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 […]

Claire Colebrook on Art and Catastrophe

Here, one of my favourite critical theorists/philosophers Claire Colebrook talks about the role of art in thinking and imagining the end of the world. The bottom line, for her, is that only a certain idea of art as decoupled from our immediate practices and functions, that which always relates to other worlds, allows us to […]

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 an […]

Bakker on Malabou on Life

Scott Bakker has written a fascinating and extremely timely interrogation of a recent article by Catherine Malabou on the implications of recent biology for biopolitics in Critical Enquiry “One Life Only: Biological Resistance, Political Resistance” Malabou’s piece castigates biopolitical theorists such as Foucault and Agamben for infusing their accounts of embodiment and life with symbolic and vitalistic conceptions […]

Derrida and Syntax

    There’s a fascinating post over at M-Phi, asking whether Godel’s use of numbers to code formal relations of derivability in his proof of the incompleteness of arithmetic can be generalized to logical systems which don’t “contain” arithmetic. Not coincidentally, it includes a link to an interesting paper by Paul Livingstone on Derrida, Priest […]

What Derrida is Realist About

There’s an instructive debate going on between Graham Harman at Object Oriented Philosophy (henceforth OOO) and Levi Bryant over at Larval Subjects (henceforth LS) about whether Derrida’s work is serviceable for realism. OOO is emphatic: not only is Derrida not a ‘plug and play’ realist, his work has no realist application at all. Unlike Heidegger – whose account of […]