Schwindel der Postmoderne: Zufall und Kontingenzpotenzierung in Performance und Film


Since early modernity, art, philosophy, and science have appropriated the potential of disorder inherent in chance as a principle of innovation. In contemporary aesthetic discourse, turbulences of chance are operationalized by artists for their critique of causality, calculability and subjective command of action, and bear a radicalised signature. On one hand, in line with Gilles Deleuze’s claim of “totally accepting chance,” a dissolution of hierarchies is pursued in postmodern performance art, e.g. in Xavier Le Roy’s Projekt (2003) that indirectly celebrates chance as a playful principle of intervention. On the other hand, elsewhere in the contemporary aesthetic discourse, the frightening power of chance is articulated and escalated. In Ethan and Joel Coen’s post-apocalyptical thriller No Country for Old Men (2007), chance appears as a protagonist, that manifests itself through uncontrollable outburst‚ of violence and a cruelty of the absence of reliable order. The article examines these two contemporary aesthetic articulations of chance as manifestations of an aleatoric culture and the transformations of subjectivity therein, that go along with an increase of contingency.





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