UBC Lectures, Seminars, and Symposia

Turn Meaning On/Off : The Flip and Flop of "Understanding" Media Siegert, Bernhard


German Media Theory started out in the 1980s with the guiding assumptions that information was as the limit of literature and technology that of interpretation. However, the relationship between the humanities and technology needs to be reviewed both in archaeological and methodological ways. The concept of interpretation, instead of being totally discarded, is in need of a redefinition that takes into account its limits, interruptions, disruptions, and empty spaces of sense-making. Now, more than 30 years after David Byrne gave the “good advice” to Stop Making Sense, is it not time for the reboot of a hermeneutics for which technology is no longer the ultimate border of “understanding”? What, then, is the situation of interpretation after Heidegger, McLuhan, Winograd/Flores, and Kittler, as we are about to enter an age in which nature and media, life and technology merge - and not only in the biosynthetics lab?

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