Be Less Smart

Brilliant essay:

I am a dumb writer, perhaps one of the dumbest that’s ever lived. Whenever I have an idea, I question myself whether it is sufficiently dumb. I ask myself, is it possible that this, in any way, could be considered smart? If the answer is no, I proceed. I don’t write anything new or original. I copy pre-existing texts and move information from one place to another. A child could do what I do, but wouldn’t dare to for fear of being called stupid.

“The Sniper is the person who is always on to some new book or author six months before everyone else. They use this author to fire apparently devastating salvos against everyone else, while hinting at some ominous coming paradigm shift triggered by this author that will call everything we ever believed into question.”

Graham Harman finally comes up with a nickname for himself.

Here is Graham “The Sniper” Harman in action:

The French philosopher and novelist Tristan Garcia was born in Toulouse in 1981. This makes him rather young to have written such an imaginative work of systematic philosophy as Forme et objet, the latest entry in the MétaphysiqueS series at Presses universitaires de France. But this reference to Garcia’s youthfulness is not a form of condescension: by publishing a complete system of philosophy in the grand style, he has already done what none of us in the older generation of speculative realists has done so far. His book is sophisticated, erudite, rigorous, imaginatively rich, and abundant in worldly wisdom– despite the author’s conclusion that wisdom does not exist.

Always on to some new untranslated work that will forever change philosophy and so on. Reading new books that no one read yet and praising them to heavens. Beautiful.

Search Engine Terms: You Ask, We Answer.

Question: Can I publish the same article twice? 
Answer: Of course you can. You can publish the same article thrice. Some scholars publish the same article (or the same book) over and over again their entire life. No need to worry about this, kid.

Question: Post Hegelian philosophy?
Answer: There is no such thing. Whoever told you to look it up is an idiot – punch him in the face.

Question: If you can put your five finders through it…
Answer: …it’s not an object anymore – contact your local object-oriented philosopher to inquire about what to do next.

Question: Learning German to read Hegel…
Answer: …is a waste of your time. It will take most of your life and by the time you are good at it, you’ll realize you wasted most of your life on a useless skill. It’s like learning French to read Derrida or learning Russian to read Dostoevsky. Get a life!

Снимок экрана 2014-01-06 в 2.42.50 после полудня

“The white-collar worker has kind of a Bob Cratchit attitude,” he explained. “He feels he’s a half-step below the boss. The boss says, ‘Call me Harry.’ He feels he’s made it. You go to a shoe store, they got six managers. They call everybody a manager, but they pay ’em all shit.”

Interesting piece at Salon about wages, unions and workers: 

As Oil Can Eddie pointed out, a class consciousness discourages office workers from unionizing. There’s a popular discounting company in Chicago called Groupon, where the account executives — who are all expected to have bachelors’ degrees — earn $37,800 a year. Adjusted for modern dollars, that’s about Stanley’s starting wage, without overtime. Because they’re educated and sit safely at desks, they don’t think of themselves as blue-collar mopes who need to strike for higher pay and better working conditions.

…largely it’s just a big, expensive celebration of the academic status quo.

Interesting piece on the upcoming MLA convention in Chicago:

They’ll all be there: muckety-mucks whose rings ache for kissing; frazzled early-career professors angling for tenure; and, of course, hordes of desperate graduate students and barely employed Ph.D.s, hoping to break into what everyone actually calls “the profession.”