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Jonathan Beller

Distinguished Visiting Professor


Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies, English, Film Studies


501 Barnard Hall
W 2-4pm


Jonathan Beller is Distinguished Visiting Professor of English and Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies at Barnard. In the 1990s in articles for Communication Research, boundary 2 and postmodern culture, he became the first critical theorist of what he called "attention economy" and formulated the attention theory of value. His work in media studies includes materialist analysis of cinema, photography, computation, information, and money/finance. This work understands media platforms as various forms of social mediation, semiotics and political economy. His research is situated in film studies, media studies, critical race theory, feminist theory and anti-imperialist and decolonial epistemology and struggle. Beller's books include The Cinematic Mode of Production: Attention Economy and the Society of the Spectacle (2006); Acquiring Eyes: Philippine Visuality, Nationalist Struggle, and the World-Media System (2006);  The Message is Murder: Substrates of Computational Capital (2017) and The World Computer: Derivative Conditions of Racial Capitalism (2019, forthcoming Duke University Press). Current interests include the utilization of programmable money for activist projects and work on a new book tentatively entitled Derivative Revolution. He is a member of the Social Text editorial collective.





  • Ph.D., Duke University
  • M.A., Columbia University
  • B.A., Columbia University

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