The Play in the System
The Art of Parasitical Resistance
Anna Watkins Fisher
Published by Duke University Press, 2021
What does artistic resistance look like in the twenty-first century, when disruption and dissent have been co-opted and commodified in ways that reinforce dominant systems? In The Play in the System, Anna Watkins Fisher locates the possibility for resistance in artists who embrace parasitism, a tactic of complicity that effect subversion from within hegemonic structures.
Anna Watkins Fisher speaks to Pierre d’Alancaisez about the underhand tactics of the parasite – artists like the collective Ubermorgen, Núria Güell, the writer Chris Krauss, or Roisin Byrne – by which it appropriates the logic of their hosts – Amazon, the Spanish State, Dick, and in the case of Byrne, Watkins Fisher herself.
- Ubermorgen, Amazon Noir
- Núria Güell, Stateless by Choice, Humanitarian Aid
- Marina Abramović, The Artist is Present
- Ann Liv Young archive.org capture, Sheryl Is Present
- Lauren Barri Holstein
Anna Watkins Fisher is a cultural and media theorist whose research spans the fields of digital studies, performance studies, visual culture, environmental humanities, and critical theory. She is an associate professor in the Department of American Culture at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
The Play in the System is available as an open-source download.