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Tag Archives: Hannah Arendt

Interchange – Terror Skies: The Drone as Judge and Jury


In Part One, we’re joined by Majed Akhter, an Assistant Professor of Geography at Indiana University Bloomington whose current research examines how state power shapes, and is in turn shaped by, mobile objects such as drones and rivers. His writing focuses especially on Pakistan and the United States.

And in Part Two we’ll joined by Stephen John and Greta Wohlrabe to discuss a new play being produced by The Cardinal Stage Company called “Grounded” by George Brant about a female Air Force fighter pilot “grounded” by pregnancy who becomes a drone pilot operating out of a trailer in the Nevada desert. John is the play’s director and Wohlrabe its star.

Morse Peckham had this to say about state violence and terrorism back in 1987 (“Literature and the State”).

It cannot be that the state objects to terrorism because its citizens are being killed. In this country the citizens kill each other by murder and automobiles, fifty percent of the latter by drunken driving, and the state remains on the whole quite unruffled, except when some group of citizens forming itself as an organ of the state manipulates the state to take some action….No, the state objects to terrorism for quite different reasons. A state maintains its legitimacy by maintaining a monopoly on the use of violence for politics and governance. Terrorism is a challenge to the state’s monopoly on violence for such purposes….The trouble with violence is that if it is used in its ultimate forms there is no further recourse. So we may understand civilization as the strategy by which control and position are maintained without resorting to violence. Legal texts are of the first importance, of course, in circumventing the use of violence as well as justifying violence.

Dronification of State Power

Grounded (Cardinal Stage Company)

Producer & Host: Doug Storm
Board Engineer: Jonathan Richardson
Social Media: Carissa Barrett
Executive Producer: Joe Crawford

Interchange – Minded By Algorithms: Digitizing the Word


Host Doug Storm talks with Ted Striphas, an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication & Culture at Indiana University and the author of the 2009 title The Late Age of Print: Everyday Book Culture from Consumerism to Control, about the ways that book technology has evolved and the ways in which humans evolved with it. 

In discussing the digitization of “the word” we look at  Amazon.com’s Kindle: not only at the ways we read Kindles (and how they mimic the form of the book) but also how Kindles read us by sending information about our very marginalia back into the Cloud of knowing.

We also discuss the ways in which a digital information age bears a striking resemblance to what Hannah Arendt called a society where “there is nobody left with whom one could argue, to whom one could present grievances…in which everybody is deprived of political freedom, of the power to act; for the rule by Nobody is not no-rule, and where all are equally powerless we have a tyranny without a tyrant.”

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