A.N. Whitehead and digital aesthetics

Barker, T. (2009) A.N. Whitehead and digital aesthetics. In: Creative Margins Conference, Perth, Australia, 5-6 Nov 2009,

Full text not currently available from Enlighten.


The aesthetics of media art seem to be inextricable from time and process. Surprisingly though, interaction with digital systems has traditionally been marked by spatial concepts and metaphors, turning the Internet into a virtual 'cyberspace' and thinking of the aesthetics of interaction as a convergence of space. This concern with space has restricted an aesthetic theory of media art from grappling with questions of time and the more specific questions of the temporal and 'temporalising' nature of interaction. My research seeks to address this problem by developing a process philosophy of digital aesthetics, focusing upon the event of interaction and seeking to move beyond the strict subject/object distinction that dominates traditional approaches to aesthetics. This work crosses into A.N. Whitehead's process philosophy of the early 20th century, a domain usually only occupied by other process philosophers, philosophers of science and some experimental theologians. Readings of Whitehead are not at all settled and his application to digital aesthetics signifies a new way in which to approach his work. The research that I enact thus not only uses Whitehead to rethink the digital encounter, but also brings his work into the contemporary post-digital condition and uses this to shed new light on his ideas, outside of their usual theoretical framework.

Item Type:Conference Proceedings
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Barker, Professor Timothy
Authors: Barker, T.
Subjects:B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
N Fine Arts > N Visual arts (General) For photography, see TR
College/School:College of Arts & Humanities > School of Culture and Creative Arts > Theatre Film and TV Studies

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record