Pettman, Dominic

Pettman, Dominic

Dominic  Pettman
PhD, Department of English & Cultural Studies, University of Melbourne
Professor of Culture and Media; Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts

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Dominic Pettman’s teaching and research focuses on the manifold ways in which media theory influences cultural practice, and vice versa. While his current work is grounded in technologies of the present, he is equally interested in the ways in which previous forms and formats were once considered disorienting examples of "new media."

Pettman’s first book, After the Orgy: Toward a Politics of Exhaustion, explored the intersections between decadence, technology, transgression and apocalyptic rhetoric in the 1890s and 1960s. His second book, co-written with Justin Clemens, and entitled Avoiding the Subject: Media, Culture and the Object, studied various "symbolic objects" that circulate within popular culture, such as visual memes and music samples. His third book, Love and Other Technologies: Retrofitting Eros for the Information Age, presented the possibility that even something as ineffable and seemingly natural as "love" can be considered a social technology (designed to engineer and maximize a specific type of belonging). His most recent book, Human Error: Species-Being and Media Machines, examines the cultural co-evolution of humans, animals, and machines, arguing that "humanity" may be one of the world's most significant cases of mistaken identity.
Courses Taught:
  • Media Toolkit
  • Introduction to Media Studies
  • Introduction to Cultural Studies
  • Locating the Human
  • Cooking, Culture, and Cannibalism
  • Dream Factories
  • Humans, Animals, Machines
  • Love and Other Technologies
Recent Publications:
Human Error: Species-Being and Media Machines. University of Minnesota Press, 2011.

"After the Beep: Answering Machines and Creaturely Life." Boundary 2 37 (2010): 133-153.

Introduction in Jean Baudrillard's Fatal Strategies. New York: Semiotext, 2008.

"Bear Life: Tracing an Opening in Werner Herzog's Grizzly Man." Theory and Event 12: (2009).

"Love in the Time of Tamagotchi." Theory, Culture, & Society [Special Issue, "Ubiquitous Media"] 26 (2009): 189-208.

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