfants.

Si l'école n'est pas un ailleurs de la vie contingente alors que peut-elle
apporter à celle-ci ?

Quant à la part du rêve, je ne vois pas où elle se trouve ? Est- ce dans
l'éducation des parents ?

On 16/01/07 22:25, "The Art Gallery of Knoxville" <> probably wrote:

Trebor Scholz <> mailed this link to [iDC], I think it
provides some additional perspective / solutions to the question.

<> :


This situation calls for multiple levels of intervention:

1. School based -- designed to integrated into existing school disciplines

2. after-school programs -- designed to expand creative opportunities
for kids in a way which also emphasizes the cultural context and
ethical consequences of those practices.

3. informal learning -- collaboration with creative industries to
insure that ideas about media literacy feed back into popular culture.

4. teacher training -- designed to provide teachers with models for
classroom practices which foster the new media literacies.

5. parents training -- designed to give parents the knowledge and
skills they need to foster media literacy in preschool children and to
support the informal learning of their school aged offspring.

We are proposing an integrated approach which works at four levels:

Exercises (E1) -- designed to refine and rehearse preliminary literacy skills.

Exemplers (E2)-- designed to illustrate creative processes and
practices and provide a critical vocabulary for the aesthetic
evaluation of media.

Expressions (E3) -- designed to allow kids to put these skills into
play through individual and collaborative creative projects.

Ethics (E4) -- designed to encourage reflections on the social
contexts in which media is produced and circulated, including a strong
focus on the ways individuals relate to larger communities and the
ability to make meaningful choices and weigh their consequences.

We can understand this more fully if we look at a specific subject
area: digital storytelling.

Basic Pedagogical Goals:

1. A recognition of the ways stories change as they move across media
(multimodal, convergent) and an appreciation of new kinds of
storytelling media (mobile, immersive, interactive) which may deal
with stories in different ways.

2. A recognition of the basic building blocks of canonical stories,
including questions of sequencing, exposition, and point of view, as
well as an awareness of the ways that these basic principles can be
manipulated to create alternative storytelling practices.

3. An appreciation of the functions stories play within cultures,
including the value of stories for entertainment, transmitting
traditions, opening up new possibilities and alternative perspectives,
etc. (generational)

4. An appreciation of cultural differences in the form and content of
stories (multicultural, global).

5. An awareness of the role which stereotypes and clichs play in the
construction of stories as well as the impact that such devices can
have on the ways we interact with other people. (negotiation)

6. the ability to identify core elements of stories and rework them to
communicate alternative perspectives (appropriative).

7. a recognition of those factors shaping which stories get told in the media
and how those stories get structured.

8. an understanding of how story elements can be dispersed across
multiple media channels in order to create a range of different
experiences. (Convergent)

9. practice in translating one?s own experiences into stories which
can be understood by others both in your own community and
beyond.(expression, performance)

10. refine technical skills in media production as well as developing
criteria for evaluating stories within different media contexts.

11. recognize that people in different communities might narrate the
same experiences in different terms or might form conflicting
interpretations of shared stories (negotiation)

12. understand the ways that authors build upon pre-existing stories
as well as recognize the current legal conflicts over who should
control what use gets made of one's creative work. (sampling)

Our overall approach emphasizes comparison across different media,
across different historical periods, across high and popular culture,
across mainstream and experimental media, and across different
cultural traditions. Any opening session needs to emphasize the
diversity of current storytelling media with an emphasis on both
commonalities and differences.

At the same time, this approach is designed to bring together
literature, art, and social sciences so that people understand what
stories are, how to express one's ideas through stories, and how
stories operate within cultures.

empyre forum

Christiane Robbins

J e t z t z e i t
Los Angeles  l  San Francisco

... the space between zero and one ...
Walter Benjamin

The present age prefers the sign to the thing signified, the copy to the original, fancy to reality, the appearance to the essence for in these days illusion only is sacred, truth profane.

Ludwig Feuerbach, 1804-1872,
German Philosopher

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