Framing and the Ontology of the Art Work: Kendall Walton and Jacques Derrida

In his 1977 paper “Categories of Art” Kendall Walton argues that aesthetic categories like “piano music” or “bust” determine how an audience ascribes aesthetic significance to the non-aesthetic properties of the work such as their shape, matter or sound. Walton calls the perceptible properties that determine whether it belongs to a given category of artwork […]

Disconnection, Unbinding and Practice: Posthumanism as (maybe not) Non-Philosophy

Disconnection Speculative posthumanism (SP) is concerned with the prospect of a posthuman reality emerging from the technological alteration of the human one. This technological focus comports with a general concern with human-made futures that don’t include us. Outside fiction, our moral concern for a nonhuman future is prompted by the theorised potential of technology to […]

A Post-Sellarsian Encounter

  Modern philosophical aesthetics has been concerned with the special field of art and artistic expression, but always with a view to its implications for our understanding of sensation, emotion and their relationship to the wider field of conceptual thinking and knowledge.  The wider and the special inquiries intertwine because art is thought to be […]

Pornography and Resurrection

Ballard’s novella Myths of the Near Future [formulates] a deranged ‘metametaphorics’ for which pornography and a kind of autistic bricolage function as the privileged figures of knowledge. Myths relates the epidemiology of a mysterious schizoid condition that appears to emenate from the abandoned Kennedy Space Centre in Florida. When its protaganist, the Orphic architect Roger […]

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 […]

No Future? Catherine Malabou on the Humanities

Catherine Malabou has an intriguing piece on the vexed question of the relationship between the “humanities” and science in the journal Transeuropeennes here. It is dominated by a clear and subtle reading of Kant, Foucault and Derrida’s discussion of the meaning of Enlightenment and modernity. Malabou argues that the latter thinkers attempt to escape Kantian assumptions about […]