Federico Francucci

Innervations. Walter Benjamin and the Typewriter

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Informations and abstract

Keywords: Walter Benjamin; Typewriter; Literature; Media Theory; Revolution.

It is well known that Walter Benjamin did not love typewriters. Using a mechanic tool for writing was too far from his passion for the slow, methodical work of the hand. Nonetheless, in a short text included in "One-way street", Benjamin not only does not speak openly against the typewriter, but he also uses a strange word to define the relation between the machine and the human fingers: the word 'innervation'. Following the paths of that word in Benjamin's work, this essay attempts to connect the typewriter with the theory of the hand and of the gesture elaborated by the philosopher.

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