Special Issue "Philosophies of Time, Media and Contemporaneity"

A special issue of Philosophies (ISSN 2409-9287).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 May 2019

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Timothy Barker

School of Culture and Creative Arts, University of Glasgow, University Avenue, Glasgow, G12 8QQ, UK
Website | E-Mail
Interests: Media Archaeology; Media Philosophy; Interactivity; Philosophical Approaches to Games and Play; Philosophy of Time

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Philosophies is currently inviting submissions for a special issue on Philosophies of Time, Media and Contemporaneity. In the special issue we hope to address questions of so-called ‘globality’ and media, paying particular attention to the way media and mediation may offer new ways to describe, explore and critically evaluate global temporalities in the twenty-first century. In general, we want to ask can close attention to the function of media offer us new ways to think about time and temporality, including critical approaches to historiography? and, following on from this what do methods of communication - and miscommunication – tell us about the contemporary conditions of globality?

As the methods of networked communication proliferate and as questions of the fidelity of information and the political economies of noise begin to take on new relevance, these questions require close critical attention. In this special issue of Philosophies we seek contributions from across fields including but not limited to philosophy, media theory, art history, political theory, digital humanities and cultural history that engage with questions relating to what Terry Smith describes as ‘the conditions of contemporaneity’ through a focus on philosophies of media and time. This involves thinking about the multiple times that are collected together – and that often cause conflict – within contemporary societies. This also involves rethinking the spatial dynamics of the social within info-spheres of various scales and exploring the multiple global histories now produced by networked communication and social media. Overall, we are asking contributors to this special issue to critically explore the function of media in producing and explaining world histories and temporal experience. We are also interested in contributions that explore potential sites of resistance within or outside these new territories for communicative reality.

The term 'contemporaneity', which we use in this special issue to refer to the time of the global, is designed to describe the historical present and is intended to capture an intense depth difference. As a replacement for the conceptualisation of history found in discussions of Western modernity, the term contemporaneity has been used in cultural theory, art theory and philosophy over the last decade or so to discuss new ideas about the multiple, and often conflicting times, memories and histories of global, twenty-first century culture.[1] Modernity was described as marked by a type of time that was one-dimensional, progressive and oriented towards the production of a shared future. It could be claimed that post-modernity, on the other hand was conceived as, among other things, the aftermath of this type of time. The term contemporaneity is a way of both getting beyond the modern concept of a one-dimensional model of time and also of addressing the experiences of cultures that did not share in the experience of modernity in the first place, and thus are not captured by the term post-modernity. It instead encourages thinking about the present as a conjuncture of other, multiple and sometimes conflicting versions of time.[2]

As Peter Osborne argues, contemporaneity is not simply a way to conceptualise the coming together of individuals in time, but it represents a way to conceive of the condition of global networks as a coming together of times:

we do not just live or exist together ‘in time’ with our contemporaries – as if time itself is indifferent to this existing together – but rather the present is increasingly characterized by a coming together of different but equally ‘present’ temporalities or ‘times’, a temporal unity in disjunction, or a disjunctive unity of present times [emphasis in original].[3]

In this special issue authors are invited to address, build on, challenge or offer alternatives to these accounts of time in order to focus a discussion of contemporaneity on media and communication realities. To address the topic of philosophies of time, media and contemporaneity, we seek contribution that may address (but need not necessarily be limited to) the following themes:


Conflict, terror, contemporaneity and media

Anxiety, media and contemporaneity

Authority and contemporaneity

Memorialization and contemporaneity

Media archaeologies of time and temporality

Video games and contemporaneity

Theories of coevalness

Communication, time and the other (revisiting Fabian)

Environmental crisis, media and contemporaneity

Media and marginalization/media and boundaries

Media and historiography (Oral, Print, Digital)

Contemporary art and time, as it relates to questions of globality

Rethinking media histories from transnational perspectives

Conflicting histories and media

Non-linear history and media

Multi-temporality and contemporaneity

Cosmopolitanism, temporalities and media

This special issue of Philosophies will address the task of trying to think through some of the major questions of contemporaneity with an emphasis on the realities of media and communication, including social media, video games, contemporary art, film and television. It is the challenge presented to contributors to begin to investigate the way changes in the media landscape may affect philosophical thought and may offer us new ways to both produce and address the time of the contemporary.

[1] See for instance Terry Smith, “Contemporary Art and Contemporaneity,” Critical Inquiry 32:4 (2006): 681-707 and Peter Osborne, Anywhere or Not at All: Philosophies of Contemporary Art (London and Brooklyn: Verso, 2013).

[2] Juliane Rebentisch, “The Contemporaneity of Contemporary Art,” New German Critique 42:1 (2015): 223-237, pp. 233-234.

[3] Osborne, Anywhere or Not at All (above, n. 34), p. 17.

Dr. Timothy Barker
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Philosophies is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) is waived for well-prepared manuscripts submitted to this issue. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • time and media
  • contemporary philosophies of time
  • historiography and media
  • memory and media
  • contemporaneity
  • cosmopolitanism

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessArticle The Quale of Time
Philosophies 2019, 4(2), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/philosophies4020016
Received: 2 February 2019 / Revised: 23 March 2019 / Accepted: 8 April 2019 / Published: 11 April 2019
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Time is one of the greatest subjects of interest to the disciplines of both Science and Philosophy, being seen to have a greater importance in the workings of reality than other entities. In this paper, a phenomenological analysis of time based on the [...] Read more.
Time is one of the greatest subjects of interest to the disciplines of both Science and Philosophy, being seen to have a greater importance in the workings of reality than other entities. In this paper, a phenomenological analysis of time based on the general workings of the emergent structure of consciousness will be done, and time will be shown to be no different than any other qualia. It will be shown that, like any other qualia, time is an emergent level of consciousness, manifesting all the properties of emergence: inheritance of qualities from the previous levels, top-down influence in levels received from the higher levels and top-down influence in levels impressed on the lower levels. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Philosophies of Time, Media and Contemporaneity)
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