24 Jun 2020 4:00pm - 5:30pm Online


Speaker: M. Beatrice Fazi

Discussant: Joshua Scannell, The New School (USA)

Chair: Caroline Bassett, CDH Director, Cambridge


Can computation generate the new? M. Beatrice Fazi argues that engaging with such questions involves addressing computation aesthetically. Drawing from her monograph Contingent Computation (2018), Fazi will discuss aesthetics as concerning creation and reality’s potential for self-actualisation. This talk will demonstrate that aesthetics is a viable mode of addressing computational systems precisely because such generative potential is inherent to the axiomatic, discrete and formal structures of digital technologies. Novelty in computation is then expressed not by computers doing something strange or unexpected, but by a computational process that does what it is supposed to do.

Beatrice Fazi is Lecturer in the School of Media, Film and Music at the University of Sussex. Her primary areas of expertise are the philosophy of computation, the philosophy of technology and the emerging field of media philosophy

Josh Scannell is an Assistant Professor of Digital Media Theory at The New School’s School of Media Studies. Prior to joining The New School, he taught sociology and women, gender, and sexuality studies at Hunter College, and Queens College, CUNY, and in the Media Culture and Communication department at NYU Steinhardt

The article ‘Digital Aesthetics: The Discrete and the Continuous’. Theory, Culture & Society, 36(1): 3–26. would be helpful to read before the event.


Please email Karen Herbane at CDH to register for the event. 

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