The silenced medium: theoretical re-flections on a media theory of Walter Benjamin

  • Maurício Liesen Universidade de São Paulo Universität Potsdam
Keywords: Walter Benjamin, medium, media theory, communications theory, media philosophy

Abstract

This paper presents a communicational and theoretical reflection on the conceptual difference between medium (Medium) and means (Mittel) proposed by Walter Benjamin in his essay On Language as Such and on the Language of Man, written in 1916. The present text discusses that such terminological refinement  grounds a communication theory in opposition to the arbitrariness of the linguistic sign. Through a revision of the Brazilian versions of some Benjamin’s texts, this paper intends to restate the question of the medium in the work of the German philosopher: question that is often silenced in the national translations.

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Author Biography

Maurício Liesen, Universidade de São Paulo Universität Potsdam
Postdoc at the Universidade de São Paulo. Between 2012 and 2014 he was a visiting researcher at the University of Potsdam (European Media Studies). He holds a PhD in Communications Sciences from Universidade de São Paulo (USP), a Master's Degree in Communication & Culture from Federal Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (Brazil 2010) and has a BA in Communication Sciences from Universidade Federal da Paraíba (Brazil 2007). E-mail: mauricioliesen@usp.br
Published
2014-12-17
How to Cite
Liesen, M. (2014). The silenced medium: theoretical re-flections on a media theory of Walter Benjamin. MATRIZes, 8(2), 243-257. https://doi.org/10.11606/issn.1982-8160.v8i2p243-257
Section
Em Pauta/Agenda