Biomorphic Horror: from zoe to zero

Biomorphic Horror. With an effort, Dr Nathan looked away from Catherine Austin as she picked at her finger quicks. Unsure whether she was listening to him, he continued: ‘Travers’s problem is how to come to terms with the violence that has pursued his life – not merely the violence of accident and bereavement, or the […]

Autonomy and Modularity

  Autonomous systems of the kind that we can conceive as emerging from our technology are liable to be modular assemblages of elements that can couple opportunistically with other entities or systems, creating new assemblages whose powers and dispositions are transformed and dynamically put into play by such couplings. The best way of representing modularity […]

Posthuman Ecology

Work is being produced at the interface of the bioscience, plastic and visual art, architecture and philosophy that reimagines ecology as a technique of relational technogenesis rather than as the search for a pre-lapsarian presence or balance. Practitioners of this speculative engineering frequently employ Deleuze and Guattari’s notion of the assemblage and Haraway’s figure of […]

Assemblages: Downward Causation and Upwards Dependence

According to Manuel Delanda an assemblage such as an organism or an economic system is an emergent but decomposable whole. Unlike a totality, an assemblage’s parts can follow independent careers: Pulling out a live animal’s heart will surely kill it but the heart itself can be implanted into another animal and resume its regular function. […]

Remarks on Delanda on the Virtual

  Gilles Deleuze famously replaces the traditional modal distinction between actuality and possibility with a distinction between actuality and virtuality. This is introduced to block the claim that reality can be fully or adequately represented. If the actual is just the instantiation of the possible, then an actual thing resembles the thing as conceived or […]