Robin James

Profile picture of Dilettante Army Author Robin James

Robin James is a writer and editor working across philosophy and popular music studies. She is author of four books including The Future of Rock and Roll: 97X WOXY and the Fight for True Independence (UNC Press, 2023) and The Sonic Episteme: acoustic resonance, neoliberalism, and biopolitics (Duke 2019). Her writing has appeared in venues such as The Guardian, Jezebel, LARB, Hypatia, and The Journal of Popular Music Studies. Her current book project argues that the contemporary discourse of "vibes" is the qualitative, vernacular analog for the form of quantitative modeling algorithms use to surveil and govern us in the 21st century--vibes are how we see ourselves the way AI and finance see us.

“Liminal Space” and Aesthetics as a Practice of Individual Responsibility

Robin James sees corporations monetize liminal space—an eerie vibe and a state of systemic failure—and then sell you a way out of it, turning empty public space into private crises.

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