Seeing Degree Zero

Barthes/Burgin and Political Aesthetics

Edited by Ryan Bishop, Sunil Manghani

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Examines the critical concept ‘zero degree’ through the work of Roland Barthes and Victor Burgin

In the fields of literature and the visual arts, 'zero degree' represents a neutral aesthetic situated in response to, and outside of, the dominant cultural order. Taking Roland Barthes’ 1953 book Writing Degree Zero as just one starting point, this volume examines the historical, theoretical and visual impact of the term and draws directly upon the editors’ ongoing collaboration with artist and writer Victor Burgin.

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Response/abilities of SeeingRyan Bishop and Sunil Manghani

Reading Barthes, AgainVictor Burgin and Sunil Manghani

BelledonneVictor Burgin

Part 1: Degrees and Variations

Saenredam, Barthes, BurginSunil Manghani

I was Sitting in a Room: Cybernetic Aesthetics and Victor Burgin’s Projection LoopsRyan Bishop

The Situation of PracticeVictor Burgin

Part 2: Image Zero Degree

Painting, Photography, ProjectionRyan Bishop and Sunil Manghani

The End of the FrameVictor Burgin

Camera as Object and ProcessRyan Bishop, Sean Cubitt and Victor Burgin

PrairieVictor Burgin

Part 3: Writerly Readings

Pre-occupations: Calling Up Ghosts in A Place to Read and Belledonne Christine Berthin

Prairie (Argo)Kristen Kreider and James O’Leary

Photography as Rhythm: On PrairieDomietta Torlasco

The Work of Death in Burgin’s BelledonneGordon Hon

Notes on Contributors Index

Ryan Bishop is Professor of Global Arts and Politics and Co-director of the research group Archaeologies of Media and Technology at the Winchester School of Art, University of Southampton, United Kingdom. He co-edits the journal Cultural Politics (Duke UP), and is a series editor for Technicities (Edinburgh University Press) and Cultural Politics (Duke UP).

Sunil Manghani is Professor of Theory, Practice and Critique at Winchester School of Art, University of Southampton

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