AIL Talk Series – The Trouble with Visibility

Ramon Amaro will talk about his upcoming book  The Black Technical Object: On Machine Learning and the Aspiration of Black Being, 01 Dec 2022, 07:00 pm.

The book aims to introduce the history of statistical analysis and a knowledge of sociogenesis—a system of racism amenable to scientific explanation—into machine learning research as an act of impairing the racial ordering of the world.

While machine learning—computer programming designed for taxonomic patterning—provides useful insight into racism and racist behavior, a gap is present in the relationship between machine learning, the racial history of scientific explanation, and the Black lived experience.

Ramon Amaro explores how the history of data and statistical analysis provide a clear (and often sudden) grasp of the complex relationship between race and machine learning.

Amaro juxtaposes a practical analysis of machine learning with a theory of Black alienation in order to inspire alternative approaches to contemporary algorithmic practice. In doing so, Amaro offers a continuous contemplation on the abstruse nature of machine learning, mathematics, and the deep incursion of racial hierarchy.

Ramon Amaro’s writing, research and practice emerge at the intersections of Black Study, psychopathology, digital culture, and the critique of computation reason. He draws on Frantz Fanon’s theory of sociogenic alienation to problematise the de-localisation of the Black psyché in contemporary computational systems, such as machine learning and artificial intelligence.

Tiara Roxanne work contends that AI is colonial in creation and nature, as its invention is founded on a settler colonial paradigm. In acknowledging this certainty, she states I cannot decolonize my body and performs as an incantation of survival and ancestral reconciliation. In performance, Roxanne is (dis)entangled within material and digital colonial borders of the past, present and future.

As part of an ongoing project entitled Red, through performance Tiara Roxanne will illustrate the relationship between Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Indigeneity.

By reinterpreting processes of colonial recovery through a performative and critical lens, Roxanne suggests that we will arrive at sovereign, Indigenous notions of digital borders, data colonialism and storytelling.