Decodings September 2020

Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts 2020 Special Event
AI/IA: Promises and Perils of Augmented/ Artificial Intelligence

Thursday, October 8, 2020 [4pm Pacific, 7pm Eastern]

Program (approximately 2 hours over Zoom; link TBA on litsci list & SLSA Facebook page)

Welcome: David Cecchetto, Incoming President

Announcement of Lifetime Achievement Award & Remarks by 2020 recipient Richard Powers

Kate Hayles introduces lightning talks–

Ed Finn,“How to Imagine AI: Cultural Frames for Thinking with Machines”

Jennifer Rhee, “Histories of AI Futures”

Evan Selinger,“Reject Dual-Use Dogma”

Audience Q and A via chat

Announcement of Bruns Essay Prize

“Expanding AI: A conversation with artist Stephanie Dinkins and Srimoyee Mitra, Director, Stamps Gallery,”
introduced by Irina Aristarkhova

Announcements of Schachterle Essay Prize and Kendrick Book Prize

“Using and Musing AI in Books and Postprint,” a conversation between Amaranth Borsuk and Kate Hayles

Moderated audience Q&A

Information about Speakers–

“Lightning Talks on Futures (and Responsibilities) of AI/IA”

Ed Finn is the founding director of the Center for Science and the Imagination at Arizona State University where

he is an associate professor in the School for the Future of Innovation in Society. He is the author of What

Algorithms Want: Imagination in the Age of Computing. He also serves as the academic director of Future

Tense, a partnership between ASU, New America and Slate Magazine, and a co-director of Emerge, an annual

festival of art, ideas and the future.

Jennifer Rhee is an associate professor of new media in the Department of English at Virginia Commonwealth

University. She’s written about robotics and artiicial intelligence in technology, visual and performance art,

literature, and film in her book The Robotic Imaginary: The Human and the Price of Dehumanized Labor

(University of Minnesota Press, 2018). Her work can also be found in journals including Camera Obscura,

ConfigurationsASAP/JournalScience Fiction StudiesMosaic, and Postmodern Culture. She’s currently

working on a book on big data and futurity in technology, literature, and art.

Evan Selinger, Professor of Philosophy at Rochester Institute of Technology, is the co-author of Re-

Engineering Humanity, selected by the Observer as one of the “Best Books of 2016.” He writes for many

periodicals and blogs such as The NationSalon, and The Guardian. He is currently a member of the Institute

for Defense on Analysis‘s Legal, Moral, and Ethical Working Group, which contributes to a DARPA-funded

project that uses artificial intelligence to enhance the autonomy of non-lethal technological systems.

“Conversation with Stephanie Dinkins and Srimoyee Mitra, introduced by Irina Aristarkhova”

Stephanie Dinkins ( is a leading transmedia artist who creates platforms for dialog about

artificial intelligence to confront questions of bias in AI, consciousness, data sovereignty and social equity. She

is particularly driven to work with communities of color to co-create more inclusive, fair and ethical artificial

intelligent ecosystems. Dinkins is a 2019 Creative Capital Grantee as well as Data and Society Research

Institute Fellow. She is Associate Professor of Art at Stony Brook University.

Srimoyee Mitra is Director of the Stamps Gallery at the Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design, University of

Michigan, Ann Arbor. She is an award-winning curator and editor of Border Cultures (Windsor Gallery / Black

Dog Publishing, 2015). Her research interests lie at the intersection of exhibition-making and participation,

migration, globalization and decolonial aesthetics.

Irina Aristarkhova is Professor at the Stamps School of Art & Design and the Digital Studies Institute, University

of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She is author of Hospitality of the Matrix: Philosophy, Biomedicine and

Culture and Arrested Welcome: Hospitality in Contemporary Art.

“Conversation between Amaranth Borsuk and Kate Hayles”

Amaranth Borsuk is a poet known for her experiments with textual materiality and digital poetry. She is the coauthor,

with Brad Bouse, of, a book with visual icons that can only be read with the aid of a computer. She is

currently an Associate Professor at the University of Washington Bothell.

N. Katherine Hayles is a literary and cultural critic who writes on the relations of literature, science and

technology in the 20th- and 21st- centuries. She is the author of How We Became Posthuman: Virtual Bodies in

Cybernetics, Literature and Informatics. She is Distinguished Research Professor at the University of

California, Los Angeles and James B. Duke Professor of Literature Emerita at Duke University.