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Daily Archives: January 21st, 2011

Digitisation Perspectives



Digitisation Perspectives
Edited by Ruth Rikowski

Sense Publishers, Rotterdam, The Netherlands, 2011

ISBN 978-94-6091-297-9 (pbk); 978-94-6091-6 (hdbk);

978-94-6091-299-3 (e-book)

£35.00 (pbk); £75.00 (hdbk)

Part of Book Series: ‘Educational Futures: Rethinking Theory and Practice’

Series Editor: Michael A. Peters

Digitisation Perspectives will be launched on Wednesday 16th February 2011,  17.30 – 20.00
At: Wilkins Terrace Restaurant
University College London
Gower Street
London, WC1E 6BT, England

Digitisation Perspectives includes contributions from 22 experts worldwide.

Foreword by Simon Tanner, Director Digital Consultancy, King’s College London, who says that the book: “…seeks to address and answer some of the big questions of digitisation…It succeeds on many levels…”

Topics covered include: electronic theses, search engine technology, digitisation of ancient manuscripts, citation indexing, reference services, digitisation in Africa, the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition, new media and scholarly publishing. The final chapter explores virtual libraries, posing some interesting questions for possible futures.





Chapter 1:  The Rise of Digitization: An Overview – Melissa M. Terras         

Chapter 2:  Digital Libraries and Digitisation: an overview and critique – Ruth Rikowski            

Chapter 3:  Digital Knowledge Resources – M. Paul Pandian              

Chapter 4: Digitisation: research, sophisticated search engines, evaluation: all that and more – Ruth Rikowski


Chapter 5:  Improving student mental models in a new university information setting – Alan Rosling and Kathryn Chapman

Chapter 6:  Electronic Theses and Dissertations: promoting ‘hidden’ research – Susan Copeland

Chapter 7:  Learning Systems in Post-Statutory Education – Paul Catherall

Chapter 8:  Going Digital: the transformation of scholarly communication and academic libraries – Isaac Hunter Dunlap


Chapter 9:  Hegemony and the Web: the Struggle for Hegemony in a Digital Age – Tony Ward

Chapter 10: Digital libraries: an opportunity for African education – Dieu Hack-Polay    

Chapter 11:        Critical Perspectives on Digitising Africa – by Leburn Rose


Chapter 12: Digital Library and Digital Reference Service: integration and mutual complementarity – Jia Liu            

Chapter 13: The New Generation of Citation Indexing in the Age of Digital Libraries – Mengxiong Liu and Peggy Cabrera        


Chapter 14: Building the Virtual Scriptorium – Tatiana Nikolova-Houston and Ron Houston               

Chapter 15: SPARC: creating innovative models and environments for scholarly research and communication – Heather Joseph    

Chapter 16: Impacts of New Media on Scholarly Publishing – Yehuda E. Kalay                     


Chapter 17: Meeting and Serving Users in Their New Work (and Play) Spaces – Tom Peters       

Chapter 18: Virtual Libraries and Education in Virtual Worlds: twenty-first century library services – Lori Bell, Mary-Carol Lindbloom, Tom Peters and Kitty Pope                               


Cover designed by Victor Rikowski

Refreshments provided.
Confirmed speakers at the launch include:

An Introduction by Andy Dawson, Senior Teaching Fellow and MSc Information Science Programme Director, Department of Information Studies, UCL.

Ruth Rikowski is a Freelance Editor, commissioning books for Chandos Publishing, Oxford. She is an Associate of the Higher Education Academy and a Chartered Librarian. Ruth Rikowski is the author of Globalisation, Information and Libraries (Oxford: Chandos Publishing, 2005) and the editor of Knowledge Management: social, cultural and theoretical perspectives (Oxford: Chandos Publishing, 2007). She has also written numerous articles and given many talks; focusing in particular on the topics of globalisation, knowledge management and information technology. Ruth Rikowski is on the Editorial Board of Policy Futures in Education and Information for Social Change. The Rikowski website, ‘The Flow of Ideas’ can be found at and her blog, ‘Ruth Rikowski Updates’ is at

Paul Catherall is a librarian currently working at University of Liverpool, UK. Paul has worked in E-Learning and technical support roles over a number of years and his current role involves providing library services to students studying online. Paul also worked for several years as a college lecturer in Information Communications Technology.  Paul is also undertaking a PhD within the area of E-Learning and is a graduate of Glyndŵr University, formerly the North East Wales Institute of Higher Education (B.A.) and John Moores University (M.A. Dist). Paul is also an associate of the Higher Education Academy and chartered member of Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP). Paul has also been active in various CILIP affiliated groups, including the Career Development Group and is a member of the Editorial Board for the collective forum and journal Information for Social Change. Paul has authored various published journal articles and texts including a stand-alone book Delivering E-Learning for Information Services in Higher Education (Chandos 2005).

Julianne Nyhan – on behalf of Melissa Terras, who is a Senior Lecturer in Electronic Communication in the Department of Information Studies, University College London, and the Deputy Director of the UCL Centre for Digital Humanities. With a background in Classical Art History and English Literature, and Computing Science, her doctorate (University of Oxford) examined how to use advanced information engineering technologies to interpret and read the Vindolanda texts.  She is a general editor of DHQ (Digital Humanities Quarterly) and Secretary of the Association of Literary and Linguistic Computing. Her research focuses on the use of computational techniques to enable research in the arts and humanities that would otherwise be impossible.

Places limited for the book launch: R.S.V.P:

Purchasing Digitisation Perspectives:

From Sense Publishers:









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Ben Linus Taking Control


Taking Control: registration now open
SOAS, University of London, 12th March 2011

Keynote: Professor Jodi Dean

Other speakers include: Professor Peter Hallward, Dr Alberto Toscano, Dr Paul Blackledge

This conference is concerned with control.  On what it means today – under globalised late capitalism – to take or be in control of institutions, whether political, economic, or academic.  We are concerned with theorising how to take control, and on what to do when we take it.  We want to focus not on the dangers of control – since the corrupting effects of power have been amply theorized – but rather on what it means to take responsibility and effect change, and what this change could be.

That is, how can a vision for society be enacted in practical terms? What is the role of democratic participation in this process of mastering social change?  And how do we remain accountable as we take control.  Does taking control mean working against, within or beside the existing institutional structure?

This question remains under-theorised in contemporary critical political theory – which often remains limited to the critique of the status quo. Without the impulse to take responsibility and take control, this critique becomes meaningless – it results in a de facto acceptance.  Where projects like the ‘Idea of Communism’ stop, this conference seeks to take the next step.  It must be situated along work such as the Turbulence Collective’s ‘What it means to win’ volume and Erik-Olin-Wright’s ‘Envisioning Utopias’.

We are clear that the idea of communism remains important and a project to be fought for.  However in the strategic question we are at an impasse, how to take control and implement a new communism? The vanguard model seems discredited, but the model of the multitude seems non-committal, a mere waiting for things to gradually come together, resulting in a de facto withdrawal from the social. Even more than this impasse, in times of late capitalism the very meaning of what being in control entails is no longer clear.  We want to move from thinking about the idea of communism to implementing it.

The event is free to attend but registration is essential.  Please email

Organised by ES: Philosophy Research Collective

With support from the Department of Politics and International Studies, SOAS

Department of Politics, Goldsmiths

For more information see

Update 2nd March 2011:

Full Programme:


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MySpace Profile:

The Ockress:

Rikowski Point:

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at:


Critical Pedagogy



Educational Spaces of Alterity
University of Nottingham, Tuesday 26th April 2010

Nottingham Critical Pedagogy invites contributions for a day of workshops considering spaces (both inside and outside the academy) that may help challenge the dominance of neoliberal logics, alienated practices and Eurocentric hegemony in contemporary educational practice, and in so doing contribute to radical social change. We are pleased to announce that John Holloway will be hosting a keynote workshop at the event.

We hope to welcome contributions from a variety of disciplines and from inside and outside the academy. These can be in any format, but we especially encourage those that break from traditional conference paper models: workshops, artistic engagements, poster presentations and performances would all be welcomed. We welcome suggestions for entire workshop sessions (90 minutes), or single contributions, which we will group into workshops.

Our event partners Spaces of Alterity: a conference hosted by the University of Nottingham’s Department of Culture, Film and Media on Wed 27th-Thurs 28th April, with keynote addresses by China Miéville and Alberto Toscano. Both events are designed to work on their own, but participants are more than welcome to attend both should they wish, and we will be co-curating an Annexinema film night with Spaces of Alterity (details tbc) to show short films which touch upon the themes of the two events.

A non-exhaustive list of themes you may wish to consider is offered over the page. Please do not feel these are mutually exclusive:

Critical Education and ‘The Crisis’

  • How can critical education respond to the crisis in higher education and wider societal crises?
  • Do these crises close down or create spaces of hope for critical education?
  • Defending the university? Transforming the university? Abandoning the university?


Education and the Affective

  • Emotional epistemologies and pedagogies.
  • The role of hope in critical education.
  • ‘Radical love’.


Community Education

  • Skillshare workshops.
  • Social movements/community politics.
  • Challenging the borders between HE and community.
  • The role of non-traditional educational spaces (art galleries, social centres, etc).


Border Thinking and Hybridity

  • The importance of identity and difference for critical education.
  • Challenging hegemonic and Eurocentric perspectives.
  • How can we introduce the subaltern into the classroom?


Reflections on Practice

  • Experiences of critical education.
  • What can we learn from past experiences, experiments and struggle?


Art, Music and Critical Education

  • The role of art and music in critical education.
  • Resonances between critical education and contemporary theory and practice in art and music.
  • Problems of assessment in critical and artistic education: or is assessment the problem?


Please send abstracts and information on the format you wish your presentation to take to no later than Tuesday 8th February. These should be no more than 300 words, but may contain links to further reading regarding your chosen method of presentation.

Registration is free for Educational Spaces of Alterity but there are fees for Spaces of Alterity: attendance for one day is £25/£35; for both days it’s £45/55 (cheaper price for students and unwaged).

We have a limited amount of money to help cover the travel and accommodation costs of participants who would not otherwise be able to attend, or to help with fees for those who wish to stay for Spaces of Alterity. Details will be announced once abstracts have been received. Food and drink will be provided for all.

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The Flow of Ideas:

The Island


History Matters


A ‘Lost Text’ from 1975 rediscovered: David Brown on the ‘Illusions’ of Maurice Brinton and Cornelius Castoriadis

Editorial notes by the Hobgoblin Collective:

Hobgoblin has published (online) for the first time a text, written in 1975 as a letter to the membership of the Solidarity group – also known as ‘Solidarity For Workers Power’. This group was founded in 1960 by Chris Pallis, an eminent neurologist who wrote under the name “Maurice Brinton,” and Ken Weller, a young shop steward working in the motor industry. The group, initially known as Socialism Reaffirmed, published a journal, Agitator, which after six issues was renamed Solidarity. Both Brinton and Weller had previously been members of Gerry Healy’s Socialist Labour League, founded amidst the mass defections from the Communist Party after the Hungarian Revolution of 1956. As Richard Abernethy put in an obituary for Chris Pallis in Hobgoblin in 2005:

“Solidarity punctured and deflated some favourite left-wing illusions. It recognised that there was no actually existing socialism, no worker’s states, in the world. Notwithstanding all differences between the Western capitalist bloc, the Eastern bloc ruled by Communist parties, and the Third World, the basic divide between rulers and ruled existed everywhere.”

The Solidarity group, despite never having much more than a hundred members, was influential, not least because Solidarity became the main conduit of the political theories of Cornelius Castoriadis aka Paul Cardan (1922-97), founder of Socialisme ou Barbarie in France.

The resignation statement by Solidarity member, David Brown, was written at a time (1975) when the group was in decline, facing splits and having to deal with the fact that Castoriadis/Cardan had, following the demise of Socialisme ou Barbarie in 1965, moved to the Right. Brown, was influenced by French ex-Bordigist, Jacques Camatte, some of whose writings he translated, by the Russian value-theorist, II Rubin, and by Karl Korsch, author of Marxism and Philosophy. According to Brown, Castoriadis and Solidarity shared with the traditional left a restricted understanding of Marx’s ideas, not recognising the liberatory core of Marx’s Capital, and taking the shortcoming of the traditional left as grounds for breaking with Marx. Brown argues that Castoriadis, Brinton and the Solidarity group misunderstood the cardinal term of the Marx’s critique of political economy – value. Brown writes:

“The attack on the labour theory of value is only a prelude to a more general attack on the materialist conception of history. By reducing the general conception of the mode of production to mean technology and the word ‘determine’ to mean the same as ‘cause’, a simple transformation of marxism into banality follows.” 

Castoriadis had argued that:

“The revolutionary movement… must become the place (the only place in contemporary society, outside the factory) where… individuals learn about collective life, run their own affairs and fulfill and develop themselves, working for a common objective in reciprocal recognition.”

Brown finds this position to be “entirely false,” and argues (following Jacques Camatte) that “all organisations are despotic” because, basing themselves on “critique of other organisations and individuals” they are “already” the conception of competitive capital.

Two of the editors of The Hobgoblin (Richard Abernethy and George Shaw) are former members of the Solidarity group. As Marxist-Humanists, we do not agree with a lot of the positions David Brown expressed in 1975. If the statement that “all organisations are despotic” means that all attempts to overcome atomization and individual isolation are doomed, then we certainly disagree, believing, as we do, in a philosophically-grounded alternative to capitalism – something Castoriadis, as a “positivist,” never even considered. Nor do we agree that “support for oppressed peoples” was part of the degeneration of Marxism (this in spite of Marx’s own statements on Ireland, Poland etc), or saying that people who voted Labour in 1974 “voted for capitalism.”

We are publishing this text not only because of its historical interest as a critique of a (dead) organization of the Left, once significant (and still influential “beyond the grave,” through the works of its theoreticians and the legacy of its activists) , but also because of the general theoretic questions it raises have, in the 21st century Left, not been surpassed.


The Hobgoblin:

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The Flow of Ideas: