I recently learned of the Pittsburgh Continental Philosophy Reading Group. They organize discussion of, obviously, continental philosophy texts. They meet in the East End Book Exchange in the Bloomfield neighborhood. It’s really great to see this kind of extra-academic activity going on in the city!
Their website is HERE.
My book Levinas Unhinged gets a very positive and nicely written review by Will Rees at 3:AM Magazine. I couldn’t be happier that the book is described as an “act of vandalism,” but one that is also “reinvigorating.” It seems like it’s accomplishing exactly what I wanted it to accomplish.
Rees finds some minor points of contention, all of which I think are fair and warrant the closer attention he calls for. At one point he says that a “decisively narrow conceptualization” of phenomenology informs my reading of Levinas. He is absolutely right about this. I give a rationale for this, and a defense of it, in my two forthcoming books, Plastic Bodies and The End of Phenomenology. Hopefully he’ll find them as worthwhile as he does the Levinas book.
This article has been making the rounds for a while now, but it’s worth posting again…and again. It’s so right, it’s terrifying how right it is.
This is happening at Slippery Rock University, where I teach.
At the request of someone on Twitter, I’m posting here the draft blurb for The End of Phenomenology. It’s possible that the exact wording will change for the cover, but the substance will remain.
In the twentieth century phenomenology promised a method that could get philosophy ‘back to the things themselves’. But phenomenology has always been haunted by the specter of antirealism. It has tried many strategies to escape this ghost, but to no avail. Antirealism is part and parcel of the method of phenomenology. The End of Phenomenology shows how, in the twenty-first century, speculative realism aims to do what phenomenology never could: provide a philosophical method that disengages the anthropocentric approach to the things themselves in order to chronicle the complex, and often strange, realm of nonhuman reality. Through a focused reading of the methodological statements and metaphysical commitments of canonical phenomenologists – including Husserl, Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty, and Levinas – alongside the original proponents of speculative realism, Graham Harman, Quentin Meillassoux, Ray Brassier, Iain Hamilton Grant, and key figures in speculative realism’s second wave, this book demonstrates why speculative realism is replacing phenomenology as the beacon of realism in contemporary continental philosophy.
This will be the cover for The End of Phenomenology, due out next year with Edinburgh University Press and available for preorder at Amazon UK.
I pulled this off the top of my bottle of orange juice.
Someone’s life involves making these things. Someone’s life involves running a company that makes these things. Someone manages a factory that makes these things. Someone owns the company that makes these things; these things are their business. The funny thing is that there’s no one in the world who dreams of making these things as a kid. And yet, there they are on top of my orange juice.