Nature is not natural and can never be naturalized — Graham Harman

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

High Frequency

Tone. High frequency tone. Autocorrect turned that into "high frequency time" in a recent post.

That was also true! But the smell of pine is like a high frequency tone...

Sonic Acts

These are the people who have invited me to the far north. Amazing, right?

Disobedient Objects

At the V&A. Doesn't it look nice? And isn't disobedience sort of hard-wired into objects?

That's an interesting title. It could be some objects that don't obey humans. Or a hypothesis that all objects are disobedient...nice one.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Even Though I'm Supposed to Know This: Oh God No

This piece of news.

Lovely Art Thing 2

It seems as if I can still be involved at the Serpentine in week 3 of October!

Lovely Art Thing

Haim Steinbach let me watch the restricted (because of copyright things and consent things) video of our talk at the Menil.

Oh I wish you could see it. When I'm in dialogue I'm not all shouty like I am when I do lectures. I seem to like to push people in lectures.

Also we came up with some very touching funny and insightful things.

And he's sent me a drawing!

Jón Gnarr Your Wish Came True

We do have a reader for the Hyperobjects audiobook!

Not that reader, but maybe that's a good thing.

We both thought it might on balance be Morgan Freeman, for not-his sterling work reading a sorority letter on YouTube.

What Theory Classes Are Too Often Like

Hey! Every day will be like a road trip! With your dad! To school! So how about those rainbow suspenders, huh? Dad- - 
Pretty cool way to keep your pants up, eh? - 
I see these kids now with "jive" printed on their shirts.
Now, I can teach you how you're supposed to say "jive." 
Dad! Please just drive the car, Dad.
I'm watching the road, sweetie.
"You jive turkey!" See? You got to sass it.
"Quit jivin' me, turkey!" You got to sass it.
A turkey is a bad person.
KFSL- Fossil 103.
Classic hits from ABBA to Zeppelin, comma, Led.
Tell him! 
Uh, Mr.Simpson, sir? Can you please change the radio station? 
But this is Grand Funk Railroad.
You guys back there know Grand Funk, right? Nobody knows the band Grand Funk? The wild, shirtless lyrics of Mark Farner? The bong-rattling bass of Mel Schacher? The competent drum work of Don Brewer? Oh, man! For more information on Grand Funk consult your school library.
When I listen to a really good song I start nodding my head, like I'm saying "Yes!" to every beat.
"Yes! Yes! Yes! This rocks!" And then sometimes I switch it up, like- "No! No! No! Don't stop a-rockin'!" Dad, please.
You're embarrassing us.
No, I'm not.
I'm teaching you about rock music.
Now, Grand Funk Railroad paved the way for Jefferson Airplane which cleared the way for Jefferson Starship. The stage was now set for The Alan Parsons Project which I believe was some sort of hovercraft.  --- The Simpsons, Season 7, episode 21 (“‘Homerpalooza”)

Monday, August 25, 2014

Norway and Russia! Norway and Russia!

And far far north to boot! In October! I imagine that the aurora may be in evidence. Please please pretty please with sugar on top.

In Kirkenes. And Nikel (a little bit south south east) in Russia.

What I mean is, I'm giving two talks at a Sonic Acts conference called (wait for it wait for it) Dark Ecology. 

How could I not go!?

The talk has a nice title too and it's thanks to Douglas Kahn, as is my favorite new headshot. Doug is a really really awesome chap and a really really astute writer on sound. He recently taught me that the eardrum vibrates 100th of the width of an atom of hydrogen when it hears the quietest sound it can hear. For reals!!

The title is

“Human Thought at Earth Magnitude”

My New Graduate Theory Class

In general, theory (Greek, theoria) is a cognitive state suffused with some kind of affect (emotion). Theory is a questioning attitude towards reality and towards pregiven thoughts (assumptions). It is also a feeling of wonderment. Philosophy's basic affect is wonderment (Plato, Theaetetus).

Then there is “theory.” Which is what we mostly know from English Lit. and Comp. Lit. classes.

“Theory” is really a very small bandwidth of continental philosophy (i.e. not analytic, mostly English and USA) that literature scholars have latched onto since about 1950.

Quite often, because of this selectiveness, and because of the forgetting that selections were made by someone somewhere; and because of disciplinary chauvinism: “theory” (which is not singular at all, really) has often proclaimed that it is bigger than, or beyond, or above, or more radical than, philosophy.

Not true! That's a bit narcissistic if you think about it. Precisely because they work in big, powerful departments (mostly, at least compared with other humanities ones), English scholars should get out more…

Also, this splendid isolation has led to a not so great syndrome: the use of “theorists” as candy sprinkles on an essay.

In this class, we shall study a much broader bandwidth of philosophy to find out about aesthetics, which are the basis of all theory.

We will be taking the approach of a committed scholar, rather than the overview approach. Not an ism a week, then.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Glasgow lecture

September 19 at University of Strathclyde for a conference called The End of Place as We Know It

"...and I Feel Fine?"


Hyper 2

I also really like how the (phasing?) rhodes is playing two bars' worth of almost random sequences of one single note, quantized (to 16th notes naturally). In tandem with the metallic toms that sound like Indian drumming. Brilliant. Like Zakir Hussain!

Where else did one find the weird neural pathway to the term hyperobject? : ) 

Victorian Socialist Goth OOO

Yes. This should put paid to the silly idea that OOO is about being a bourgeois pig or whatever. I'm an anarchist pig anyway (!) but this wonderful book about Ruskin and Morris and gothic should convince you. What Lars Spuybroek says about the procedural rhetoric of gothic, the way it refuses a substance/accidents binary, and the way it leans towards the socialist thoughts of those two guys should do the trick.

Morris is condemned in some purist Marxist circles for being kitsch. Awesome! Bring on the kitsch!

Just look at what Ruskin says in a book called (wow) The Ethics of the Dust:

Things are not either alive, or wholly dead.


Wow there's a lot of cool things in my mail this morning. Must be the start of term...

Haim Steinbach!!!!

I'm almost done with my essay on him for a major retrospective book about his work. What an awesome chap too.

If you don't know his work please find out about it now. It's really super duper about nonhuman beings, without being didactic or dogmatic.

I will never think about shelves or shelving in a superficial way again!