Peter Osborne, Radical Philosophy, Zizek

More than everything / less than nothing

Today I came across Peter Osborne’s brave review of Slavoj Zizek’s heavy-weight magnus-opus Less Than Nothing in Radical Philosophy. The review reads like a true ‘Everything you were always uncomfortable about in Zizek (but were afraid to proclaim)’ with numerous passages like the following:

‘That said, Less Than Nothing is carefully, if some­what gauchely structured, as the story of a seduction. It begins with ‘The Drink Before’ (Part I): some emblematic, fast-forward philosophical prehistory -Plato, Christianity, Fichte. It progresses to ‘The Thing Itself, in two parts: Hegel and Lacan. And it ends with ‘The Cigarette After’ (Part IV), during which smoke is puffed in the faces of some competing philosophical positions: Badiou, Heidegger and ‘The Ontology of Quantum Physics”.

‘The Conclusion – presumably ‘A Quick Exit’, before things get complicated – is a restatement of Žižek’s own version of Lacanian politics (‘The Political Suspension of the Ethical’) with various other bits and pieces thrown in along the way’.

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Ecology, Giddens, Object Oriented Ontology, Timothy Morton, Zizek

2x The End of Nature

‘The end of nature’ is – whether as a concept, term or slogan – much used in both academic and ‘popular’ circles. In its most well-known usage, probably by Anthony Giddens, it has been employed to argue that there is now, in our times, no longer any or, at least, few aspects of the physical world untouched by human intervention. This is not to say that there is no ‘natural environment’, but merely serves to highlight a change in subjective attitudes towards this environment; where people, for hundreds of years, worried about what nature could do to us – catastrophes, floods etc. – ‘somewhere over the past fifty years or so’ (as Giddens remarks) people stopped worrying about what nature could do to us, but what we have done to nature.
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Object Oriented Ontology, Philosophy, Speculative Realism, Stengers, Zizek

The Speculative Turn

Finally, The Speculative Turn is available as a free downloadable PDF file on re-press.com. For many reasons, the release of this book can be seen as a major event; just consider the amount of highly relevant and contemporary contributors (from Harman and Latour to Zizek to Bryant to Stengers) and the fact that the book can be seen as the ‘official’ starting point of what is commonly called ‘object oriented ontology’ or ‘speculative realism’. You can find the book here.

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