The Radical Outside
CRITICAL THINKING OF TECHNOLOGY: The Radical Outside II | Spring 2018
Instructor: Morehshin Allahyari | morehshin.com | firstname.lastname@example.org
Teaching Assistant: ann tbd | a-tbd.com | email@example.com
Class Times: Tuesdays at 10am
Class Location: School for Poetic Computation | sfpc.io | @sfpc_school | 155 Bank St, New York, NY 10014
Office Hours: Tuesdays, 2-3pm (Morehshin) | Thursdays 1-5pm (ann)
Table of Contents
Expectations and structure
Feb 21 : Artist talk by Morehshin
Mar 13 : Guest lecture by Sarah Aoun
Mar 20 : Art, Design, and Activism
Mar 27 : Other Futurisms (Cyberfeminism, Afrofuturism, Gulf-Futurism/Ethnifuturisms)
Apr 03 : Manifestos
Apr 10 : Digital Colonialism
Apr 17 : Showcase week
Apr 24 : Last class & crit
May 01 : Residency week
This is a theory course for critical thinking of technology through the lens of activism, politics, and the 'outside'; to think and create beyond technology for technology's sake; to ask difficult questions; to read, learn, and engage in technology as a field of contemporary art practices and theories, as well as art historical systems. What will separate this course from many others is a collective effort (by all of us) for 'reflective thinking'; to not find comfort in how - up to this very day - the story of technology is told to us; by which figures and which systems. I hope that together we can build a new library of critical thinking and reading; written and processed by women (+LGBT) and POC. This is a collaborative course for interrupting and re-building.
- Each week, there will be a guest speaker who will introduce a topic. We will focus on a combination of historical and contemporary text.
- Each week students should come to class ready to read their stories and assignments (more on that soon).
- Read all the material and come prepared to discuss it in depth. Please bring other resources, authors and artists that you find relevant. Please see here for presentation guidelines.
- Blog weekly about the readings and your thoughts. Think critically and post something that questions, criticizes, endorses, and/or adds to the reading or find other related material or resources that can juxtapose or compare the reading to something else you find relevant.
- Participation in class discussions for readings, material that we watch in class, giving feedback to your peers is essential.
- As this is primarily a discussion-based class, let's have all phones off. Best policy for laptop use: laptops down.
- Classroom hygiene
- Best policy for speaking up, listening in
Schedule (Please keep an eye on the schedule in this document every week). This is under construction and will be changed throughout the course. Please feel free to give feedback.
## Artist talk by Morehshin + First class-Intro Wednesday, February 21, 10am
On Privacy and Surveillance (Guest Teacher Sarah Aoun)
Tuesday, March 13, 10am I - History, Colonialism, Empire
II - Algorithms, Surveillance
III - Additional Reading
Homework Please submit to the github the night before our class (Monday, March 12)
Prompt 1: It's the year 2050. You are arguing in front of the Supreme Court in favor of increasing surveillance.
- agnes, eunsun, hans, nabil, yeli, phil, riley, sean, sukanya
Prompt 2: It's the year 2050. You are arguing in front of the Supreme Court in favor of regulating the surveillance reach of the government (and the private companies they hire)
- ailadi, gonza, kelly, fame, paola, rachel, sarah, syd, yael
For both prompts, speculate about 1) the state of world affairs, 2) the technologies that exist or are being developed, 3) the political climate in the US, and anywhere else your imagination takes you.
Please limit your answers to 600 words maximum.
Please come to class ready to read your story. Practice reading it a bit before the class so you can read it smoothly.
We will be recording your readings to be used at the end of the semester for our podcast. You do not need to worry about that right now since we will do all the final decision making and editings the last 2 weeks of the semester together. This is just a heads-up that we will record this material for the podcast.
On Art, Design, and Activism
Tuesday, March 20, 10am
- Readings Due (post one paragraph response in the directory named mar_20_assignment/) On Art Activism by Boris Groys
Syllabus for White People to Educate Themselves - Click "Download pdf" link
Art Activism and politics: Ideology, Confrontation and Political Self-Awareness By Adrian Piper
On Other Futurisms (Cyberfeminism, Afrofuturism, Gulf-Futurism/Ethnifuturisms)
Tuesday, March 27, 10am
Writing Assignmnet Due: Write one paragraph fiction on 're-imagining and re-building the future
**Essential Reading: On Climate / Borders / Survival / Care / Struggle:**
Guest Speaker: Ayodamola Okunseinde
Tuesday, April 03, 10am
Choose 3 manifestos from the lists below and write one paragraph respond to them. Post on class blog.
Some other suggestions:
- Computer Lib, by Theodor Nelson (1974)
- The GNU Manifesto, by Richard Stallman (1985)
- The Hacker’s Manifesto, by The Mentor (1986)
- Manifesto for the Unstable Media (1987)
- Cyberfeminist Manifesto for the 21st Century, by VNS Matrix (1991)
- A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, by John Perry Barlow (1996)
- Manifeste du Web indépendant, par le minirézo (1997)
- Die Hackerethik, Chaos Computer Club e.V. (1998)
- The Zero Dollar Laptop Manifesto, by James Wallbank (2007)
- The Lo-Fi Manifesto, by Karl Stolley (2008)
- The Uppsala Declaration, by the Swedish Piratpartiet (2008)
- Guerilla Open Access Manifesto, by Aaron Swartz (2008)
- POwr, Broccoli and Kopimi, by the Pirate Bay (2009)
- Glitch Studies Manifesto, by Rosa Menkman (2009)
- The WeRebuild Manifesto (2009)
- The Critical Engineering Manifesto, by Oliver, Savičić, Vasiliev (2011)
- We, the Web Kids, by Piotr Czerski (2012)
- Iterative Book Development Manifesto, by Adam Hyde (2012)
- A CryptoParty Manifesto (2012)
- Bill Of Computer Users Rights, by Olia Lialina (2013)
- The Mundane Afrofuturist (2013)
- Balconism, by Constant Dullaart (2014)
- A feminist server manifesto (2014)
- the cybertwee manifesto, by Hileman, Forest, Waver (2014)
- New Clues, by David Weinberger and Doc Searls (2015)
- Xenofeminism, by Laboria Cuboniks (2015)
*** Listen to podcast from last cohort here
On Digital Colonialism
Tuesday, April 10, 10am
Reading due: post one paragraph response in the directory named apr_10_assignment/ choosing one of the below material)
Guest Speaker: Fei Liu
Fei Liu is a designer, artist, writer, and creative technologist exploring digital empathy and narrative interfaces. She teaches at the Design and Technology program at Parsons, The New School for Design, where she received an MFA. Her previous residencies include Researcher in Residence at the New Museum’s art and tech incubator NEW INC and the Digital Solitude fellowship at Akademie Schloss Solitude in Stuttgart, Germany.
Showcase week: No class
Tuesday, April 17
Last class & Crit
Tuesday, April 24, 10am
Residency week. Graduation party.
Tuesday, May 1
- Riley, Nabil, Sarah
- Hans, Sean, Eunsun, Ailadi
- Syd, Yeli, Phil, Yael
- Sukanya, Kelly, Fame
- Agnes, Pao, Gonza, Rachel