Alexander Galloway Receives Berlin Prize

MCC Professor Alexander Galloway is among the recipients of the 2018-2019 Berlin Prize—a semester-long fellowship administered by the American Academy in Berlin.

The highly coveted prize is awarded annually to scholars, writers, composers, and artists from the United States who represent the highest standards of excellence in their fields. Fellows receive a monthly stipend, partial board, and accommodations at the American Academy’s lakeside Hans Arnhold Center, in Berlin’s Wannsee district.

Galloway will spend the semester developing a research project on the prehistory and culture of computation, widening the historical scope to nineteenth-century media, such as photography, simulation, sculpture, and games. Topics will include the lesser-known histories of nineteenth-century German and French practitioners of chronophotography, such as Albert Londe, and an examination of mathematician Nils Aall Barricelli, who wrote algorithms to create artificial organisms that reproduce and mutate. Galloway will also consider French filmmaker and philosopher Guy Debord, who, in the 1970s, established a commercial game company.

Alexander Galloway is Professor of Media, Culture, and Communication at New York University, where he focuses on media theory and contemporary philosophy. He received a BA in modern culture and media from Brown University, and a PhD in literature from Duke University. As a programmer and artist, Galloway’s projects include Carnivore, a networked surveillance-tool based on the eponymous FBI software (awarded a Golden Nica at Ars Electronica 2002), and Kriegspiel, based on a war game designed by Guy Debord. He is founding member of the Radical Software Group (RSG).

Galloway has held visiting posts at the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard University, and is the author of Laruelle: Against the Digital (Minnesota, 2014), The Interface Effect (Polity, 2012), Gaming: Essays on Algorithmic Culture (Minnesota, 2006), and Protocol: How Control Exists After Decentralization (MIT, 2004).