Conferences and Events

It’s been a busy few weeks. Last week I went to the 21st Century Heidegger conference in Dublin (organised by Paul Ennis of AHB), which was very good, despite confirming certain Heideggerian stereotypes. My paper did not go down particularly well, but I suppose this was to be expected. A few people have asked me for copies of the paper, so it’s probably easier to just post it up here (PDF, PPT Slides). I must warn people that it’s very dense, given that I had to cram it into 20 minutes, and it might be useful to read it in parallel with my recent post on Ereignis (here). Another qualifier I should add is that my position on what metaphysics is in relation to Heidegger’s work has changed since my earlier posts, and so if you find any apparent contradictions there, choose in favour of the newer stuff.

On top of the Heidegger conference, I’ve just gotten back from the Accelerationism event in London (details here). This was also very enjoyable, although there was a diversity of opinion about exactly what accelerationism is and what it entails. Benjamin Noys has already put up his paper (here), and I’m sure we’ll get other papers and the audio soon enough. I find myself pretty squarely in the anti-accelerationist camp, though not because of anti-market commitments (Marxist or otherwise), but the debate is certainly an interesting one.

Finally, the deadline for submissions for the Science and Metaphysics event is tomorrow. Don’t worry if you don’t have anything written up yet, as we’re reasonably flexible, but please do submit something! A thousand words will do! I should get back to work on my own piece…

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Appropriate descriptors: (neo)rationalist, left-accelerationist, socratic wanderer, heretical Platonist, computational Kantian, minimalist-Hegelian, heterodox Foucauldian, dialectical insurgent, conceptual mercenary, philosopher of fortune.

3 thoughts on “Conferences and Events”

  1. Thank you for the London paper on Heid. Cannot argue with it, as I have not yet completed a reading, not to mention a study, of the Beitrage. My only issue is whether “strife” is adequately described as a “unity” rather than an “ambiguity.”

    One typo. In the paragraph before “modes” of Being, the verb “are” seems to be missing. (Or are you trying to show us by its absence? 🙂

  2. Many thanks, Pete. Not being much of a Heideggerian I can only be an uninformed appreciator here, but the paper makes a lot sense of such morsels of Heidegerian lore as I possess. I’m curious to know if there were substantive points of disagreement with your take.

  3. Well, my major frustration when presenting it was that I didn’t get much specific criticism, but I can give you a few places where lots of Heideggerians would disagree:-

    1. Many Heideggerians don’t think that there is the kind of change between the early and later work that I see. There are at least two ways this is articulated: i) that Heidegger never thought he could provide an ahistorical answer to the question of Being as he originally formulated it (as I claim), and ii) that Heidegger was always only interested in Being thought as truth, or the structure of beings as a whole, and never principally interested in the structure of beings as such.

    2. A lot of people object to my claim that Ereignis is independent of the existence of Dasein. These people tend to hold that because Ereignis is nothing other than the process through which Being is given to man, there is no Ereignis without man. This is a difficult dispute to untangle as the texts are nowhere approaching clear on this point. Nonetheless, I think my reading is better. I think that Ereignis can be seen as that through which strife happens, and thus in some sense independent of any and all particular happenings of strife.

    3. It’s possible to object to my use of the terms ‘essence’ and ‘existence’ to characterise the relation between Ereignis and Dasein, because Heidegger famously tried to show that the ways in which these notions were understood varied between metaphysical epochs, and thus that they could not be assumed unproblematically. There is something to this, but at the same time we have to recognise that Heidegger deploys the notions himself, particularly ‘essence’, which he uses a great deal. Some might argue at this point that Heidegger transfigures the notion of essence in some way, and although this is to some extent true, I don’t think that this transfiguration could be understood to be independent of his wider theoretical apparatus (which is articulated through the use of the term). In short, I think we can use both terms in a reasonably minimal way in order to express what Heidegger was getting at.

    4. Some Heideggerians argue that what Heidegger means by Dasein completely changes after the Contributions, and that this would invalidate my position. I accept that Heidegger’s way of talking about Dasein changes, but I really don’t think it’s as big a shift as it’s sometimes made out to be. Heidegger switches back from talking about Dasein to talking about ‘man’ and ‘mortals’, which are clearly supposed to be playing the same role, and so it can’t be that Dasein becomes something other than the designation for human being it was in B&T. As for the account of Dasein itself, Heidegger’s major changes are the increasing importance of mood (which is accompanied by a reconfiguration of the account of mood presented in B&T) and a revised account of language in which it is no longer derivative of significance but constitutive for it. Neither of these changes poses any problems for my account.

    There’s probably more than this, but that’s what I can tell you off of the top of my head.

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