Questioning History in the Age of Artificial Intelligence

Thursday - Friday
11 Apr - 12 Apr 2024

Social Science Matrix

Event Type

Shane Denson
Associate Professor of Film & Media Studies, Stanford University

Ekaterina Babintseva
Assistant Professor, History, Purdue University


The AI & History Symposium is scheduled for April 11th and 12th, 2024, at the the Social Science Matrix (820 Social Sciences Building). Seminars will take place all day, beginning at 10am. This event is free and open to the public. No RSVP required.



Shane Denson, Associate Professor of Film & Media Studies, Stanford University

Ekaterina Babintseva, Assistant Professor, History, Purdue University



David Bates, Professor, UC Berkeley

Johan Fredrikzon, Visiting Scholar, UC Berkeley

Jacob Gaboury, Associate Professor, UC Berkeley

Julia Irwin, PhD Candidate, UC Berkeley

Xiaochang Li, Assistant Professor, Stanford University

Massimo Mazzotti, Professor, UC Berkeley

Aaron Mendon-Plasek, Resident Fellow, Yale University

Jessica Riskin, Professor, Stanford University


Event Agenda


Seminars Thursday, 4/11
in the Social Sciences Matrix

10am – 12pm
Aaron Mendon-Plasek, Yale University
“‘AI Winters’ as Moral Prejudice: How Machine Learning Origin Stories Constrained Political Policy, Scientific Imaging, & Legal Reason-Giving”
Ekaterina Babintseva, Purdue University
“The Mind and the Algorithm: Bringing the Unconscious to Soviet Artificial Intelligence”

2 – 4pm
Johan Fredrikzon, UC Berkeley
“The Past as Error: Archival Regimes in Cybernetics & AI”
David Bates, UC Berkeley
“Prediction is not Anticipation: Machine Learning & the Historicity of the Human”

Keynote: 5-7 pm in Dwinelle 142
Shane Denson, Stanford University
“AI and the Future of (Media) History”
in Dwinelle 142


Seminars Friday, 4/12
in the Social Sciences Matrix

10am – 12pm
Julia Irwin, UC Berkeley
“William James’s Neural Network, Fringe Consciousness, & Historical Time”
Christina Vagt, UC Santa Barbara
“Recursive History: The Economic Reason of AI”

1 – 2:30pm
Jacob Gaboury, UC Berkeley & Xiaochang Li, Stanford University Roundtable: “AI History as Media History”

3 – 5pm
Robin Manley Mihran, UC Berkeley “Genealogy & Form: Foucault’s Anti-Nietzschean Theses on History”
Jessica Riskin, Stanford University
“Turing Among the Machines”


This event is co-sponsored by the Department of Rhetoric, Department of Film & Media, Townsend Center for the Humanities, Berkeley Center for New Media, Center for Science, Technology, Medicine, & Society, Stiftelsen Gustaf Sterns Fond, and Stiftelsen Karl Staaffs fond. Information regarding this symposium can be found on the Department of Rhetoric’s upcoming events webpage.

This event is sponsored by CSTMS.
Additional sponsorship comes from:  Berkeley Center for New Media • Department of Film & Media • Department of Rhetoric • Townsend Center for the Humanities
Department of Film & Media

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