Reinterpretations of marxist critical theory away from politics and in philosophy
Adorno’s aesthetics and the revolutionary potential of the avant garde as catalyst
Analysis of music, formal, structural complexity and high modernism
relationship to popular culture – its simplicity hinders the revolution
more situated in popular culture
Base and Superstructure
Base – material foundation
superstructure – transcendent ideological structure
Primacy in the base – the main driver
Superstructure changes happen more slowly
So mechanical reproduction has emerged (at time of Benjamin’s writing) as a means of production, but the true revolutionary potential of this in the superstructure has yet to be realised
tension betw two differing positions
will either resolve or cancel out the other, and result in the third, the synthesis.
Loss of Aura
By reproducing, is something lost – the essense? Or is this a beginning (Benjamin) to set in motion the revolutionary potential
Genius, pure creativity, art for art’s sake as aura that hinders potential, a moving target that is always changing
Whereas w Benjamin in a reproduction, the traces, markers of authenticity, of Aura are lost. But did he get this right? A photo isn’t permanent in the end…
it’s understandable that in his time, the photographic negative seemed permanent
Ref Fried – Art and Objecthood
Section IV – aura, authenticity and the traditions of ritual .
Artworks based on these traditions are in his view useful to the sort of fascism he opposes
The cutting out of time
How mechanical reproduction can become a form of critical practice. The critical gaze – comparisons between artforms – photography and painting, magician and surgeon – those which maintain aura and those that do away with aura
Magician has aura, but never penetrates surface
Surgeon cuts beneath the surface
Is there a inherent critical nature to the mechanical
is the film camera analytical and thus critical because it can bring forth what otherwise might not be perceived?
His closing statements on Fascism perpepuating property – is this the same smokescreen by which Web 2.0, X-factor and commercial forces invite us in participatory media only reappropriate our output as property or capital?
Aesthetics of the reproduced object as an object
As reproduction becomes cleaner, it’s increasingly luring us into cycle of consumption – the illusion of bringing us close to object, the myth of fidelity
How does this situate w respect to the advent of glitch art and having the fault in the foreground?
The surface noise tells us that it is a reproduction. With increased fidelity we get a commodity fascism, which takes upon a new aura
But today, imperfect medium in video, photography, can be a marker of authenticity…
Or surface noise can be used for retro – for nostalgia – where is the aura here and is it an indicator of the counterrevolutionary potential of nostalgia?
The difficulty in the text is his use of Lacanian structure in his writing and his writing
real – gramophone
imaginary – film
symbolic – typewriter
Gramophone – the real, the body
The recorder doesn’t hear in the same way we hear ourselves – it records everything, the stutters, etc, the noises that are you, but are not you.
Lacanian reference to the real
With Adorno we’re not sure whether he’s talking about the noises of the medium or the noises of the voice
Gramophone as Edison was deaf – technology as an extension?
Is there a sense of self coming in Kittler that is less apparent in Adorno, and the 40 years in between?
Trope of media histories – reproduction and cadavers