Helene von Oldenburg — SpiderBug. Browsing the Brain

The history of discovery, diagnostic tools, tips for handling, prevention of epidemic spreading, strategies for cyberfeminists

The so-called SpiderBug, recently discovered by neurologists while doing their research in the field of Arachnomantic, is a program working the human brain like a virus in a computer. Because there is not yet an antivirus program available - supposedly never will be - we have to invent strategies to deal with this potent bug. The SpiderBug is not only influencing our intentions but it is also damaging our ability of selforganization. Arachnomantic research tells us that the human mind shows a highly significant preference for a variety of thread-bound constructions like lines, knots or nets. When analyzing the underlying structure of our ideas and inventions we find a networking dynamic in nearly every part of life, science, art or society. Up to now the Arachnomantic could prove only how this process is initiated by arachnoids out of the future and that it is increasing its spreading rate. Arachnomantics could not predict the organic and psychic conditions of this process. The discovery of the SpiderBug as being responsible for this evolutionary process is a dramatic breakthrough.

The lecture will demonstrate the risks and possibilities SpiderBug poses to
cyberfeminists as a group of future related and netbased thinkers and

Hacking as method and metaphor

Cornelia Sollfrank

Barbara Thoens/ Rena Tangens

Stephanie Wehner

Corrine Petrus/ Marieke


'Split bodies and fluid gender: the cutting edge of information technology - (between scientific and artistic visions)'


Feminist Activism, Difference, and Global Technologies

The contested territory of the Internet has been opened up not only for feminist communication, interrogation, play, and pleasure, but just as importantly,for new feminist campaigns, education, critique,tactical interventions, activist coalitions and all manner of collaborations. A new cyberfeminism can draw on a strategic knowledge of feminist history,theory and practice to thoroughly scrutinize the effects of technology on many aspects of women's lives and to fashion a politics of presence, tactical embodiment,and full engagement with the discourses of technology and power, keeping prominently in mind that all women (all people) are affected by technology in different ways depending on race, class, economic and social factors.

In order to reconcile local and global, virtual and lived worlds, communication and collaboration among women must occur in parallel with local organization and activism. If successful organization among women is to occur on both local and global levels, we must examine and confront our discomfort with issues of race and class. Recent writings by feminists of color reiterate problems seldom discussed in electronic media theory: universalism, marginalization, stereotyping, strategies of silencing and rendering invisible.

Currently there is much confusion and doubt about the effectiveness of various activist and resistant strategies on the Internet.We hope to use the flesh meetings of the Next Cyberfeminist International for radical and energetic discussions with many different women to inspire new strategies and tactics for an engaged, activist, and embodied cyberfeminist politics.



Maria Fernandez and Faith Wilding in conversation
Feminism, Difference, and Global Capital

New cyberfeminist strategies involve examining the connections between historical and contemporary sites of feminist struggle and resistance and the new technological developments which are having a profound impact on these sites.
A starting point for developing change could be the revaluation of the old dictum: "The personal is the political." It is now necessary to become aware of how we deal with differences in our most intimate spheres. At the same time we need to strengthen our presence in the greatly contested digital domain as technology has been an integral part of the construction and positioning of identities. In the current state of technologically facilitated global capitalism it becomes imperative to find new ways of interacting in and out of cyberspace. Following are the some of the topics which we will address in our discussion:

1. The interconnections of technology and difference. It is vital for women to become conscious of their own immediate situations and conditions and how they are being reshaped by the new global technologies. At the root of such consciousness-raising lie questions of agency and power.

2. The conditions of production (labor) and reproduction--historically always already linked for women--are changing in ways that are having drastic consequences for the lives of all women. Cyberfeminists need to analyze and draw attention to the changed conditions of the entwinement of women's productive and reproductive functions in the global marketplace, and address issues of justice, working conditions, opportunity, and quality of life.

3. Increasingly medical and military technologies are closely connected. As Claudia Reiche and others have pointed out, much cutting edge medical technology is being developed and tested by the military. Civilian applications of this technology are already having far reaching effects on women, as for example in ultrasound pregnancy technologies and in imaging techniques. The manufacture and control of fertility/infertility and the medicalization of women's body processes are vital subjects for cyberfeminist scrutiny, critique, and activism.



Yvonne Volkart — Art strategies in the New World Order

In the current re/construction of the new world order, and with respect to globalisation and pancapitalist economisation, culture and art became important factors of more or less hidden ways of policy. Especially since the enhanced scientific and social development of communications- and biotechnology the discourses about the blurring of the borders of gender and body is not only oberwhelming but even producing and installing this „new bodies". Therefore the arts as field of the visual hold a dominant and/or activist place in our growing visualised society of styles and commodities. This lecture questions several contemporary art projects in different media which all have in common that they deal with the theme of the technological and/or new biological body. From a cyberfeminist point of view and with respect to categories such as gender, class and race it seeks to analyse the hidden ideologies and phantasmas and tries to contextualize them with traditional and historical ones. It discusses their relations to actual social realities and questions their options and possibilities of criticism and agency in the new world order.



Ursula Biemann <performing the border>

A discursive approach to the border of Mexico where Mexican women produce electronic hardware in the service of North American information industry. A multilayered discussion on economic, cultural, theoretical and psychoanalytic interpretations of gender coded identity formations. Both presentation and video are an attempt to draw together identity politics in representation and the sexualized inscriptions on social practice on the urban territory south of the border.



Mare Tralla (Estonia/UK) and Pam Skelton (UK) —

Private Views is a collaborative project between Estonian and British women artists working with photography, video, film and digital art. The exhibition raises questions of difference and identity in relation to gender, geography, history, and culture.


Nat Muller — Cyberfeminists and Activism

This paper will begin with a collage of what cyberfeminisms means to theorists and writers such as Rosi Braidotti, Sadie Plant, Anne Balsamo, and Constance Penley. This triggers a discussion about the discrepancies between feminist theory and feminist practice particularly as they relate to technologies. Theory and practice should interact and inform each other and it is not an easy mechanism to get started. If we can slowly break down the dialectic between them then we may be heading towards a potentially effective strategy for cyberfeminism.



Caroline Bassett — A Manifesto Against Manifestos

This lecture examines cyberfeminism's current failure to take issue with digital technology. The triumphant rhetoric of some brands of cyberfeminism has hidden its often tenuous connections with what is really going on in digital spaces. This lecture begins with an assessment of cyberfeminism as another technological fix and moves on from there to ask what/how/we might rethink cyberfeminism, and whether this can be done in a way that is productive for an activist feminism.

Alla Mitrofanova— WOMAN, MANY, SELF

3 issue and 3 foundational part of CF: 1)Foucault, 2)Irigaray, 3)Deleuzeguattarism; key words of cyberfeminism

1) FOUCAULT AND MICROANALYSIS OF VISIBLE what is "dispositif" and how we could use the term of Foucault to settle a question of sexuality, politics and internet now. Key points of contemporary sexuality: nomadic subjectivity, transegenger/transex, motherhood: instead of regulated family, masturbating child, hysteric woman:

2) IRIGARAY AND DEVELOPING OF INVISIBLE her slogan to reject a present signifier economy for producing many of them become a banner of cyberfeminisms, each of them makes visible taboo experience, hidden unregistered modes of relations/communications, plus identities. We produce a platform to make politics of multiplied self defended and socially recognizable.


4) KEY WORDS OF CYBERFEMINISM: disembodiment, embodiment, nomadic subject, transsexual body experience, micropolitics of self. Key words are directories in the same time, they work in the same diagram (dispositive) of tensions and problems, explore the same hot examples. They could be taken as maim topics of cyberfeminism.




Rasa Smite talks about net audio, mostly about the experimenting with live streams and collaborative broadcasting experience, as well as non-linearity of the streaming audio and its unpredictability in
the ways how it is creating the environment and not only about 'live' - but also about net audio archives - orang system - global real servers network idea, etc.



Claudia Reiche— Bio(r)Evolution® . On the Contemporary Military-Medical Complex

The presentation reports from the annual conference "Medicine Meets Virtual Reality", announced as"the premier international forum on medicine and interactive electronic technologies... where hype is left behind, where VR achieves legitimacy and utilization". The relation to the military is close and presented as a military funding for medical projects in peacetime or as 'technology transfer'. Because: "There is only a little difference in the needs of a soldier on the battlefield, a farmer in a remote field, an
astronaut in the Space Shuttle or grandmother living alone." ( Richard M. Satava, MD FACS) Referring to the WWW-representation of the discussed projects some nilitary/medical visions of the 'virtual' healthcare and 'informational' mankind are closely analyzed from a cyberfeminist perspective.



Claudia Reiche— Pixel by Image: A Fantastic Voyage to 'Dandy Dust'(a Film by Hans Scheirl, 1998)

Dandy Dust is: "a transgendered horror-comix, set inside the body of the protagonist-multiplicity", "cybernetic time/spaces, planets with organs, shape-shifters, time-travelling, miniature-models, tv-proscenia, hi-camp lo-tec! super-kinetic! hyper-graphic!" (press release) The film crossbreeds a multitude of literary and filmic discourse fragments, using the filmstrip technically and essentially as a strange kind of "cyberspace".That is the medial, unifying platform of a space situated as inside as outside: overturned like a used glove or a tunnel-simulation penetrating into the depth of the virtual at the border of your crt-screen. The presentation follows a personal web of associations (from german expressionist cinema to medical VR simulations) related to assorted clippings of 'Dandy Dust'. The idea is one of 'Dandy Dust' as an eloquent filmic incorporation of the imaginary shifts of what identity, body, gender or even a narrative could be in 'information age'.



Irina Aristarkhova — Radek. Russian women and the net.

"The first part of my presentation focuses on the history of radical political and intellectual movements in Russia in order to show how Russian feminists position themselves today within our post-Soviet
context. As a case example I use my own involvement in the left-wing (Internet) Radek project. My discussion concludes with an analysis of how Russian women use contemporary media strategically in an interventionist manner."


Susanne Ackers — Vanished Venus into Virtu(e)al Visions?

Based on McLuhan's interpretation of electronic media as extensions of the human nervous system, the question arises which specific experiences are evolving through the internet. At the first CI it was Josephine Bosma who offered a workshop on RSI (repetetive stress injury). This talk is pointing towards the relationship of psychosis and internet.