Archive for June, 2012

Ants and humans

27 June 2012

Did you know that

Only ants and humans are able to “organise themselves into teams” to lift heavy objects [?]

Also, they “call for emergency backup with chemical trail.” BBC Nature

27 June 2012

27 June 2012

Latour’s call for co-investigators

16 June 2012

For his “An Inquiry Into Modes of Existence” project:

For a philosophy that is empirical and not simply empiricist, investigation offers the only way to ferret out its concepts and then put them to the test before proposing a version that can be submitted to critique by its peers. And yet, even though investigation as a genre benefits from a distinguished and intimidating prestige in philosophy, it is fairly unusual for an author to propose to carry out an investigation with the participation of his readers. This is nevertheless what I propose to do in publishing a book titled An Inquiry into Modes of Existence: An Anthropology of the Moderns, alongside a digital site that allows its visitors, who will have become co-investigators, to inspect its arguments and go on to suggest other fields to study, other proofs, other accounts. By means of this arrangement I invite my co-investigators to help me find the guiding thread of the experience by becoming attentive to several regimes of truth, which I call modes of existence, after the strange book by Étienne Souriau, recently republished, that features this phrase in its title.

More here. H/t AIME. The video is definitely worth watching: it provides a succinct and clear summary of what otherwise sounds like a rather complex project.

Between ontology and methods

11 June 2012

I only just saw that CSISP at Goldsmiths have posted the audio and video of Richard Rogers and Bruno Latour’s talk on “Digital Societies: between Ontology and Methods” (March 7, 2012 16:30-18:00) on their website.

In this joint event, Bruno Latour and Richard Rogers will present their respective programmes for researching digital social life. If digital networked media are transforming social life as well as social research, what are the implications for our analysis of digital societies? In taking up this question, Latour and Rogers will examine the changing relations between technology, research methods and ontology in digital social life, and what this means for the emerging field of digital sociology.

Transcendence and Immanence

11 June 2012

The 2011 vol. 3 issue of Analecta Hermenutica is now open access with downloadable PDFs. It contains a number of contributions on speculative realism, object-oriented ontology and actor-network theory, including a piece by Jay Foster, “Ontologies without Metaphysics: Latour, Harman and the Philosophy of Things,” which discusses at length the February 2008 debate between Harman and Latour at the LSE (published as The Prince and the Wolf).

11 June 2012

Object-Oriented Philosophy

For the past year and a half, I had been checking the Gifford website periodically and had found nothing about Latour’s Gifford Lectures.

But finally there is this:

“Series 2012-2013

The 2012 – 2013 Gifford Lecture Series will be given by Professor Bruno Latour of Sciences Po, Paris, in Feb 2013.

Please check this page for further details in late December 2012.”

February works great for me, so I’ll try to go up to Edinburgh for one or more of these. Always nice to meet the Edinburgh University Press people too.

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6 June 2012

Speculative Heresy

Materialism and World Politics

20-22 October, 2012
LSE, London, UK

Registration is now open here for anyone who wants to attend.

Scheduled Speakers:

Keynote: The ontology of global politics
William Connolly (Johns Hopkins University)

Opening Panel: What does materialism mean for world politics today?
John Protevi (Louisiana State University)
More TBC

Closing Panel: Agency and structure in a complex world
Colin Wight (University of Sydney)
Erika Cudworth (University of East London)
Stephen Hobden (University of East London)
Diana Coole (Birkbeck, University of London)

ANT/STS Workshop keynote:
Andrew Barry (University of Oxford)

ANT/STS Workshop roundtable:
Iver Neumann (LSE)
Mats Fridlund (University of Gothenburg)
Alberto Toscano (Goldsmiths, University of London)
More TBC


The annual conference for volume 41 of Millennium: Journal of International Studies will take place on 20-22 October, 2012 at the London School of Economics and Political Science. This includes 2 days of panels and keynotes on the weekend, and…

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CfP: Valuation Studies

2 June 2012

See the call for papers here [PDF]. Here is the journal website: Valuation Studies. H/t CHARISMA.

Valuation  Studies  is  a  new  open  access  journal  connecting  several  vibrant research fields working  on the study  of valuation as a  social practice.  To engage scholars  with  various  backgrounds  and  orientations  in  discussions  about valuation, the journal  welcomes  papers  in different  forms,  including papers that use or  combine a variety of methods, from ethnographic accounts to quantitative appraisal to conceptual interpretation.

The  overall aim of the new open access journal Valuation Studies is to foster valuable conversations in a new transdisciplinary and emerging field relating to the  study of  valuation as a  social practice. The journal’s first issue  will be available in the first half of 2013.

The  journal will provide a space for the assessment and diffusion of research that  is  produced  at  the  interface  of  a  variety  of  approaches  from  several disciplines:  sociology,  economic  sociology,  science  and  technology  studies, organisation  and  management  studies,  social  and  cultural  anthropology, market  studies,  institutional  perspectives  in  economics,  accounting  studies, cultural geography, philosophy, and literary studies. The project  emerges out of  the  increasing  synergies between these  approaches  around one  particular ambit: valuation.


Professor C-F Helgesson, Linköping University
Senior researcher Fabian Muniesa, Mines ParisTech