Thesis Info

Thesis Title
Glocal Vagabondage: Nomadism as a Tactical Use of Information and Communication Technology
Valeska K. Buehrer
2nd Author
3rd Author
Master of Arts in European Media
Number of Pages
University of Portsmouth/ Merz Akademie Stuttgart
Thesis Supervisor
Prof. Olia Lialina
Supervisor e-mail
Other Supervisor(s)
Prof. Dr. Helmut Draxler
Language(s) of Thesis
Department / Discipline
New Media Studies
Languages Familiar to Author
URL where full thesis can be found
ICT, Tactical Media, Flexible Response, Unhierarchical Networks, Alternative Forms of Collaborations
Abstract: 200-500 words
My intention was to research and analyse the network society looking at different forms of taking the advantage of new technologies on the principle of flexible response. The subject matter of my thesis is the infrastructure of networks, the technological mobilities they support, their impact on cities and urban societies. The local, global and glocal aspect of urban life which is fundamentally mediated by such networks, plays an important role for my topic, as it could reside as a critical urbanism within the existing system. Through the fusion of the local and global aspect this new public space of the network appeared. The standardised infrastructures which were influenced and built up by the thought of being in progress and modern are the main aspects I wanted to analyse critically. 'The political power of the State is polis, police, that is, management of the public ways, the gates of the city, its levies and duties, are barriers, filters against the fluidity of the masses, against the penetration power of migratory packs.' 1 Nomads were traditionally parasitic in relation to cities and towns, often criminal elements. They are inside the economy, but parasitical, they don’t try to create an utopia, they just get what they can without becoming integrated. By using the allegorised picture of the nomad I was scrutinising non-mainstream and alternative ways of the contemporary networked metropolis as well as forms of tactical use of Information and Communication Technologies. 'Packs, bands, are groups of the rhizome type, as opposed to the aborescent type which centers around organs of power.' 2 Tactical media's mobility connects it to a wider movement of migrant culture. There is a need for practices of opposition to the mechanisms of the information and control society using tactics, which - like the deterritorialised flows of capital - cannot be fixed in one place, cannot be settled down. Opposed to the flows of capital, however, these practices should continually create uncontrolled, self-determined lines of rupture, tactical and rapid appropriation of new situations, with their lines of flight in and through nomadic space. My project's aim is to enable local cultural workers to share resources and become better aware of what others have already experienced and archived. The DiY culture appears as an answer to the question if change can be effected through existing structures or whether new alternatives should be utilised. The efforts and social aspects of these Do-it-Yourself media tools are that they connect people to people, they tend to be relatively low-tech, small and bottom-up. (project can be found on 1cp. Paul Virilio, Speed and Politics (1977) 2cp. Gilles Deleuze & Félix Guattari, Nomadology: The War Machine (1986)