Brian Holmes on Sat, 29 Sep 2007 03:03:26 +0200 (CEST)

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Re: <nettime> ICT&S Researchers: Towards Critical Internet Theory

Thanks Geert, this post is extremely interesting because it shows how
we, acting basically as a grassroots avant-garde network (yup, that's
how it is), created behaviors and ideas in the late 1990s and early
years of this decade which are now being made into official sociology.

Donatella della Porta, for instance, is an academic working in social
movement studies whose ideas are a sociological translation of the
self-understandings of millions of people who have participated in
so-called "alterglobalization" demonstrations across the world. Once
I was so curious what Della Porta and Sidney Tarrow had to say that I
shelled out 37 euros for a thin paperback book called "Transnational
Protest and Global Activism." In it I found no basic concept which
had not already been developed by people publishing through free
media, so I didn't quote the book in the essay I was writing at the
time (Transparency & Exodus). I don't have anything against the work,
however, except for the absurd price tag.

I guess the thing to do now is to collectively create the concepts and
social behaviors that the next generation of scholars will translate
into official sociology, if the global crisis doesn't make such
translations obsolete. By the way, Wolfgang Hofkirchner's ideas about
a critical systems-theory approach to the Internet sounds pretty close
to a few things that have been bandied around here recently, n'est-ce
pas? We wouldn't want those academics to catch up with us....

best, BH


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