Limits of Posthuman Democracy

From Posthuman Life, pp. 178-9 ‘[differences in phenomenology] can be significant obstructions to our understanding without being impassable barriers. It follows that the situation following phenomenological speciation might not preclude interpretation where it is technically possible to adapt human phenomenology to cope with posthuman phenomenology (See sections 5.5, 5.7). In extreme cases, no available technology […]

Correlationist Spawn

  (Image from http://eden.rutgers.edu/~kmg215/425/ewp-final/ewp-background.html) Recall Well’s time traveller  on the terminal beach, billions of years in the future; his encounter with a tentacled creature on that dark shore. He learns nothing of it but only experiences an abject terror that results in his return to Edwardian Richmond. What if this entity is not only uninterpreted but, in […]

Interpretation and Idea of the Shared World

Just an attempt in progress to clarify an argument regarding the plausible dependence of pragmatist theories of intentionality on phenomenological worlds. ************** Interpreters can differ in many ways that are irrelevant to their interpreterhood – differences in language, embodiment, gender, etc. However, if there are essential features common to all interpreters these might show up […]

Reduction, Elimination and Radical Uninterpretability

Anti-reductionist physicalists or materialists deny that psychology can be theoretically reduced to physics but allow physics sovereignty concerning what exists. Anti-reductionist arguments vary but a common line of attack against reductionism is that psychology expresses rational or normative relationships between mental states; not causal or functional relationships of the kind expressed in theories of natural […]

Seminar on Brandom and Posthumanism – 4th March

I’ll be destruction testing my paper on Brandom and Posthumanism at the Open University in Milton Keynes, Wednesday 4 March at 2 pm in MR05 Wilson A 1st Floor. The piece is forthcoming in PHILOSOPHY AFTER NATURE Rosi Braidotti and Rick Dolphijn (eds.). Here’s the abstract: BRANDOM AND POSTHUMAN AGENCY: AN ANTI-NORMATIVIST RESPONSE TO BOUNDED POSTHUMANISM By […]

Robert Brandom and Posthumanism

Here’s a first draft of my paper for the Philosophy After Nature Conference in Utrecht, Sept 3-5. All feedback gratefully received! (For academia.edu users a pdf is available here) BRANDOM AND POSTHUMAN AGENCY: AN ANTI-NORMATIVIST RESPONSE TO BOUNDED POSTHUMANISM David Roden, Open University Introduction: Bounded Posthumanism Posthumanism can be critical or speculative in orientation. Both kinds […]

Functional Semantics meets Radical Quotation

  Wilfred Sellars (1974) argues that we should not construe claims about meanings as expressing a semantic relation between a verbal entity (a word, sentence, etc.) and a language-independent entity (abstract or concrete) but as claims about the functional roles of linguistic tokens. Thus we should construe “chat” (in French) means cat as *chat*’s (in […]