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Cybernetic Culture Research Unit


The Cybernetic Culture Research Unit (Ccru) was a student-run interdisciplinary research collective founded in 1995 out of the University of Warwick's philosophy department.

The collective's research was closely tied to the work of philosophers Sadie Plant (around whom it was founded), Nick Land, and their colleagues throughout the 1990s, and in particular the emerging cyberfeminist thinking that would lead to the Virtual Futures conferences at Warwick in the middle of the decade. Ultimately, Plant would abandon her academic post and affiliation with the Ccru in 1997, during which time it came under the direction of Land. Under his leadership, the collective became increasingly experimental and unorthodox in its work, with its output (which included writing, performance events, and collaborative art) crossing post-structuralism, cybernetics, science-fiction, rave culture, and occult studies. In 2015, a collection of Ccru pieces entitled Ccru: Writings 1997-2003 was published.

Although it only existed in an official capacity for little over two years—following the departure of Plant, the University of Warwick would deny any relationship to the renegade collective—the Ccru's cultural impact has been significant. Those who were affiliated with the Ccru during and after its time as part of the University of Warwick Philosophy department include philosophers Iain Hamilton Grant, Ray Brassier and Reza Negarestani; cultural theorists Mark Fisher and Kodwo Eshun; publisher and philosopher Robin Mackay; digital media theorists Luciana Parisi and Matthew Fuller; electronic music artist and Hyperdub label head Steve Goodman, aka Kode9; writer and theorist Anna Greenspan; novelist Hari Kunzru; and artists Jake and Dinos Chapman, among others. Land and the Ccru collaborated frequently with the experimental art collective 0[rphan]d[rift>] (Maggie Roberts and Ranu Mukherjee), notably on Syzygy, a month-long multidisciplinary residency at Beaconsfield Contemporary Art gallery in South London, 1999, and on 0[rphan]d[rift>]'s Cyberpositive (London: Cabinet, 1995), a schizoid work of cut-and-paste cyberphilosophy.



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