Category Archives: Academic

Hi from Germany. Frankfurt is unseasonably warm, hotter than New York right now. It feels like Southern Virginia at the time I left. I was in Berlin and Poland (Sczcecin) last weekend. It was not much colder in either city. Trying not to think about climate change feels like trying not to be human. Even […]

acid communism

Yet another mainstream news article about Silicon Valley’s fetish for microdosing LSD. I’m kind of sick of hearing about this trend. (Article posted here only for the sake of reference; see thumbnail below). Meanwhile I’ve been getting more into Mark Fisher, reading Ghosts Of My Life for the first time. I just learned that at […]

encountering aliens

In September I will be giving a talk at the Technical Universitat Dresden (in Dresden, Germany) about Bertolt Brecht’s theater politics, social media, and anti-fascist aesthetics: Encountering Aliens: Digital Verfremdungseffekt and The Theater of the Self In this talk, I will argue that self-reflexivity in social writing exists beyond the normative confines of social media. […]

SPECTRA Journal 7.1 Call for Papers

The editors of SPECTRA: The ASPECT Journal invite scholarly work in all areas of social, political, ethical, and cultural thought for the Fall 2018 issue. We invite the submission of academic articles, book reviews, and original artwork for publication in volume 7.1. Submissions may speak to individual social science or humanities fields, or apply an interdisciplinary lens to […]

epistemic black markets; algorithmic governance; psychedelics; the future

Lately I’ve been reading the work of Sun-Ha Hong, a scholar whose work “examines how new media and its data become invested with ideals of precision, objectivity and truth – especially through aesthetic, speculative, and otherwise apparently non-rational means.”  That bio statement is taken from his website: sunhahong.wordpress.com. He writes about the future as a […]

Tomorrow I’ll be giving a talk at the Human Futures and Intelligent Machines Summit at Virginia Tech.   Check out the program: http://o-culus.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/Human-Futures-and-Intelligent-Machines-Agenda1.pdf and a link to the livestream: https://virginiatech.zoom.us/my/tech4humanity Here’s an excerpt from an essay, in progress, which includes some of the ideas I’ll share in the talk. *** As a scholar, I am less interested […]

4/9

Today is my birthday. It’s also my brother’s birthday (we’re twins) and my cat’s. She’s 2. I am 29. I thought a little about getting older today. All I have to say is that I’m happier at age 29 than I was at 19, but probably not happier than when I was 9. When I […]

opaque, fragile and performative selfhoods

Recently I’ve discovered some overlaps between various works of contemporary psychedelic scholarship. Over the summer I started reading Nicolas Langlitz’s book Neuropsychedelia and came across the work of Chris Letheby not long after (when he himself reached out to me after an introduction I made on a grad student listserv… +1 for email networking). Letheby co-authored a philosophical paper […]

problem children

In November, I’m presenting a paper tentatively titled “The Electric Kool-Aid Turing Test” at this conference  in Brighton, England. My argument is that emerging paradigms in research on the use of psychedelic drugs as psychotherapeutic tools problematize machine learning. This is pulled from my abstract: The paper draws from interdisciplinary scholarship that uses qualitative methods to interpret research […]

not digging political art

Re-reading Walter Benjamin’s “The Work Of Art In The Age Of Mechanical Reproduction” — good to remember this, from the epilogue, as fascist tendencies are (again) emergent: “The growing proletarianization of modern man and the increasing formation of masses are two aspects of the same process. Fascism attempts to organize the newly created proletarian masses […]