Friday, July 14, 2017

The Allure of Things

Process and Object in Contemporary Philosophy. Edited by Roland Faber and Andrew Goffey (NY: Bloomsbury, 2014). Available free here. Bryant's updated version of "Time of the object" is chapter 4. Also recall this brief FB thread on it. The comments therefrom:

Seems he added sections of Democracy of Objects to this paper. Relating to the Captain Metaphysics comic, I like this:

"What Derrida articulates in this passage is a variation of Aristotle’s concept of primary substances; for the very being of primary substance is to exceed and be detachable from every context. Hence, in the case of New Historicism which strives to reduce an articulation to its context, we encounter a sort of transcendental illusion where the historicist is not discovering the contexture of relations that gave the work meaning, but rather creating a contexture, a regime of attraction, that generates meaning as an effect. It is for this reason that I refer to substance under the title of presence as local manifestation, for the manifestation of any substance is a function of its contingent context, such that every substance, in principle, harbors the power of falling into other contexts and thereby of manifesting itself otherwise than it does in this context. [...] Derrida’s account of time and diffĂ©rance gives us one way of providing a formal ontological demonstration for the thesis that substances are withdrawn" (89-90).

And the conclusion, a variation on Edwards' syntegrity:

"Derrida argues that we must abandon the thesis that the synthesis of time is accomplished by a preexistent transcendental identity or unity that affects the synthesis of traces of the past. Rather, we must see the unity and identity of the substance as arising from the interplay of these traces and differences themselves. The substantiality of substance must, like Whitehead’s 'societies,' be seen as that which perpetually produces itself from itself without a homunculus presiding over the synthesis of these differences. In this regard, the substantiality of substance, its identity and unity, would not be an identity and unity that precedes this synthesis, but would be the very
activity of synthesis itself. It is precisely an account of a decentralized process of synthesis in autopoietic and allopoietic machines that Luhmann gives us" (90).

A lot of discussion of Derrida in the Captain Metaphysics comic thread, but there's a lot of material in this thread that responds to it that goes way beyond a kennilingus (purely relativistic) MGM orientation and situates him smack dab inside an IPS, withdrawn warts and all. Plus there is always reconstruction with every deconstruction (aka de/re) via his notion of iteration, something Bryant discusses without using that word.

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