Cybernetics for the 21st Century, Vol.1: Epistemological Reconstruction

The Research Network for Philosophy and Technology is delighted to announce the launch of their first book publication, Cybernetics for the 21st Century, Vol.1: Epistemological Reconstruction, co-published by the research network and the newly established Hanart Press (Hong Kong).

Cybernetics for the 21st Century, Vol.1: Epistemological Reconstruction is dedicated to the epistemological reconstruction of cybernetics, consisting of a series of historical and critical reflections on the subject – which according to Martin Heidegger marked the completion of Western metaphysics. In this anthology, historians, philosophers, sociologists and media studies scholars explore the history of cybernetics from Leibniz to artificial intelligence and machine learning, as well as the development of twentieth century cybernetics in various geographical regions in the world, from the USA, the Soviet Union, Latin America, France, Poland, China to Japan. The reconstruction shows the various paths of cybernetics and their socio-political implications, which remain unfamiliar to us today.

This volume includes texts by Brunella Antomarini (John Cabot University/Italy), Slava Gerovitch (MIT/USA), Daisuke Harashima (Waseda University/Japan), Kathrine Hayles (Duke University/USA), Yuk Hui (Erasmus University Rotterdam/Netherlands), Dylan Levi King (Independent Writer/Japan), Michał Krzykawski (University of Silesia/Poland), David Maulen de los Reyes (Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez/Chile), Andrew Pickering (Exeter University/UK), Dorion Sagan (Independent Writer/USA) and Mathieu Triclot (Belfort-Montbéliard University of Technology/France).

The book will be released at 12:00 CET/ 19:00 HKT, 1st February 2024. Readers will be able to download the digital version of the book or order a paperback book at:


Cybernetics for the 21st Century, Vol.1: Epistemological Reconstruction

Editor: Yuk Hui

Language: English
Book size: 148 x 210 mm
Pages: 271
ISBN: 978-988-70268-0-8 (print)
ISBN: 978-988-70268-4-6 (e-book)


Table of Contents

Introduction: Why Cybernetics Now?
Yuk Hui


Part I: Maps

Translating Rationalism: Leibniz and Cybernetics
Brunella Antomarini

Machine and Ecology
Yuk Hui

Ontology and the Politics of Information in the first Cybernetics
Mathieu Triclot

Detoxifying Cybernetics: From Homeostasis to Autopoiesis and Beyond
Kathrine Hayles

James Lovelock, Gaia, and the Remembering of Biological Being
Dorion Sagan


Part II: Territories

Cybernetics in Britain
Andrew Pickering

Cybernetics Across Cultures: The Localization of the Universal
Slava Gerovitch

Cybernetics, Communism, and Romanticism: Cybernetic Thinking in the Polish People’s Republic and in the Pre-Cybernetic Era
Michał Krzykawski

A Brief History of Chinese Cybernetics
Dylan Levi King

Why Did Cybernetics Disappear from Latin America? An Incomplete Timeline
David Maulén de los Reyes

Life-in-formation: Cybernetics of the Heart
Daisuke Harashima




Cybernetics for the 21st Century is a research project initiated by the research network together with the Medialab of the Guangzhou Times Museum in 2021. The project continues in partnership with Hanart Forum after the closure of the museum in 2022. Through a series of lectures, symposiums and publications, the project animates reflections on the historical development of cybernetics and the technological future of society.

Watch the lecture series from Part I: Epistemological Reconstruction:
The program for Part II: Cybernetics to Come will be announced shortly.


The Research Network for Philosophy and Technology, established in 2014, is a project to rethink the relation between philosophy and technology, and the future of this relation from global and historical perspective. It hosts the academic journal, Technophany—A Journal for Philosophy and Technology, co-published with the Radboud University Press.

Hanart Press
, founded in 2023, is committed to Open Access publications on cutting-edge research on the intersection between philosophy, art and technology. It operates in conjunction with the contemporary art platform Hanart Forum, supported by the Jia Li Hall Foundation.

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