A few weeks / months ago — what is time? — the Contemporary Theory Reading Group at the University of Birmingham organised an amazing series of lectures and workshops during quarantine around the work of Mark Fisher. The sessions brought together some wonderfully like-minded people and I was honoured to be asked to present some of my research as part of the series.
The Contemporary Theory Reading Group has now changed shape and they have re-launched themselves as a proper online entity called Ctrl Network. They’ve started a blog and written a little something here explaining their shape-shift and their plans for the future. Embracing the way that quarantine exploded their existence, they hope to function as a node for wider discussion in a network that exceeds their institution. I’m sure anyone who took part in their K-Punk Quarantined series will vouch for this as a really exciting endeavour for anyone theoretically inclined looking for a way to share ideas and chat with people.
You can check out their website here for more information, and make sure to follow them on Twitter. If you want a taste of what the group have done, the entire series of workshops and lectures around Fisher’s work is now up online here and my guest lecture is embedded below.
Hey man, I’ve been exploring your blog today. I’m not sure I fully grasp what your project is or what you are you working towards, but you are beautiful writer and seem to be a profound thinker. I’m in an ideological haze right now that is the result of 3 years of essentially negating everything that I previously believed. The internet is good at that kind of thing, though it does leave you destabilized and is quite painful.
I am now trying to slowly, carefully re-create a coherent worldview, but it’s difficult when accelerating technological progress re-shapes the human condition and subjectivity on a yearly basis. Maybe all I can do is hold on for dear life until this trajectory we’re on finally drops us off somewhere and we have time and space to re-create an organic culture and society. I appreciate people like you, who engage with the world in the thick of things and are trying to create a genuinely positive and coherent philosophical project. Many seem to have given up and are nakedly only concerned with critiquing other philosophical projects, or accelerating technology for its own sake just because it’s interesting to do so, regardless of the outcome. Maybe I misunderstood your work, but you seem to have deep concern for other human beings, and so I trust people like you… unlike many of the extreme anti-human edgelords out there who seem to value sadism towards “normies” more than collective emancipation. Keep it up!