I wanted to announce the launch of a new collaborative blog titled Critical Code Studies (http://criticalcodestudies.com). The blog is dedicated to exploring interpretations of computer code within cultural contexts. Rather than focusing primarily on making code
function or even the pursuit of “beautiful” code, critical code studies brings in critical theory to examine the ways in which the lines of code reflect, shape, and reproduce our culture including aspects of class, gender, race, sexuality. These criticisms include
both the context for the code’s creation and the ways in which it circulates in culture. Rather than one specific lens, CCS names a growing collection of methodologies for making/finding meaning in code.
Critical Code Studies builds on recent efforts toward software and hardware studies to perform semiotic readings of computer source code. This blog builds off several presentations at the most recent Modern Language Association and Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts conferences. The theme of the SLSA ’07 “Code” (http://www.slsa07.com/) reflects a growing movement toward reading various kinds of codes, including computer source code. As cybercritics become more literate in coding languages and practices, increasingly their analysis of technoculture is including excerpts of the code itself. The texts under consideration may be executable programs, pseudocode, scripts, markup, or even code-like, as all of these inform the way code means.
Blog co-authors include technoculture critics as well as codework artists. A complete list of blog authors is available below and on the site.
The blog offers several resources, including:
Growing Bibliography of Critical Code Studies works
(also indexed under Citeulike)
Links to repositories of code to analyze.
Del.icio.us Feed of bookmarks (tagged critical_code_studies)
LibraryThing collection of book titles.
List of related researchers
A review of some influential Critical Code Studies can be found in the electronic book review.
To join the community of bloggers, please contact Mark Marino.
[mark+c+marino [at] gmail [dotted] com.
* Christian U Andersen
* Sandy Baldwin
* Gregory Bringman
* Patrick Burgaud
* Wendy Hui Kyong Chun
* Christy Dena
* Jeremy Douglass
* Aden Evens
* Daniel Howe
* Mark Marino
* Wayne Miller
* David Parry
* Rita Raley
* Amit Ray
* Braxton Soderman
* Paul Swartz
University of Southern California