January 15th, 2011

S.C. Hickman

Speculative Aesthetics

Just noticed this:

Speculative Aesthetics 2010 - 2011

Co-conveners: N. Katherine Hayles (Literature) and Priscilla Wald (English)


The Speculative Aesthetics Working Group will meet monthly to discuss an emerging philosophical movement called "speculative realism," which has become increasingly popular in the early years of the twenty-first century. Contemporary philosophers such as Quentin Meillassoux, Graham Harman, Iain Hamilton Grant, and Ray Brassier have sought to explore dimensions of the radically nonhuman through critiques of Kantian philosophy.  

The working group will examine the central texts of speculative realism through the question, “What kinds of aesthetics and materialities can speculative realism generate?”  In addition to the works of the speculative realist philosophers, we will read works that gesture toward this question of speculative aesthetics: Reza Negarestani’s post-horror fiction; Steven Shaviro’s work on philosophers Deleuze, Whitehead, and Kant; Ian Bogost’s object-oriented “alien phenomenology”; China Mieville’s "New Weird" fiction; and Dominic Fox’s theorization of dejection and dysphoria.  

The working group will approach the question of speculative aesthetics from multiple disciplinary perspectives – historical, philosophical, literary, and artistic – seeking less to answer the question but rather to experiment with and speculate on the question of the aesthetic possibilities generated by speculative realism. 

More info here: http://fhi.duke.edu/projects/interdisciplinary-working-groups/speculative-aesthetics

Too bad I'm stuck in the snow here in Wyoming... sounds fun there at Duke! Oh well... I'll enjoy the great outdoors on my snowmobile and snowboard watching all the objects fly by as I burrow may through the cool crisp air and the smell of pines and the site of deer and moose wandering out of the forests...