Rodrigo Martini is Assistant Professor of English at the University of Georgia, USA. He graduated with a BA and MA in Letters and Literary Studies from the São Paulo State University (UNESP – Rio Preto, 2008 and 2010), an MA in English from the University of Louisville (2012), and a PhD in English from Rice University (2019). He works on the intersections of Anglophone modernism, media thinking, and animal studies. He is co-editor of Understanding Flusser, Understanding Modernism (Bloomsbury 2021) and his work on Vilém Flusser has appeared in Journal of Comparative Literature Studies and Flusser Studies.
Articles of Rodrigo Martini
A Foray into the Worlds of Imaginary Animals and Humans
This essay places Flusser’s What if? (2022) and his experiments with Louis Bec’s Institut Scientifique de Recherche Paranaturaliste (Scientific Institute of Paranaturalist Research – I.S.R.P.), in conver-sation with Joan Fontcuberta’s Fauna exhibit (1985-89). It understands both Flusser’s and Fontcuberta’s experiments as being line with the modernist obsession with fake sciences, especially the pataphysical work of Alfred Jarry. The essay argues that the strangeness in Flusser’s What if? comes from a particular form of reversing the focus of scientific investigation, forcing readers to look inward to the role of scientific writing, and the scientist, and their role in framing the truths they claim to find.
Flusser’s Plantonic Philosophy
This essay examines the imagery of trees in Flusser’s works such as Natural:Mind, as well as shorter essays “On the Forest” [Da Floresta] and “Plant Film.” The figure of trees and plants cut across the different facets of Flusser’s corpus: from his employment of Husserlian phenomenology, to his retooling of Heidegger’s metaphysics, to his views on media thinking and the apparatus. Understanding his engagement with the plant world can help us understand his modernist method of thinking and the importance of language as a mediating apparatus for thinking. Together, these ideas about trees offer a unique view into Flusser’s thinking of media as a locus of innovation and resistance – two modernist concerns par excellence.