TECHNOLOGICAL ANTI-HOLISM AND THE THINKING OF THE OUTSIDE

** This is a longer version of paper I presented at the Unlearning Nihilism conference in London, June 23-26 2022, jointly organized by Royal Holloway’s Centre for Continental Philosophy and The New Centre for Research & Practice ** Let’s begin with a  memorable scene from John Milius’ Conan the Barbarian (1982). Conan has been captured […]

Transgression as Erotic Technology

Over on Facebook my friend Chaim Mendel posted up a disarmingly good question about the relationship between desire and transgression which has been nagging me a lot recently: Why is the forbidden so erotic? what is it about transgression that is so central to the nature of desire? Transgression or perversion isn’t only an erotic […]

Subtractive-Catastrophic Xenophilia

    Introduction Subtractive ontologies – like those of Alain Badiou or Quentin Meillassoux – hold that Being is inaccessible to thought or experience. Rather, Being is indexed for thought by a hole in thought; an opening onto an Outside uncorrelated with thought or subjectivity. I will argue that posthumanist ontologies are, likewise, subtractive operations […]

Cronenberg’s Videodrome: the Catastrophe of Desire

My first viewing of David Cronenberg’s Videodrome (1983) was shattering. I was upended by its dislocated narrative rather than the body horror of its denouement, – where image extrudes into reality and bodies develop erogenous control surfaces or explode into cancerous larvae. I could not see how this unreality emerged from the film it initially […]

Disappearance and Assembly – extract

‘Disappearance and Assembly’ is now published open access in Springer’s Nanoethics journal as part of the BrisSynBio Art-Science Dossier   Meshes Of The Afternoon (Maya Deren, 1943) from SeriousFeather on Vimeo. It is easy to believe nobody built this degradable substrate with that small figurine encysted within, an unsung astronaut, that the condition did not […]

The Doll Hospital: Between Laruelle and Badiou, Vitalism and Anti-Vitalism

I’ve been thinking through the relationship between a maximally Unbounded Posthumanism that relinquishes any constraints on what subjects, worlds or agents are or ought to be and artistic production by considering its analogs in contemporary French thought: particularly the work of Badiou and Laruelle (See also Roden 2018). One way in which Unbound Posthumanism can […]

The Biomorphic Horror of Everyday Life

This paper has been written for the Philosophy, Art and Society: Body as Medium event in the Watershed Media Center, Bristol June 16 2018 It explores the idea of the ‘biomorph’ as a perverse ‘non-philosophical’ solution to the aporias of speculative posthumanism through the work of J G Ballard, Hans Bellmer and Gary J Shipley. […]

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 […]