I’m pleased to share a preview of my latest publication in Evolve: Magazine for Consciousness and Culture. As always, it is an honor to be featured in their magazine.
German readers: please do check it out!
My writing is a response to the prompt: “Does the new media call for a new consciousness?”
It was a great question, and I’m thankful that the editors accepted my wordy statement.
You can read the (original) English version I sent them right here:
The great media theorist Marshall McLuhan declared that with the advent of electricity, the age of print media—in which one word follows another in sequence—was over. The electric age, now the age of New Media, produced the greatest reversal in cultural evolution by retrieving the medieval form of the icon—image, film, television or more recently the luminous iPad screen—and through it a new structure of consciousness has, at last, arrived. Electricity implicates the simultaneous co-presence of the whole nervous system. The body surround. Yet, it also promises a new electric body, intuited by Walt Whitman, liberated from the perspectivalism of Jean Gebser’s mental consciousness. This body, like its consciousness, is an a-perspectival one; made of configurations, not causal sequence. It is an integral body extended in dimension and distributed through time. “I contain multitudes.” But before we can actualize the integral, New Media must be seen through: it is Janus-Faced. New Media expresses the clarifying promise of an a-perspectival world as much as it does the problems of the deficient perspectival one. It is decentralizing, but it is also dividing. It is a network, but it is ratio. New Media abolishes time but also pins us into the digital now. If New Media is yet divided by the interim world, it is only because we are divided; we are Janus-Faced. The new can only be brought about by the new; we can only enact the whole when we act from that capacity in ourselves.