Open lecture: Manu Luksch and Franco “Bifo” Berardi
Chair: Frederik Tygstrup, IKK
Host: Uncertain Archives, Department of Arts and Cultural Studies
Time: November 3rd, 10am-13pm.
Place: University of Copenhagen, KUA1, Njalsgade 136, Room 27.0.09
Big data archives offer us a previously unknown sense of security; for one, the huge
bodies of information that internet archives contain can augment our human capacities to
those of prosthetic gods at the click of a button. Meanwhile the mass collection of data
by corporations and agencies of the state promises to make the world’s populations
increasingly traceable and, it is hoped, predictable or even preemptable.
As the archive moves from a regime of existent truth to one of future anticipation, we
seem to have garnered command of the future in the form of cultural fluctuations, flu
epidemics, criminal acts, environmental disasters and terrorist attacks. Yet, do the
predictive possibilities of digital storage institutions provide a false sense of security?
Recent scandals, including the Wikileaks and NSA revelations, have caused experts and
observers to question not only the statistical validity of the diagnoses and prognoses
conjured from big data, but also the broader implications of their large-scale
determination of knowledge.
This event brings into focus the question of archival temporality. It focuses on archives not
only as places of documentation but also of speculation, asking: What happens when we
reconfigure the archive from a place that tells us about previous historic events to a
machine that projects futures back onto our presents?