P       RNCU   REPO   ODER       E            P O S T M O D E R N
P  TMOD RNCU  U EP S  ODER  ULTU E               C U L T U R E
P  TMODERNCU  UREPOS  ODER  ULTU E          an electronic journal
P  TMODERNCU  UREPOS  ODER       E           of interdisciplinary
Volume 14, Number 3 (May, 2004)              ISSN: 1053-1920

Editors:                            James F. English

Editors Emeritus:                   Eyal Amiran
                                    Lisa Brawley
                                    Stuart Moulthrop
                                    John Unsworth

Review Editor:                      Paula Geyh

Managing Editor:                    Claire Chantell

Research Assistants:                Sean Borton
                                    Paul Fyfe

Editorial Board:                                           

     James Berger                   Patrick O'Donnell
     Nahum Chandler                 Elaine Orr
     Heesok Chang                   Bob Perelman
     Ashley Dawson                  Marjorie Perloff
     Wendy Hui Kyong Chun           Fred Pfeil    
     J. Yellowlees Douglas          Peggy Phelan
     Johanna Drucker                Arkady Plotnitsky
     Diane Gromala                  Judith Roof
     Graham Hammill                 Susan Schultz
     Terry Harpold                  William Spanos
     David Herman                   Katie Stewart
     Marcia Ian                     Allucquere Roseanne Stone
     Michael Joyce                  Gary Lee Stonum
     Matthew Kirschenbaum           Rei Terada
     Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett  Darren Tofts
     Neil Larsen                    Paul Trembath
     Brian Massumi                  Greg Ulmer
     Jerome McGann                  
     Adrian Miles                   
     Jim Morrison
     Larysa Mykyta                                          
    Anustup Basu, The Human and his Spectacular 
    Autumn, or, Informatics after Philosophy
    Jason B. Jones, The Time of Interpretation: 
    Psychoanalysis and the Past
    Pelagia Goulimari, "Myriad Little Connections": 
    Minoritarian Movements in the Postmodernism Debate
    Robert Payne, Virtually: The Refreshment of 
    Interface Value
    Gillian B. Pierce, Lyotard's Anti-Aesthetics. 
    A review of Jean-François Lyotard, _Soundproof Room: 
    Malraux's Anti-Aesthetics_, trans. David Harvey. 
    Stanford: Stanford UP, 2001.
    Stuart Kendall, Poet, Actor, Spectator. A review 
    of Clayton Eshleman, _Juniper Fuse: Upper Paleolithic 
    Imagination and the Construction of the Underworld_. 
    Middleton, CT: Wesleyan UP, 2003.
    Michael S. Martin, Aesthetic Primacy, Cultural Identity,
    and Human Agency. A review of Emory Elliott et al, 
    eds., _Aesthetics in a Multicultural Age_. New York: 
    Oxford UP, 2002.
    Andy Weaver, Supporting the Cage. A review of David 
    W. Bernstein and Christopher Hatch, eds., _Writings 
    through John Cage's Music, Poetry, and Art_. 
    Chicago: U of Chicago P, 2001.
    David Alvarez, Excursions into Everyday Life. A review
    of Ben Highmore, ed., _The Everyday Life Reader_. 
    London: Routledge, 2002.
    Caleb Smith, Solitude and Freedom. A response
    to Saul Newman, "Stirner and Foucault: Toward a Post-
    Kantian Freedom," _Postmodern Culture_ 13.2 (Jan. 2003) 
    Saul Newman, Spectres of Freedom in Stirner 
    and Foucault. A response to Caleb Smith.
                      Notices (WWW Version Only)
                      Notes on Contributors
    Anustup Basu, The Human and his Spectacular Autumn, or,
    Informatics after Philosophy
        o Abstract: This essay revisits a few core postulates 
    of an idealistic modernity of the west that was based 
    on the voluntarism of the human subject, the rational 
    workings of the secular state, and a scientific episteme 
    of power/knowledge that was to absolve a godless, 
    historical universe of dogma and miracle. But perhaps, 
    as it has been increasingly apparent, a new form of 
    sovereign power is making itself immanent in our times. 
    Instead of a historical agency of the conscientious 
    human, or an isomorphic relationship between 
    disciplinary knowledge and power, the global application 
    of this form of sovereignty is based more on the 
    temporal and spatial inseparability among moments of 
    militarization, informatization, and financialization. 
    As a result, categories and definitions of a classic 
    liberal political imagination--like fascism for 
    instance--can no longer be simply attached to human 
    profiles or human tasks. This new, dogmatic, faith-based 
    sovereignty of informatics and technology-in-and-of-
    itself is diffuse and micro-punctual in its presence, 
    unlike the world-historical spectacle of the mad Fuhrer. 
    In the wake of specific molar technologies for producing 
    social life itself, one has to be attentive to a 
    transformed situation in which meritorious conversations 
    between humans are increasingly overwritten by a great 
    dictatorial monologue of power, by which money alone, 
    along with its complex corporatist-statist interests, 
    speaks to itself.
    How does one re-think politics and resistance in such a
    scenario, where inhuman assemblages and flows of finance
    and interests--mega-forces of funding and facilitation--
    override communicative presumptions about scientific 
    truths and pieties of democratic representation? How do 
    we start thinking in this moment of danger in a manner 
    that is neither driven by paranoia nor enclosed in an 
    ivory tower of angelic ironies?--ab
    Pelagia Goulimari, "Myriad Little Connections": Minoritarian
    Movements in the Postmodernism Debate
        o Abstract: The canonical phase of the postmodernism 
    debate, in the work of Fredric Jameson and others, 
    bequeathed to us a model of interaction between 
    minoritarian movements which it is our challenge now to 
    leave behind: minoritarian movements as non-communicating 
    fragments in need of unification by a hegemonic force. 
    In our post-hegemonic world, I return to Deleuze and 
    Guattari's Anti-Oedipus for a "new" model of interaction: 
    escaping the false dilemma of fragmentation versus 
    unification, minoritarian movements are distinct, having 
    nothing in common, as well as unceasingly interacting in 
    myriad little encounters.
    Jason B. Jones, The Time of Interpretation: Psychoanalysis 
    and the Past
        o Abstract: Though "deferred action" has entered the
    theoretical lexicon of the humanities, Lacan's theory of
    causality is still poorly understood, as are its 
    implications for interpretation. This essay argues that 
    the return to Freud reveals psychoanalysis to be in the 
    first instance a theory of temporality and history. 
    Against conventional understandings of psychoanalysis as 
    a recovery of the past--the view that the "cure" works 
    because one remembers what "really happened"--Lacan proposes 
    that interpretation works by depleting the analysand's 
    putative knowledge of the past. Paradoxically, by draining 
    the past of meaning, Lacanian analysis binds us to the work 
    of history. The essay offers a systematic reading of Lacan's 
    1950s works on technique, connecting these with later 
    developments to clarify the anti-narrative emphasis in 
    psychoanalytic theory. 
    Robert Payne, Virtually: The Refreshment of Interface Value 
        o Abstract: This essay examines virtual representation 
    as a source of anxiety--moral, cultural, and epistemological. 
    By first analyzing two failed attempts by the U.S. Congress 
    to apply legislative closure to the admitted epistemological 
    uncertainty of virtual child pornography, the question of 
    performativity is raised. The Congressional Acts' 
    contradictory logic imagined a contagion of harm emanating 
    from digital material and attacking actual, uninvolved 
    children, but also a contagion of perpetration to "desensitize" 
    potentially any viewer. The essay pivots on Margaret Morse's 
    definition of the virtual as the "present subjunctive mode of 
    a fictively shared present" and goes on to examine the 
    equally uncertain performativity attributed to the virtual 
    relationships between personal webcam subjects and their 
    viewers. Charges of "virtual prostitution" against some 
    female webcam subjects recall Congress's moralist fears of 
    infectious "transmission." As a device of perceived 
    telepresence and telepistemology, webcam representation is 
    discussed as the reiteration of interface simulation, where 
    the continuous, mechanical "refreshment" of this mediating 
    device itself becomes an object of attention. The necessary 
    imprecision and epistemological frustration of the virtual 
    has become a compelling narrative of its own.
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