A presentation and dialogue on two recent books on digital culture and aesthetics:Experimental Games: Critique, Play, and Design in the Age of Gamification by Patrick Jagoda (University of Chicago) and The Play in the System: The Art of Parasitical Resistance by Anna Watkins Fisher (University of Michigan).
The Play in the System explores what artistic resistance looks like in the twenty-first century, when disruption and dissent have been co-opted and commodified in ways that reinforce dominant systems.
Experimental Games draws on the history of economics, affect theory, media theory, and game studies to explore video games as cultural counterparts of neoliberalism and as experimental forms that can complicate this paradigm from the inside out.
‘Theory of the Gimmick– Aesthetic Judgment and Capitalist Form’ by Sianne Ngai (English, University of Chicago)
Mark Greif (English, Stanford University) Joseph Jonghyun Jeon (University of California, Irvine) Leigh Claire LaBerge (The City University of New York)
Repulsive and yet strangely attractive, the gimmick is a form that can be found virtually everywhere in capitalism. It comes in many guises: a musical hook, a financial strategy, a striptease, a novel of ideas. Above all, acclaimed theorist Sianne Ngai argues, the gimmick strikes us both as working too little (a labor-saving trick) and as working too hard (a strained effort to get our attention).
Writer, journalist, and cultural critic Zha Jianying will present and discuss her five-part essay, China’s Heart of Darkness: Prince Han Fei and Chairman Xi Jinping, a study of the legacy of Chinese Legalist philosophy and its influence on the rule of Xi Jinping. This essay was published in China Heritage, July 14-22, 2020.
Loubna El Amine, Political Science, Northwestern University Geremie Barmé, College of the Asia & Pacific, Australian National University Pratap Bhanu Mehta, Contributing Editor at Indian Express, formerly vice-chancellor of Ashoka University
Organized by the CGCC in collaboration with the CTS, this webinar is part of a larger series of conversations ‘Questioning The Present’, a forum on contemporary issues.