Paper: What if Foucault had had a blog?

Re-Mediating Literature conference. Interesting sounding paper:

Zylinska: “Logos bio-ethikos: What If Foucault Had Had a Blog?” -This paper focuses on one particular domain of contemporary media culture which blurs the boundary between the literary and the literal: blogging. Arguing that blogs aim at creating an experience of total life by building intricate systems of connections between online and offline spaces, personae and narratives, I will explore the extent to which practices facilitated by blogging can be interpreted in terms of bioethics. However, bioethics for me is not limited to the study of ethical issues arising from the biological and medical sciences. Rather it becomes a broadly conceptualised ethics of life, which requires judgement on what we understand by life in its different forms, and on what our position as those who deem themselves to be human is in this bioethics. Interestingly, Foucault associates the practice of self-writing precisely with an ethos of life. The keeping of individual notebooks focused on the recollection of the past is for him a matter of constituting a logos bioethikos for oneself, an ethics quite explicitly oriented by concern for the self toward objectives defined as: withdrawing into oneself, getting in touch with oneself, relying on oneself, benefiting from and enjoying oneself. This phrase logos bioethikos provides a key for my ereading of bioethics as a practice of good life, always on the way to becoming-a-good-life. But I suggest Foucault has in mind something much more material and direct than just a story about one s life and about how it should be lived: this practice of self-writing is actually said to produce a body. Drawing on Seneca, Foucault claims that writing transforms the thing seen or heard into tissue and blood. From this perspective diaries and blogs are not just commentaries on someone’s life, already lived to this point but also somehow more real outside its narrative; rather they are materialisations of it, as I will argue in this paper. In doing so I will show that in blogging this materialisation occurs very much through an enactment of a different, more embodied, aware, and lively relationship with technology.

It says here:

Zylinska is currently writing a book on forms of bioethics for the ‘new media age’ for The MIT Press. This project is informed by the philosophy of Levinas, Derrida, Agamben and Butler, the ‘cyberfeminist’ approaches to technology as well as the latest experiments in robotics, biotechnology and aesthetic surgery.

This ties in with arguments I made a few years ago in my book!

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