immaterialism objects and social theory theory redux

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Immaterialism

Author : Graham Harman
ISBN : 9781509500987
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 54. 2 MB
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What objects exist in the social world and how should we understand them? Is a specific Pizza Hut restaurant as real as the employees, tables, napkins and pizzas of which it is composed, and as real as the Pizza Hut corporation with its headquarters in Wichita, the United States, the planet Earth and the social and economic impact of the restaurant on the lives of its employees and customers? In this book the founder of object-oriented philosophy develops his approach in order to shed light on the nature and status of objects in social life. While it is often assumed that an interest in objects amounts to a form of materialism, Harman rejects this view and develops instead an “immaterialist” method. By examining the work of leading contemporary thinkers such as Bruno Latour and Levi Bryant, he develops a forceful critique of ‘actor-network theory’. In an extended discussion of Leibniz’s famous example of the Dutch East India Company, Harman argues that this company qualifies for objecthood neither through ‘what it is’ or ‘what it does’, but through its irreducibility to either of these forms. The phases of its life, argues Harman, are not demarcated primarily by dramatic incidents but by moments of symbiosis, a term he draws from the biologist Lynn Margulis. This book provides a key counterpoint to the now ubiquitous social theories of constant change, holistic networks, performative identities, and the construction of things by human practice. It will appeal to anyone interested in cutting-edge debates in philosophy and social and cultural theory.

Immaterialism

Author : Graham Harman
ISBN : 9781509501007
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 63. 44 MB
Format : PDF, Mobi
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What objects exist in the social world and how should we understand them? Is a specific Pizza Hut restaurant as real as the employees, tables, napkins and pizzas of which it is composed, and as real as the Pizza Hut corporation with its headquarters in Wichita, the United States, the planet Earth and the social and economic impact of the restaurant on the lives of its employees and customers? In this book the founder of object-oriented philosophy develops his approach in order to shed light on the nature and status of objects in social life. While it is often assumed that an interest in objects amounts to a form of materialism, Harman rejects this view and develops instead an “immaterialist” method. By examining the work of leading contemporary thinkers such as Bruno Latour and Levi Bryant, he develops a forceful critique of ‘actor-network theory’. In an extended discussion of Leibniz’s famous example of the Dutch East India Company, Harman argues that this company qualifies for objecthood neither through ‘what it is’ or ‘what it does’, but through its irreducibility to either of these forms. The phases of its life, argues Harman, are not demarcated primarily by dramatic incidents but by moments of symbiosis, a term he draws from the biologist Lynn Margulis. This book provides a key counterpoint to the now ubiquitous social theories of constant change, holistic networks, performative identities, and the construction of things by human practice. It will appeal to anyone interested in cutting-edge debates in philosophy and social and cultural theory.

Immaterialism

Author : Graham Harman
ISBN :
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 75. 70 MB
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In this book the founder of object-oriented philosophy deploys his model of objects in the context of social theory. In Part One he outlines an ï¿1⁄2immaterialistï¿1⁄2 method to counter the dual reduction linked to the two senses of materialism, which either decomposes entities into their constituent pieces or overdetermines them by way of their relations and effects. Special attention is paid to the virtues and vices of actor-network theory, with the conclusion that ANT needs more focus on the unity, autonomy, and stability of objects, not less as some theorists have proposed. In Part Two the author makes a case study for an object-oriented social theory: the Dutch East India Company (or ï¿1⁄2VOCï¿1⁄2), wrongly belittled by the philosopher Leibniz as a mere aggregate rather than a genuine thing. The VOC qualifies for objecthood neither through ï¿1⁄2what it isï¿1⁄2 nor ï¿1⁄2what it doesï¿1⁄2, but through its irreducibility to either of these forms of knowledge. As with any object, the story of the VOC is not exhausted by what it did or might have done. The phases of its life are not demarcated primarily by dramatic incidents, but by moments of symbiosis, a term drawn from the biologist Lynn Margulis. This book provides a counterpoint to the now ubiquitous social theories of constant change, holistic networks, performative identities, and the construction of things by human practice. It will appeal to anyone interested in cutting-edge debates in philosophy and social and cultural theory.

Object Oriented Ontology

Author : Graham Harman
ISBN : 9780241269176
Genre : Nature
File Size : 74. 71 MB
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What is reality, really? Are humans more special or important than the non-human objects we perceive? How does this change the way we understand the world? We humans tend to believe that things are only real in as much as we perceive them, an idea reinforced by modern philosophy, which privileges us as special, radically different in kind from all other objects. But as Graham Harman, one of the theory's leading exponents, shows, Object-Oriented Ontology rejects the idea of human specialness: the world, he states, is clearly not the world as manifest to humans. At the heart of this philosophy is the idea that objects - whether real, fictional, natural, artificial, human or non-human - are mutually autonomous. In this brilliant new introduction, Graham Harman lays out the history, ideas and impact of Object-Oriented Ontology, taking in everything from art and literature, politics and natural science along the way. Graham Harman is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at SCI-Arc, Los Angeles. A key figure in the contemporary speculative realism movement in philosophy and for his development of the field of object-oriented ontology, he was named by Art Review magazine as one of the 100 most influential figures in international art.

Towards Speculative Realism

Author : Graham Harman
ISBN : 9781846943942
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 31. 49 MB
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These writings chart Harman's rise from Chicago sportswriter to co-founder of one of Europe's most promising philosophical movements - Speculative Realism. This collection of essays and lectures show the evolution of his object-oriented metaphysics from its early days into an increasingly developed philosophical position.

Bells And Whistles

Author : Graham Harman
ISBN : 9781782790372
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 25. 92 MB
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In this diverse collection of sixteen essays, lectures, and interviews dating from 2010 to 2013, Graham Harman lucidly explains the principles of Speculative Realism, including his own object-oriented philosophy. From Brazil to Russia, and in Poland, France, Croatia, and India, Harman addresses local philosophical concerns with the energy of a roving evangelist. He reflects on established giants such as Greenberg, Latour, and McLuhan, while refining his differences with such younger authors as Brassier, Bryant, Garcia, and Meillassoux. He speaks to philosophers in Paris, hecklers in New York, media theorists in Berlin, and architects in Curitiba, as object-oriented philosophy consolidates its position as the most widespread form of Speculative Realism. There has never been a more upbeat introduction to one of the most challenging philosophical schools of our time.

Tool Being

Author : Graham Harman
ISBN : 9780812697735
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 71. 52 MB
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Tool-Being offers a new assessment of Martin Heidegger's famous tool-analysis, and with it, an audacious reappraisal of Heidegger's legacy to twenty-first-century philosophy. Every reader of Being and Time is familiar with the opposition between readiness-to-hand (Zuhandenheit) and presence-at-hand (Vorhandenheit), but commentators usually follow Heidegger's wishes in giving this distinction a limited scope, as if it applied only to tools in a narrow sense. Graham Harman contests Heidegger's own interpretation of tool-being, arguing that the opposition between tool and broken tool is not merely a provisional stage in his philosophy, but rather its living core. The extended concept of tool-being developed here leads us not to a theory of human practical activity but to an ontology of objects themselves. Tool-Being urges a fresh and concrete research into the secret contours of objects. Written in a lively and colorful style, it will be of great interest to anyone intrigued by Heidegger and anyone open to new trends in present-day philosophy.

Speculative Realism

Author : Professor of Philosophy Levi R (Collin College) Bryant
ISBN : 9780748679980
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 38. 45 MB
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Defends and transforms naturalism and materialism to show how culture itself is formed by nature. Bryant endorses a pan-ecological theory of being, arguing that societies are ecosystems that can only be understood by considering nonhuman material agencies such as rivers and mountain ranges alongside signifying agencies such as discourses, narratives and ideologies.

Guerrilla Metaphysics

Author : Graham Harman
ISBN : 9780812697728
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 69. 84 MB
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In Guerrilla Metaphysics, Graham Harman develops further the object-oriented philosophy first proposed in Tool-Being. Today’s fashionable philosophies often treat metaphysics as a petrified relic of the past, and hold that future progress requires an ever further abandonment of all claims to discuss reality in itself. Guerrilla Metaphysics makes the opposite assertion, challenging the dominant "philosophy of access" (both continental and analytic) that remains quarantined in discussions of language, perception, or literary texts. Philosophy needs a fresh resurgence of the things themselves—not merely the words or appearances themselves. Once these themes are adapted to the needs of an object-oriented philosophy, what emerges is a brand new type of metaphysics—a "guerrilla metaphysics."

Persons And Things

Author : Roberto Esposito
ISBN : 9780745690681
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 48. 56 MB
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What is the relationship between persons and things? And how does the body transform this relationship? In this highly original new book, Roberto Esposito - one of Italy’s leading political philosophers - considers these questions and shows that starting from the body, rather than from the thing or the person, can help us to reconsider the status of both. Ever since its beginnings, our civilization has been based on a strict, unequivocal distinction between persons and things, founded on the instrumental domination of persons over things. This opposition arose out of ancient Roman law and persisted throughout modernity, to take its place in our current global market, where it continues to generate growing contradictions. Although the distinction seems to appear clear and necessary to us, what we are continually witnessing in legal, economic, and technological practice is a reversal of perspectives: some categories of persons are becoming assimilated with things, while some types of things are taking on a personal profile. With his customary rigour, Roberto Esposito argues that there exists an escape route out of this paradox, constituted by a new point of view founded in the body. Neither a person nor a thing, the human body becomes the decisive element in rethinking the concepts and values that govern our philosophical, legal, and political lexicons.

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