“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

Monday, July 23, 2012

Flatter-y Will Get You Everywhere

By Graham. It is pretty mystifying, this idea that since only humans understand what I'm writing here (hmm), then if you talk about anything that isn't human, you are contradicting yourself.

As Graham points out, that idea makes a mockery of science.

Two random extra observations:

Is this very language that I'm writing now totally human? Why do guns go bang and pan (French) but not squiggle or squawk?

And furthermore:

The very idea of contradiction isn't strictly human. 2+2 isn't human. I can't talk about math and logic because I'm talking about stuff that it outside my humanness?


Joseph Charles said...

I wish that you and Graham and Levi not respond to these kinds of arguments. Mostly because they are not genuine criticisms, but thinly veiled attacks born of...frustration? I don't know. I looked a few blogs yesterday---almost exclusively dedicated to OOO criticism. I'm not sure what to think except that I feel pity for these individuals. In any case, the arguments are out there, and people know which ones are genuine and which ones are simply not.

Most of the blogs that I go to "discussing" object-oriented ontology are not worth the time to even dismiss. Let them criticize the void.

Joseph Charles said...

*borne, with an E! ;-)

Joseph Charles said...

To my way of thinking, you should only spend time with ideas worth the trouble, with something that is a real rival, so when I see all so much criticism of OOO that is, at the same time, saying that it is beneath the level of rational discourse, I say, here is a contradiction. You don't waste time, post after post, comment after comment, with something so stupid and inane. No, you dedicate your time to worthy challenges. This is why OOO is at its best when in confrontation and engagement with Whitehead, Heidegger, Badiou, Latour, Žižek, Deleuze, DeLanda, et al. Those are worthy adversaries. There's a performative contradiction going on, but it's not OOO.

Joseph Charles said...

Oh, and I forgot Brassier and Meillassoux, who are probably the greatest adversaries of object-oriented ontology. Are they dedicating their time online to "take down" an ontology that they supposedly find worthless in the first place? Uh, no. They don't waste their time. They are doing their own work, their own thinking, pursuits that have affirmative value for them and so should all of these trolls. Of course, then they would cease to be trolls and that's expecting a lot of them.