Craptastic Academic Drek! (on My Desk)

We bloggers (ack) are always tediously prating upon whatever trivial notion enters our field of vision, but today I’ve decided to jot down some things I’m not doing.  Here’s a few interesting, but unread articles collecting dust on my desk (in handy pdf form).  What can I do?  I’m distracted by the Euro Cup (which generally involves beers) and now, in addition to that there’s the near constant Wimbledon coverage (where I can watch everyone mis-pronounce Shahar Peer’s name, it’s not Shah-har, it’s Shachhhh-arr, Mary Carrillo!).  Watching Dick Enberg falling apart on air is always fun, give these people a coffee break!  Not to mention, um, you know, teaching. There’s always that.  These all look worth paying some attention to, someday:

1. Michel Henry, “Material Phenomenology (or, Pathos and Language)” [pathos_and_language]

2. Here’s Jacques Derrida and Francois Laruelle chit chatting about some stuff:  “Controversy over the Possibility of a Science of Philosophy”  [laruelle-derrida]

And here’s two by Graham Harman:

3. “On Vicarious Causation” [harman_vicarious_causation]

4. “The Metaphysics of Objects: Latour and his Aftermath” [harmangraham-latour]


“Diagrammatic Metaphilosophy:” Mullarkey and “Post-Continental Philosophy”

One of the central problems throughout Mullarkey’s Post-Continental Philosohy: An Outline is if everything is immanence then it would only make sense that a philosophy of immanence itself would be, well, immanent. After having read Deleuze, Henry and Badiou and showing how each has a blind spot with regards to such an understanding of immanence, error and explanation–Badiou’s pure quantity and Henry’s pure quality supplement each other but end in monism, for one example–Mullarkey turns to examine the “non-philosophy” of Francois Laruelle, a figure whom I’ve never read a word until now (and which vacillates between very interesting/novel and sheer nonsense). This chapter is far more forgiving then the three previous chapters dealing with Deleuze, Henry and Badiou. Here’s Mullarkey quoting Laruelle from an article in Angelaki, “What Can Non-Philosophy do?”:

Non-Philosophy is not an intensified reduplication of philosophy, a meta-philosophy, but rather its simplification. It does not represent a change in scale with respect to philosophy, as though the latter was maintained for smaller elements. It is the “same” structure but in a more concentrated, more focused form (138).

Somewhat reminiscent of Foucault, as Mullarkey suggests, is one of Laruelle’s central claims: all philosophy/philosophical positions are ultimately circular because they rest upon a decision through which its whole structure is given all at once. For Laruelle, all of the terminology, grammar, neologisms etc of a philosophy show themselves all at once tautologically, rather than as an argumentative series. This circularity can only be overcome vis a vis non-philosophy, a move which literally draws out the movement of philosophy all the while “bracketing” philosophy. Continue reading