Discussion: ›AGAINST PRESENTISM‹

2019-06-26 Dis­cus­si­on with Ma­ri­sa Gal­vez, Hans Ul­rich Gum­brecht, Fred Tur­ner and Sig­rid Wei­gel. Mo­de­rated by Wolf­gang Ha­gen. Wednesday, 26 Juni 2019, 07:30pm, in Eng­lish. Location: ICI, Chris­ti­nen­s­traße 18–19, 10119 Ber­lin.

Thin­king about tech­no­lo­gi­cal chan­ges or ‘re­vo­lu­ti­ons’ is of­ten mar­ked by a pre­sen­tist, ahis­to­ri­cal mode of thin­king and de­ba­te. The tro­pes mo­bi­li­zed in con­tem­pora­ry dis­cus­sion about ‘di­gi­ta­liza­t­i­on’ and its tech­no­lo­gies are usual­ly tech­ni­cist, in­no­va­ti­on- or even dis­rup­ti­on-ori­en­ted, both in their af­fir­ma­ti­ve and in their cri­ti­cal gui­ses. Litt­le at­ten­ti­on is gi­ven to his­to­ri­cal pre­cur­sors of tech­no­lo­gi­cal­ly dri­ven so­ci­al chan­ge and al­most none to con­cepts and theo­ries from other his­to­ri­cal pe­ri­ods that might help in­ves­ti­ga­te and un­der­stand the cur­rent pre­di­ca­ment.

Is the pre­sen­tism of ‘di­gi­tal cul­tu­res’ in its­elf a me­dia-tech­no­lo­gi­cal ef­fect? To what extent are the­se cul­tu­res cha­rac­te­ri­zed by a fun­da­men­tal re­struc­tu­ring of mo­dern se­man­ti­cs and ex­pe­ri­en­ces of time? In par­ti­cu­lar, do they eli­mi­na­te the ‘sur­p­lus and sur­pri­se po­ten­ti­al’, that is, the es­sen­ti­al re­fe­rence to an open fu­ture Ko­sel­leck found to be es­sen­ti­al for mo­dern his­to­ri­cal thought? The aim is to dis­cuss what this ent­ails for the hu­ma­nities as an eminent­ly his­to­ri­cal clus­ter of di­sci­pli­nes in terms of epis­te­mo­lo­gy and sci­ence po­li­cy.

 

Ma­ri­sa Gal­vez is Pro­fes­sor of French, Ita­li­an, and Ger­man Stu­dies at Stan­ford Uni­ver­si­ty

Hans Ul­rich Gum­brecht is Pro­fes­sor eme­ri­tus of Com­pa­ra­ti­ve Li­te­ra­tu­re, Ger­man Stu­dies, and Ibe­ri­an and La­tin Ame­ri­can Cul­tu­res at Stan­ford Uni­ver­si­ty

Fred Tur­ner is Pro­fes­sor of Com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on at Stan­ford Uni­ver­si­ty

Sig­rid Wei­gel is Pro­fes­sor eme­ri­tus of Li­te­ra­tu­re and Cul­tu­ral Sci­ence and for­mer di­rec­tor of the Leib­niz-Zen­trum für Li­te­ra­tur- und Kul­tur­for­schung Ber­lin

Wolf­gang Ha­gen is Pro­fes­sor of Me­dia Stu­dies at Leu­pha­na Uni­ver­si­ty and for­mer pro­gram­me di­rec­tor for cul­tu­re and mu­sic at Deutsch­land­Ra­dio Ber­lin

 

A Leu­pha­na Uni­ver­si­ty Event in co­ope­ra­ti­on with the ICI Ber­lin
Location: ICI, Christinenstraße 18-19, 10119 Berlin.