I'm a philosophy student that tends to post about really serious things unseriously and about really unserious things seriously.

I was once described as a "beautiful, intelligent iguana".

14th May 2013

Video reblogged from Rhizombie with 52 notes

rhizombie:

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Manuel Delanda performs an amazing trick in this video. Not only does he untangle the threads of Deleuze’s thinking and profoundly connects it to complexity science but also makes a profound case for the role of philosophy as a synthetic discipline that can overcome the disciplinary barriers within science. Highly recommended. 

I have a soft spot for Manuel, especially now that I’ve heard he has an accent. Also for his snide polemical remarks like “I don’t care what people say, idealism is inherently conservative” (but his swipe at Derrida sounds super amateur). Also cuz he talks about cool science things like genetics, computer science, and cool art/architecture things, and other things I don’t understand but wanna.

I think DeLanda (and perhaps Catherine Malabou? But I haven’t really read her) is one of the best challenges to the divide between analytic and continental philosophy. The divide usually lies in that analytic philosophy is supposed to be more focused on the ‘sciences’, while continental is focused on the ‘arts’. But DeLanda, definitely coming from the continental camp, is far more focused on the sciences, and is doing it in a way that’s far better than the analytic camp.

The beginning of his Philosophy and Synthetic Reason taught me more about emergence than a whole semester on the topic - and this is because he’s more sensitive to the Evental character of science. Whereas most analytic authors saw developments in complexity and emergence and thought “awesome! how can we fit this in ready-made debates about consciousness?” DeLanda saw this stuff and went “how does this fundamentally change the way we think about the world (if it does)?” And the latter seems a lot more important to me.

Tagged: manuel delandadeleuzematerialism

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9th December 2012

Post reblogged from A Momentary Flow with 13 notes

A Brief Note on Incorporeal Machines

wildcat2030:

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One of the major innovations of Onto-Cartography is the introduction of incorporeal machines.  While incorporeal machines were already implicit in my treatment of Luhmann in The Democracy of Object…

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Under Deleuze and Guattari’s account, the plane of content is composed entirely of bodies– what I call corporeal machines –affecting and being affected by one another. The relationship of a smith to his hammer and anvil, for example, belong to the plane of content. The way in which the interaction of these three machines affect one another differs from the way in which signifiers affect bodies. The perpetual hammering on the metal of the anvil produces corporeal changes in the smith’s body. His muscle structure, bone structure, and way of holding himself change over time. This is not the result of expression or signs.

read on!


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What I don’t get is whether or not Bryant’s still operating under a ‘materialist’ framework. I know the big point of disagreement between Bryant and Harman is that the latter isn’t a materialist, and it seems that with the introduction of ‘Incorporeal Machines’ as a category within Bryant’s framework that he’s moving in this direction as well.

At this point, the major point of conflict between the two thinkers would have to center around the importance of causation, and the role of networks, in their ontologies. Still, this is an interesting development.

[Also, I’m glad to see Bryant featured on wildcat2030, which usually focuses a lot on thinkers more directly tied to thinking about the sciences (biology, mostly), and stuff having to do with cyborg studies. Although, I guess this does cross over pretty well with Bryant’s work].

[Also, also, I think it’s worth mentioning that Harman is who finally convinced me that materialism wasn’t a strong enough framework to build an ontology of non-presence around. Maybe Bryant’s undergoing a similar change?]

Tagged: bryantooosronto-cartographyincorporeal machinesmaterialismharmanphilosophy

26th May 2012

Link reblogged from DROP OUT. HANG OUT. SPACE OUT. with 7 notes

Larval Subjects: Materialism, Form, and Purpose →

As I argued in an earlier post, all my materialism commits me to is the thesis that if something exists, it is material.  That’s it.  It doesn’t commit me to the thesis of reductionism or that the smallest units of matter are the really real things of the world.  H2O is a real entity in the world and while it cannot exist without hydrogen and oxygen, we have to observe H2O itself to discover what it’s powers are.  Signifying systems are, for me, real material beings in the world that have to be studied in their own terms.  While signifying systems can’t exist without electro-neural-chemical systems, we would learn next to nothing about a particular signifying system by studying neurology.  At most, we would learn about certain constraints on signifying systems by studying neurology, not how a particular signifying system is itself structured.  This is because neurological systems exist at a different level of scale and are composed of different types of elements.  Someone will say “but signifying systems are not like rocks!”, and they would be right.  But hurricanes aren’t like rocks either and no one doubts that they’re material phenomena.  Or maybe they do.  It would be peculiar if they did.

This is basically what I always considered materialism to be as well. Regardless, awesome post.

Tagged: onticologymaterialismLevi Bryant