I found yesterday’s lecture to be extremely interesting as a lecture just about knowledge; it’s great to feel like i’m being challenged to think in so many different ways and consider things I had never considered before, or even thought of, I’m loving that this course simply refuses to allow us to make generic work or churn out carbon copies.
Here are he main points of the lecture that I found to be particularly interesting…
1. Institutional expressions of power and authority that let some things ‘matter’ and other things not.
Adrian spoke about this in terms of both ‘value’ and ‘affordances’ and used journalism as an example, suggesting that journalists decide what is good journalism. This means that we as media makers have the same power, we decide the mediums affordances (what we can do with what we have/what our media allows us to do) and decide how we can use these affordances to create. We craft our own ‘grammar’.
Adrian then went on to speak about the de Certeau reading, and stuff got pretty philosophical…
2. What does knowledge ‘look like’ in this subject?
This was a key question we explored throughout the lecture in relation to our own media practice – knowing ‘how to’ is trivial in relation to other ways of doing or knowing – Anyone can learn how to ‘drive’ Final Cut, it’s what you do with it that you should spend time thinking about it.
Immersion- being guided by some ideas not ‘content’ (what is it to work in the network? What is the network? What counts as knowledge NOW and how do I make and recognise it?
3. Rhizomes and Tree’s
Adrian made what seemed like an abstract connection between knowledge and tree’s but after his explanation, I see the relationship between knowledge and the light and height that tree’s suggest. The ‘tree of knowledge of good and evil’ in bible suggests:
God tells the man that he may eat the fruit of any of the trees in the garden except that of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Genesis 2 ends with a note that the man and woman “were naked and felt no shame”. A talking snake subsequently tempts the woman to eat the fruit with the promise of knowledge. The woman and the man both eat, become aware of their nakedness and make coverings for themselves. God, aware that the first humans now have knowledge, banishes them from the garden lest they eat from the Tree of Life and become like the gods.
It is not clear what kind of knowledge is involved, but the three major candidates are: (1) knowledge of everything, through the mental capacities which lead to human culture; (2) moral capacity; and (3) sexual knowledge, since the man and woman recognise their nakedness on eating the fruit.
Metaphors of tree’s – light, height, seeds of an idea, hierarchy, branching off – what does this mean about knowledge?
Rhizome - a continuously growing horizontal underground stem that puts out lateral shoots and adventitious roots at intervals.
If a rhizome is separated into pieces, each piece may be able to give rise to a new plant. Think of it like a potato, it doesn’t have a centre. Underground, in the dark, tumours. There is no seed, it ‘makes do’ – its not flat, its about passage and associations, and relations between the parts. There are peaks and intensities.
What did I learn, or more fittingly, how will I apply this to my practice?
Be ephemeral, noisy and tactical in my approach to creativity, throw ‘reason’ and ‘rules’ away and start to take risks that break the ‘rules’ because the rules are made to be broken and breaking them means doing something different, its not about a privileged centre but about thinking about whole bits and how they relate to each other.
Also, another interesting question to marinate over…
What would the world be like without Google? Has Google made everything to easy?