New Books in the Arts & Sciences

Celebrating Recent Work by Dennis Tenen

Thursday, November 2, 2017  6:15pm The Heyman Center, Second Floor Common Room

Registration

Free and open to the public

No registration necessary

First come, first seated

Sponsors

The Society of Fellows and Heyman Center for the Humanities

Dean of the Humanities, Arts and Sciences

Dean of Social Sciences, Arts and Sciences

New Books in the Arts & Sciences
         —panel discussions celebrating recent work by the Columbia Faculty

Plain Text: The Poetics of Computation
by Dennis Tenen

This book challenges the ways we read, write, store, and retrieve information in the digital age. Computers—from electronic books to smart phones—play an active role in our social lives. Our technological choices thus entail theoretical and political commitments. Dennis Tenen takes up today's strange enmeshing of humans, texts, and machines to argue that our most ingrained intuitions about texts are profoundly alienated from the physical contexts of their intellectual production. Drawing on a range of primary sources from both literary theory and software engineering, he makes a case for a more transparent practice of human–computer interaction. Plain Text is thus a rallying call, a frame of mind as much as a file format. It reminds us, ultimately, that our devices also encode specific modes of governance and control that must remain available to interpretation.

Dennis Tenen is Assistant Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University, where he is a Co-Founder of Columbia's Group for Experimental Research Methods in the Humanities.

Participants

  • Author

    Dennis Tenen

    Assistant Professor of English and Comparative Literature

    Columbia University

  • Panel Chair

    Sarah Cole

    Professor of English and Comparative Literature

    Columbia University

  • Discussant

    Brian Larkin

    Director of Graduate Studies

    Barnard College, Columbia University

  • Discussant

    N. Katherine Hayles

    James B. Duke Professor of Literature

    Duke University

  • Discussant

    Nicholas Dames

    Theodore Kahan Professor of Humanities, English and Comparative Literature

    Columbia University

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