New Materialism of Dust

Jussi Parikka


This text considers the materiality of dust. It maps a transversal route of considering dust, from the processes of polishing iPad covers in Chinese factories to a wider theoretical argument for a media materiality that starts from rocks and chemicals. In short, this kind of new materialism is interested in the various times, durations, entwinements and distributions of a whole range of agencies, several of them non-human. Hence, we are also forced to think about the contexts of new materialism in a slightly more fluid, novel way than just assuming that specificity concerning the technological and the scientific underpinnings of media culture are automatically material. Indeed, materiality is not just about machines; nor is it just solids, and things, or even objects. Materiality leaks in many directions, as electronic waste demonstrates, or the effects of electromagnetic pollution. It is transformational, ecological, and multiscalar.


new materialism; dust; media ecology; media archaeology; electronic waste; Negarestani; design


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