“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

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Columbia UP will Publish the Wellek Lectures

So, I got these really nice readers' reports on Dark Ecology, my Wellek Lectures from last year (you can hear them on this blog if you go to Past Talks). It's very nice, because the readers were less acquainted with my work, and they really liked it.

I had always envisaged Ecology without Nature as the first book in a trilogy, and Dark Ecology is the third installment. Harvard published the first one and The Ecological Thought, and because Columbia publish the Welleks (for instance Derrida's Memoires for Paul De Man), they are doing Dark Ecology.

The best would be if Irigaray could endorse it, as she features large in the book. I discovered that my version of OOO basically made me an early 70s French feminist. Yippee! My favorite favorite class at Oxford was run by Stephanie Flood (hi Stephanie if you're still around!) as part of the student-run Oxford English Limited collective. We studied French feminism, in particular Marks and de Courtivron's anthology, which is due for a re-issue (take note presses!). And my very very favorite piece of writing of the time was not Marx or Derrida, but something by Chantal Chawaf from that anthology.

Finally I get to acknowledge that debt and slough off the last of the low-self-esteem peer-pressure intellectual affiliations...it's been coming but Dark Ecology is probably my most individuated. Finally I go up against (a certain form of) Marxism. Through the 90s I'd gradually seen I was more of a deconstructor than anything else, though I've always been a big Adorno fan and it's a line from him that is the epigraph of Dark Ecology. It didn't hurt that Derrida was like the first adult to really like my stuff.

Then I heard that my version of Derrida was OOO--madness! So if the shoe fits as they say...That's right, I'm The Weird One.

It's nice to discover what you think rather than impose your concept. It turns out I'm an anarchist who says about quasars and spoons what Irigaray says about the being she calls woman.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Memory knows before knowing remembers (William Faulkner)