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pISSN : 2092-6081 / eISSN : 2383-9899

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2012, Vol.5, No.1

  • 1.

    Digital Convergence and the Externalization of Intelligence

    EIH Multimedia Research Team | 2012, 5(1) | pp.5~26 | number of Cited : 0
    Abstract PDF
    This paper examines digital convergence, focusing on its technical and cultural dimension, and discusses what implications digital convergence could have for our understanding of the nature of human cognition. For the analysis of the technical dimension of digital convergence, three conceptual layers are distinguished: physical, code‐logical, and content layers. The dynamics of digital convergence is explicated by highlighting the role which the inter‐layer, i.e., digitalized code‐logical layer, is playing in mediating content‐layer and physical‐layer. For the analysis of cultural dimension of digital convergence, we invoke the notion of “externalization of intelligence,” according to which the digital devices such as the iPhone should be viewed as being not so much mere passive tools as externalizations of human mind. Based on this thesis, we contend that the ultimate form of convergence obtains not between contents or hardware, but between the human and environment (or instrument). We predict this would cause a radical change in the way we understand the concept of agency and selfhood. For example, human agent will delegates much of her cognitive authority to a digital device that is an externalization of her mind, and the boundary of one’s self needs to be drawn differently from the traditional boundary based on one’s body.
  • 2.

    The Ghostly Presence of the Hong Kong Subject in Rey Chow’s Postcolonial Critique

    Kwai‐Cheung Lo | 2012, 5(1) | pp.27~48 | number of Cited : 0
    Abstract PDF
    Hong Kong, the ex‐British colony where postcolonial critic Rey Chow grew up and was educated, is merely a ghostly presence in her postcolonial critiques though it is always being made reference to. By no means can one say that the port city is relatively absent or it just occupies a minor place in Chow’s discursive space. It is only that its presence or referentiality has been bracketed, and sometimes dismantled from the categorization of geopolitical determinant or particularism. In a way, ‘Hong Kong’ is more a sign that constitutes a certain alterity from within the bounds of subordination, thus creating room for radical theorization. Chow’s discourse always attempts to find its own political position in between the appropriation of Western theory and the particularistic assertion of local, history‐bound and culturally unique difference which is often understood as a kind of resistance to the former. As a result, the certitude of the particular identity of Hong Kong cannot be easily established. However, a spectral presence is produced and it urges us to reflect upon. The act of disavowing, however, may point to not only the subtle form of violence inherent in a system of representation that is historically intertwined with domination and exploitation, but also the lack of (temporal and ontological) self‐coincidence in theoretical discourse itself. This essay examines the ambivalence or indeterminacy of ‘Hong Kong’ as a thing to be theorized in the postcolonial theory of Chow’s writing.
  • 3.

    A Cosmopolitical Philosophy to Come: Derrida and the Ends of Humanity

    Peter W. Milne | 2012, 5(1) | pp.49~67 | number of Cited : 0
    Abstract PDF
    Although Derrida is often taken to be “anti‐humanist,” this paper argues that his engagement with the legacy of humanism is not only much more complex, but that it retains and alters this legacy in such a way as to provide a new way of thinking about the human in a trans‐national or “global” context. This argument is at the same time an occasion to briefly explore some of the implications of this for Derrida’s relation to philosophy as a humanistic discipline. It first tracks some of Derrida’s most explicit discussions of humanism over the course of several works and lines of inquiry, showing what I take to be a shift in his work from the critical stance of “The Ends of Man” to the more nuanced discussions in some of the later “political” writings. My main goal is to link Derrida’s discussions of humanism to his work on cosmopolitanism and particularly to his argument that political thinking must negotiate the troubling but important legacy of a philosophical universalism that is nonetheless tied to a very particular cultural and historical past. I take this problem to be analogous to the ambiguity of a humanist legacy that is potentially violent and limiting in its conception of universal humanity while being at the same time what underwrites important political concepts such as human rights. Derrida argues that philosophy is the “other way” and is thus always open to redirection and reappropriation by traditions other than its own. Taking the “human” as an Idea in the Kantian sense, I argue that it too can wander from its end, liberate itself from the strictures of universal humanity while nonetheless retaining the promise and the political consideration due that humanity. Derrida thus offers an innovative way to rethink the humanist legacy in the context of a plurality of cultures. I end by suggesting that philosophy and the humanities more generally, far from being irrelevant, may thus be more relevant than ever.
  • 4.

    Strange Foreigners We Are!: Identity Transits in Portuguese Immigration

    Isabel Pires de LIMA | 2012, 5(1) | pp.69~88 | number of Cited : 0
    Abstract PDF
    Portugal, a country for centuries in a Diaspora fed upon by massive waves of emigration in the 19th and 20th centuries, has become a destination for Cape Verdean, Moldovan, Brazilian, Ukrainian, Chinese, and Russian immigration over the last 15 years. From an analysis of Portuguese and Brazilian contemporary fiction works in the fields of novels, cinema, video, I attempt to study how identities in transit are developed and built through processes of cultural hybridism and of ‘ghettoization’ experiences, leading both the Portuguese and the others, the immigrants, to become some ‘others’—we are all strange foreigners in the sudden world of global migrations.
  • 5.

    Identity, Performative Subjectivity, and the Politics of Disidentification

    SHIM Bo-Seon | 2012, 5(1) | pp.89~108 | number of Cited : 0
    Abstract PDF
    This paper investigates the possibility of the politics of disidentification, which invents the voice and stake of the new community of equality by reinterpreting the notion of performative subjectivity. Reinterpreting the notion of performative subjectivity submitted by Judith Butler and following Jacques Rancière, It is argued that the politics of disidentification transforms the discourses, laws, and symbols treated as universal categories into democratic inscriptions, which will, in turn, operate as practical words for the political performances of the people. This paper demonstrates through three Korean examples; The Yongsan Demonstration, The Multicultural Festival, and The Ignorant Poet that the universal categories, which are in fact symbolic capital distributed according to the given social order, can be disidentified and reconstructed into practical manifestations of new identity and contribute to the creation of the community of equality.
  • 6.

    Why So Serious? Toward Online Game Ethics: Wittgenstein’s “Norm” and Levinas’s “Il y a” as Illumination

    WU Che-Yen | 2012, 5(1) | pp.109~124 | number of Cited : 0
    Abstract PDF
    This paper first tries to spell out the literary review of the game discourses by seminal figures like Johan Huizinga, Roger Caillois, and Hans‐Georg Gadamer. Then, by introducing Ludwig Wittgenstein’s notion of ‘norm’ and ‘family resemblance,’ it is argued that the ethics of games today holds the key to the metaphysical prison of the traditional game. Next, the Massively‐Multiplayer Online Role‐Playing Game (MMORPG) WOW (World of Warcraft) is chosen in particular, as the text set in motion to exemplify the operation of game ethics in a postmodern age. Furthermore, Emmanuel Levinas’ concept of “Il y a” will be appropriated to beacon the way out of the intrinsic contradiction in this kind of postmodern MMORPG. “Il y a” is a state of ineluctable ‘presence of absence,’ an impersonal and anonymous ‘there is,’ which echoes the feature of anonymity in a MMORPG, where the game is still on, and the chosen character is still there even when a player takes a break, logging out and shutting down the computer. The player seems absent but in fact present, entering a state of ‘presence of absence,’ owing debt to the other players as inter‐subjects. It is in this sense that the ethical responsibility is involved. For Levinas, real time exists only in synchronic intersubjectivity, which can emancipate the subject from self‐identity through diachronic time in traditional games (readily reminiscent of Agamben’s implication of game as a time‐accelerator). The immediacy of online games welcomes and allows any player to join in at any time, whereas the traditional games refuse the impromptu joining due to the limit of artificial time such as a round, a set, or an inning. Also, it is also this immediacy of online games that makes the instant negotiation and modification of rules possible, paralleling Wittgenstein’s ‘norm’ again.
  • 7.

    (Re)locating Gendered War Memories in the Asia Pacific

    Berverley Anne YAMAMOTO | 2012, 5(1) | pp.125~154 | number of Cited : 0
    Abstract PDF
    This paper explores the representation of war memory and narratives of commemoration in four war memorials/museums in Japan and Australia focusing particularly on the workings of nationalism, gender and militarism. One site, the Australian War Memorial, has been noted by some for its gender‐balanced representation of World War II and subsequent conflicts, but also criticised by others for linking national identity with a masculinised memory of the failed Gallipoli Campaign during World War I. The second site, the Yasukuni Shrine and Yūshūkan War Museum in Tokyo, is highly controversial due to bellicose representations of Japan’s military expansionism during the Asia‐Pacific War (1931‐1945) and sanitization of past atrocities. It will be shown that while seemingly very different both AWM and Yūshūkan commemorate the same male‐militarist version of war memory, albeit in a much more highly contested nationalistic context in the case of the latter. The other two sites, the Himeyuri Peace Museum in Okinawa and the Women’s Active Museum War Museum on War and Peace (WAM) in Tokyo, are also in the same cultural space as the Yūshūkan, Japan, but offer a counter view of these fifteen years of conflict to varying degrees. Both have attempted to offer a ‘countermemory’ or alternative narrative of the Asia‐Pacific War by articulating the histories of those who suffered the violence of theses times as young women mobilised to serve as military nurses in Okinawa, in the first instance, and as ‘comfort women’ (military sexual slaves) in a variety of locations colonised or occupied by Japan, in the second. Whereas the message of the Himeyuri Peace Museum is the futility and brutality of war, the imperialist, militarist and patriarchal power structures that contributed to the war are not fully attended to. In contrast, WAM draws links between everyday violence against women and the violent conditions that the comfort women were subjected to in war time. It will be argued that WAM in particular, with its activist approach, creates ‘effective history’ that shatters the unitary narrative of sites of memory that monumentalize the deeds of an imagined or constructed masculine hero. WAM, which is the product of the coming together of women of the former colonizing and colonized nations as well as the invading and invaded nations, stands as an example of history transcending borders in an attempt to recreate the rules that have hitherto silenced them. It is so disturbing to those wedded to monument of male sacrifice and heroic deed because the testimonies of the former comfort women (girls) exposes not only the brutality and violence of war, but also the intimate relationship between military masculinities and violence.
  • 8.

    Cultural Translation as Hybridisation

    Robert J. C. YOUNG | 2012, 5(1) | pp.155~175 | number of Cited : 4
    Abstract PDF
    In this essay I consider the question of the relation of hybridity to cultural translation. The history of the idea of cultural translation is shown to have begun in the discipline of anthropology: at the moment when it was discredited there, it was appropriated according to a different theoretical model for postcolonial studies in which it comes close to the concept of hybridity. Nevertheless, the complexities of the concept of cultural translation, and its relation to linguistic translation, as well as to ideas of cultural hybridity, remains. The essay concludes by arguing that in fact cultural and linguistic translation are conceptually antithetical.