“Was not their mistake once more bred of the life of slavery that they had been living?—a life which was always looking upon everything, except mankind, animate and inanimate—‘nature,’ as people used to call it—as one thing, and mankind as another, it was natural to people thinking in this way, that they should try to make ‘nature’ their slave, since they thought ‘nature’ was something outside them” — William Morris

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Object-Oriented Rhetoric Class

I'm teaching rhetoric as a graduate theory class this quarter and would really appreciate any advice anyone has to give me, so feel free to comment on my choices, topics and so on. As you can see the conclusion will be OOO, which I find very exciting. Throughout we're going to keep testing to see how far we can bend things away from human reference.

So far my syllabus is:
1) Introduction.
2) The pre-Socratics.
3) Language and Idea. Plato and Neoplatonism.
4) Technique. Aristotle, Quintillian, Horace.
5) God. Maimonides, Augustine, Eckhart, Milton.
6) The sublime. Longinus, Burke, Kant.
7) Production. Nietzsche, Marx, Freud.
8) Deconstruction. Heidegger, Derrida.
9) Objects. McLuhan, Bogost, Harman, Bogost, Barnett, Gale, Reid.


Henry Warwick said...

Pre Socratics?

Pyrrho of Elis




Frankly, I'd skip the whole subject, or have them discuss life on Mars.


Never liked Nietzsche. Sorry. Him and Heidegger both piss me off. I'd include Adorno. And Zizek.

Kittler. Foucault.

I'd ditch God and go for activism.
Voltairine deCleyre, John Zerzan, Rosa Luxemburg, Derrick Jensen.

But it's your class. hope my ideas help.


Timothy Morton said...

Thank you Henry. Very helpful.

camerontw said...

Are you familiar with, and or interested in, for this course, or more generally, literature on the design of things as rhetorics for persuading users of those things to do this or that with said things? These are sometimes called product semantics (Krippendorf); but they can also be less semiotically interactionist, taking up Gibsonian 'affordances;' and then they might be quite structural, as in Akrich and Latour's scripts. Alan Costall's recent edited collection _Doing Things with Things_ [Ashgate] is an example (not a great one) of this kind of design-oriented philosophical anthropology. It is less object-oriented than object-based, but let me know if you want more of these sorts of references.


Timothy Morton said...

Fascinating, thanks and I'll take a look.

Nathan Gale said...

Hey Tim,

Any chance I can get a finished copy of your syllabus when you're done - that is, with specific readings? I'd really appreciate it - plus, one day I hope to be able to teach a similar course. Thanks in advance.