Book launch ‘Animal Spirits: A Bestiary of the Commons’, by Matteo Pasquinelli

Book launch ‘Animal Spirits: A Bestiary of the Commons‘, by Matteo Pasquinelli, Studies in Network Cultures.

Animal Spirits: A Bestiary of the Commons book launch
Date and time: Tuesday 20 January at 17h00
Location: Waag Society, Theatrum Anatomicum, Nieuwmarkt 4, Amsterdam
Free entrance

The spectres of the financial and energy crisis are affecting new media culture and question the autonomy of networks. While activism and the art world still celebrate Creative Commons and the ‘creative cities’ as the new ideals for the Internet generation, Pasquinelli identifies the key social conflicts and business models at work behind the new commons.

Animal Spirits is the third issue in the series of studies in Network Cultures. This book series investigates concepts and practices special to network cultures. Exploring the spectrum of new media and society, we see network cultures as a strategic term to enlist in diagnosing political and aesthetic developments in user-driven communications. Network cultures can be understood as social-technical formations under construction.

The launch includes short presentations from Matteo Pasquinelli, Sebastian Olma, Merijn Oudenampsen and a discussion, led by Geert Lovink.

About the book: After a decade of digital fetishism, the spectres of the financial and energy crisis have also affected new media culture and brought into question the autonomy of networks. Yet activism and the art world still celebrate Creative Commons and the ‘creative cities’ as the new ideals for the Internet generation. Unmasking the animal spirits of the commons, Matteo Pasquinelli identifies the key social conflicts and business models at work behind the rhetoric of Free Culture. The corporate parasite infiltrating file-sharing networks, the hydra of gentrification in ‘creative cities’ such as Berlin and the bicephalous nature of the Internet with its pornographic underworld are three untold dimensions of contemporary ‘politics of the common’. Against the latent puritanism of authors like Baudrillard and Žižek, constantly quoted by both artists and activists, Animal Spirits draws a conceptual ‘book of beasts’. In a world system shaped by a turbulent stock market, Pasquinelli unleashes a politically incorrect grammar for the coming generation of the new commons.

About the author: Matteo Pasquinelli is an Amsterdam-based writer and researcher at the Queen Mary University of London and has an activist background in Italy. He edited the collection Media Activism: Strategies and Practices of Independent Communication (2002)  and co-edited C’Lick Me: A Netporn Studies Reader (2007).  Since 2000, he has been editor of the mailing list Rekombinant (www.rekombinant.org).

Table of Contents:
1. Animal Spirits: A Conceptual Bestiary
2. The Parasite of the Commons: Digitalism and the Economy of ‘Free Culture’
3. The Hydra of Language: The Biomorphic Unconscious of Culture Industry
4. The Bicephalous Image: The Just Masochism of the Imaginary

Matteo Pasquinelli, Animal Spirits: A Bestiary of the Commons, NAi Publishers, Rotterdam and the Institute of Network Cultures, Amsterdam, 2008. ISBN 978-90-5662-663-1. Paperback, sewn, 240 pages, Size: 16 X 23 cm. € 23.50

Design: Huug Schipper/Studio Tint. Cover: Leon Kranenburg and Loes Sikkes

This publication was made possible thanks to the financial support of the Mondriaan Foundation, Amsterdam.

Previous published in this series:
– Ned Rossiter, Organized Networks: Media Theory, Creative Labour, New Institutions (Rotterdam: NAi Publishers and Amsterdam: Institute of Network Cultures, 2006)
– Eric Kluitenberg, Delusive Spaces: Essays on Culture, Media and Technology (Rotterdam: NAi Publishers and Amsterdam: Institute of Network Cultures, 2008)

Press: Please contact Barbera de Kooij at NAiPublishers for more information.

To buy the book visit the NAiPublsihers website.
http://www.naipublishers.nl/art/animal_spirits_e.html (English version)
http://www.naipublishers.nl/kunst/animal_spirits.html (Dutch version)

http://www.networkcultures.org/
http://www.naipublishers.nl/

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