Gaps Between the Digits: On the Fleshy Unknowns of the Human

Morrison, Romi
Information Design Journal

Artificially intelligent systems (ai) are increasingly becoming the ubiquitous, unseen arbiters of our social, civic and familial lives. Ever increasing computational power, combined with almost limitless data, has led to a turning point in the way artificial intelligence assists, judges, and cares for humans. In the wake of such power we must ask ourselves what it is that we are making inherently unknowable as the world becomes more predictable, managed, and discrete. Building on the work of black feminists Sylvia Wynter and Hortense Spillers, I perform a reading of the “flesh”. I aim to hint towards a different field of relations and a knowledge politic premised on unknowability and the radical potential of the subjugated to foster new imaginaries of the human fluid enough to weather instability. This piece troubles the boundaries inscribed between things. Settled in the flesh of blackness, we are reminded of the ways that blackness floods the landscape of productive reason while holding outlier ways of being beyond Western Man. This paper seeks to return to the pulse found within the flesh as a critical site for thinking through alternate ways of being, within the messiness, the unstable, the precarious; finding life born of transition, the pulse within discord.