[-empyre-] - noise of contagion - tuer

Junting Huang jh2358 at cornell.edu
Sun May 3 11:10:51 AEST 2020

Hi, Johannes, I am not sure I understood your question entirely. But as I read Ricardo’s thought-provoking post on the “undead media” and “zombie dreams,” I was also reminded of Mark Fisher’s writings on hauntology and capitalist realism. It is not only that what we have been experiencing right now is so real and surreal at the same time (and thus the living dead), but also that capitalism does not allow us to imagine any alternatives at this point. 

It’s funny how we all look back at the 1980s and 1990s to see what went so wrong in the world. My own research focuses on artistic experiment with the recorded sound in the 1990s in China and Taiwan. In my own work, I am also inspired by Mark Fisher to think the recorded sound as temporal disjunctions, as something haunted, something eerie, something there and not there at the same time.

That said, I was also reminded of Derrida’s “artifactuality,” to think this “real-time” "half-actual-and-half-artificial" news cycles, or Infodemics, we are bombarded with. Derrida writes:

“This international artifactuality, this monopolization of the ‘actuality effect,’ this centralizing appropriation of artifactual powers for ‘creating the event,’ may be accompanied by advances in the domain of ‘live’ communication, or communication in so-called real time, in the present (tense)” 

My reference to The Hypothetical Mandarin might be another issue. For me, it’s not so much about life and death metaphorically, but more about the ethical responsibilities “in a world of strangers,” to use Anthony Appiah’s words.

all my best

> On May 2, 2020, at 6:04 AM, Johannes Birringer <Johannes.Birringer at brunel.ac.uk> wrote:
> ----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------
> dear all,
> in a conversation, at one of the recent Segal Center talks with artists from all over the world, the Haitian theatre artist Guy Régis Jr. mentioned not only the need for a new (meta)physical theatre, but reflected on the graffiti he noted in the streets of  Port-au-Prince:  "Tuer".
> I think Ricardo wrote a furious and challenging post here on undead media and zombie dreams, on dying, and I am still trying to catch its many references (i am also trying to understand what the "new normal" could possibly mean). But I had also meant to ask Junting about the fantasies about the death of China that he refered to ['if the "great empire of China” were suddenly destroyed by an earthquake, how would an average westerner react to the news?']
> .... this western notion of "tuer" -  could you tell us more, Junting?
> thanks, with regards
> Johannes Birringer
> +++++
> [Junting Huang schreibt]
> Thank you, Luca. A quick note on your last point, Eric Hayot’s The Hypothetical Mandarin: Sympathy, Modernity, and Chinese Pain traced that whole tradition to the Enlightenment period, when European philosophers often used the Chinese in their thought experiments on ethics. At its core, it asks us again and again what we should do about the suffering from afar.
> I also tried to follow the debates originated from Agamben, and I do feel the remarks he has made are a bit out of touch with reality, even though he may have some valid points in China’s context—considering civil liberties in the state of exception (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/09/the-new-normal-chinas-excessive-coronavirus-public-monitoring-could-be-here-to-stay), etc. However, his deliveries read more like an ideological commitment than a theoretical guidance.
> Junting
> _______________________________________________
> empyre forum
> empyre at lists.artdesign.unsw.edu.au
> http://empyre.library.cornell.edu

More information about the empyre mailing list