Critique and Predictive Media

If we are anticipating that something different – an algorithmic other – is determining future actions, questions on the limits and possibilities of critique arise. These questions on the algorithmic other and how it redefines the conditions of critique are what sets the scope for my dissertation project. I define the algorithmic other as predictive media: while prediction operates within a temporal order of the past, present and future, it is exactly this temporal order that is challenged by predictive media.

Taking into account that temporality and critique are intertwined, especially in the sense that the distance and reflection critique needs to articulate itself and to form its object stems from time-space-gaps, social constructions of time will be examined in regard to the modern project of critique. If time is no longer perceived as a linear movement, how does critique articulate itself and from where does it draw its authority? How are real-time calculations and cybernetic loops related to the possibilities of critique?

Starting at the Urszene of predictive media, this project will draw a line from Norbert Wiener’s work on the antiaircraft predictor to German historian Reinhart Koselleck’s notion on time semantics of modernity, that shows how the phantasms of control and prediction have inscribed themselves in temporal structures of digital cultures and how that challenges the project of critique.


  • Lotte Warnsholdt