Film & Media Studies / 2004 -
Peter Krapp is Professor of Film & Media Studies at the University of California, Irvine, and affiliated with the Departments of English, Music (Claire Trevor School of the Arts), and Informatics (Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Science). Main publications include Medium Cool (2002), Deja Vu: Aberrations of Cultural Memory (2004), Noise Channels: Glitch and Error in Digital Culture (2011), and the Handbook Language-Culture-Communication (2013).
Born in Switzerland, he studied at Bonn University (supported by the Adenauer Foundation) and took an M.Phil. from Stirling University (funded by the DAAD) before participating as a doctoral fellow ("Theorie der literarischen Kommunikation") in a Graduiertenkolleg at Konstanz University (funded by the DFG), and filed his PhD at UC Santa Barbara in 2000. He taught at the University of Minnesota (in Cultural Studies and Comparative Literature and in English) and at Bard College (where he also taught at the Eastern Maximum Security Prison in upstate New York) before coming to UC Irvine in 2004, and has since then held visiting appointments at Tainan National University of Art, Tainan (Taiwan), at Sci_Arc and at Otis College of Art in Los Angeles, at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg (South Africa), the Laguna College of Art and Design in Laguna Beach, Leuphana University, Lüneburg (Germany), and UNISINOS, Porto Alegre (Brazil).
He got his first computer, an Apple Macintosh SE, in 1987, and his first laptop, a used Apple Powerbook 140, in 1992. During his school, college, and graduate school years, he worked as a musician, journalist, gold courier, webdesigner, translator, and stockbroker, and learned to write about himself in the third person. He can still imitate the sounds of a modem, and remembers the anxiety of paying by the minute for internet access over a phone line. His first website went online in 1994, and some of his sites in the 1990s won awards. In 2000, he was interviewed by Newsweek about hacktivism, and Artforum plugged his websites as early as 1998 (37:1, Sept, p 22). He still owns a few domain names, but these days takes pride in ugly barebones designs. In one style or another, .