Fluency Machines: Semiocapitalism, Disability, and Action

Joshua St Pierre
2019
Neoliberal capitalism has internalized communication within its basic operations and thus enabled the rise of the so-called "information society" and "semiocapitalism." In this dissertation I argue that the demand for maximal connection and information flow takes an embodied toll on its subjects. Bringing critical disability studies into conversation with contemporary critical theory, I critique technologies of "fluency" that seek to make information flow unchecked across the social and
more » ... bodies. Humans are increasingly expected to communicate on the terms of machines and thus become "fluency machines" that signify clearly, efficiently, and without interpretation or dispute. By exposing in the domains of political theory and political economy the underlying conception of a "sovereign speaker" fully in command of their speech, this dissertation both critiques practices of communication invested with capital and seeks to imagine "dysfluency" as a transformative practice of the self that can break with neoliberal modes of subjectivization.
doi:10.7939/r3-x9mt-dz02 fatcat:egkf27hc3jcbdhxgypalrvxwbe