Monthly Archives: December 2016

Entangled : an archaeology of the relationships between humans and things

Entangled : an archaeology of the relationships between humans and things / Ian Hodder.

Publisher: Malden, MA : Wiley-Blackwell, 2012.Description: xi, 252 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm.ISBN: 0470672110; 0470672129; 9780470672112; 9780470672129.

Thinking about things differently — Humans depend on things — Things depend on other things — Things depend on humans — Entanglement — Fittingness — The evolution and persistence of things — Things happen- — Tracing the threads — Conclusions.

A powerful and innovative argument that explores the complexity of the human relationship with material things, demonstrating how humans and societies are entrapped into the maintenance and sustaining of material worlds

Argues that the interrelationship of humans and things is a defining characteristic of human history and culture Offers a nuanced argument that values the physical processes of things without succumbing to materialism Discusses historical and modern examples, using evolutionary theory to show how long-standing entanglements are irreversible and increase in scale and complexity over time Integrates aspects of a diverse array of contemporary theories in archaeology and related natural and biological sciences Provides a critical review of many of the key contemporary perspectives from materiality, material culture studies and phenomenology to evolutionary theory, behavioral archaeology, cognitive archaeology, human behavioral ecology, Actor Network Theory and complexity theory


Notes from train to Manchester

Image analysis

Radiologist versus CAD- artificial intelligence

Automation of the trace- image as data

Shadows – aerial photography. Archaeology- finding graves from shadows early evening aerial photos

Marey as early form of image analysis – interested in Motion.

Aerial photography- topography and architecture.

Possible research into image quantification to the present day.
Another example Orford Ness – bomb ballistics and the camera obscura – tracing the trajectory. From Marey to aerial surveys to the photogrammetry of negatives – machines
Another example – Farocki’s film about Auschwitz aerial photographs


Beginning to realise that spectral media is a cultural construct – phantasmagoria. Spectrality is not an essential property of the projected image for example.

Points towards a media archaeological approach to medium.

Links also to Krauss’ essay Voyage on the North Sea.  What is an obsolescent medium for example?  What are the strategies implied by this essay if looked at from the point of view of artists practise rather than an art historian?

Thinking through the role of the medium via media- art- history.

The Fragment: Towards a History and Poetics of a Performative Genre

The Fragment: Towards a History and Poetics of a Performative Genre 

This monograph is an interdisciplinary study of the concept of ‘fragment’ in literature and in critical and literary theory. It discusses the fragment’s performativity and function within a historical perspective, stretching from Heraclitus, via the German Romantics and European writers of the Modernist period, to American postmodern manifestations of the fragment. This is the first history of the fragment to appear in English, and it is also the first attempt at producing a consistent taxonomy of literary and critical fragments. The fragments are categorised according to function, not author intention, and the study addresses a number of questions: What constitutes the fragment, when the fragment can only be defined a posterior? Does the fragment begin on its own, or is it begun by others, writers and critics? Does it acquire a name of its own, or is it labelled by others? All these questions revolve around issues of agency, and they are best discussed in terms of performativity, which means seeing fragments as acts: acts of literature, acts of reading, acts of writing. The book demonstrates how a poetics of the fragment as a performative genre can be created, situating the fragment both as literature and as a phenomenon within postmodern criticism against the background of philosophy, art history, and theology

Paperback: 410 pages

Publisher: Peter Lang Publishing (15 Dec. 2004)

  • ISBN-10: 0820471585
  • ISBN-13: 978-0820471587

Portland notes 3

Intermedia, gestures, spectrality, terrain vague

Gesture and performativity in relation to intermedia – the gesture of photography (Flusser)

Terrain vague – Stalker. an inbetween zone. a kind of ghost story.

Blend modes and spectrality (spirit photography)

Blending in The Sandman -Stan Douglas

Blending in Vera Lutter’s photographs – due to long exposure

Tracing gestures – Pierre Bismuth tracing gestures from film and displaying them over a photograph – another form of blending.




Portland notes 2 – Ghost in the machine

links to noise

at some point a trace cannot be distinguished – figure ground problem.  The ground can be viewed as noise and the trace -signal.

link also to forensics

Traces can be linked to narrative – a positivist view of history – evidence.

The spectre is associated with noise (haunted media)  breakdown or technology

Ghost in the machine.

Spectrality – Disputed chronology – neither present nor absent