[ISEA2017] Paper: Minso Kim — Does Ritual Disappear as Walter Benjamin describes in “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction” in the Age of Digital Technology?


Keywords: Popular Culture, Creative Writing, Cyber Space, Fanfic, Aura, Ritual, Ceremonial Cheerleading, Balloon.

This article refutes Walter Benjamin’s opinion about the disappearance of aura and ritual in ‘The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction’. According to this essay, rituals disappear through a method of mass reproduction— a film. I argue one of the mass reproductions, the film, actually creates a new aura and new ritual unlike Benjamin’s opinion. In the digital technology era, numerous replicas influence the fact that the massive re- production leads to create a new ritual phenomena as well. This phenomena appears as a piece of creative writing, a piece of fan-fiction in the cyber space. Firstly, we are going to look at a new ritual which is created by a character in the television series, Star Trek. Then, we will examine a new ritual phenomenon which is generated by a fan-fiction, in the late 1990s Korean pop culture, in the age of digital technology.

  • Minso Kim is an international artist and educator whose practice explores relationship between analog and digital worlds by weaving human interaction. She teaches courses in from painting to contemporary art practices and researches at Seoul Women’s University, Republic of Korea.

Full text (PDF) p.  502-506