Gillespie/Woodard: the subject of speculation

Teresa Gillespie’s video/sound montage from body horror movies evokes the matter hell of an inhuman nature on which the human subject is asymmetrically dependent. As Ben Woodard observes in his commentary on Schelling’s Naturphilosophie, this can still be described as a rational acknowledger of norms; but to treat it as conceptually independent of its ground ignores the complicity […]

Reality Chunking: Review of DeLanda’s Philosophy and Simulation

Originally, written at the request of Deleuze Studies, who seem to have forgotten they asked somewhere along the way. Not to worry, it’s a great opportunity to show off this photo of a magnificent cumulonimbus (Thanks, by the way, to Craig Hickman for identifying said cloud). ********************************************************************* DeLanda, Manuel (2011), Philosophy and Simulation: The Emergence of Synthetic […]

Iain Grant on "The Great Cake of Being"

A wonderful presentation by Iain Hamilton Grant which takes flight from the Kantian principle that we can only understand something if we can synthesise it. This is not a problem in geology or chemistry when we are dealing with the synthesis of particulars from other material components. But what are its implications for our understanding […]

Posthuman Life: The Galapagos Objection

Since Philperc’s Posthuman Life reading group got into gear a month ago, I’ve been dealing with numerous objections to the theses in Posthuman Life. But I’ve not been beset in quite the way I had expected. In my simplicity, I had assumed that the epistemological claims for unbounded posthumanism developed in Chapters 3 and 4 (and in later work […]

Françoise Balibar: Nature is Only There Once

Françoise Balibar, Professor Emeritus of physics at the Université Denis Diderot, Paris VII gave a wonderful keynote on final day of the Philosophy After Nature conference in Utrecht whose title was drawn from Ernst Mach’s aphorism Die Natur ist nur einmal da (Nature is there only once). Here she discussed the philosophical implications of failures of univocity […]

Realism, Indeterminacy and the Eye of the Mind

Epistemic indeterminacy concerns our representations of things rather than things. Thus the location of a mobile phone with a nokia ring tone may be represented as indeterminate between your pocket and your neighbor’s handbag. This epistemic indeterminacy is resolvable through the acquisition of new information: here, by examining the two containers. By contrast metaphysical indeterminacy […]