Updates from May, 2015 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Mark 7:58 pm on May 27, 2015 Permalink
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    Music I find inexplicably conducive to write (#16) 

     
  • Mark 7:43 am on May 25, 2015 Permalink
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    Things I’ve been reading recently #8 

    • Difficult Men: Behind The Scenes of a Creative Revolution by Brett Martin
    • That Option No Longer Exists: Britain 1974-76 by John Medhurst
    • Them: Adventures With Extremists by Jon Ronson
    • Boomerang: The Biggest Bust by Michael Lewis
    • Adrian Mole: The Prostrate Years by Sue Townsend

    Graphic Novels:

    • Southern Basterds Volume 2
     
  • Mark 6:45 pm on May 19, 2015 Permalink
    Tags: doomtree, ,   

    Music I find inexplicably conducive to writing (#15) 

    I’ve had this on repeat for days now. One of those rare albums that gets better the more you listen to it:

     
  • Mark 5:41 pm on May 16, 2015 Permalink
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    Things I’ve been reading recently #7 

    It’s been a while since I last did one of these:

    • The Happiness Industry by William Davies – superb and I’m interviewing him about it next week
    • A Decent Ride by Irvine Welsh – far from his best but immensely readable nonetheless
    • Warwick University LTD by E.P. Thompson and others – I chose an eerily appropriate time to finally read this astonishing book
    • Say Everything by Scott Rosenberg – a thoughtful and interesting history of blogging by the editor of Salon
    • The Rise of Islamic State by Patrick Cockburn – impressive and brave reporting in a book that unfortunately seemingly consisted of a series of LRB essays spliced together
    • Live and Let Die by Ian Fleming – my enthusiasm for James Bond books died just as quickly as it emerged. I just can’t get past the racism & misogyny.
    • So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed by Jon Ronson – I read this out of sheer curiosity due to Luke Mason and Dan O’Hara dragging up the Weavrs affair. I actually really liked it.

    Graphic Novels:

    • Alex + Ada volume 1 and volume 2 – powerful and unusual.
    • The United States of Murder Inc – great concept but the art bugged me
    • MPH – really enjoyable example of Mark Millar following a formula without being formulaic.
    • Alias – for years I thought people were talking about the old TV show when they mentioned this. It turns out it’s an incredible series by Brian Bendis following the life of Jessica Jones after she left the Avengers. Possibly the best graphic novel I’ve ever read.
    • The Pulse – a less interesting, less engaging but nonetheless worthwhile follow up to Alias.
     
  • Mark 10:43 am on May 15, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    CfP: The Politics of Data (Science) 

    The Politics of Data (Science)

    This special issue of Discover Society will explore the political implications of ‘big data’ and the systems of expertise emerging around it, including though not limited to Data Science. In doing so it will aim to bridge the gap between the methodological discourse surrounding data science and the political discourse beginning to emerge around ‘big data’. Here are some of the questions the issue will address:

    – How is ‘big data’ understood and acted upon? How should we understand its cultural power?
    – How is ‘big data’ reconfiguring the social sciences? Do we risk all science becoming data science?
    – How and why has the ‘data scientist’ come to be seen as the ‘sexiest job of the 21st century’?
    – Is the ‘data scientist’ just a ’Statistician who lives in Shoreditch?’ Or is this a genuinely new intellectual role?
    – Can ‘big data’ address ‘big questions’? If not, is this a problem?
    – What are the precursors of ‘data science’ within the academy and/or within corporations?
    – What implications does corporate data science have for the relationship between corporations & consumers?
    – What implications does national security data science have for the relationship between the state & citizens?
    – Can the use of digital data lead to efficiency savings in public services? How does this relate to the politics of austerity?
    – How could predictive privacy harms emerging from data analytics be addressed politically?
    – Can the opacity of algorithmic processes be challenged? Or are we heading inexorably for a ‘black-box society’?
    – How are new forms of digital data reconfiguring activity in particular social environments?

    However these are just suggestions and ideas beyond the scope of this list are very welcome.

    The deadline for contributions is June 15th. Contact mark@markcarrigan.net to discuss a potential contribution.

    The article will constitute the July issue of Discover Society. Most articles will be 1500 words however there are a number of special sections in the online magazine.

    Front line – 1500 words
    View point – 1500 words
    Policy briefing – 1500-2000 words

    If you would be interested in writing one of these thematic sections, please get in touch asap.

    The issue will follow the usual formatting guidelines of Discover Society. Please consult the notes for contributors.

     
  • Mark 5:26 pm on May 10, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    An introduction to Design Fiction for Sociologists, May 13th at Goldsmiths 

    Design fiction is a term first coined by Julian Bleecker and popularized by SF author Bruce Sterling, who describes it as “the deliberate use of diegetic prototypes to suspend disbelief about change.” and that it “attacks the status quo and suggests clear ways in which life might become different.”

    Design fiction isn’t science fiction, it’s not just a telling of stories in the future or trying to make predictions of the future, instead it is a way of trying to envision and interrogate possible futures based on research data, current trends, and/or technologies. Originally, primarily used by product designers as a cheap alternative to prototyping new products, it has found traction as a critical tool allowing us to see through the fog of hype and digital evangelism. 

    In this event Tim Maughan introduces design fiction for sociologists. He discusses the work he is undertaking with Sava Saheli Singh (New York University) and its possible implications for how we write about research.

    Keith Kahn-Harris will discuss his new project which looks at how kinds of mainstream texts other than science fiction also generate ’social science fictions’, often ‘accidentally’ as a result of the pragmatic requirements of generating workable plots and scenarios. Such texts can help force attention to a neglected sociological question: what are the limits of possibility in human society?

    Sarah Burton will also speak on a topic to be finalised.

    Les Back and Mark Carrigan will each offer a short response before the event is opened up for a general discussion.

    Eventbrite - Design Fiction for Sociologists

     
  • Mark 10:16 pm on May 7, 2015 Permalink
    Tags:   

    Dear England 

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tSjAI3KMS2I

    Whoa, give me the words, give me the words

    That tell me nothing

    Dear England,

    Whoa, give me the words, give me the words

    That tell me nothing

    They say God save the queen,

    Britannia rules the waves,

    Britannia’s in my genes

    But Britannia called us slaves

    Britannia made the borders

    Cause Britannia’s forces came

    Britannia lit the match

    But Britannia fears the flame

    Where blood stains the pavement

    Tears stain a cheek

    And privilege is threatened, the fear reigns supreme

    Where bankers are earning, from burning and looting

    The nervous are shooting, search for solutions

    I shed a tear for the father in Birmingham

    Quick swerve of the car and it murdered them

    In Tottenham the apartments were burning

    And nobody came just arson is circling

    All wanna be down

    Till TV’s get robbed like jewels on the queens crown

    They say now no cause for a rebound

    See now they call me a fool cause I speak out

    People are humans but mind is animals

    This violent tyrannical system is fallable

    Hand in the loot by the minute you see ’em

    But the biggest looters are the British museum

    This happened here and you think it’s a accident

    Just relax as we slip into fascism

    And the fear gets drilled into your hearts

    But remember these children are all ours

    Whoa, give me the words, give me the words

    That tell me nothing

    Dear England,

    Whoa, give me the words, give me the words

    That tell me nothing

    If a policeman can kill a black man where he found him

    A soldier can kill an Afghan in the mountains

    A petty thief can get ransacked from his housing

    While the bankers are lounging

    That’s my surroundings

    Took land, no one in your family has heard of

    Before you sleep, whisper the mantra you learnt cause

    Never will there be a day that cameras are turned off

    Who runs this country, Cameron or Murdoch

    Who’s the government, a government that can’t govern

    Can’t you figure it’s ways bigger than Mark Duggan

    Bigger than Smiley, bigger than Jean Charles

    Hundreds are dead not one killer is on trial

    Just a familiar sound of hysteria

    Bombs over Libya but not this area

    Downing Street I can find villains

    Cut education, privatize prisons

    Surprised by theft when it’s organized,

    But mass immorality is normalized

    Assumptions surrounding the looting of London

    But this is a system consumed by consumption

    Yea it happened here and you think it’s a accident

    Just relax as we slip into fascism

    And the fear gets drilled into your hearts

    But remember these children are all ours

    Whoa, give me the words, give me the words

    That tell me nothing.


     
  • Mark 1:38 pm on May 3, 2015 Permalink
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    Music I find inexplicably conducive to write (#14) 

     
  • Mark 10:43 am on May 2, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags:   

    CfP: The Politics of Data (Science) 

    The Politics of Data (Science)

    This special issue of Discover Society will explore the political implications of ‘big data’ and the systems of expertise emerging around it, including though not limited to Data Science. In doing so it will aim to bridge the gap between the methodological discourse surrounding data science and the political discourse beginning to emerge around ‘big data’. Here are some of the questions the issue will address:

    – How is ‘big data’ understood and acted upon? How should we understand its cultural power?
    – How is ‘big data’ reconfiguring the social sciences? Do we risk all science becoming data science?
    – How and why has the ‘data scientist’ come to be seen as the ‘sexiest job of the 21st century’?
    – Is the ‘data scientist’ just a ’Statistician who lives in Shoreditch?’ Or is this a genuinely new intellectual role?
    – Can ‘big data’ address ‘big questions’? If not, is this a problem?
    – What are the precursors of ‘data science’ within the academy and/or within corporations?
    – What implications does corporate data science have for the relationship between corporations & consumers?
    – What implications does national security data science have for the relationship between the state & citizens?
    – Can the use of digital data lead to efficiency savings in public services? How does this relate to the politics of austerity?
    – How could predictive privacy harms emerging from data analytics be addressed politically?
    – Can the opacity of algorithmic processes be challenged? Or are we heading inexorably for a ‘black-box society’?
    – How are new forms of digital data reconfiguring activity in particular social environments?

    However these are just suggestions and ideas beyond the scope of this list are very welcome.

    The deadline for contributions is June 15th. Contact mark@markcarrigan.net to discuss a potential contribution.

    The article will constitute the July issue of Discover Society. Most articles will be 1500 words however there are a number of special sections in the online magazine.

    Front line – 1500 words
    View point – 1500 words
    Policy briefing – 1500-2000 words

    If you would be interested in writing one of these thematic sections, please get in touch asap.

    The issue will follow the usual formatting guidelines of Discover Society. Please consult the notes for contributors.

     
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