“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

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Subject to Change Liveblog 14

Callum Ingram (UVa)

“Democrats in Space: Critical Geography and Material Efficacy” 

How to account for objects, eg the persistence of architectural built space in the power of the Supreme Court
Rawls: misses how objects condition politics and exceed signification
Hobbes: natural laws as social products
Meyer: constitutive model, good but vague (political norms develop within bounds of constitutive possibilities)
Harvey: things are a variable, not an expression nor container of politics: reduction to normative structures
Latour, Whatmore: theory constrained by the fact that everything is social circumstances
pragmatism: don’t we need what works best for our politics?
yet this misses out on OOO and new materialisms, that things are not able to be what we say what they are
I’m a democrat, and does that mean I get to push things around?

This was a most interesting talk. My notes have not done it justice, because it was fast, fierce and awesome. Sorry! There was an incredible handout which I shall try to get. 

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