Art, AI and Culture, Michael Betancourt, Im Pressd Marilena Pateraki
Art, AI and Culture interrogates the aesthetic heritage of Modernism as it informs contemporary cultural applications of AI which demonstrate there is no escape from the kaleidoscopic lineage of colonialism where the status of “human” and all the rights that entails were withheld from the colonized in general, and from slaves, labor, and women specifically. This analysis theorizes the social identity threat posed by AI’s challenges to existing social, cultural, political, and economic orders. Digital technology is not exempt from this historical lineage that transforms familiar questions of economic displacement caused by machine learning and digital automation into new battles in an on-going conflict over social status and position. This cultural approach to AI reveals the ways that it transforms expressions of identity, leisure and luxury into opportunities for profit extraction. Social phenomena, (including racism, sexism, and nationalism), capture individuals in a web of systemic control where digital automation provides a mechanism preserving the existing hierarchies and social status that it might otherwise challenge. Drawing on a reconception of capitalism as a proxy for social status and position, this study critiques of the fantasy that replacing all human labor will create a fully automated luxury utopia without bias, oppression, or social change.
With full color images.