front cover of Digital Baroque
Digital Baroque
New Media Art and Cinematic Folds
Timothy Murray
University of Minnesota Press, 2008

A surprising and original application of theories of new media art

In this intellectually groundbreaking work, Timothy Murray investigates a paradox embodied in the book’s title: What is the relationship between digital, in the form of new media art, and baroque, a highly developed early modern philosophy of art? Making an exquisite and unexpected connection between the old and the new, Digital Baroque analyzes the philosophical paradigms that inform contemporary screen arts.

Examining a wide range of art forms, Murray reflects on the rhetorical, emotive, and social forces inherent in the screen arts’ dialogue with early modern concepts. Among the works discussed are digitally oriented films by Peter Greenaway, Jean-Luc Godard, and Chris Marker; video installations by Thierry Kuntzel, Keith Piper, and Renate Ferro; and interactive media works by Toni Dove, David Rokeby, and Jill Scott. Sophisticated readings reveal the electronic psychosocial webs and digital representations that link text, film, and computer. Murray puts forth an innovative Deleuzian psychophilosophical approach—one that argues that understanding new media art requires a fundamental conceptual shift from linear visual projection to nonlinear temporal folds intrinsic to the digital form.

front cover of Mimesis, Masochism, and Mime
Mimesis, Masochism, and Mime
The Politics of Theatricality in Contemporary French Thought
Timothy Murray, Editor
University of Michigan Press, 1997
In the first collection of its kind, Timothy Murray brings together writing by leading French thinkers on the political effects of theatricality on theater, film, literature, philosophy, and psychoanalysis. In addition to recently translated work by Cixous and Deleuze, the collection features English translations of essays by Althusser, Derrida, Durand, Fanon, Féral, Foucault, Girard, Green, Irigaray, Kristeva, Lacoue-Labarthe, Lyotard, and Marin.
Mimesis, Masochism, & Mime provides a welcome theoretical contribution to recent theories of performance and to the development of French cultural studies. Its emphasis on the politics of theatricality lends unprecedented focus to French theorizations of the body, gender, sight, screen, voice, territoriality, otherness, and diversity. In so doing, the volume provides an intellectual context and theoretical blueprint for future work in the cultural study of mimesis, masochism, and mime. The collection highlights the importance of theatricality to the theory and practice of aesthetics as well as to French debates over patriarchy, absolutism, and metaphysics. In turn, wide-ranging analyses provide a range of approaches to the politics of identity, feminism, marginality, and postcoloniality. Timothy Murray's introduction makes clear the theoretical context of the volume, and situates the book in relation to recent Anglo-American debates over realism, multiculturalism, and identity politics.
The contributors are especially helpful in linking varying political accounts of ideology, philosophy, and psychoanalysis to historical and contemporary work in performance, film, and video. Astute commentaries on Sophocles, Shakespeare, and Artaud are combined with fascinating analyses of more recent mixed-media performance, from the European stage (Duras, Théâtre du Soleil, Bene, and Strehler), to the site of North American performance (Snow, Mabou Mines, Wilson, and Rainer).
Mimesis, Masochism, & Mime provides a stunning account of the political importance of theatricality to contemporary French thought and will be welcomed by readers in French studies, theory, theater, cultural studies, film, women's studies, aesthetics, and psychoanalysis.
"The essays . . .are judiciously chosen, accurately justified, wide in range within the dispensation of post-structuralist thought--that is, they touch on everything from the question of origins to the libidinal economy of performance to post- Brechtian staging to the ineliminable shadow play of tragedy through its ideological demystification by schizoanalysis to feminism in the theater." --Herbert Blau, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee
Timothy Murray is Professor of English at Cornell University and former Editor of Theatre Journal. He is the author of Theatrical Legitimation: Allegories of Genius in Seventeenth-Century England and France and Like a Film: Ideological Fantasy on Screen, Camera, and Canvas.

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Psychoanalysis and the Phantasms of Early Modern Culture
Timothy Murray and Alan K. Smith, Editors
University of Minnesota Press, 1998

Repossessions was first published in 1998. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.

A double-edged critical forum, this volume brings early modern culture and psychoanalysis into revisionist dialogue with each other. The authors reflect on how psychoanalysis remains

"possessed" by its incorporation of early modern mythologies, visions, credos, and phantasms. Their essays explore the conceptual and ideological foundations of psychoanalysis while articulating fresh insights into the vicissitudes of autobiography, translation, mourning, and eroticism in the transitional period from the waning of feudalism to the emergence of capitalism.

Employing a broad spectrum of the most recent, Continental psychoanalytic approaches, the book covers topics and figures ranging from King James to Leonardo, demonology to cartography, astronomy to cross-dressing, and mythology to biology. Its detailed readings of Boccaccio, Ficino, Finé, Michelangelo, Montaigne, and others dramatically reassess the foundational concepts of cultural history, secularization, autobiography, reason, and government. Through a sustained focus on visual and verbal residues of personal and cultural trauma, the essays generate innovative analyses of the interrelation of writing, graphic space, self, and social identification in early modern texts, paintings, maps, and other artifacts.

Contributors: Elizabeth J. Bellamy, Tom Conley, Mitchell Greenberg, Kathleen Perry Long, Julia Reinhard Lupton, Christopher Pye, Juliana Schiesari.

Timothy Murray is professor of English and director of graduate studies in Film and Video at Cornell University. Alan K. Smith is assistant professor in the Department of Languages and Literature at the University of Utah.


front cover of Technics Improvised
Technics Improvised
Activating Touch in Global Media Art
Timothy Murray
University of Minnesota Press, 2022

Seeing new media art as an entry point for better understanding of technology and worldmaking futures

In this challenging work, a leading authority on new media art examines that curatorial and aesthetic landscape to explore how art resists and rewires the political and economic structures that govern technology. How do inventive combinations of artistic and theoretical improvisation counter the extent to which media art remains at risk, not just from the quarantines of a global pandemic but also from the very viral and material conditions of technology?  How does global media art speak back to the corporate closures of digital euphoria as clothed in strategies of digital surveillance, ecological deprivation, and planned obsolescence? In Technics Improvised, Timothy Murray asks these questions and more. 

At the intersection of global media art, curatorial practice, tactical media, and philosophy, Murray reads a wide range of creative performances and critical texts that envelop artistic and digital materials in unstable, political relations of touch, body, archive, exhibition, and technology. From video to net art and interactive performance, he considers both canonical and unheralded examples of activist technics that disturb the hegemony of biopolitical/digital networks by staging the very touch of the unsettling discourse erupting from within. In the process, critical dialogues emerge between a wide range of artists and theorists, from Hito Steyerl, Ricardo Dominguez, Joan Jonas, Isaac Julien, Ryoji Ikeda, and Shadi Nazarian to Gilles Deleuze, Jean-Luc Nancy, Elizabeth Povinelli, Jean-François Lyotard, Erin Manning, Achille Mbembe, and Samuel Weber.

Brilliantly conceived and argued and eloquently written, Technics Improvised points the way to how artistic and theoretical practice can seize on the improvisational accidents of technics to activate creativity, thought, and politics anew.


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