The Plantationocene Series: Plantation Worlds, Past and Present (2019)

9 July 2019, dusan

“The Plantationocene is an alternate name for the epoch often called the Anthropocene. Inspired by the scholars and artists visiting University of Wisconsin–Madison as part of the 2019-2020 Plantationocene Sawyer Seminar, this series aims to create a conversation about multiple forms of plantations, both past and present, their materialities, the economic, ecological, and political transformations they wrought, and their significance to the making of human bodies, capitalism, and land over the course of four centuries.”

Contributors: Sophie Sapp Moore, Monique Allewaert, Pablo F. Gómez and Gregg Mitman; Deborah A. Thomas; Raina Martens and Bii Robertson; Leanne Day and Rebecca Hogue; Kwynn Johnson; Donna Haraway and Anna Tsing, a.o.

Edge Effects dossier
Publisher Center for Culture, History, and Environment (CHE), Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2019
Creative Commons BY-NC-ND 4.0 International License

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Neda Atanasoski, Kalindi Vora: Surrogate Humanity: Race, Robots, and the Politics of Technological Futures (2019)

14 June 2019, dusan

“In Surrogate Humanity Neda Atanasoski and Kalindi Vora trace the ways in which robots, artificial intelligence, and other technologies serve as surrogates for human workers within a labor system entrenched in racial capitalism and patriarchy. Analyzing myriad technologies, from sex robots and military drones to sharing-economy platforms, Atanasoski and Vora show how liberal structures of antiblackness, settler colonialism, and patriarchy are fundamental to human—machine interactions, as well as the very definition of the human. While these new technologies and engineering projects promise a revolutionary new future, they replicate and reinforce racialized and gendered ideas about devalued work, exploitation, dispossession, and capitalist accumulation. Yet, even as engineers design robots to be more perfect versions of the human—more rational killers, more efficient workers, and tireless companions—the potential exists to develop alternative modes of engineering and technological development in ways that refuse the racial and colonial logics that maintain social hierarchies and inequality.”

Publisher Duke University Press, 2019
Perverse Modernities series
ISBN 9781478003861, 1478003863
x+240 pages

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South Atlantic Quarterly, 116(2): Autonomia in the Anthropocene (2017)

5 October 2018, dusan

“Despite Autonomia’s widespread influence on political action and post-Marxist scholarship, it has been surprisingly slow to address planetary change and environmental politics. With a focus on cognitive capitalism, many autonomist scholars have downplayed or fully ignored the ecological dimensions of post-Fordism—its foundations in extractive energy economies, its links to the accelerating financialization of nature under the banner of so-called green capitalism, its harnessing of nonhuman capacities, and its wildly uneven toxic geographies. This lack of engagement is regrettable given that, we propose, autonomist insights hold great promise for understanding both the transformed relation between capital and nonhuman natures in post-Fordism and the many political movements that have emerged in response. […]

It is no longer evident that key terms found in the autonomist lexicon—species being, the common, multitude, potentia—survive the challenge of the Anthropocene unchanged or that the production of subjectivity (a cornerstone of autonomist thought) can be understood solely in terms of language, habit, or gesture. It may therefore be necessary to think beyond the struggles of the factory floor, or those of the cognitariat today, to imagine and think from other sites of struggle, other forms of solidarity, and other experiments in “commoning.” These bring into play unfamiliar actors and unacknowledged geographies: sites of extraction and circuits of waste, indigenous communities and territories, rising seas and toxic landscapes that are materially present within the informationalized economies of global capitalism, but often invisible to those working within them. We might say, then, that the Anthropocene names autonomist Marxism’s unthought, an unthought that intrudes on its political imaginaries. What happens to autonomism if it begins to question the autonomy of the human? Or if it leaves its privileged sites in the global North?”

With contributions by Sara Nelson and Bruce Braun, Miriam Tola, Jason Read, Elizabeth R. Johnson, Elizabeth A. Povinelli, Matteo Pasquinelli, Karen Pinkus, Marco Armiero and Massimo De Angelis, Anja Kanngieser and Nicholas Beuret, and Isabelle Stengers.

Edited by Sara Nelson and Bruce Braun
Publisher Duke University Press, Apr 2017
ISSN 0038-2876
178 pages

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