Thesis 1. On Advenience

1. Davide Panagia, The Political Life of Sensation (Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 2010), 11–16.

2. Roland Barthes, Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography, trans. Richard Howard (New York: Hill and Wang, 1981), 19.

3. Ibid., 10.

4. Ibid., 18.

Thesis 2. On Be/holding

1. Marie-José Mondzain, Image, Icon, Economy: The Byzantine Origins of the Contemporary Imaginary, trans. Rico Franses (Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 2005).

2. Robert Warshow, The Immediate Experience: Movies, Comics, Theatre, and Other Aspects of Popular Culture (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1962), xlii.

3. James Tully, Public Philosophy in a New Key: Volume 1, Democracy and Civic Freedom (Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 2008), 21. Here Tully states that “one might take as a provisional field of inquiry ‘practices of governance,’ that is, the forms of reason and organization through which individuals and groups coordinate their various activities and the practices of freedom by which they act within these systems, either following the rules of the game or striving to modify them.”

4. The indistinction between human and nonhuman has been amply documented by such diverse thinkers as Donna Haraway, Gilles Deleuze, and Stanley Cavell. In each instant, the case is made (in divergent ways) that the difference between human and nonhuman is tenable only if there are uncontested criteria for humanness. Thus the cyborg, or the BwO, or the automaton only counts as nonhuman from the perspective of a discourse that sustains the organic organization of humanness. But as Cavell’s “striptease of misery” illustrates (The Claim of Reason [New York: Oxford University Press, 1999], 403–11), the perfected automaton poses the question of whether there can be care for a human something. Whatever answer we may give requires that we take very seriously the idea—first advanced by Hume in his elaboration of a discontinuous self, and then by cinema in its projection of actors on a screen—that we are all simply human somethings.

Thesis 3. On Immediacy

1. Michel de Montaigne, The Complete Essays of Montaigne, trans. Donald M. Frame (Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 1976), 611.

2. David Hume, A Treatise of Human Nature, ed. David Fate Norton and Mary J. Norton (New York: Oxford University Press, 2000),, p. 126.

3. Robert Nozick, Invariances: The Structure of the Objective World (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2001), 126–28.

4. Anne Norton, 95 Theses on Politics, Culture, and Method (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2004). See especially theses 67–69.

Thesis 4. On Aspectuality

1. Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Phenomenology of Perception, trans. Colin Smith (New York: Routledge, 2002), 182.

2. Hume, Treatise of Human Nature,, p. 136.

3. On grasping as a mode of understanding in political theory, see the first volume of James Tully’s Public Philosophy in a New Key, 66. On aspect change as a democratic practice, see Aletta Norval’s Aversive Democracy (Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 2007), esp. 126–40.

4. Ludwig Wittgenstein, Philosophical Investigations: The English Text of the Third Edition, trans. G. E. M. Anscombe (New York: Macmillan, 1973), §122.

5. Ibid.

Thesis 5. On Handling

1. Martin Heidegger, Being and Time, trans. John Macquarrie and Edward Robinson (New York: HarperPerennial, 2008), 102.

2. Ibid., 98.

3. Ibid., 103.

Thesis 6. On the Noli me tangere

1. Glenn W. Most, Doubting Thomas (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2009).

2. Jean-Luc Nancy, Noli Me Tangere: On the Raising of the Body, trans. Sarah Clift, Pascale-Anne Brault, and Michael Naas (New York: Fordham University Press, 2009), 49–50.

Thesis 7. On Interface

1. Lev Manovich, The Language of New Media (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2001).

2. Anna McCarthy, Ambient Television: Visual Culture and Public Space (Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 2001).

3. We say “half-jokingly” because as Karin Knorr Cetina’s ethnographies of investment culture have shown, the computer screen is—now—the principal site of what she calls “architectural flows” of investment/trader culture and financial markets: “Clearly, if the screen world is a flow-world then this has to do with the technologies, the dealing systems and the feeds of content that make up this world and account for its step-by-step change. Traders acting on screen contribute to the flow through the specific time span of their activities and the text they add, but the time span and the information requirements are pre-given by the screen world. Engrossment and responsiveness result from the narrow framing and temporal ‘shortness’ of the electronic lifeworld, and from the existence of entrance conditions. We maintain that the network reality of earlier times where markets were not embodied on screen did not show this temporality and other features. We also believe that they resulted in similar engrossments only at certain moments, for example when markets were found and connected in arbitrage deals.” Karin Knorr Cetina and Urs Bruegger, “Inhabiting Technology: The Global Lifeform of Financial Markets,” Current Sociology 50, no. 3 (2002): 400–401.

4. Alex Nunns and Nadia Idle, Tweets from Tahrir: Egypt’s Revolution as It Unfolded, in the Words of the People Who Made It (New York: OR Books, 2011).

5. Stanley Cavell, The World Viewed: Reflections on the Ontology of Film (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1979), 24–25.

6. One of the fascinating developments that emerged from practices of interface deployed during the 2011 revolution in Egypt is Hosni Mubarak’s attempt to shut down Internet servers (on January 26, 2011) that lasted for five days. This did, indeed, interrupt the flow of tweets and Facebook posts. However, the one remaining Internet provider Mubarak did not shut down was the one used by Egypt’s stock exchange, which quickly became a central hub for the transmission of illicit tweets. See Idle’s introduction to Nunns and Idle, Tweets from Tahrir.

Thesis 8. On Luminosity

1. Alfred North Whitehead, The Concept of Nature (Seattle: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2012), 144.

2. Alfred North Whitehead, Process and Reality (New York: Simon and Schuster, 2010), 25, 184–85.

Thesis 9. On Impropriety

1. Jacques Rancière, Disagreement: Politics and Philosophy, trans. Julie Rose (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1999), 29.

2. For reasons of copyright I am unable to reproduce the image of Pollock’s painting here. To those unfamiliar with the work, please view it online at

3. Pepe Karmel, ed., Jackson Pollock: Interviews, Articles, and Reviews (New York: Museum of Modern Art, 1999), 17.

4. Michael Fried, Art and Objecthood: Essays and Reviews (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1998), 106; Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, trans. Brian Massumi (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1987), 298.

5. Jean-Jacques Rousseau, The Discourses and Other Early Political Writings, ed. Victor Gourevitch (Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 1997), 161.

6. Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus, 172.

Thesis 10. On the Unusable

1. Immanuel Kant, Critique of the Power of Judgment, trans. Paul Guyer and Eric Matthews (Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 2000).

2. Cavell, Claim of Reason, 358.