c y b o r g m a n i f e s t o 2 . 0
:: t e c h n o l o g i e s :: h y p e r t e x t
:: d e c e n t e r i n g
In his book "Hypertext 2.0" George Landow draws upon Derrida in arguing that hypertext provides for an 'infinitely recenterable system' as reader(s) constantly adopt other organising logics when moving through various different trails and lexias. Jacques Derrida showed in fact how epistemological shifts always involve a decentering of central concepts and organising logics of an epistemic field. Of course, it can be argued that any language system, based as it is on the potentially infinite repeatability of signs, is henceforth 'infinitely recenterable'. There seems however to be a factor of explicitness in connections and endowment of speed of hypertext that may enforce faster decentering motion.
This might be extremely interesting for conceptualising and practicing social and intellectual change, but as standpoint theories remind us: what about a necessary 'recentering' in order to make new knowledge claims? Derrida himself also notes that "centers are not bad in themselves". The crucial point then becomes to carefully look at situated workings of in- and exclusion, of both privileging and marginalising effects of new technologies.
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