2 day conference on the demise of cyber utopias and new normative challanges in politics,economy, culture and art

Conference CALL

RealityCheckForCyberUtopiasPlan ::: publishing.RC4CU.reader

TXT ITEM: cyber_utopias or whom our present belongs to?

On the 4th and 5th of May, 2002 in Zagreb (Croatia) Multimedia institute and Goethe Institut Zagreb are organising the conference Reality Check for Cyber Utopias (as a part of the larger New Media Culture Week). Conference is aimed at a critical reexamination of the discourses - discourses we chose to call cyber_utopias - that had emerged in the heydays of technological development in the 90-ties, and had tried to give expression to the hopes for transformations made possible by the widespread use of new information technologies. It should account for following aspects: 1. what are the underlying normative claims behind cyber_utopias, 2. how are those put to use and what normative crises arise from their application?

This examining beyond cyber_utopias˛ will be divided in four sessions, each addressing respective implications of utopian discourses in the fields of art, media culture, political economy and software.

We invite you to apply for the participation in the conference and send in your abstracts of your interventions addressing the outlined topic. Interventions should not exceed 20 min.

As a suggestion, we offer following considerations on the general topic of cyber_utopias:

01. are cyber_utopias utopias of post-industrial age? and what is their utopian substance? what distinguishes utopias in the age of immaterial production from those in the period of modern mass-industrialisation...

02. are cyber_utopias utopias of transforming the space, as suggested by the term "cyber_space"? ---or are those rather utopias of transforming the time and history?

03. are cyber_utopias utopias of cybernetic collective experimentation? or isnt the cybernetic, controlling character of cyber_utopias contrary to the inalienable intent of utopian thought and praxis to seek for the unheard-of(mozda neki drugi pojam)?

net-economy / virtual reality / OpenSource / CyberCommunities / ...

can there be a utopian transcending of the contemporary regime of control that uses the information technology as its most prominent instrument of policing the multitude?

04. are cyber_utopias a dream of communication that would leave behind all catastrophic discourses of media of sovereignty? or isnšt the only truly revolutionary question rather how to transform the existing (technological) modalities of social reproduction? what does it mean not to give in to the game of politics that is constructed on the understanding that the reproduction of politics is impossible, because those who rule are not able to hand down the knowledge of power, whereas those who are able to hand down that knowledge are not vested with power?

() what does it mean not to give in to the catastrophic discourse of the homogenous domains of sovereignty that are crumbling down in the very moment they are actualising their goal or utopia - total leveling out of the qualified and non-qualified life of community?

05. are cyber_utopias an indication of social reproduction that does not reproduce the mechanisms of domination, but rather the experience of solidarity, richness and happiness? aren't cyber_utopias, for that very reason, first and foremost narratives of an inalienable and happy life, and not a philosophical concept or concept of any other sort, that would serve as a melancholic legitimation of an existing or a future state of affaires?

06. do cyber_utopias belong to anyone? or are they rather the singular name for that which opens up the potential for spaces and times of emancipation?

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