[Reader-list] just a suggestion
Jo and Tarun
jotarun at yahoo.co.uk
Wed Sep 19 06:48:39 IST 2001
If we could just provide URLs of the essays one is quoting rather than reproduce them in all their glory, we would make the list more functional and friendly.
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When replying, please edit your Subject line so it is more specific
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1. Re: BLACK TUESDAY: THE VIEW FROM ISLAMABAD (Rana Dasgupta)
2. Re: the liberal response (philip pocock)
3. Australian Arabic Council statement on 11/9 (Alex English)
4. RE: BLACK TUESDAY: THE VIEW FROM ISLAMABAD (Steef Heus)
5. Re: ..a post.ing as yet not sent... (ap][e][ologger)
6. Re: Alan Sonheim's net art? /text on the missing (Frederic Madre)
7. On critical integrity of the list (Monica Narula)
8. Re: the liberal response (Boud Roukema)
Date: Tue, 18 Sep 2001 02:26:35 -0700 (PDT)
From: Rana Dasgupta
Subject: Re: [Reader-list] BLACK TUESDAY: THE VIEW FROM ISLAMABAD
To: reader-list at sarai.net
May I protest to the list and to Philip for this kind
of mail (below).
As Menso Heus suggested yesterday, I think the reader
list is not the place for ad hominem attacks of this
kind. If anyone suspects someone else of being
"psychopathic" can they either keep it to themselves
or advise the relevant person of their concern in
My own assumption is that this list is for engaging
with ideas and not the defects of its members'
personalities. Moreover, it is a place that I come to
because of a presumed openness as to what kind of
ideas are deserving of attention and discussion.
With the diversity of backgrounds and interests of
people on this list it is quite likely - and desirable
- that disagreements will arise. These are not to be
erased in the name of the same sort of emotional
blackmail that is currently jamming the mainstream
media. There is no point launching an investigation
of a situation of hatred and vengeance if I/we/you try
to shut it down as soon as I/we/you feel your
interests or your point of view to be offended.
Sorry to waste members' time by stating what I thought
would have been obvious. But (to quote another list
member, this time in reference to the attached mail):
>it undermines open and honest criticism and dialogue
>concerning real human issues and a complete waste of
>at least my time.
--- philip pocock
> Pradip Saha wrote:
> > this is the last one:
> > i actually recognise my numbness to be terrible,
> and decided to be honest,
> > rather than to be nice and do a lip service.
> you appear to be psychopathic, with all options open
> to be manipulated by your
> Reader-list mailing list
> Reader-list at sarai.net
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Date: Tue, 18 Sep 2001 11:20:43 +0200
From: Philip.Pocock at t-online.de (philip pocock)
Reply-To: philip.pocock at t-online.de
To: Rana Dasgupta
CC: reader-list at sarai.net
Subject: Re: [Reader-list] the liberal response
Rana Dasgupta wrote:
> But I have to confess to wondering what the point of
> this stuff is right now. Are we just trying to say to
> the US, "You deserved it"? Are we attempting to
> remain above the sensationalism of the TV networks by
> saying "Chill out - it was always going to happen"?
> Or are we hoping that the US will temper its response
> as a result of these reminders of its own wrongs?
this is good thinking, simple basic focussed thinking.
the misuse of the notion of karma as some sort of timeless contextless
pingpong game is equivalent to the blame game of guilt giving and evokes
useless emotion that is a smokescreen for some sort of intolerance. the
'you deserve it' routine is rootless, for action-reaction is the endless
chain that vedic karmic thinking is trying to escape not exploit for
casting blame. it is the same as newton attempted on a pragmatic and
physically abstract level.
the intolerance held in the soul of the blamer saying 'you deserved it'.
as one person on the list did, they owned up to why they backhandedly
praised bin laden, at least honestly displaying their troubled mind and
human numbness so that orientation and more importantly their own
soul-searching process may begin to heal their lazy anger. but usually
the answer to the question above is self-dishonety, cowardice and fear.
Reply-To: "Alex English"
From: "Alex English"
Date: Tue, 18 Sep 2001 20:29:02 +1000
Subject: [Reader-list] Australian Arabic Council statement on 11/9
The following is an article concerning the events in New York of September
11 2001, written by Alexander Kouttab of the Australian Arabic Council.
apologies for the bad wrapping; I've done the best I could...
The haunting footage of United Airlines Flight 175 rapidly approaching the
South Tower of the World Trade Centre in downtown Manhattan, the massive
explosion that followed, the thick black smoke, the confusion and disbelief,
the two towers collapsing within a short time of each other - these are
placed to become some of the most enduring images of human vulnerability
tragedy in our time.
The sophistication, scale and sheer audacity of the operation behind the
suicide attacks in New York and Washington became apparent in the hours
followed. In targeting the World Trade Centre, the Pentagon and the
House, those responsible had intended to simultaneously destroy America's
economic, military and political infrastructure. At the same time, they
sought to undermine America's dominance as an untouchable military
preying on its internal vulnerability and providing the world
with some of
the most visually arresting images of destruction and powerlessness.
Today, four days after the suicide attacks and the wider global impact is
also beginning to take shape. Most notably, this includes the rethinking
international security and protection under the banner of 'collective
security'; the crackdown on suspected terrorist organizations; fears of
downturn in the global market; and the geopolitical realignments that
later surface as the U.S seeks to consolidate what it is calling an
'international coalition against terrorism'.
Some of the most prescient commentaries over the last few days are those
that in trying to understand the motivations behind the attacks, have sought
answers that go beyond the wholesale vilification of an entire region and
its people. They are commentaries that see these events as an indelible
reminder of the unfolding tragedy of recent global history.
If the scale of this attack on American soil is unprecedented, the horror
speaks of has a long history of colonization, imperialism and resistance;
ideological divisions and countless lives lost; of global antagonism
'East-West' divide, out of which terrorism has emerged as an ugly
manifestation propagated by the fanatical few in an increasingly militarised
Nothing happens in an historical vacuum, and after the shock and anger have
abated, it is this tragic history, one that has now engulfed America, that
must come to insinuate itself into our making sense of why this happened.
Nothing can justify the taking of innocent lives, and there is no cause
God in the name of which such devastation can be sanctioned.
The images of Flight 175 crashing into the World Trade Centre and the
that followed portray the tragic underside of a global history that
not spared any corner of the world. They portray a human story in which
humanity has somewhere gone terribly wrong. And they predict a future where
the cycle of grievance and revenge is making it increasingly difficult to
see a light at the end of the tunnel.
For many, however, the lines of battle seem already in place. With those
suspected of hijacking the four planes all Arabic and all Muslim, this has
quickly become cause for some in the West to judge the entire Arab world
With familiar gusto, the Middle East is readily placed in opposition to
'democratic', 'free' and 'civilized' world. It is a rehearsal of old
divisions that only serve to further compound the tragedy of September 11th,
not resolve it. One cannot help feeling that the battle between good and
evil, democracy and tyranny, civilization and barbarity is somewhere and
somehow going to eventually implicate the whole of the Arab and Islamic
world as the enemy against which we are warned to remain vigilant.
Indeed, the increasing appearance of blatant anti-Arab racism in some
of the media and the enormous jump in race hatred crimes at
schools, in Australian workplaces and on Australian streets
the street is already one step ahead.
This wholesale vilification and 'scapegoating' of Arabic communities around
the world also has a long history whose ideological origins are well known.
Racism was around before the suicide attacks in the U.S and it shall linger
long after or as long as racists scramble to find justification for their
actions in ways that parallel the delusion of those responsible for the
Arab mosques and churches have been fire bombed; women who wear the Muslim
headscarf have been spat at on trams and threatened with rape when they
down the street; our businesses have been vandalised and have been
painted with swastika's; Arabic schools have been forced to close
parents of children attending non-Arabic schools are keeping their
home amid threats of violence and retribution.
Members of the Arabic community respond to September 11th as any decent
person would, with both shock and horror. Our community and religious
leaders have emphatically condemned the attacks and offered their full
support to those in Australia who have lost friends and loved ones. They
have been at pains to point out that 'Islamic fundamentalism' is a narrow,
unrepresentative and distorted interpretation of Islam that is held together
by anti-American sentiment and whose influence is restricted to a few
across the globe. Leaders in the Arabic world were amongst the
condemn the attacks and have been unambiguous in their opposition
This should all be patently obvious, yet Arabic community groups in
are having to defend our community's very innocence. For the
it seems that we are all under suspicion, so much so that
Kim Beazley has, with characteristic simplicity and
confusion, called on
our community to 'dob in' terrorists. Not far behind
is Peter Reith's
appalling attempt to capitalize on the tragedy by
manipulating it into
a justification for the current government's hysterical
reaction to asylum seekers arriving in Australia.
With an absence of political leadership shown by either main political party
at the Federal level, it is left to the wider community to rediscover a
sense of humanity that is inclusive rather than exclusive, that is
rather than racially and religiously divisive, one that
brings home our
need to differentiate right from wrong both here and abroad.
And it is
those from the wider community who are shocked at the
devastation in New
York and Washington and equally appalled at the current
of the Arabic community in Australia who with dignity,
have taken up the
challenge of finding a light at the end of the tunnel.
From: "Steef Heus"
To: "Rana Dasgupta" ,
Subject: RE: [Reader-list] BLACK TUESDAY: THE VIEW FROM ISLAMABAD
Date: Tue, 18 Sep 2001 12:38:44 +0200
This posting of Rana has my full support!
> -----Original Message-----
> From: reader-list-admin at sarai.net [mailto:reader-list-admin at sarai.net]On
> Behalf Of Rana Dasgupta
> Sent: dinsdag 18 september 2001 11:27
> To: reader-list at sarai.net
> Subject: Re: [Reader-list] BLACK TUESDAY: THE VIEW FROM ISLAMABAD
> May I protest to the list and to Philip for this kind
> of mail (below).
> As Menso Heus suggested yesterday, I think the reader
> list is not the place for ad hominem attacks of this
> kind. If anyone suspects someone else of being
> "psychopathic" can they either keep it to themselves
> or advise the relevant person of their concern in
> private emails?
> My own assumption is that this list is for engaging
> with ideas and not the defects of its members'
> personalities. Moreover, it is a place that I come to
> because of a presumed openness as to what kind of
> ideas are deserving of attention and discussion.
> With the diversity of backgrounds and interests of
> people on this list it is quite likely - and desirable
> - that disagreements will arise. These are not to be
> erased in the name of the same sort of emotional
> blackmail that is currently jamming the mainstream
> media. There is no point launching an investigation
> of a situation of hatred and vengeance if I/we/you try
> to shut it down as soon as I/we/you feel your
> interests or your point of view to be offended.
> Sorry to waste members' time by stating what I thought
> would have been obvious. But (to quote another list
> member, this time in reference to the attached mail):
> >it undermines open and honest criticism and dialogue
> >concerning real human issues and a complete waste of
> >at least my time.
> --- philip pocock
> > Pradip Saha wrote:
> > > this is the last one:
> > >
> > > i actually recognise my numbness to be terrible,
> > and decided to be honest,
> > > rather than to be nice and do a lip service.
> > you appear to be psychopathic, with all options open
> > to be manipulated by your
> > character.
> > _______________________________________________
> > Reader-list mailing list
> > Reader-list at sarai.net
> > http://mail.sarai.net/mailman/listinfo/reader-list
> Terrorist Attacks on U.S. - How can you help?
> Donate cash, emergency relief information
> Reader-list mailing list
> Reader-list at sarai.net
Date: Tue, 18 Sep 2001 20:49:35 +1000
To: reader-list at sarai.net
Subject: Re: [Reader-list] ..a post.ing as yet not sent...
Cc: reader-list at sarai.net
At 11:04 AM 18/09/01 +0200, philip pocock wrote:
>save your out-of-date concrete poetry to yourself. were you a ee cummings and
>the clock was wound back 50 years i might delve in to read and image your
>email is a voice and ee cummings was a response to that in print media.
>and cut the nostalgia. you wont get my attention.
of course my last posting was in no way intended to "get the attention" of
list members like philip, and i wasn't trying at all to discuss my personal
wurk. howeva, in light of this ][offensive and highly inappropriate][
response, i'll post some quotes regarding the wurk i produce in order to
give it some context.
"...Mez's writing proceeds with irregular energy... in the sense of the
type of context sensitivities she sets up that proceed simultaneously in
various directions. Ingenious in the manner of the representation of
'regular expressions' in the mathematics of computer science, for instance.
As though it contained its own hyper links..her voice is electric and
acoustic in a single phrase.....and the sense of sound is phenomenal, the
humour startling...Mez's language...is particularly strong in voice. Strong
in voice and bristling with innovation and possibility. This is, in itself,
'serious'. Past 'language poetry', for instance. Suited to this medium in
-Jim Andrews, webartery
"mez's writings are, in my view, examples of reflecting the virulence of
digital text without actually coding in programming language. - The beauty
of 'mezangelle' is that it uses elements of programming language syntax as
material, i.e. reflecting formal programming language without being one. Of
course, many other aesthetic options in Internet poetry exist, and many of
them may have an aesthetics which totally separates the textuality of the
digital poem from the internal textuality of the machine. I just prefer if
the latter is the product of an aesthetically conscious decision _against_
algorithmic coding (i.e. as its negative reflection)
The code poetry of,
among others, mez, Alan Sondheim and Ted Warnell seems to build on two
developments a) the re-coding of traditional pictorial ASCII art into
amimetical noise signals by net artists like Jodi, antiorp, mi-ga and
Frederic Madre, (b) the mass proliferation of programming language syntax
through web and multimedia scripting languages and search engines. For the
reader of mez's "netwurks", it remains all the more an open question
whether the "mezangelle" para-code of parentheses and wildcard characters
only mimics programming languages or is, at least partially, the product of
programmed text filtering."
[in Cream 1: Collaborative Research into Electronic Art Memes]"
-Florian Cramer, lecturer in Comparative Literature at Freie
"When I first encountered mez's work the association with contemporary
clichés of language didn't even occur to me for quite some time - i saw it
as something else completely. the difference: CONTENT/intent. mez doesn't
play this way with language because of trendi-ness or eaze, but with
deliberate intent/choice. [this] FORM as integral to her content, and as
[a] form of communication which is distinguished by her particular
content/treatment/meaning ... also, it doesn't read with the eaze that
phonetic treatment of language usually duz - in youth filled chat rooms for
instance - one has to dig a bit, step back and read with conscious
intent/concentration if one's is to actually gather what's being said,
which brings a new attention to reading, akin to that which we bring to
-Claire Dinsmore, Cauldron & The Net
"...during a period of time from approximately 1995 to 1997 interface as a
concern was investigated in earnest, and in some cases brilliantly realized
by a very few of the original net.artists (Bunting, JODI, MEZ,
Lialina)...Mez is without doubt one of the most consistent, prolific,
innovative artists working new media today. Mez's work with language has
had a considerable effect on the language of many..."
-Ted Warnell, warnell.com
"...Mez reaches into the very structure of the word, creating an entire
para-language, called "m[ez]ang.elle," which is readable by readers of
English, but only at the cost of a dramatically slowed reading speed. She
organizes textual performances which she designates as e-mail trawling,
hacker attacking, open source kode poetri, or electronic channeling. Though
this work uses many of the devices of so-called L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E poetry,
fluid spacing, bracketing, and ambiguous punctuation to obtain a
simultaneity of reference that tests fixed neuronal patterns, it also tests
these, simultaneously,through choreographed and random kinetic oscillations
of the Web environment, re-converting the process of reading to a process
of action, perhaps somewhat akin to what oral cultures undertook when print
first spread through them."
-Stephanie Strickland, from "Dali Clocks: TIME DIMENSIONS OF HYPERMEDIA",
at Digital Arts and Culture Conference, Norway 00.
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