Comprehensive Exam Questions and Partial Bibliographies

Major General:  In “Transformations of the Image in Postmodernity” Frederic Jameson acknowledges the primacy of the visual and how “aesthetic experience is now everywhere and saturates social and daily life….” (The Cultural Turn, 100) In a culture so overwhelmingly dominated by the visual, Jameson, Hal Foster, Nicholas Mirzoeff and many others agree the visual sense is privileged above other senses within the human sensorium. For the Major General exam I discussed critiques of visual culture- manifested within the broader field of communication studies, and I expanded upon the opportunities and limitations that are opened by the field. In my response, I situate recent tenets of visual culture as an entry point in a discussion of the study of communication and culture.

Abbreviated Bibliography:

Adorno, Theodor and Max Horkheimer. 2001. “Chapter 4: The Culture Industry: Enlightenment as Mass Deception.” Media and Cultural Studies: Keyworks edited by Meenakshi Gigi Durham and Douglas Kellner. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers. 71-101.

Agamben, Giorgio. 1998. Homo Sacer: Sovereign Power & Bare Life. Stanford University Press.

Benjamin, Walter. 1969. “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction.” Illuminations, edited by Hannah Arendt. New York: Schocken Books. 217-51.

Berland, Jody. 1999. “Space at the Margins: Critical Theory and Colonial Space after Innis.” In Harold Innis in the New Century, edited by C. Acland and W. Buston. Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queens University Press, 281-308.

Carey, James W. 2009. “Space, Time and Communications: A Tribute to Harold Innis.” In Communication as Culture: Essays on Media and Society, Revised Edition. New York and London: Routledge: 109-132.

Craig, Robert T. 1993. “Why Are There So Many Communication Theories?” Journal of Communication, vol. 43(3): 26-33.

Craig, Robert T. 1999. “Communication Theory as a Field.” Communication Theory, vol. 9(2): 119-61.

Durham Peters, John. 1999. Speaking into the Air: A History of the Idea of Communication. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press.

Eisenstein, Elizabeth. 2012. The Printing Revolution in Early Modern Europe. 2nd Edition. Ann Arbor: Cambridge University Press.

Elcott, Noam. 2016. Artificial Darkness: An Obscure History of Modern Art & Media. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press.

Foster, Hal. 1988. Vision and Visuality. New York: New Press.

Foucault, Michel. 1995. “Panopticism,” In Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison. Vintage: 195-228.

Foucault, Michel. 2001. “Space, Knowledge and Power” in Essential Works of Foucault 1954-1984 vol. 3, edited by James Faubion. 349-364.

Gitelman Lisa. 2008. Always Already New: Media, History and the Data of Culture. Cambridge and London: The MIT Press.

Hall, Stuart. 1993. “Culture, Community, Nation.” Cultural Studies, Taylor & Francis Group

(Abingdon), vol. 7 (3): 349-63.

Hall, Stuart. 1999. “A Conversation with Stuart Hall.” The Journal of the International Institute vol. 7(1).

Hall, Stuart. 2003. “The Work of Representation.” In Representation: Cultural Representations and Signifying Practices, edited by Stuart Hall, 13-74. London, Thousand Oaks and New Delhi: Sage Publications.

Hu, Tung-Hui. 2015. A Prehistory of the Cloud. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Innis, Harold. 1984. The Bias of Communication. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Latour, Bruno. 1993. We have never been Modern. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Manovich, Lev. 2001. The Language of New Media. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press.

Mitchell, W.J.T. 2002. “Showing Seeing: A Critique of Visual Culture.” Journal of Visual Culture, Sage Publications (London, Thousand Oaks and New Delhi), vol. 1(2): 165-181.

Mitchell, W.J.T. 2005. “There are no Visual Media.” Journal of Visual Culture, Sage Publications (London, Thousand Oaks and New Delhi), vol. 4(2): 257-266.

Mirzoeff, Nicholas. 2013. “Introduction: For Critical Visuality Studies.” In The Visual Culture Reader, 3rd Edition, edited by Nicholas Mirzoeff, xviiii-xxxviii. London and New York: Routledge.

Mirzoeff, Nicholas. 2002. “The Subject of Visual Culture.” In A Visual Culture Reader, 2nd Edition, edited by Nicholas Mirzoeff, 3-23. London and New York: Routledge.

Rancière, Jacques. 2013. Aisthesis: Scenes from the Aesthetic Regime of Art. Translated by Zakir Paul. London and New York: Verso.

Rancière, Jacques. 2012. “The Paradoxes of Political Art.” In Dissensus: On Politics and Aesthetics, edited and translated by Steven Corcoran. 134-151. London and New York: Continuum.

Said, Edward. 2002. “Invention, Memory, and Place.” In Landscape and Power, edited by W.J.T. Mitchell, 241-259. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Schivelbusch, Wolfgang. 1995. Disenchanted Night: The Industrialization of Light in the 19th Century. Berkeley, Los Angeles, London: The University of California Press.

Smith, Marquard. 2005. “Visual Studies, or the Ossification of Thought.” Journal of Visual Culture, Sage Publications (London, Thousand Oaks and New Delhi), vol. 4(2): 237-256.

Smith, Marquard. 2009. “Visual Culture Studies: Questions of History, Theory and Practice.” In The Art of Art History: A Critical Anthology edited by Donald Preziozi, 455-467.Oxford University Press.

Starosielski, Nicole. 2012. “Warning: Do Not Dig: Negotiating the Visibility of Critical Infrastructures.” Journal of Visual Culture, Sage Publications (London, Thousand Oaks and New Delhi), vol. 11(1): 38-57.

Virilio, Paul. 1994. Vision Machine, Bloomington & Indianapolis, Indianapolis University Press.

Major Specific: The panoptic model (as theorized by Bentham and later, famously, Foucault) once accurately described a subject’s internalization of surveillance and attendant self-censorship. But times have changed. The sheer volume of modalities by which individuals are monitored in contemporary times (cameras, microphones, data tracking, gait profiling etc.) suggests that perhaps another model is required. Does the self-monitoring induced by the panopticon still function as an operative form of control? In my response to this question I detailed new iterations of the panoptic model that may be emerging, while paying close attention to the specific technical configurations that inform them, while also outlining concomitant forms of emergent resistance.

Abbreviated Bibliography:

Andrejevic, Mark. 2002. “The work of being watched: interactive media and the exploitation of self-disclosure.” Critical Studies in Media Communication, vol. 19 (2): 230–248.

Bauman, Zygmunt. 2012. Liquid Surveillance. Polity Press.

Browne, Simone. 2015. Dark Matters: On the Surveillance of Blackness. Durham and London: Duke University Press.

Castells, Manuel. 2001. “The Politics of the Internet II: Privacy and Liberty in Cyberspace.”  In The Internet Galaxy: Reflections on the Internet, Business and Society, 168-187. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Chamayou, Grègoire. 2015. A Theory of the Drone. New York: The New Press.

Deleuze, Gilles. 1992. “Postscript on the Societies of Control.” October, vol. 59 (Winter): 3-7.

Foucault, Michel. 1977. “Panopticism.” In Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison,195-228. New York: Vintage Books

Haggerty, Kevin. 2006. “Tear down the walls: On demolishing the panopticon.” In Theorizing Surveillance: The Panopticon and Beyond, 23-45. Cullompton and Portland: Willan Publishing.

Hardt, Michael. 1998. “The Global Society of Control.” Discourse: Journal for Theoretical Studies in Media and Culture, vol. 20. no. 3 (Fall): 139-152.

Kolchin, Peter. 2016. “Slavery, Commodification and Capitalism.” Reviews in American History, vol. 44, no. 2 (June): 217-226.

Los, Maria. 2006. “Looking into the Future: surveillance, globalization and the totalitarian potential.” In Theorizing Surveillance: The Panopticon and Beyond, 69-94. Cullompton and Portland: Willan Publishing.

Lyon, David. 2006. Theorizing Surveillance: The Panopticon and Beyond. Cullompton and Portland: Willan Publishing.

Mann, Steve, Jason Nolan and Barry Wellman. 2003. “Sousveillance: Inventing and Using Wearable Computing Devices for Data Collection in Surveillance Environments,” Surveillance and Society, vol. 1(3): 331-355.

Norris, Clive and Gary Armstrong. 1999. The Maximum Surveillance Society: The Rise of CCTV. London, Oxford, New York: Bloomsbury Publishing.

Noys, Benjamin. 2015. “Drone Metaphysics,” Culture Machine, vol.16: 1-22.

Virilio, Paul. 1989. War and Cinema: The Logistics of Perception. Trans. Patrick Camiller. London and New York: Verso Books.

Virilio, Paul. 1994. Vision Machine, Bloomington and Indianapolis, Indianapolis University Press.

Minor: Though the concept of the Anthropocene is currently receiving much critical attention, the idea of human intervention bringing about radical, planetary-scale environmental alteration is far from novel. For the Minor exam I traced the history of this shift of consciousness while speculating on the reasons why it has reached a critical mass in contemporary times in attempting to grasp the complex interlocking processes that constitute climate change by outlining the positions of two key theorists currently working in the field. In so doing, my answer conveyed the fundamental questions, debates, and arguments within emerging theories of the Anthropocene. I outlined the different modes that have enabled a global conception of the Anthropocene and the importance of interdisciplinary approaches to understanding the scale of this planetary crisis. Furthermore, my response developed upon the Imaginary as a common horizon in addressing subjectivities of the Anthropocene.

Abbreviated Bibliography:

Abbas, Ackbar. 2012. “Adorno and the Weather: Critical Theory in an Era of Climate Change,” Radical Philosophy, vol. 174 (July-August): 7-13.

Art Gallery of Ontario. 2015. Camera Atomica.

Art Museum at the University of Toronto. 2017. It’s All Happening So Fast. 

Barnosky, Anthony, Nicholas Matske, Susumu Tomiya, Guinever Wogan, Brian Swartz, Tiago Quental, Charles Marshall, Jenny McGuire, Emily Lindsey, Caitlin Macguire, Ben Mersey, Elizabeth Ferrer. 2011. “Has the Earth’s sixth mass extinction already arrived?” Nature, vol. 471(March 3): 51-57.

Bonneuil, Christophe. 2015. “The Geological Turn: Narratives of the Anthropocene.” In The Anthropocene and the Global Environmental Crisis: Rethinking Modernity in a New Epoch, edited by Clive Hamilton, Christophe Bonneuil and François Gemenne. 17-31. London and New York: Routledge.

Bonneuil, Christophe and Jean-Baptiste Fressoz. 2016. The Shock of the Anthropocene: The Earth, History and Us. London, New York: Verso.

Bildmuseet Umeå University. 2016. Perpetual Uncertainty.

Chakrabarty, Dipesh. 2009. “The Climate of History: Four Theses,” Critical Inquiry 35, 2 (Winter): 197-222.

Cohen, Tom. 2012. Telemorphosis: Theory in the Era of Climate Change. Ann Arbor: Open Humanities Press.

Crutzen, Paul J. and Eugene F. Stoermer. 2000. “The Anthropocene,” IGBP [International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme] Newsletter 41: 17-18.

Grosz, Elizabeth. 2013. “Time Matters: On Temporality and the Anthropocene.” In Architecture and the Anthropocene: Encounters Among Design, Deep Time, Science and Philosophy, edited by Etienne Turpin. 129-138. Ann Arbor: Open Humanities Press.

Emmelhainz, Irmgard. 2015. “Conditions of Visuality Under the Anthropocene and Images of the Anthropocene to Come,” e-flux Journal, vol. 63: 1-13.

Emmelhainz, Irmgard. 2015. “Images Do Not Show: The Desire to See in the Anthropocene.” In Art in the Anthropocene: Encounters Among Aesthetics, Politics, Environments and Epistemologies, edited by Heather Davis and Etienne Turpin. 131-142. Ann Arbor: Open Humanities Press.

Hamilton, Clive, Christophe Bonneuil and François Gemenne. 2015. The Anthropocene and the Global Environmental Crisis: Rethinking Modernity in a New Epoch. London and New York: Routledge.

Hamilton, Clive. 2016. “Define the Anthropocene in terms of the whole Earth,” Nature, vol. 536 (August 18): 251.

Haraway, Donna. 2015. “Anthropocene, Capitalocene, Plantationocene, Chthulucene: Making Kin,” Environmental Humanities, vol.6, no.1: 159-165.

Jameson, Frederic. 2005. Archaeologies of the Future: The Desire Called Utopia and Other Science Fictions. London, New York: Verso.

Latour, Bruno. 2014. “Agency at the Time of the Anthropocene,” New Literary History, vol. 45, no. 1 (Winter): 1-18.

Lewis, Simon L. and Mark A. Maslin. 2015. “Defining the Anthropocene,” Nature, vol. 519 (March 15): 171-180.

Marsh, George P. 1864. Man and Nature or, Physical Geography as Modified by Human Action. New York: Charles Scribner.

Mirzoeff, Nicholas. 2014. “Visualizing the Anthropocene,” Public Culture, vol. 26, no.2: 213-232.

Mirzoeff, Nicholas. Forthcoming. “It’s not the Anthropocene, it’s the White Supremacy Scene. Or, the Geological Colour Line.” In After Extinction, edited by Richard Grusin. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

Monastersky, Richard. 2015. “First Atomic Blast Proposed as Start of Anthropocene,” Nature (January 16).

Moore, Jason W. 2016. Anthropocene or Capitalocene? Nature, History and the Crisis of Capitalism. Oakland: PM Press.

Moore, Jason W. 2015. Capitalism in the Web of Life: Ecology and the Accumulation of Capital. London, New York: Verso.

Morton, Timothy. 2013. Hyperobjects: Philosophy and Ecology after the End of the World. Minneapolis, London: University of Minnesota Press.

Morton, Timothy. 2014. “How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Term Anthropocene,” Cambridge Journal of Postcolonial Literary Inquiry, vol.1, no. 2: 257-264.

Morton, Timothy. 2016. Dark Ecology: For a Logic of Future Co-existence. New York: Columbia University Press.

Ruddiman, William F. 2003. “The Anthropogenic Greenhouse Era Began Thousands of Years Ago,” Climatic Change, vol.61, 261-293.

Ryerson Image Centre. 2016. The Edge of the Earth: Climate Change in Photography and Video.

Shaviro, Steven. 2003. Connected or What It Means to Live in the Network Society. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

Steffen, Will, Jacques Grinevald, Paul Crutzen, and John McNeil. 2011. “The Anthropocene: Conceptual and Historical Perspectives,” Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society 369, 842-867.

Stoppani, Antonio. 1873. Corso di Geologia. Translated by Valeria Federighi, edited by Valeria Federighi and Etienne Turpin. Milan: G. Bernardoni, E.G. Brigola Editori.

Tate Modern. 2015. The Anthropocene Project. 

Tsing Lowenhaupt, Anna. 2015. The Mushroom at the End of the World: On the Possibility of Life in Capitalist Ruins. Princeton University Press.

Turpin, Etienne and Valeria Federighi. 2013. “A New Element, a New Force, a New Input: Antonio Stoppani’s Anthropozoic.” In Making the Geologic Now: Responses to Material Conditions of Contemporary Life, edited by Elizabeth Ellsworth and Jamie Kruse. 34-41. Brooklyn, NY: Punctum Books.

Turpin, Etienne and Heather Davis. 2015. Art in the Anthropocene: Encounters Among Aesthetics, Politics, Environments and Epistemologies. Ann Arbor: Open Humanities Press.

Vernadski. Vladimir I. 1998. The Biosphere. Translated by David B. Langsmuir. New York: Copernicus, Springer-Verlag.

Wark, McKenzie. 2014. Molecular Red: Theory for the Anthropocene. London: Verso Books.

Zylinska, Joanna. 2014. Minimal Ethics for the Anthropocene. Ann Arbor: Open Humanities Press.