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New Media and the Permanent Crisis of Aura

Forelæsning ved Jay David Bolter
professor, School of Literature, Communication and Culture
Georgia Institute of Technolog

Aura is one of the most commonly invoked terms in media theory. Walter Benjamin’s argument that film and other “reproductive” media diminished or destroyed the aura that had belonged to earlier art is regarded as one of the foundations of media theory. Benjamin was writing, however, in the 1930s, when film was the popular “new medium” that posed a challenged to the traditional plastic arts. What does the coming of digital media do to Benjamin’s argument? The question of the loss of aura is especially relevant for a particular group of digital media technologies called “mixed reality,” which combine the physical and the virtual and therefore exist at the boundary between reproductive technologies and older forms, to which Benjamin ascribed aura.

Onsdag 7. september, 9.15-11.00
Åbogade, Benjamin-bygningen, lok. 122

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