July 2014 — Montgomery Cantsin from Furtherfield recently interviewed Lori Emerson about her ideas on today’s world of technology and the release of her new book, Reading Writing Interfaces (recently published by University of Minnesota Press). “Emerson’s work celebrates and calls for a ‘frictional media archeological analysis’ aimed at the continual ‘unmooring’ of the accepted conventions of reading and writing. Towards this end, she critiques consumer-oriented trends in computing–trends which unfortunately seek to ‘efface the interface’ in the name of so-called user-friendliness.” Read the full interview.
About Reading Writing Interfaces:
Uncovers a lineage of writers and thinkers who have rebelled against the means of production
In Reading Writing Interfaces, Lori Emerson examines how interfaces—from today’s multitouch devices to yesterday’s desktops, from typewriters to Emily Dickinson’s self-bound fascicle volumes—mediate between writer and text as well as between writer and reader. Following the threads of experimental writing from the present into the past, she shows how writers have long tested and transgressed technological boundaries.
This is the first book to bridge the fields of media archaeology and literary studies, specifically poetry and poetics. It offers new readings-and sometimes a first reading-of important texts, it performs historical spadework that adds to the existing narratives of how the personal computer has evolved, and it contributes to current critical conversations by making the category of interface central to its explorations of textual materiality.