In contemporary liberal democracies there is a polarisation between ideals of transparency – borne out in open government legislation, freedom of information, and confessionary culture – and what we might call a secret sphere, an institutionalised commitment to covert security operations that exist beyond the public view.
In the wake of the Snowden revelations about the surveillance capabilities of intelligence agencies around the globe, an interdisciplinary symposium at King’s College London** in 2015 gathered experts to discuss the place and implications of secrecy for contemporary cultural politics. Speakers addressed what was politically, ethically, socially and ontologically at stake in cultures of secrecy at the individual, national and international level.
Recordings from the event have been hidden across some of the darkest corners of the world wide web and will be revealed through a series of leaks and revelations.
#secrecymachine was a project of slow secretion, devised by Pete Woodbridge and Clare Birchall, to reveal the event’s secrets beyond the academy. It started on the 8th October 2015. Participants were exposed to a number of secret emails, each revealing codes and details for accessing content from the event.
All of the talks are now available and open to the public here http://immersivestorylab.com/secret/
Please share this secret with anyone you trust …
**’The Politics and Practices of Secrecy’ was a symposium organised by Clare Birchall & Matt Potolsky and funded by the Institute of North American Studies, King’s College London.