Hyperrhiz 4

A Dialogue Between Two Eyeballs

Braxton Soderman
Brown University

Citation: Soderman, Braxton. “A Dialogue Between Two Eyeballs.” Hyperrhiz: New Media Cultures, no. 4, 2008. doi:10.20415/hyp/004.g01

Abstract: "A Dialogue Between Two Eyeballs" is an experimental text staging a speculative exploration of the dialectic between the old and the new. Within the text, form and content merge as the positions of the interlocutors oscillate and interweave. While constructing and implementing the textual form I discovered John Cayley's theorization of writing on (and for) complex surfaces. "A Dialogue" could potentially be read as an experiment investigating the complex, flat and "dimensionless" surface of writing, utilizing letters and words themselves in a dynamic figure/ground relationship that creates the space of the page that the text inhabits. The manipulation of the scale of the textual elements allows for the interplay of the legible and the illegible: words rupture into the abstract while other words reform within the space that this rupturing expands. With the seemingly endless potential for the creation of new literary, digital forms one fruitful task for writers will be the investigation of the relationship between dynamic form and semantic content. "A Dialogue" attempts to construct strong rhetorical resonances between what the words do and what they say: the pendulum-like sway (both back-and-forth and in-and-out) and the interpenetration of the distinct lines of dialogue attempt to embody the dialectic of modernity as it tetherballs around the discussion of key concepts such as the old and the new, the obsolete and the innovative.

Technical Note

The project requires the latest shockwave plugin (version 10.2). If you have an older version you will need to update. The plugin can be found at adobe.com. Those with Intel-based Macintosh machines will need to run Safari in Rosetta Emulation mode. Instructions for doing so can be found here. "A Dialogue" runs best on fast PCs or Macs. Those with slower machines might want to select the non-audio version.

VIEW A Dialogue Between Two Eyeballs (with audio)

VIEW A Dialogue Between Two Eyeballs (non-audio version)