»(Re-)Constructing Authorship«

Angela Butterstein's picture
October 22, 2015 to October 24, 2015
Subject Fields: 
Cultural History / Studies, Humanities, Journalism and Media Studies, Law and Legal History, Philosophy

The continental European construct of authorship as a quasi-property right to intellectual achievements has its origin in the French Enlightenment and in England in the 18th century. Since then, the author as the creator of literary and artistic works has no longer been considered as one out of many artisans, who are involved in the production of a work: With the autonomous creation of ideas and texts, the author now gained a specific function within the production process. This status of originality functioned as the basis for present-day copyright law, which aims both at the prevention of the distortion of the works as well as their economic exploitation by others.

In consequence of the development of the World Wide Web, a decomposition of the originary creative process and the individual right to intellectual property ensued, turning into the movement of a collective knowledge production. In its theoretical foundations, this new understanding of authorship comes close to structuralist theories, which underlined the citability of the text as well as the importance of interpretation and claimed the destruction of the unity of author and work. Today’s network society, which is based on the utopia of autonomy and cooperation, enabled the realization of this theoretical approach through new forms of public and cultural production, such as the development of the Creative Commons. Nevertheless, its social potentiality is still controlled by the regime of the copyright.

»(Re-)Constructing Authorship« is the first symposium in a series of three, which is settled in a dialogue between artistic disciplines, philosophy, law, computer, and social sciences. The main focus of the event will be on different cultures of authorship in the arts, humanities, social sciences, exact and natural sciences with their forms of individual and co-authorship. An emphasis will be put especially on how the copyright debate could be developed constructively by the possibilities of digital media, with hypertext applications that allow active participation of the audience and that move towards a common-collective creative production. How can Common Grounds, Open Source and Creative Commons licenses apply as a new form of ethics and practice of common intercourse in the digital era? How can the innovation potential of the Internet – as an access to knowledge and to the possibility that everyone can be involved in the development of knowledge – be implemented democratically and fair for all?


Thursday, October 22, 2015

8.00 p.m. | The Concept of the Author: Historical and Theoretical Introductions
Keynotes by Martha Woodmansee, Felix Stalder

Friday, October 23, 2015

10.00 a.m. | Workshop with The Darmstadt Delegation

1.00 p.m. | Lunch

2.00 p.m. | Modes of Production after the Computational Turn I
The Darmstadt Delegation (Femke Snelting/Seda Gürses/Jara Rocha/Miriyam Asfar)

3.00 p.m. | Coffee break

3.15 p.m. | Modes of Production after the Computational Turn II
Sebastian Lütgert, Andrew Norman Wilson

4.15 p.m. | Coffee Break

4.30 p.m. | Authorship and Techniques of Sampling
Reading/Sound-Performance by Thomas Meinecke, Kinga Tóth

7.00 p.m. | Dinner

8.00 p.m. | Not So Happy Together
Performance by Anna Gschnitzer, Nikolaos Eleftheriadis

Saturday, October 24, 2015

10.00 a.m. | Workshop with Sebastian Lütgert

1.00 p.m. | Lunch

2.00 p.m. | The Relation of Authorship to Ownership
Panel discussion with Roberto Yanguas Gómez, Antoine Conjard, Till Kreutzer

3.30 p.m. | Coffee break

3.45 p.m. | The Ethics of Authorship
Panel discussion with Philipp Kleinmichel, Antoinette Rouvroy, Tomislav Medak, Gal Kirn

With contributions by:

Antoine Conjard, director Hexagone Scène Nationale Arts Sciences, Meylan/France
The Darmstadt Delegation (Femke Snelting, Seda Gürses, Jara Rocha, Miriyam Asfar), theorists, practitioners and activists, BE, ES, GB, NL, TR, USA
Nikolaos Eleftheriadis, actor, Stuttgart/Germany
Roberto Yanguas Gómez,intellectual property specialist at Facebook, Dublin/Ireland
Anna Gschnitzer, playwright, Vienna/Austria
Sebastian Lütgert, internet activist and media artist, Berlin/Germany
Gal Kirn, philosopher, Berlin/Germany and Ljubljana/Slovenia
Philipp Kleinmichel, philosopher, Berlin/Germany
Till Kreutzer, lawyer, Berlin/Germany
Tomislav Medak, digital librarian, Zagreb/Croatia
Thomas Meinecke, author and musician, Berg/Deutschland
Antoinette Rouvroy, permanent research associate, National Fund for Scientific Research, Department of Law, University of Namur, Namur/Belgium
Felix Stalder, professor of digital culture and network theories, Zürich/Switzerland
Kinga Tóth, (sound-)poet-illustrator, Sárvár/Hungary
Andrew Norman Wilson, artist, New York, NY/USA
Martha Woodmansee, professor of English and law, Cleveland, Ohio/USA

The symposium takes place within the framework of the art, science & business program at Akademie Schloss Solitude as well as the Kreativitäts- und Innovationsring Baden-Württemberg. The project is supported by the Innovationsfonds Kunst of the State of Baden-Württemberg.


Location: Akademie Schloss Solitude, Solitude 3, 70197 Stuttgart, Germany

The event will be held in English.
Admission is free. Per diem meal allowance 30 euros/15 euros for students.

Contact Info: 

Please register until October 16, 2015 via email to Mira Witte
+ 49 (0) 711 99619 134

Contact Email: