Archive for March, 2013

Ecological Anxiety Disorder: Diagnosing the Politics of the Anthropocene

29 March 2013

Ecological Novelty is the name natural scientists have given to their anxiety. In this paper, Paul Robbins (University of Arizona) reviews the genesis of ecological novelty as a boundary object in interdisciplinary life sciences, explains the scientific cultural conditions that gave rise to it, and addresses several problematic assumptions that have begun to be freighted into its otherwise promising conceptual architecture.

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Erin Manning:The Shape of Enthusiasm

27 March 2013

Catherine Malabou – From the Overman to the Posthuman: How Many Ends?

26 March 2013

Catherine Malabou – From the Overman to the Posthuman: How Many Ends?

In this presentation, I will read and discuss Derrida’s text The Ends of Man (Margins Of Philosophy), and ask what remains of the notions of The Human, Humanity, and Humanism after deconstruction. To what extent are we still allowed to elaborate a notion of the “proper” of man?
This will also be a reflection on Nietzsche and current biology.

Christopher Fynsk. Concealment and Unconcealment.

24 March 2013

talking about polemics, national-socialism, concealment, unconcealment, being, mitdasein, referring to Heidegger, The Origin of the Work of Art, Raoul Walsh, The Essence of Language, Lacoue-Labarthe, Plato

Christopher Fynsk: Mimesis and Anxiety. Heidegger. 2012

23 March 2013

talking about origin, anxiety, boredom. In the lecture, Christopher Fynsks discusses jointure, articulation, concealment, inscription, language, mimetic, being relation, facticity, stimmung, metaphysics referring to Heidegger, The Origin of the Work of Art, Hölderlin, “What are poets for?”, Plato, Socrates, Maurice Blanchot, Wittgenstein.

Solutionism: Limits of Technology in an Imperfect World

22 March 2013

The temptation of the digital age is to fix all the world’s problems – from crime to corruption to pollution to obesity – using smart technology, says Evgeny Morozov. But where does this end? And are ‘smart solutions’ changing how people understand politics and culture? Morozov will argue that while technological innovation can be a force for improvement in our lives, we should consider the moral and political consequences of how we use technology and learn to appreciate the ‘imperfections’ of liberal democracy.

Penpals With The Unabomber

21 March 2013

Penpals With The Unabomber

When David Skrbina wrote to the man called “The Unabomber,” he was surprised to get a reply, and so began their decade-long exchange of ideas. Guest host Sean Cole speaks with Skrbina, a philosophy professor, about his correspondence with Ted Kaczynski. Kaczynski sent bombs through the mail in an effort to have his manifesto published. It was an essay called “Industrial Society and Its Future,” and explained his anti-technology philosophy.

Jaron Lanier talks to James Bridle on Who Owns the Future?

18 March 2013

Jaron Lanier is a technology inventor and philosopher who has been dubbed the prophet of the digital age. He coined the phrases ‘Virtual Reality’ and ‘digital Maoism’. His last book, You Are Not A Gadget, was a hugely influential and hotly debated critique of the ‘hive mind’. In this rare appearance in London he talks about his new book, Who Owns the Future?, with James Bridle.


Digital technologies dawned with the promise that they would bring us all greater economic stability and power. That utopian image has stuck. But, Lanier argues, the efficiencies brought by digi-techs are having the effect of concentrating wealth while reducing overall growth. He predicts that, as more industries are transformed by digital technologies, huge waves of permanent unemployment are likely to follow those already sweeping through many creative industries.



Hubert Dreyfus: Freeman’s Merleau-Pontian Neurodynamics – Similarities and Differences

16 March 2013

Hubert Dreyfus: Freeman’s Merleau-Pontian Neurodynamics – Similarities and Differences

Our experience of the everyday world is given as already organized in terms of significance and relevance. Yet, all that the organism can receive is meaningless physical energy. How can such senseless physical stimulation be experienced directly as significant and acted upon? To suggest an answer to this basic question I will draw on Walter Freeman’s model of rabbit learning and of acting which resembles Maurice Merleau-Ponty’s account of perception and action.
To bring out the structural similarities and differences, I will consider two examples, one of convergence (Freeman’s account of learning new attractors and Merleau-Ponty’s description of what he calls the intentional arc), and one of possible divergence concerning the role of expectation in the perception/action loop. The question then will be: How does Freeman’s account of preafference relate to Merleau-Ponty’s account of maximum grip?

Zygmunt Bauman – The Global Factory of Wasted Humans

14 March 2013

Zygmunt Bauman, one of the greatest sociologists of our time, a harsh critic of modernity, talks about “The Global Factory of Wasted Humans” in a filmed conference published on the French video portal “Audiovisual Research Archive” (part 1).

part 2: http://youtu.be/8FERsOMlpUE
part 3: http://youtu.be/m_m8LTJqO8M