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Images, Maps, Spaces – Cultural Techniques of the Visual

April 17, 2021 @ 10:00 am 4:00 pm

This colloquium is organized by MLL department visiting scholar Antje Pfannkuchen and brings together presentations and responses by Wilda Anderson (JHU), Jörg Dünne (HU Berlin), Ute Holl (Basel), Annina Klappert (Erfurt), Anand Pandian (JHU), Birgit Schneider (Potsdam), Kyle Stine (JHU), and Bernadette Wegenstein (JHU). 

To register and receive the Zoom link, please contact pfannkuchen@jhu.edu.

The study of cultural techniques, or Kulturtechniken, has recently reshaped and sharpened discussions in Germany of the relationships between (media) technology and culture. The word was borrowed from a 19th century idiom referring to agricultural engineering practices that cultivated wild lands, or, to follow the etymology, turned nature into culture. The implication of a Kulturtechnik therefore is a fundamental shift created by a range of influences that results in far-reaching effects. The joining (in the name itself) of cultural and technology studies allows for multifaceted investigations of complex phenomena which simultaneously transform scholarly perceptions and designations. At this colloquium four German scholars will present their research related to cultural techniques of the visual realm.

  • 10 a.m. EST: Introduction by Antje Pfannkuchen
  • 10:15-11:15 a.m.: Birgit Schneider, “Lines as travel paths of knowledge. Humboldt’s climate map as the origin or proto-ecology.”
  • 11:15-12:15 a.m.: Jörg Dünne, “Map Line Narratives”
  • 1-2 p.m.: Annina Klappert, “Boxes of art and literature: The Ergodic as a Cultural Technique of Reading”
  • 2-3 p.m.: Ute Holl, “Videoconferencing: Cultural Techniques of the Grid and the (In)visibility of Infrastructure”
  • 3 p.m.: Final discussion