March 30, 2007

Don't Miss...

Networks and Assemblages: The Rebirth of Things
in Latour and DeLanda

Friday 20 April
5.00-7.00pm, Ben Pimlott Lecture Theatre

With Graham Harman | American University in Cairo

Graham Harman is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the American University in Cairo. He supported himself through part of graduate school as a Chicago sportswriter, in which capacity he interviewed figures such as Sammy Sosa and Bobby Knight. He is the author of Tool-Being: Heidegger and the Metaphysics of Objects, Guerilla Metaphysics: Phenomenology and the Carpentry of Things, and Heidegger Explained: From Phenomenon to Thing, as well as translator of Gudrun Kramer's History of Palestine.

In recent years, Manuel DeLanda has been one of the more imaginative defenders of realism in philosophy. In his latest book, A New Philosophy of Society (2006), DeLanda portrays a world of alliances and alloys in which things are nonetheless not defined by their interactions with other things. This brings DeLanda into tacit agreement and enmity with Bruno Latour, who also pictures a world of autonomous actors partially linked in networks. Although their models of reality are strikingly similar, and though both authors contribute to a badly needed revival of metaphysics in the continental tradition, they disagree on the key point of how a thing is defined by its relations within the world. This talk aims to clarify the silent dispute between Latour and DeLanda, which deserves to be a central controversy of the emerging object-philosophy.

Speculative Realism

Friday 27 April
1.00-7.00pm, Ben Pimlott Lecture Theatre

A one-day workshop co-sponsored by COLLAPSE
Chaired by Alberto Toscano | Sociology, Goldsmiths

Ray Brassier | Middlesex University
Iain Hamilton Grant| UWE (University of West England)
Graham Harman | American University in Cairo
Quentin Meillassoux | Ecole Normale Superieure

(Papers available online here)

Attendance is free but please register beforehand by emailing Alberto Toscano at

Contemporary continental philosophy often prides itself on having overcome the age-old metaphysical battles between realism and dualism. Subject-object dualism has supposedly been destroyed by the critique of representation and supplanted by a fundamental correlation between thought and world. This workshop will bring together four philosophers whose work questions some of the basic tenets of this continental orthodoxy. Speculative realism is not a doctrine but the umbrella term for a variety of research programmes committed to upholding the autonomy of reality against the depredations of anthropocentrism, whether in the name of transcendental physicalism, object-oriented philosophy, or abstract materialism.

Posted by mark at March 30, 2007 03:41 AM | TrackBack