Remediating 9/11



Like Walter Benjamin’s concept of dialectical history, premediation does not consider the future as an empty and homogeneous time into which the present moves progressively forward (Benjamin, 1940). Just as Benjamin characterizes two kinds of history, one which sees the past as dead or as autonomous, the other that sees it actively engaged with the present, so there are two ways to look at the future — one which operates on a model of prediction, which imagines the future as settled (or to-be-settled), as moving from possible to definite, and another which imagines the future as immanent in the present, as consisting of potentialities that impact or affect the present whether or not they ever come about. Premediation imagines multiple futures which are alive in the present, which always exist as not quite fully formed potentialities or possibilities. These futures are remediated not only as they might become but also as they have already been in the past. Premediation is not free from history but only from what Benjamin characterizes as “historicism.” Premediating the future entails remediating the past. Premediation is actively engaged in the process of reconstructing history, particularly the history of 9/11, in its incessant remediation of the future. Thus the historical event of 9/11 continues to live and make itself felt in the present as an event that both overshadows other recent historical events and that continues to justify and make possible certain governmental and medial practices of securitization.


Video Game World Trade Terrorist Attack Double Logic Conspiracy Theory 
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© Richard Grusin 2010

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