Doing Academia Differently: Taking Care of Humans, Technologies and Environments in the Digital Age




Deleuze and Guattari, ecological crisis, practices of care, pedagogies of care, anthropocene


In this SoTL undertaking, we reflect on two of the most prominent issues of our time: new algorithmic ecologies and the ecological crisis. In particular, we are interested in what these mean for teaching, and teaching differently. To do so – and using the ‘Socratic method’, a dialogic technique of questioning and cooperative cross-examination that provokes critical thinking – we consider the refrains of death immanent to digitality and the Anthropocene, and how they affect not only subjective formation, but also knowledge production. Reflecting on these issues in our classrooms, for example the widespread disaffection prevalent in universities, aided by internet addiction, dopamine loops, the disintegration of societal rituals and bonds, and the looming ‘end of the world’ (at least as we know it), we consider the role of practices of care, drawing on the work of Stiegler, and Deleuze and Guattari. Our argument is that what is needed, against the intensified bureaucratisation and neoliberalisation of academic institutions, is careful experimentation for the production and circulation of healthier intensities that tend to and nurture life in the face of the refrains of death all around us. 

Author Biographies

Delphi Carstens, University of the Western Cape, South Africa

Delphi Carstens is a lecturer at the University of the Western Cape. He holds a PhD that explores uncanny science fictions from Stellenbosch University. His research interests revolve around the intersection of feminist new materialisms, Deleuze and Guattarian practices, posthumanism, science/sonic fiction, speculative art-science activisms and pedagogy. Recent publications include chapters in edited volumes by Palgrave (Indigenous Creatures, Native Knowledges, and the Arts), Sternberg Press (Fiction as Method: Counterfactuals and Effective Virtualities) and Bloomsbury (Socially Just Pedagogies in Higher Education: Critical Posthumanist and New Feminist Materialist Perspectives), as well as articles in Parallax vol 24(3), Gender Questions vol 5(1), and Education as Change, vol. 21(2).

Chantelle Gray, North-West University, South Africa

Chantelle Gray is an Associate Professor in the School of Philosophy at the North-West University. Her interests span critical algorithm studies, queer and critical feminist theories, experimental music studies, cognitive studies, anarchism and Continental philosophy, especially the work of Deleuze and Guattari. The interdisciplinary nature of her work allows her to ask critical questions about how to take care of humans, technologies and ecologies in the digital age. She is the Chair of the Institute for Contemporary Ethics (, the co-convener of the South African Deleuze & Guattari Studies Conference (, and an editorial board member of Somatechnics. Her books include Deleuze and Anarchism, co-edited with Aragorn Eloff (2019, Edinburgh University Press) and Anarchism after Deleuze and Guattari (2022, Bloomsbury). 




How to Cite

Carstens, D., & Gray, C. (2023). Doing Academia Differently: Taking Care of Humans, Technologies and Environments in the Digital Age. Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in the South, 7(1), 8–26.



Peer-reviewed articles