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Philo-fictions and Experimental Texts: Philosophy as Artistic “Whatever” Material

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art / experiment / Laruelle / non-philosophy / philosophy / text / textuality / Uncategorized

A few years ago, I took a graduate seminar on experimental texts at Emory University. Some of the work I have done during my studies I have put up on Fractal Ontology, but I never included this one. I will run you through the basics of the project. First, I wanted to showcase the “consumption” of philosophical texts that I have participated in over the course of my reading. This usually entails me, pen in […]

Celebrating Our 25th Podcast on theorytalk

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Katerina Kolozova / philosophy / podcast / Theory / Philosophy / theorytalk / Uncategorized

Hello everyone! I would like to extend an invitation to check out what Joe and I are doing over at our new theorytalk podcast. We just released our 25th podcast and show no signs at all of slowing down any time soon. For a more complete description, you can find Joe’s earlier post on theorytalk here at Fractal Ontology, and be sure to check out our Patreon page for even more information on what we’re […]

Notes on Derrida’s “Structure, Sign and Play in the Human Sciences”

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deconstruction / derrida / Levi-Strauss / Nietzsche / structuralism / Uncategorized

Derrida: “Structure, Sign and Play in the Discourse of the Human Sciences” From Writing and Difference, trans. Alan Bass (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1978): 278-93. “We need to interpret interpretations more than to interpret things” (Montaigne). Derrida refers to the history of the concept of structure and an “event” in that history (it should be noted that in this opening paragraph, Derrida himself highlights the bracketing of the term event in quotation marks to […]

Constant’s Seductive Education, or Adolphe’s Astonishment (with translations)

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[Update: I have taken the liberty of translating, by my own limited and critically biased means, the French citations of Constant in this essay. I hope that this makes for a more enjoyable and comprehensible experience! :)]. Benjamin Constant’s Adolphe presents the reader with the guiding inspiration behind its genesis, which is that what is at stake here is a narrative that would feature only two main characters. In his preface to the third edition […]

To Read or Love as She Pleased: Dream-Reading ‘Dora’ through Dora’s Reading-Dream

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They do it in fear and trembling, with an uneasy look over their shoulder to see if some one may not be coming.—Freud, Dora: An Analysis of a Case of Hysteria, Touchstone: New York, 1997, p. 92. How are we to approach the singular genre of the case history that Freud develops early on in his psychoanalytic and writing career? This genre is all the more striking in his first case history Dora: An Analysis […]

Notes on ‘Introduction aux sciences génériques’

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The following are notes typed up fairly summarily and quickly from Laruelle’s Introduction aux sciences génériques [Introduction to the Generic Sciences], Paris: Editions Petra, 2008. Since this work hasn’t yet been translated, I have tried to stick closely to Laruelle’s verbiage. Any lack of clarity is definitely on my part. One thing not included in these notes is a little dig that Laruelle makes at Badiou and Deleuze (p. 21). Since I am mentioning it […]

Internetics and Conviviality

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So I thoroughly enjoyed reading through two books this weekend: Tubes: A Journey to the Center of the Internet by Andrew Blum and Where Wizards Stay Up Late: The Origins of the Internet by Katie Hafner and Matthew Lyon. The first book focuses on the geographically grounded physicality of the internet and is quite fascinating insofar as it brings it back down into the mud of things in flesh and blood away from the heavenly […]

New Translation(s) of Laruelle on Univocal Press

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Over at Univocal Publishing there is a new translation of Laruelle’s essay on non-ethics available on their blog. Be sure to go over and check this out here: http://univocalpublishing.com/blog/108-the-concept-of-an-ordinary-ethics-or-ethics-founded-in-man. Hopefully this translation will help bring attention to the great work they are doing already. Be sure to check out the titles they have already published, and expect to see more Laruelle in the future (I’ll be publishing two of Laruelle’s translations with them next spring. […]

Odysseus, the Stranger-subject

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So Odysseus is telling the truth when he says he is nobody. This truth—told as a lie, functioning as a trick—allows him to escape, but Odysseus cannot stop there: he has to step over the line (hubris) and shout out his name to the Cyclops, he has to brag that the great Odysseus bested the Cyclops. What can we make of this? Precisely that Odysseus is not Odysseus until he says his name.

Animal

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The status of the animal raises a number of critical questions — for psychology, for political economy, but also for philosophy, gathering together the problem of the meaning of the animal as well as the question of the nature of the relationship between human beings and animals. We shall attempt to explore the problematic status of the animal through the investigation of the status of animals in antiquity. What might ancient beliefs in metempsychosis, and the ancient practices of […]

Three Hundred

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We would like to take a moment to celebrate a milestone: Fractal Ontology is now over four years old and boasts more than 300 posts. We’ve upgraded our theme to celebrate. We are hoping that it might also serve to make navigating through our archives a bit more accessible and pleasant. We would like to invite you to explore! We would also like to take this oppourtunity to express our heartfelt gratitude for those who […]

Simmel and Simondon: From the Ventures of Life to the Advent of Adventure

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I have added a strange note to the end of this post that…trails off at the end. When you see it, if you do, good reader, (ha, old conventions are funny), it will make sense that it does not make sense (to which, they replied, you mean the paper or the note?) What a wonderful audience. Anyway, this paper needs to be cleaned up immensely (as I specify later), so please be patient and suspend […]

‘Aversi sumus, perversi sumus’ : Augustine and the Eclipse of God

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The following is an essay that I composed for a class last semester on the cultivation of the self. It is a work in progress, and I have added idiosyncratic notes to the work in brackets–don’t mind them if they don’t make sense…In any case, the main inspiration behind this work is my ongoing engagement with F. Laruelle and the term vision-in-One–which I believe in some way can be traced back to Plotinus in some […]

New Post on Gabriel Catren’s Critique of Meillassoux via Speculative Physics

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Over at Stellar Cartographies there is a new post (called: Speculative realism, stamp collecting, and the question of Science) that goes into great detail about Gabriel Catren’s critique of Meillassoux on the basis of theoretical physics and quantum mechanics (lovingly dubbed by the former as “speculative physics”). The majority of the post (in reality almost already essay-length) focuses on Catren’s extensive essay that appeared in Collapse vol. 5 just recently. There are also at least […]

Machinic Unconscious Complete

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I just wanted to throw out there that I have finished the bulk of translating Guattari’s The Machinic Unconscious: Essays in Schizoanalysis. Now begins the revision stage of my project, and a few interpolations of quotes from Proust’s In Search of Lost Time (I’m using the new Penguin editions, which are fabulous translations btw). I hope this excites some people (I know Joe has been impatient for this…). I, too, am pretty thrilled about this […]

On the Misery of the Unbeliever

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The Bhagavad Gita, like any text or doctrine rigorously indebted to the religious genre of literature, presents the (post)modern or skeptical reader with all the things that Krishna attributes to “cynical people:” perhaps nothing but misery or frustration (83.3). In the same sense, it is an awesome text due to its absoluteness. The word “metaphysics” in philosophy has recently come to designate a form of thought which perpetuates the belief in the necessary or absolute […]

Pre-eminence and the Status of Politics

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“…all superior men who were irresistibly drawn to throw off the yoke of any kind of morality and to frame new laws had, if they were not actually mad, no alternative but to make themselves or pretend to be mad—and this indeed applies to innovators in every domain and not only in the domain of priestly and political dogma…” (Daybreak, 14). In contrast to some of the shrewder commentary on Nietzsche’s politically charged philosophy, I […]

Outside

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alterity / awareness / being / difference / inequality / inhumanity / language / levinas / love / metaphysics / Politics / reason / truth / tyranny / Uncategorized / violence

The relation between me and the other commences in the inequality of terms, transcendent to one another, where alterity does not determine the other in a formal sense… It is produced in multiple singularities and not in a being exterior to this number who would count the multiples. The inequality is in this impossibility of the exterior point of view, which alone could abolish it. The relationship that is established–the relationship of teaching, of mastery, […]

Learning to Fly

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acceleration / anti-gravity / Bachelard / belief / brother / celerity / change / dream / dreams / feeling / flight / future / laughter / love / memory / reality / texture / Thought / transformation / truth / Uncategorized / world

Psychologists — and more especially philosophers — pay little attention to the play of miniature frequently introduced into fairy tales. In the eyes of the psychologist, the writer is merely amusing himself when he creates houses that can be set on a pea. But this is a basic absurdity that places the tale on a level with the merest fantasy. And fantasy precludes the writer from entering, really, into the domain of the fantastic. Indeed […]

The Voice of Silence

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1 = 0 / art / clarity / contradiction / courage / cruelty / daybreak / future / God / identity / nature / noise / parasite / science / signal / silence / Uncategorized

Flow. There are no words, only silence; no silences, only words. It’s not as bad as you think. It’s worse. There is no beginning which is not also an end. The fire rages on, infinitely. Beyond time. Above the waves. Can you hear them? Singing? So softly, like angels’ whispering secrets to us. In silence. A broken flaw in the scheme, the impossible number. Ten equals one million. One equals Zero. A flock of birds. […]

Abolishing Distinction: Adorno and Sense

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creation / dialectic / intellectual / madness / music / philosophy / play / production / rationalization / reason / science / sickness / Uncategorized / waste / work

I should account as the foremost musician one who knew only the sadness of the most profound happiness, and no other sadness at all; but such a musician has never existed yet. Nietzsche (The Gay Science 183) The dialectic cannot stop short before the concepts of health and sickness, nor indeed before their siblings reason and unreason. Once it has recognized the ruling universal order and its proportions as sick — and marked in the […]

New Archive Page Added with PDFs!

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The archive page has recently been added. This page resolves three (minor) problems: it provides another medium for easier reading; it allows for Joe and I to fully differentiate our original posts; and it brings all the posts on one page and makes them permanently and easily accessible. Every post (other than the notes and translations) that appears on the main site will subsequently find its way to the archives in PDF formatting. Both Joe […]

SPEP Chicago

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Taylor and I will be taking some well-deserved (and much-needed) time off to attend the 46th SPEP meeting in Chicago. We’re driving up tonight and will be back this weekend. One of our favorite professors, Sid Littlefield, will be delivering a paper on Badiou, Lucretius and Spencer-Brown. And if you’re going to be attending, why not go ahead and leave a message here? We’d be delighted to meet others who are going.

Blogosphere Kinships: Activity at Massthink

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Arthur Danto / Darwinism / Deleuze / Deleuze and Guattari / evolution / hylomorph / identity / Manuel DeLanda / massthink / Nietzsche / philosophy blog / Theory / Philosophy / Uncategorized

I’ve been visiting the massthink blog (populated by Ryan and Aless) for a couple of months now, but, as a bad reader, I failed to leave comments. I was thrilled not only with the content, but more so with the way in which these two have organized their site. I was inspired to see their text page (which encouraged me to put up the bibliography, still under construction) and by the way in which they […]

Acceptance!

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A paper of mine has gotten accepted to the Event and Decision conference at Claremont Graduate University! Both Taylor and I will be attending. The conversation is going to be about ontology and politics in light of Deleuze, Whitehead and Badiou. It’s really exciting; Oliver Feltham, Jeffrey Bell and Bruno Bosteels are going to be lecturing, among many others.

Schematic Confirmed

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Hurray! We’ve finally integrated all of our outlines in one place. (Stable links are available here.) Currently we’ve got notes for Serres, Bahktin, Deleuze, Debord, Flusser and Lyotard. We plan on extending this idea further with notes and commentary on different works, probably focusing particularly on Deleuze, Guattari, Badiou, Levinas and Nietzsche. Please enjoy!

Translation: Albert Lautman’s Essay on the Notions of Structure and Existence in Mathematics

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axiomatics / Brunschvicg / Deleuze / Difference and Repetition / foundations of mathematics / French Translation / Hilbert / Lautman / mathematics / metamathematics / Poirier / problematics / Russell / Uncategorized / Untranslated Theory / Whitehead

We should speak of a dialectics of the calculus rather than a metaphysics. By “dialectic” we do not mean any kind of circulation of opposing representations which would make them coincide in the identity of a concept, but the problem element in so far as this may be distinguished from the properly mathematical element of solutions. Following Lautman’s general thesis, a problem has three aspects: its difference in kind from solutions; its transcendence in relation […]

Translation: Francois Laruelle’s Beyond the Power Principle

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abstraction / French Translation / Laruelle / non-Marxism / non-philosophy / Politics / power / Uncategorized / Untranslated Theory

The following is the preface from Francois Laruelle’s Beyond the Power Principle pp. 1-9 and is an original translation by Taylor Adkins 10/09/07. Stylistic Caution A: But if everyone knew this most would be harmed by it. You yourself call these opinions dangerous for those exposed to danger, and yet you express them in public? B: I write in such a way that neither the mob, nor the populi, nor the parties of any kind […]

Translation: Raymond Ruyer and the Genesis of Living Forms

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French Translation / knowledge / la genése des formes vivantes / morphology / ontology / physiology / Raymond Ruyer / Russell / structure / Uncategorized

Ruyer, Raymond. La genése des formes vivantes. Paris: Flammarion, 1958. The following is my translation of the introduction pg 5-9. Morphology, the study of forms and their arrangements, does not present any fundamental difficulty. It needs more than precision and meticulousness. It requires, more frequently, indirect methods that demand a lot of ingenuity, like those methods that led to the structural diagrams of organic chemistry or to the genetic cartography of cellular nuclei. The results […]

Deleuze and Guattari’s Anti-Oedipus (Parts I, II)

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Anti-Oedipus 1: Desiring-MachinesFor every organ-machine, an energy machine (1).Schizophrenia and the time before the man-nature dichotomy/split (1).Nature lived as process of production (2).Oedipus presupposes a fantastic repression of desiring-machines (3).The schizophrenic experiences not nature, but nature as a process of production (3).Production is immediately consumption and a recording process, without any sort of mediation (4).The recording process and consumption directly determine production, but within the production process itself (4).Production as process:Production of production—actions and passionsProduction […]

Debord: Society of the Spectacle Notes (Part 1)

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Separation PerfectedBut certainly for the present age, which prefers the sign to the thing signified, the copy to the original, representation to reality, the appearance to the essence…illusion only is sacred, truth profane. Nay, sacredness is held to be enhanced in proportion as truth decreases and illusion increases, so that the highest degree of illusion comes to be the highest degree of sacredness.–Feuerbach, Preface to the second edition of The Essence of ChristianityFeuerbach—copy/original—simulacrum—Deleuze and Baudrillard?Accumulation […]

Deleuze’s Bergson (Part I)

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Bergsonism: Intuition as MethodIntuition as method entails: 1. stating and creating problems; 2. discovery of genuine differences in kind; 3. apprehension of real time (duration) (14).First rule: Apply the test of true and false to problems themselves. Condemn false problems and reconcile truth and creation at the level of problems (15).We are wrong to believe that true and false only refer to solutions—the Schoolmaster gives problems that we are forced to solve, but the true […]

Lyotard, The Postmodern Condition (Introduction, Parts 1-2)

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This book enquires on the condition of knowledge today in highly developed societies (xxiii).It is also situated in the crisis of narratives (xxiii).Philosophy legitimates the rules of science’s language games (xxiii).‘Modern’ designates any science that legitimates itself with reference to a metadiscourse in relation to certain grand narratives (such as the dialectics of Spirit, the hermeneutics of meaning, the eancipation of the rational or working subject, or the creation of wealth) (xxiii).‘Postmodern’ designates incredulity toward […]