Rafael Capurro & John Holgate (eds)

Messages and Messengers /

Von Boten und Botschaften

Angeletics as an Approach to the Phenomenology of Communication /

Die Angeletik als Weg zur Phänomenologie der Kommunikation

Munich: Wilhelm Fink, 2011, 351 pp.

As we can read in the Glossarium BITri, “’angeletics’ derives from Greek angelia, meaning message”. But this approach, proposed by our colleague Rafael Capurro since the 1990s, does not refer to angels or divine messengers –as in the angelology–, it aims instead at studying “the social phenomenon of messages and messengers”, which “is a vast, old and complex phenomenon”. In our digital age, the question is “to what extent the internet creates a new angeletic space giving rise to new synergies of messages and messengers beyond the hierarchical structure of mass media” (p.13). Or considering the global transformation of our communicational means and our cultures as a whole, we may even ask more dramatically: Are we moving towards an “angelical” world or rather towards a “dysangelical” one (i.e., “a time of empty angels” using Sloterdijk’s expression)? (p.13, 195)… Although these questions undoubtedly move in the territory of the very complex human systems, the analysis of messages –as we can see in the book– also reaches the field of natural sciences and technology (for instance, the physical constraints of messages and the rise of meaning through the growing complexity of biological systems). This book –the first one entirely dedicated to angeletics– is structured in two parts: fundaments, where former and new texts stating the principles of Angeletics are compiled, and applications, where the analysis of messages and messengers is extended to different fields.


CONTENTS: Foreword (R. Capurro); Introduction (J. Holgate, R. Capurro);  I. FOUNDATIONS: Angeletics — A Message Theory (R. Capurro); Theorie der Botschaft (R. Capurro); A Dialogue on Intercultural Angeletics (R. Capurro, M. Nakada); The Hermesian Paradigm (J. Holgate); Circulating Messages to Every Body and No Body (M. Eldred); Plotinus’ Angeletics: A Neoplatonic Message Theory (G. Stamatellos); Anmerkungen zu einer Theorie der Botschaft (M. Knödler-Pasch); Political Economy and the Double Dialectic of Information (R.E. BABE); Beyond Humanisms (R. Capurro); II. APPLICATIONS: Botschaften ohne Botschafter — Botschafter ohne Botschaften (K. Wiegerling); Messages in an Open Universe (J.M. Díaz Nafría); Systemtheorie — Von der Hermeneutik zum Konstruktivismus (H.H. Diebner); Communities of Action and the Message Society (W. Hofkirchner); Orts-Botschaften. Orte in Jordanien und Syrien (G. Grossklaus); Marginalien zur Angeletik (C. Coenen); Angeletics and Epistemology — Angeletics as Epistemology (P.-H. Wong); Carbon Atoms as Prime Messengers for the Origins of Life (K. Matsuno); On the Relevance of Angeletics and Hermeneutics for Information Technology (R. Capurro, T. Takenouchi, L.M. Tkach-Kawasaki, T. Iitaka).