Book Announcement: Object-Oriented Philosophy

Originally posted on Deontologistics:

I promised an exciting announcement, and here it is. As anyone who has read this blog for a while knows, I have a long history with Object-Oriented Philosophy/Ontology, having criticised it quite extensively on this blog before (see here). I even published an article on it two years ago, titled ‘The Noumenon’s New Clothes’ (see here), which was quite optimistically subtitled ‘Part I’. I’m sure some people have been wondering what happened to Part II. The answer is that it got a bit out of hand, and the two part article grew into a full length book, which is about to be published by Urbanomic as part of their excellent new set of titles.

Of course, this might strike some people as overkill, but I’m quite proud of the book. It is a pretty scathing critique of Harman’s work, but it is more than just this. At the very least…

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Two Sentiments Inspired by Contemporary Academia

Having only been out of graduate school for a few years, I still have plenty of contacts still working on their degrees. One thing I envy about these students, aside from the fact that they still get to sit in on seminars and don’t yet know the crushing depression of the job market, is their travel funding. Where I work, at a public, state-funded university, there is no premium on research. As a result, there is little travel funding available aside for the faculty. I’m allotted just enough to cover one domestic conference, if I drive myself, stay in the cheapest hotel, and don’t spend too much on food. It seems like all my graduate school contacts are constantly traveling the country and, more enviously, heading overseas for conferences, workshops, and summer schools. I remember the days when that was realistic for me, but now that student loans are due and my funding is minimal, I find myself passing up on many conferences and other networking opportunities domestic and foreign.

This is one aspect of my life in the “Ivory Tower.” That nickname really bothers me, more and more, because it never feels like I’m living in an Ivory Tower at all. A brick and concrete institution, maybe. A public facility, yes. But there’s really very little that’s elevated, insulated, or prestigious about my university. I’m not treated like royalty, and I don’t enjoy any sort of special protection or security. I’m not as vulnerable as all the adjuncts out there, but my job security year-to-year is only marginally better than theirs. Only a portion of academics enjoy life in the Ivory Tower, and that number is diminishing every year. So, can we please stop referring to all of academe as the Ivory Tower? It’s not only a misrepresentation of the state of things, it’s offensive to the growing population of contingent labor that’s educating our children.

CFP: Workshop on “The Ideas of Phenomenology”

At the Center for Contemporary European Philosophy, Radboud University Nijmegen:

Call for Papers
International workshop and graduate student meeting on
The Ideas of Phenomenology. Contemporary Varieties of Phenomenological Research
Center for Contemporary European Philosophy & Center for the History of Philosophy and Science
Radboud University Nijmegen – Faculty of Philosophy, Theology and Religious Studies
Nijmegen, the Netherlands
19-20 March 2015
Keynote speakers:
Sara Heinämaa (University of Jyväskylä, University of Helsinki)
Nicolas de Warren (University of Leuven)
A truly paradoxical and puzzling situation affects contemporary debates in phenomenology. On the one hand, over the last century phenomenology has been widely and diversely disseminated in all major fields of philosophical research and in a variety of scientific domains. In effect, a considerable number of philosophers and (neuro-)scientists make use of phenomenological or phenomenologically inspired concepts and approaches in order to address basic questions in ontology, practical philosophy, epistemology, philosophy of mind, philosophy of religion etc. On the other hand, the question ‘what is phenomenology?’ has become significantly less important, with the result that ‘phenomenology’ seems to be nothing but a label attached to philosophical perspectives which do not seem to have much to do with each other. The ambition of this international conference is precisely to re-address the question ‘what is phenomenology’. Instead of interpreting or presenting the conceptions of phenomenology that have been elaborated by the major authors of the phenomenological movement, the speakers will discuss the more or less implicit ideas of phenomenology that define today’s phenomenological landscape.The conference includes two sections. The international workshop is intended for senior researchers (post-doc and professors). The graduate student meeting is intended for PhD candidates and research master students. Obviously, graduate students are invited to attend the international workshop as well.

Papers will be presented in English (30 min. presentation + 20 min. collective discussion).

Organizers: Antonio Cimino & Cees Leijenhorst (international workshop); Cees Leijenhorst & Carli Coenen (graduate student meeting)

Deadline for the submission of abstracts (1,000 words) and CV (1 page): October 1, 2014.

Please send abstracts (prepared for blind review) and CV to:
a.cimino@ftr.ru.nl (international workshop)
c.coenen@ftr.ru.nl (graduate student meeting)

A decision about the submitted abstracts will be made by the 1st of November 2014 at the latest.