Memories of the Future published

«Everywhere the crisis speeds toward places and people that have long kept the disasters they produced far away and for others. Across a series of groundbreaking essays, Memories of the Future sets into play a debate among scholars and artists about the politics of the future present. This collection refuses to offer an answer. It instead provides what we need now, the current grammatical and semantic nature of art and politics today – when the coming future crisis was and for whom; ends whose beginnings are coming; and events that never quite happen.» – Elizabeth A. Povinelli, Franz Boas Professor, Columbia University

«If those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it, what about those who fail to imagine the future? This volume bursts with insights into the history and contemporary practice of prediction, illuminating futurology as a politically charged dimension of intellectual history.» – Glenn Adamson, Senior Scholar, Yale Center for British Art

What is a memory of the future? Is it a myth, a fiction of a severed arm, a post-human debate or a broken time machine? In an increasingly insecure future-world there is an urgency to consider and debate these questions. Memories of the Future: On Countervision addresses these concerns by speculating on the connections between memory and futurity in fields such as counter-histories, women’s studies, science fiction, art and design, technology, philosophy and politics. This book reveals how these subjects regenerate at the intersections of vision, counter-cultural production and the former present. The volume links the re-imaginings of memory into the present with topics such as the fever dream allegory of the adolescent social experience, soft technologies of future dress, reinventions of monetary exchange, rekindled subjectivities of school days, and technics and human progression. These countervisions argue against the homogenizing status quo of the present in order to challenge the customs, traditions and conventions of the past and propositions of the future.

Available for purchase here.

Stephen Wilson is a writer and theorist on contemporary art; he is a senior lecturer and coordinator of postgraduate theory at University of the Arts, London.

Deborah Jaffé is a cultural and design historian and the author of Ingenious Women: From Tincture of Saffron to Flying Machines (2003).


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