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What happens to objects, to things, in a museum? In his essay “Civic Laboratories”, published in 2005, the English cultural and social theorist Tony Bennett examined the simultaneous mutability and immutability of objects in museum contexts. To this end he focused on questions of identity formation, taking his readers on a journey from European theory and Baldwin Spencer’s staging of Aborigines in Australian museums to Franz Boas’s life groups at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. How do objects change as a result of their embedding in different regimes of objecthood? What forms of interiority do they trigger in the observing subject? And what forms do they require? To article...

Constanze Fischbeck’s video project Terra Nova documents the delicate tapestry of hopes and expectations that occurs when two Berliner initiatives invite people in the asylum application process for ‘guerilla gardening’ in an unused corner of the Jerusalem Cemetery in Berlin Neukölln’s highly gentrified Schillerkiez. To article in German...

The migration scholar Nanna Heidenreich talks about her three-part project “Soundtracks”. Discussing the works by Constanze Fischbeck, Philip Scheffner, and Julia Tieke that make up this project, Nanna Heidenreich illustrates how listening is politicized, which narratives and voices are perceived in and by today’s media landscape and which are not, and how to avoid victimization and exploitation of projects “about,” but not “made by” immigrants and refugees. To article in German...

War and displacement go hand in hand. The author Stefan Zweig describes what the historian Jörn Leonhard underlines in his analysis of the First World War – the anonymizing and bureaucratizing of violence – using the example of the individual fate: The person who is destined to lose as a pawn in the game played by unnamed and merciless forces. To article in German...

The First World War was by no means “the war to end all wars” it was conceived to be: Anonymous killing and the total removal of boundaries on a technological and bureaucratic war machine are mortgage debts that remain unpaid to this day. According to Jörn Leonhard in his contribution to the project Tatort Schlachtfeld “The victor wasn’t a nation, a state, or an empire, and the First World War’s result wasn’t a world without war. The real victor was war itself.” To article in German...

Does truth exist? And do we still need it? Taking the concept of Négritude as their point of departure Nobel laureate in literature Wole Soyinka and film theorist Manthia Diawara talked about a universal idea and it’s relevance today. A short survey of edition #3 of the Dictionary of Now. To article...

In the second edition of the Dictionary of Now Eyal Weizman, architect turned intellectual activist, meets social historian Dipesh Chakrabarty to talk about the FORUM. Vague concepts of morality are useless in dealing with climate change. An efficient FORUM, as Chakrabarty maintains, needs to take up a planetary perspective. To article...

Anthropocene Campus: The Technosphere Issue was an eight-day teaching and learning experiment in which new forms of knowledge production and dissemination were tested. Art and cultural critic Brian Holmes who participated as an instructor reflects on the exemplary model course and its outcomes. To article...

Thoughts in the aftermath of “Technosphere X Knowledge”

A new component of the Earth system is emerging today, comparable in scale and function to the bio- and hydrosphere: the Technosphere. It is being driven by the intertwining of natural environments with vast socio-technical forces and increasingly diverse technological species. The “Technosphere X Knowledge” event brought together scientists and artists in cross-disciplinary settings. In the aftermath of this encounter, the writer Adania Shibli reflects on the techniques and practices of knowing, sensing, and experiencing concurrently shaping the Technosphere. To article...

The dystopian video series “The Common Sense” is about “the patch.” Adhered to the palate, this prosthesis transfers the emotions and physical sensations of other people. Leaping through time and space, the video series reveals the far-reaching social changes that the gadget causes – from absolute surveillance at the workplace to a pornographic economy. In this interview artist Melanie Gilligan talks with Bert Rebhandl about devices, TV series and neurosciences. To article...