Media Matter: The Materiality of Media, Matter as Medium

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What is a medium? If Nietzsche was right in claiming that our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts, that media help us think, and if different media allow for different ways of thinking, then the body of the respective medium in question, its materiality, shapes and influences the range and direction of how media make us think. Shouldn't we consequently speak of informed matter and of materialized information? Launching Bloomsbury's Thinking Media series, Media Matter introduces readers to the nascent field of media-philosophy. Contributors urge readers to re-adjust their ideas of Media Studies, by both extending the understanding of medium in such a way as to include a concept of materiality that also includes non-human transmitters (elements such as water, earth, fire, air) and by understanding media not only in the context of cultural or discursive systems or apparatuses, relays, transistors, hardware or discourse networks, but more inclusively, in terms of a media ecology. Beginning with more general essays on media and then focusing on particular themes (neuroplasticity, photography, sculpture and music), especially in relation to film, Herzogenrath and contributors redefine the concept of medium in order to think through media, rather than about them.