Thursday, November 22, 2012

Robbert on Latour's latest

Robbert posted a brief summary review of a recently released translation of the intro and first chapter of Latour's latest work. From Robbert:

"Recall that at the start of his introduction Latour gave us an account of an encounter, between the industrialist and the climate scientist; legislating between claims was the central issue. But also recall that this legislation will not be accomplished by an appeal to language games or speech acts (though it might include these). Rather, Latour now argues, this legislation will be attempted through metaphysics and ontological pluralism. To put it differently, it is being over language that is at stake for Latour. Here we might ask: Isn’t the appeal to metaphysics — to ontotheology, more precisely — what caused so much trouble in the past, before the advent of critical philosophy and the glorious decapitation of speculative philosophy? Wasn’t confusing beings with a single Being — White Men, God, Selfish Genes, Atoms, whatever — the whole problem with the violent nature of metaphysics to begin with? Maybe, but this is not what Latour means by 'metaphysics.'”

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