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INTRODUCTION: FRIEDRICH KITTLER’S LIGHT SHOWS John Durham Peters Optical Media may be Friedrich Kittler’s best book for the uniniti- ated. It is breezy . Optical Media provides an accessible introduction to the media theory of Kittler’s middle period as it applies primarĀ¬ ily to the optical realm. (Kittler’s chief interest. Optical Media by Friedrich A. Kittler, , available at Book Depository with free delivery worldwide.

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Witty, insightful, provocative, at times outrageous but always stimulating, Optical Media is not only an overlooked back entrance into the study of visual media from the Renaissance to the present, it is also an equally helpful back entrance into Kittler’s own theory. Despite or because of this, Greek mathematics had precisely begun, to the astonishment of oriental despots, to be able to predict future solar and lunar eclipses.

The use of simple torches since the time of the Greeks had always given generals the greatest kittlfr in transmitting orders that went beyond mere oppositions like yes and no, light and dark. He also discusses the development of various mechanical devices, such as the camera obscura and the kitt,er magica, which were closely connected to the printing press and which played a pivotal role in the media war between the Reformation and the Counter-Reformation.

Elizabeth Eisenstein very convincingly argues that friedrihc new, mechanically perfect reproducibility of the medium of handwriting also put competitive pressure on other manual arts. As we know, both happened in the nineteenth century, which began with the development of photography and ended with the development of film.

This will still be shown mrdia technical positivity, but beforehand I will briefly sketch out the fundamental principles. Technical media and only technical media – according to the thesis of these lectures – destroyed this postulate of visibility.

To describe linear perspective as a free geometric construction, Alberti friwdrich the concept of an ideal or simply imagined window. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here According to Luther, therefore, everyone should be able to be blessed without the worship of holy images and frjedrich useful works for the church. At this point, though, I immediately recognize my own limits: The last historic act of writing may thus have been in the late seventies when a team of Intel engineers [plotted] the hardware architecture friedricch their first integrated microprocessor.

In Egyptian painting, there existed only a radical joining of frontal and side views, as we know, but Greek pottery painting was also unable to create spaces whose lines all ended at a vanishing point on the horizon. Being, in an eminent sense, allows itself in principle not to be seen today, although or because it allows the visible first to be seen. The range of possibilities is quite diverse: The camera obscura was directly linked to the letterpress. In this way, the history of optical media is a history of disappearance, which also allows me the freedom to disappear for today.


Everything mediw was style or code in the arts registered a distinction that is quite the opposite of technical standards. Join 1, other followers. From this, Lorenz decides to take the next logical step and write his obviously cultural studies book not about film but rather about the cultural studies gossip about film. This is particularly true of television, as we know that there is a recommended optimal distance between the slipper kitttler, on the one hand, and the wing chair, on the other.

With his half-cylindrical curvature Berthold proves himself to be a direct pupil of Pozzo. Slow-motion, time-lapse, back-masking, jump-cuts, collage – modern acoustic and optical media – make temporal events available for editing.

Optical Media

As Optical Media puts it in one of those reductive dicta for which Kittier is famous: I urge you to read the relevant chapter.

In this century, a technique of writing emerged, or more precisely a technique of description, that, if you will, made texts compatible with screenplays for the first time. It is therefore no wonder that the first descriptions of a functional camera obscura came from Italy, the western European country with the brightest sunlight: Einstein was thus strangely and unforeseeably in agreement with Heidegger that the explosion of information is more dangerous than all atomic bombs.

It should have already become implicitly clear – but to allay any fears I will say it again – that the problems posed by writing and its aesthetics will certainly not be left out. Now we await the utopian possibility, as he concludes, of working with light as light, not just light as effect or trace.

Loyalty to the Counter-Reformation and Jesuit propaganda could hardly be carried any further. Kittler is interested in the engineering. It may be more likely, though, that the number of cases did not increase, but rather that the number of scientists interested in them. He is a controversialist who enjoys being outrageous and he has managed to offend or annoy a wide range of spirits. Romance is the circulation of handwritten notes with occasional contact among bodies.

This conversation has come down to us from Alberti himself, and it gives unexpected information about the causes that drove the modernization of technical media in the middle of the fifteenth century. That concludes the history of being and my explanation of why the lanterna magica could not have come into existence until years after the camera obscura.


A prophet, as they say, has no honor in his own country, in part due to the sound ecological principle that any local species has co-evolved with its own natural enemies. Wagner as early cinema is abundantly suggestive. Even Busch is succinct and resigned: Standards determine how media reach our senses.

These lectures will have to take up this debate yet again, as the concept of simulation, which refers to the sublation of a separation, allows for the introduction of a sharper distinction between traditional arts and technical media than is customary in everyday language.

University of Pennsylvania Press,pp. These lectures must and will therefore satisfy a pent-up demand to catch up with his work.

To bring the matter into focus, I will limit myself to Kircher, who was also one of the most exciting figures of his time. For instead of maintaining a sole focus on reliefs or art more generally, as his medieval predecessors did, Brunelleschi went on to study mathematics and architecture.

In our current mania over film and television, this strategy of effects may seem strange for a new optical medium, but it is necessary to realize that the first great entertainment media of the modern era, theater and literature, arose from a centuries-long war over religion and images.

In a story by E. What remained in the absence of kittelr was the use of the very short and unreliable channels, which the physical laws of nature are able to provide. Except for the quotation of short passages for the purpose of criticism and review, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a friedricj system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior permission of the publisher.

Ottilien, but Kircher began to reel them off at time-lapse speed and they began, if you will, to move.

The Voice Imitator: Friedrich Kittler: Optical Media

And the evidence supports the assumption of Harold A. Romantic reading is a kind of proto-film viewing, a lonely egotistical position within a simulating apparatus, not unlike the position of the fighter pilot or the video game player.

Every additional word about film beyond this degenerates into cultural or cultural studies gossip.