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Shadowing the Anthropocene: Eco-Realism for Turbulent Times

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ISBN: 9781947447875 9781947447882 Year: Pages: 294 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0211.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Environmental Sciences
Added to DOAB on : 2019-03-26 11:21:04
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A spectre is haunting humanity: the spectre of a reality that will outwit and, in the end, bury us. “The Anthropocene,” or The Human Era, is an attempt to name our geological fate – that we will one day disappear into the layer-cake of Earth’s geology – while highlighting humanity in the starring role of today’s Earthly drama. In Shadowing the Anthropocene, Adrian Ivakhiv proposes an ecological realism that takes as its starting point humanity’s eventual demise. The only question for a realist today, he suggests, is what to do now and what quality of compost to leave behind with our burial. The book engages with the challenges of the Anthropocene and with a series of philosophical efforts to address them, including those of Slavoj Žižek and Charles Taylor, Graham Harman and Timothy Morton, Isabelle Stengers and Bruno Latour, and William Connolly and Jane Bennett. Along the way, there are volcanic eruptions and revolutions, ant cities and dog parks, data clouds and space junk, pagan gods and sacrificial altars, dark flow, souls (of things), and jazz. Ivakhiv draws from centuries old process-relational thinking that hearkens back to Daoist and Buddhist sages, but gains incisive re-invigoration in the philosophies of Charles Sanders Peirce and Alfred North Whitehead. He translates those insights into practices of “engaged Anthropocenic bodymindfulness” – aesthetic, ethical, and ecological practices for living in the shadow of the Anthropocene.

Reiner Schürmann and Poetics of Politics

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ISBN: 9781947447738 9781947447745 Year: Pages: 176 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0209.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Philosophy
Added to DOAB on : 2019-03-26 11:21:04
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Reiner Schürmann’s thinking is, as he himself would say, “riveted to a monstrous site.” It remains focused on and situated between natality and mortality, the ultimate traits that condition human life. This book traces the contours of Schürmann’s thinking in his magnum opus Broken Hegemonies in order to uncover the possibility of a politics that resists the hegemonic tendency to posit principles that set the world and our relationships with one another into violent order. The book follows in the footsteps of Oedipus who, in abject recognition of his finitude, stumbles upon the possibility of another politics with the help of his daughters at Colonus. The path toward this other, collaboratively created and thus poetic politics begins with an encounter with Aristotle, a thinker whom Schürmann most frequently read as the founder of hegemonic metaphysics, but whose thinking reveals itself as alive to beginnings in ways that open new possibility for human community. This return to beginnings leads, in turn, to Plotinus, who Schürmann reads as marking the destitution of the ancient hegemony of the Parmenidean principle of the One. By bringing Schürmann’s innovative and compelling reading of René Char’s poem, The Shark and the Gull, into dialogue with Plotinus we come to encounter the power of symbols to transform reality and open us to new constellations of possible community. In Plotinus, where we expected to encounter an end, we experience a new way of thinking natality in terms of what comes to language in Char as the nuptial. Having thus been awakened to the power of symbols, we are prepared to experience how in Kant being itself comes to expression as plurivocal in a way that reveals just how pathologically delusional it is to attempt to deploy univocal principles in a plurivocal world. This opens us to what Schürmann calls the “singularization to come,” a formulation that gestures to a mode of comportment at home in the ravaged site between natality and mortality. This then returns us to Oedipus at Colonus; but not to him alone. Rather, it points to the relationship that emerges for a time between Antigone, Ismene, and Oedipus, as they navigate a way between their exile from Thebes and Oedipus’s final resting place near Athens. Here, having been awakened to the power of a poetic politics, we attend to three symbolic moments of touching between Oedipus and his daughters through which we might discern something of the new possibilities a poetic politics opens for us if we settle into the ravaged site that conditions our existence, together.

Non-Conceptual Negativity: Damaged Reflections on Turkey

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ISBN: 9781950192038 9781950192045 Year: Pages: 142 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0247.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Languages and Literatures
Added to DOAB on : 2019-04-12 11:21:02
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Non-Conceptual Negativity: Damaged Reflections on Turkey critiques those who have accused Deleuze of an unbounded affirmation which, according to them, has played directly into the hands of capitalist modes of production. Yet no one has acknowledged that under the aegis of nano-fascism, late capitalism has grown into Neanderthal capitalism, invented and developed in laboratory countries like Turkey with the aid of an international Neanderthal league. Layer upon layer, Aracagök explains in fragmentary fashion that it is not only a matter of how Turkey has grown into a prime laboratory of nano-fascism with the aid of the US and the European Union, but also how the results obtained from this laboratory are put into practice in different countries under Neanderthal capitalism, enslaving each and every one of us into accepting even the position of suicide bomber. As none of us is exempted from nano-fascism today, perhaps it is timely to reconsider the ways in which Deleuzian thought is appropriated in the form of an unquestioned affirmation of everything and how its critique has ended up in an old-fashioned formulation of the in-dividual according to a party program. If this all goes to show that we are face to face with a route different from the accepted forms of affirmation — that is, if we are all affirmed and seem to be happily affirming life as it is as a result of the Neanderthal manipulation of the negative — then isn’t it timely to rethink the Deleuzian affirmation in its non-originary origin with regard to Adorno’s resistance against affirmation? That is, the double negation never ends up in affirmation, and if it does so, it might mean your negation is not strong enough.

Of the Contract

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ISBN: 9781947447042 9781947447059 Year: Pages: 162 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0174.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Law
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:33
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Of the Contract is a version of a text that is as old as any memory, or a form of legal instrument that constitutes the basis of the world in which its terms have been translated. The text remains as open to renewal as that world remains to future alteration, and the terms are both already past, and always yet to come. The notion of the debt that is presented by the contract corresponds to a conception of accountancy and finance that provide a new approach to the contemporary problem of the sense of that external to the terms of human access. A reinterpretation of the philosophical tradition that runs through Levinas and Heidegger to Kant, Of the Contract is also grounded in the medieval tradition that was centered on the notion of “contraction,” and its writing was inspired by forms of life such as those found in the development of monastic constitutions, and the novels of knight errantry. It is also an oblique contribution to the recent discussions on the nature of debt, and is deeply marked by an awareness of climate change, and the insufficiencies of capital to overcome this crisis. All of these concerns however were contracted in a more acute awareness of the process of expression, and the work is given first of all as literature. It is the nature of the terms that they are open to untold interpretations.

Solar Calendar, And Other Ways of Marking Time

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ISBN: 9780998531830 Year: Pages: 348 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0165.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: History
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:34
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At the end of his life, Pierre Hadot was a professor at the Collège de France — a “professor’s professor” — and he helped Michel Foucault, most famously, conceptualize ethics. Hadot devoted his career to recovering the ancient conception of philosophy, according to which the discourses of universities are but a fragment of what philosophy is. His engagement with this theme helped Bendik-Keymer understand and develop a personal counter-culture to his academic work, a kind of original academics truer to the idea of the philosophical school Plato first developed in his Ἀκαδήµεια. But while Plato’s school developed a useful form of life, it had an ambivalent relation to democracy and to everyday people. Whereas Plato was in some ways one of the first egalitarians by merit (especially concerning women), he was also deeply classist in his categorization of intellectual potentials. He effectively thought some people were stupid by nature, having no philosophical worth. Hence the Ἀκαδήµεια existed outside the city, in practice exclusive and somewhat sequestered. To some extent, Plato’s vision of philosophy — at least as explained by Hadot — had the practical point of philosophy right, but this point still needed to be rendered thoroughly democratic in the polyphony and multiple intelligences of people. Doing so coheres with what Foucault was after in his application of Hadot. It is also what Bendik-Keymer is after — to extract what is good from original academics and make it democratic, as opposed to dumbing people down.

Deleuze and the Passions

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ISBN: 9780998237541 Year: Pages: 182 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0161.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Philosophy
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:34
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In recent years the humanities, social sciences and neuroscience have witnessed an ‘affective turn,’ especially in discourses around post-Fordist labor, economic and ecological crises, populism and identity politics, mental health, and political struggle. This new awareness would be unthinkable without the pioneering work of Gilles Deleuze, who replaced judgment with affect as the very material movement of thought: every concept is an affective experience, a becoming. Besides entirely active affects, the highest practice of thought, there is no thought without passive affects or passions. Instead of a calm and rational philosophy of passions, Deleuzian thought is therefore inseparable from “isolated and passionate cries” that deny what everybody knows and what nobody can deny: “every true thought is an aggression.” This inseparability of reason and passion is by no means an anti-intellectualist or irrationalist stance. Rather, it is critical, since it protects reason from its self-imposed stupidity (bêtise) by relating it to the unthought forces that condition it. And it is clinical, because thought becomes possessed by a power of selection. The purely active, i.e. free-floating, unrecorded desire, is never enough to produce a consistent relation to the future, which is why we need the passions to give us an initial orientation, to force and enable us to think. Passions are the beliefs, perceptions, representations, and opinions that attach us to the world; they make up the very material of which our lives and thoughts are composed.

The Digital Dionysus: Nietzsche and the Network-Centric Condition

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ISBN: 9780692270790 Year: Pages: 286 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0149.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Media and communication
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:35
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Can Nietzsche be considered a thinker of media and mediation, as the German media theorist Friedrich Kittler declared in his influential book Gramophone, Film, Typewriter? Nietzsche was a truly transdisciplinary thinker, one who never fit into his own nineteenth-century surroundings and who recognized himself as a “herald and precursor” of the future, of our globally-reticulated digital present. Perhaps not since Kittler has there been a study — let alone an anthology — that re-assesses and re-evaluates Nietzsche’s thought in light of the technically mediated and machinic conditions of the human in the age of digital networks.

Critique of Sovereignty, Book 1: Contemporary Theories of Sovereignty

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ISBN: 9780692282403 Year: Pages: 112 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0114.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Philosophy
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:38
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Using the Western tradition of metaphysical and political thought as a backdrop, Critique of Sovereignty (a work in 4 volumes) re-examines the concept of sovereignty in order to better understand why our ethical values and technical capacities often seem so divorced from our lived realities. On the one hand, ostensibly self-enclosed entities like the nation-state and the person are rhetorically bolstered as sites of technical agency and/or moral responsibility. On the other hand, these same entities appear fragile — if not purely fictional — in relation to ever ongoing tidal processes such as the migration, diffusion, and conglomeration of bodies, capital, ideas, etc. While some of our institutions might work some of the time, they always seem to work differently than we like to think they do. Accordingly, the forging of more humane institutions might very well entail if not require ways of thinking that strive to undo the self-imagined binds, exceptions, and sureties of thought for the sake of embracing a continuity with all that withers, decays, and falls away. Book I, “Contemporary Theories of Sovereignty,” compares the varied interpretations of sovereignty given by a range of 20th-century political theorists (Maritain, Foucault, Derrida, Schmitt, Agamben, Hardt, and Negri) with Jean Bodin’s initial outline of the concept, rendered at the outset of modern political thought in the 16th century. The analytic framework of sovereignty encountered in these comparative readings provides an initial point of departure for unfolding a method of critique appropriate to the concept of sovereignty. Sovereignty is an ideal starting point for a critique of the deadlocks between thought and reality for a simple reason: it doesn’t actually exist. When it serves as a guide to action, sovereignty may be regarded as a particularly captivating fantasy. The closer it appears, the further it recedes, and, too often, the more vigorously it is pursued.

Speculations V: Aesthetics in the 21st Century

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ISBN: 9780692203163 Year: Pages: 474 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0068.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Philosophy
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:41
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Ever since the turn of the century aesthetics has steadily gained momentum as a central field of study across the disciplines. No longer sidelined, aesthetics has grown in confidence. While this recent development brings with it a return to the work of the canonical authors (most notably Baumgarten and Kant), some contemporary scholars reject the traditional focus on epistemology and theorize aesthetics in its ontological connotations. It is according to this shift that speculative realists have proclaimed aesthetics as “first philosophy” and as speculative in nature. With speculative realism aesthetics no longer necessarily implies human agents. This is in alignment with the general speculative realist framework for thinking all kinds of processes, entities, and objects as free from our all-pervasive anthropocentrism, which states, always, that everything is “for us.” This special volume of Speculations explores the ramifications of what could be termed the new speculative aesthetics. In doing so, it stages a three-fold encounter: between aesthetics and speculation, between speculative realism and its (possible) precursors, and between speculative realism and art and literature

The Non-Library

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ISBN: 9780615945446 Year: Pages: 104 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0065.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Philosophy
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:41
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The Non-Library is a non-standard expression for life that is lived without mediation from words, images, or even ideas. While a thing called “the Library” continues to terrorize humanity even as it enters its last stages as a consequence of cataclysmic climate change and late capitalism, the Non-Library is a strictly performative, ahistorical immanence that suspends the Library’s insistent calls to categorization, representation, and reification. Of course, to describe or circumscribe such ineffability has its limits, but it also has its thresholds to cross: with commentary on Derrida’s Archive Fever, a deconstruction of Fichte, a para-biographical meditation on librarianship, and a vamping on the possible “Non-Virgil,” The Non-Library gently proposes a negative capability in liminal spaces in order to best escape and resist the Library’s stranglehold on human knowledge and its requisite social imaginations. Building on the non-standard thought of Francois Laruelle’s non-philosophy, while not beholden to it, The Non-Library attempts to leave the discourse of the university behind and uses its citations of Badiou, Borges, Bataille, and Dante instead to construct a philo-fiction more akin to the immanence of music and its many expressions rather than Philosophy’s demand that all questions be eventually answered, that the Real is ultimately thinkable, or that all of Life might possibly be contained in the Library.

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