Michael Litwack is assistant professor of English and Film Studies at the University of Alberta, where he also teaches in the Media Studies BA program. He received a Ph.D. in Modern Culture and Media from Brown University in 2017. His research focuses on the theoretical and historical encounters among race, media, technology, and modernity.
Michael's writing has appeared or is forthcoming in journals such as Media, Culture & Society, Cultural Critique, Media Fields, Camera Obscura, and The Black Scholar. His coedited volumes include a special dossier in Jump Cut on the "Futures of Marxist Film and Media Studies'' (2022) and an issue of the contemporary arts journal PUBLIC titled "Smoke: Figures, Genres, Forms'' (2019).
His current book project, Racial Technics: Reinventions of the Human, is a study of the vexed function of media technologies, as figurative and material resources, in both imagining and managing Black freedom struggles in U.S. modernity. Beginning with a re-evaluation of the enabling trace of racial slavery embedded in dominant conceptions of media as prosthetic “extensions of Man,” the manuscript tracks multiple philosophical, aesthetic, and political responses to the racialization of the human-technology relationship against the backdrop of twentieth-century media-technological upheavals (including automation, cybernetics, and television). In so doing, Racial Technics assembles an archive of Black media, intellectual, and cultural production that reorients the question concerning technology beyond the protocols of both racial humanism and recent posthumanisms.
media theory, critical race and ethnic studies, Black studies, screen cultures, genealogies of media and communication, U.S. American studies, gender and sexuality, history of critical and cultural theory, post/humanisms
Recent and upcoming courses include:
Prerequisites: *6 of junior English or *3 of junior English plus WRS 101; and *12 of senior-level English, *6 of which must be at the 300 level. Note: variable content course which may be repeated.Winter Term 2021
A genealogy of advanced Media Studies theories and approaches in their historical contexts. Corerequisite: MST 100.Winter Term 2021 Fall Term 2021