First Class topics

Highlights from the First Philosophy class


August Sander – important, foundational source of how people are making portraiture as documentation.

Benjamin theorised artist as a cultural producer and the changing role of an artist as maker and the meaning of images.

Flusser is based on Benjamin.

Berger’s “Ways of seeing” – almost a rip-off of Benjamin.

Contemporary thinking in photography formulated on Benjamin.

The journey from the mystical properties of images (cave paintings) to the contemporary “sea” of images. Everyone can have access to images.


We’ll be reading different texts weekly in conjunction with Flusser.

Themes to discuss:

– The Cyborg Manifesto by Dona Haraway – Post Human.

The Uncanny Valley” – up to the certain point you want the things to be real and from some point no – that’s where the uncanny valley starts.

Robots. VR, AR. -> to liberate oneself from the structures of power.

– Gender – used to be a solid rock. Now we understand it’s a spectrum and it’s fluid.¬†Gender – to assert a power structure. Being human – being in a power position.

– Psychoanalysis – Jacques Lacan, Freud

– Timothy Morton; Eugene Thacker – The Anthropocene -> Idea of history. We are in era of humans, they present next thing we have to do.

Pagans – were integrated with cyclical nature.

Abrahamic religions (Christians, Judeo, Islam) – linear time. Mankind has dominion on Earth.

Anthropocene – we need to imagine a world with out us.

Morton – hyperobjects (idea of history is one, other things that transcend the limitation of object).

You need to understand your position in the evolutionary timeline. The notion of becoming. Notion of multiple positions.

Hakim Bey (DJ, performer, theorist) – The temporary autonomous zone – space you create around yourself. Not dominated by any government.

Lifestyle anarchism – pejorative. You are part of the system, pet anarchist of the system, not really changing.

Social practice – type of art, the work itself is a social practice, investigates the social stream.

– Concept of non-photography