The Interface is the Message

By Andrew Ventimiglia

Lori Emerson, Reading Writing Interfaces: From the Digital to the Bookbound. University of Minnesota Press, 2014. 222 pp.

In Reading Writing Interfaces, media theorist Lori Emerson demystifies the enchanted world of modern digital devices. As recent technological innovations, from the ubiquitous tablet to fully-networked smart appliances, proliferate in a seductive variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, Emerson exposes the ideological project at the heart of this digital transformation.
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Media Theory at the Limits of Communication

By Aleksandra Kaminska

Alexander R. Galloway, Eugene Thacker and McKenzie Wark. Excommunication: Three Inquiries in Media and Mediation. University of Chicago Press, 2014. 210 pp.

“By being off the radar, you move in a different space, a jubilee zone of exception.”

—John Durham Peters, “Speaking Into the iPhone”

Like all such rare and catastrophic events, the disappearance of flight MH370 during a routine flight between Kuala Lumpur and Beijing in March 2014 spurred a frenzy of media coverage and public fascination.
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After the Aftermath

By Rob Coley

Siegfried Zielinski. […After the Media] News from the Slow-Fading Twentieth Century. Trans. Gloria Custance. Univocal, 2013. 276 pp.

Media theory has a problem with the new. The new is an obstacle, it is obsolete, it is yesterday’s news. Of the many responses to a late 20th century obsession with “new media,” current attempts to rethink the dominant historical narrative of media culture best encapsulate the problem.
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Under the Hood of Wolfgang Ernst’s Media Archaeology

By Liam Young

Wolfgang Ernst. Digital Memory and the Archive. Jussi Parikka, ed. University of Minnesota Press, 2013. 265 pp.

The allure of the archive as a concept, space, form, and metaphor has proven irresistible for continentally inflected media and cultural studies over the last two decades. The “archive fever” diagnosed by Derrida in 1995 has only become more acute as the ever-accelerating digitization of culture, memory, and history has fundamentally reconfigured archives, both real and imaginary.
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