Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Society and Space reviews

Two reviews (via Stuart Elden) of The Ontology of the Accident and Changing Difference at the Society and Space open website. Here:


Sunday, May 26, 2013

Levinas Unhinged by Tom Sparrow

Out now from Zer0 Books, a new book from Tom Sparrow with some focus on Catherine Malabou's work.

Levinas Unhinged

Through six heterodox essays this book extracts a materialist account of subjectivity and aesthetics from the philosophy of Emmanuel Levinas. More than a work of academic commentary that would leave many of Levinas s pious commentators aghast, Sparrow exhibits an aspect of Levinas which is darker, yet no less fundamental, than his ethical and theological guises. This darkened Levinas provides answers to problems in aesthetics, speculative philosophy, ecology, ethics, and philosophy of race, problems which not only trouble scholars, but which haunt anyone who insists that the material of existence is the beginning and end of existence itself.


Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Hegel on Synthetic A Priori Judgements (audio)


Catherine Malabou – Hegel on synthetic a priori judgments

Event Date: 10 – 12 May 2013
Room B01
Clore Management Centre
Birkbeck, University of London
Torrington Square
London WC1E 7HX

The Actuality of the Absolute: Hegel, Our Untimely Contemporary

Hegel is the ultimate bĂȘte noire of the last two centuries of philosophy:proponents of Lebensphilosophie, existentialists from Kierkegaard onwards, materialists, historicists, analytic philosophers and empiricists, Marxists, traditional liberals, religious moralists, deconstructionists and Deleuzians, they alldefine themselves through different modalities of rejecting Hegel. But when enemies start to speak the same language, it is a reliable sign that something is eluding them all. So what if something happens in Hegel, a break-through into a unique dimension of thought which was obliterated, rendered invisible, by the so-called post-metaphysical thought? What if the ridiculous image of Hegel as the absurd “absolute idealist” who “pretended to know everything” is an exemplary case of what Freud called Deck-Erinnerung (screen-memory), a fantasy-formation destined to cover up a traumatic truth? The task of the symposium will be to unearth aspects of this traumatic truth.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Whither Materialism? Althusser/Darwin (audio)


Event Date: 2 May 2013
Lecture Theatre E002, Granary Building,
Central Saint Martins,
London N1C 4AA
The Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy (CRMEP) and the London Graduate School in collaboration with Art and Philosophy at Central Saint Martins present:
Professor Catherine Malabou (Kingston) – Whither Materialism? Althusser/Darwin
I propose here to interpret the important shift in materialism announced by Althusser in his late writings. He affirms the necessity of moving from a teleological dialectical materialism (Hegel and Marx) to a “materialism of the encounter” (Epicurus, Spinoza). According to the latter, chance, “void,” absence of intention, and purpose are essential ontological conditions of possibility for a self-differentiating real. Darwin’s concept of natural selection will be analysed here as a possible example of such a movement. The question will then be: how can we transfer what works at the level of nature to the political? What is the difference between natural and social selection? Where is the “encounter” when norms, criteria, values and inequalities seem to be the only reality? Is it possible to build a new materialism which would inscribe the logic of nature in that of the community? In other terms, is social selection compatible with materialism?