Crash Cultures: Modernity, Mediation and the Material by Jane Arthurs

By Jane Arthurs

Twenty-one British students give a contribution 14 essays which think of the crash (of actual items, residing beings, and nonvisible structures within the modern global) as a symbolic and fabric occasion which may supply insights in regards to the reports of dwelling in a contemporary, technologically-oriented global. Their analyses recommend the strength of conventionalized methods of seeing and being, as a method of dealing with the unruly materiality of contemporary lifestyles, and handle the interrelations among inanimate machines and dwelling organisms. No topic index.

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Extra resources for Crash Cultures: Modernity, Mediation and the Material

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When he ‘tests’ his plane, Rosel is also being taken for a ride. But his presence in the aircraft is crucial as the human stake in the testing of the technology. For the USAF, clearly, ecstasy equals efficiency. Rosel’s ‘inner experience’ is a 32 How it Feels paradoxical one that involves the dissolution of his body in the apprehension of an impossible totality – the global network – in which he dissolves like sugar in water. It is the ecstasy of human disappearance within the machine. Like fairground attractions, the movie attraction business provides therapy and training for the mass of suburban humanity who, for now, function within the interconnected machineries of the global mechanosphere.

It is a sensation that is unlike anything else’. These rides, then, correspond to the workexperience of those at the heart of the military machine whose vehicles are also wired into the network of the ‘electronic ecosystem’ by the set of computers controlling the jet (see Adam 1991). When he ‘tests’ his plane, Rosel is also being taken for a ride. But his presence in the aircraft is crucial as the human stake in the testing of the technology. For the USAF, clearly, ecstasy equals efficiency. Rosel’s ‘inner experience’ is a 32 How it Feels paradoxical one that involves the dissolution of his body in the apprehension of an impossible totality – the global network – in which he dissolves like sugar in water.

Hoffmann’s tale (1992: 380) to the physiology of 37 Crash Cultures: modernity, mediation and the material ‘inflamed eyes, and headaches’ (Franz X. Schönhuber 1918, qu. Hake 1993: 49) and ‘an irritation of the retina caused by the confusion of images’ (Dr Campbell 1907, qu. Kirby 1988: 115), attested to by cinema reformers and doctors alike. The effects of the hectic environment on the nineteenth-century city dweller which Poe’s The Man of the Crowd (1845) and Zola’s La Bête Humaine (1890) describe, are not unlike the descriptions Kracauer gives of the cinema as a place where ‘[t]he stimulations of the senses succeed each other with such rapidity that there is no room left for even the slightest contemplation to squeeze in between them’ (1987: 94).

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