Capitalismo e immaginario. La grotta, il lavoro e l’algoritmo

Vincenzo Mele, Antonio Tramontana


Capitalism and Imaginary. The cave, the labor and the algorithm. The aim of this paper is to discuss the controversial relationship between capitalism and imaginary. Using Adorno’s concept of constellation in science, we shall underline different kind of relationship between those. we will try to identify vital conceptual nodes that can illuminate the relationship between capitalism and the imaginary. In the first part we discuss address the attention to two different perspectives aboutof the interrelationship dichotomy between capitalism and imaginary. Starting from Bataille’s reflection on Lascaux’s wall painting, we highlight focus on the difference between instrumental activity and expressive activity, while in a social and historical perspective, we pay attention on the irreconcilable contradiction of these activities that emerge with the modern concept of labor. In the second part, we analyze a case study - an algorithm called “The Next Rembrandt” - in order discuss aesthetical and cultural condition of the contemporary capitalism. How we show in the last part, the aesthetical and cultural dilemmas not only offer us a possible link between capitalism and imaginary but, at the same time, allow us to face up the ethical dimension of contemporary cultural logic of capitalism.


Capitalism; Imaginary; Labor; Algorithm; Rembrandt

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Im@go. A Journal of the Social Imaginary - Biannual - Edizioni Mimesis