A Bestiary of Digital Monsters

Rachel Douglas-Jones, John Mark Burnett, Marisa Cohn, Christopher Gad, Michael Hockenhull, Bastian Jørgensen, James Maguire, Mace Ojala, Brit Ross Winthereik

Research output: Conference Article in Proceeding or Book/Report chapterBook chapterResearchpeer-review


This article puts forward a bestiary of digital monsters. By bringing into dialogue scholarship in monster theory with that in science and technology studies, we develop the idea of the bestiary as a way of exploring sites where digital monsters are made. We discuss the role of bestiaries in narrating anxieties about the present. We proceed to populate our bestiary with various sociotechnical ‘beasts’ arising in collaborative research project on new data relations in Denmark. The paper argues for the place of the ever-incomplete bestiary in understanding digital monsters, for the bestiary’s role as a gathering point within our project, and for its capacities to speak beyond a single research setting. Through the bestiary, we look toward the ways we already live with monsters and to the forms of analysis available for describing the beasts in our midst.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLiving with Monsters? : Social Implications of Algorithmic Phenomena, Hybrid Agency, and the Performativity of Technology
Publication date2018
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-04090-1
Publication statusPublished - 2018
EventLiving with Monsters - San Francisco State Univesrity, San Francisco, United States
Duration: 11 Dec 201812 Dec 2018


ConferenceLiving with Monsters
LocationSan Francisco State Univesrity
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco
Internet address
SeriesIFIP AICT - Advances in Information and Communication technology


  • ethnography
  • Digitization
  • monsters


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