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New Sciences of Protection: Presentation, Documentation, Mediation

Date: 13 March 2008 Time: 2.00 pm 13 March 2008 - 4.00pm 14 March 2008

Workshop 5: Presentation, Documentation, Mediation

13-14 March 2008

Venue and times

Meeting Room 2-3 Institute for Advanced Studies, Lancaster 2pm 13 March - 4pm 14 March 2008

Overview

Safe living is intimately connected with the 'presentation of safety' (i.e., making protection present through techniques and strategies of aestheticization in ways that appear to render living safe). The presentation of safety involves the material, ideational, and temporal portrayal of a subject, object, image or idea as 'safe'. Two typical strategies of presentation are documentation and mediation. Experienced as either evidence (the ID Card, the passport, the insurance policy) or event (the film, the blog, the video diary), documentation performatively makes something present (evidencing existence as such) as well as situating something temporally (present as in present-tense and/or as an eternal presence). Techniques of mediation often support these aspects of documentation. As communication technologies are designed to be increasingly user friendly, questions arise as to how the proliferation of documenters and mediators of messages not only transform subjects, objects, images, and ideas but also about what these transformations do to 'safe living'.

This two day workshop explores the complexities and paradoxes that arise when one considers presentation, documentation, and mediation in relation to technologies of protection and to safe living. It central question is: How do technologies of presentation, documentation, and mediation themselves become new sciences of protection in their attempts to design safe living and safe life? Auxiliary questions include:

1. How do presentation, documentation, and mediation inform and configure protection and safe living?

2. What is the historical relationship between presentation, documentation, mediation, and protection and safety?

3. What ideas/images/imaginaries/desires of protection and safe living do documents and mediations attempt to make present?

4. How safe are presentation, documentation, and mediation?

5. Who presents, who documents, who mediations, and why does this matter for 'safe living'?

6. What might 'safe' presentation, documentation and mediation look like in contemporary global life?

7. What are the risks of presentation, documentation, and mediation? Are they always inherently unsafe? And what are the dangers of creating 'safe presentation'?

8. How do new forms of presentation, documentation, and mediation disrupt traditional interpretations of safe presentation, documentation and mediation?

Confirmed Speakers

James Der Derian (Director, Global Security Program and the Information Technology, War, and Peace Project, Watson Institute, Brown University)

Robert Ransick (Media Artist and Professor of Digital Arts, Bennington College)

Suzanna Soares (Royal College of Art Design Interactions Graduate)

Michiko Nitta (Royal College of Art Design Interactions Graduate)

Annette Davison (Music, Edinburgh University)

Andrew Clement (Information Studies, University of Toronto and IAS Visiting Scholar, Lancaster University)

Imogen Tyler (Sociology, Lancaster University)

Event website: http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/ias/annualprogramme/protection/workshop5/index.htm

Contact:

Who can attend: Anyone

 

Further information

Organising departments and research centres: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Institute for Advanced Studies

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Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Lancaster University
Lancaster LA1 4YD
United Kingdom

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