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Prof. Dr. Ivo Ritzer

Ritzer Prof. Dr. Ivo Ritzer

Short Bio

Prof. Dr. Ivo Ritzer holds the Chair of Comparative Media Studies at the University of Bayreuth. He has given invited talks all over the world for many years, while his publications include multiple essays just as several monographs and edited volumes, with topics such as media aesthetics, media philosophy, and media archaeology. His most recent book publications among more than twenty titles are Key Works in Media Studies (2020), Politics of the Popular: Media – Culture – Theory, Media Theory of Globalization (2018), Media Cities: Mapping Urbanity and Audiovisual Configurations (2018), Media Dispositives (2018), Mediatizing Africa (2018), and Mediality of Mise en scène (2017).

Work as Annual Theme Fellow

According to the cluster’s annual theme of the academic year 2021-22, i.e. medialities,  I see mediality as the general presupposition or condition under which any form of cultural production is able to take shape at all: within mediality the specific circumstances of culture are negotiated. Thus, the concept of the medium refers to all domains of cultural exchange, which in itself is medially determined. However, this is not to postulate a naïve empiricist stance that 'materializes' the immaterial, even subjectivity, as a positive given in the 'objective' world. In tradition of critical materialism and the cluster’s emphasis on reflexivity, I believe that there can never be the position of an external observer relationally disconnected from the world and its objects. The material of reality therefore is precisely not exclusive. In other words, materialist thinking has to deal with a multiplicity not exhaustive by thought, but with the condition of every material relation. As a consequence, it is our task to not only reflect on the diversity of objects, but rather, on a basic epistemological level, to come to terms with the relationship between subjectivity and the material world.

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