WikiLeaks, the Snowden affair, and secret service hacks have brought the notion of the secret, long sidelined by a morally charged discourse on digital transparency, to the forefront of the world’s attention. Correspondingly, in this chapter we conceptualize digital cultures not—or at least not primarily—in terms of the nature and potential of transparency (or of related concepts such as participation and the public sphere). Instead, we suggest thinking about them in terms of the secret, in terms of fundamental intransparency and non-knowledge, and in terms of the arcane. How would digital cultures be understood if we set aside modern concepts and instead examine them through the strangeness of premodern concepts like the arcane?
Beyes, Timon; Pias, Claus: Secrecy, Transparency, and Non-Knowledge. In: Andreas Bernard, Matthias Koch, Martina Leeker (Hg.): Non-Knowledge and Digital Cultures. Lüneburg: meson press 2018, S. 39–51. DOI: https://doi.org/10.25969/mediarep/1640.
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