The Moment of Complexity: Emerging Network Culture
by Mark C. Taylor
University of ChicagoPress
We live in a moment of unprecedented complexity, an era in which change occurs faster than our ability to comprehend it. With The Moment of Complexity, Mark C. Taylor offers a map for the unfamiliar terrain opening in our midst, unfolding an original philosophy of our time through a remarkable synthesis of science and culture. According to Taylor, complexity is not just a breakthrough scientific concept, but the defining quality of the post-Cold War era. The flux of digital currents swirling around us, he argues, has created a new network culture with its own distinctive logic and dynamic.
Drawing on resources from information theory and evolutionary biology, Taylor explains the operation of complex adaptive systems in natural, social, and cultural processes. To appreciate the significance of emerging network culture, he claims, it is necessary not only to understand contemporary scientific and technological transformations, but also to explore the subtle influences of art, rchitecture, philosophy, religion, and education. The Moment of Complexity, then, is a remarkable work of cultural analysis on a scale rarely seen today. To follow its trajectory is to learn how we arrived at this critical moment in our culture, and to know where we might head in the twenty-first century.