New Materialisms: reading group. Wednesday 18th Jan at Banner Repeater
Concepts and Objects with Steve Klee
We will be reading: Ray Brassier's Concepts and Objects with Steve Klee. Please find the text here.
We will have read theses 1 to 37, then conclude with 46 & 47
This session will look at ideas of rationality, asking if this is the means by which sapient beings get access, rather miraculously, to the real, or, is rationality only a suspect mechanism, a player within the long game of social control, and an inherently violent mode of thought?
We will be reading Ray Brassier’s Concepts and Objects in conjunction with the Xenofeminist Manifesto as a way to think through these ideas, further, together.
Brassier considers the total reduction of objective thought to political power-play a mistake, and a miss-move endemic within a ‘cognophobic’ continental philosophy; the most recent manifestation of such being the actant and object theories of Latour and Harman.
In a world where the new White House administration’s ‘default position’ on climate change is that ‘it is a bunch of bunk’ then the philosophical defence of rational objectivity is an urgent necessity. It would seem that this defence is central to the political positions of Xenofeminism, emblematised by the slogan: ‘If nature is unjust, change nature!’ For, it is only after the rational divination of nature that the process of its egalitarian transformation can begin. This does not mean that we have to accept the ‘actually existing’ institutions of rational objectivity, but that we should be prepared to defend the possibility of objectivity.