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Volume 1, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 2045-6298
  • E-ISSN: 2045-6301


This article is based on a paper I gave for the first seminar of a series organized by the AHRC Artists’ Moving Image Research Network, held at Chelsea College of Art and Design in January 2011 – ‘Rewriting History: Interrogating the Past and the Question of Medium Specificity’. The printed version tries to preserve the informal style of the talk, including its jumps of focus and attention. At the risk of being churlish about the ‘Moving Image’, which after all is embedded in the name of the Network and that of this journal, I argue against the notion of a Moving Image culture and its tendency towards homogeneity. I strongly support MIRAJ and its mission, and am glad to be part of it, but I want to question some of the consequences, as I see them, of an inclusive approach to media art in all its many shapes and forms, to which the Network is dedicated in principle and deed. In particular, I think we need more critical distinction and debate in this ever-growing area of practice. I refer to some of the seminar discussion and objections the paper led to, in the hope of stimulating still more responses. The debate goes on, in events, conferences and the art press. Originally, I was going to name this paper after King Lear’s angry growl ‘I’ll teach you differences’, but that hostage to fortune pitched it a bit high. I settled for a milder title, and I hope a milder tone.


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