Objects and Encyclopedias

My second article in the Encyclopedia just posted, though it’s behind a payment firewall, HERE. The previously commissioned article, published last …

Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Literature

It is interesting to me how philosophers neatly and discreetly avoid the basis of their arguments, to rely upon a paradigm that is already been established to thereby argue something that it is not.

I think there is a basic problem with Most of the philosophies that we call realist that talk about objects, such as my hero Graham Harman , also Levi Bryant, but Ray Brassier as well.

The basic fault in all of their approaches, or I should say, the basic fault in what has developed Out of their approaches, is that their initial realization by which they have become known for talking about real objects seems to go by the wayside as their careers advance. And this is to indicate a coincidence in the advancement of careers and the necessity to develop what was once a significant into a regular and mundane and discourse of postmodern dimensions.

In short, the discussion about objects is a discussion that keeps philosophy in place. Stable in one moment of time. And indeed, if we are going to find out the truth of some thing, we want to look at it from a stationary position for a long time. We can’t have everything moving about, or trying to get somewhere. Lol. 

I feel that if we are going to get anywhere then I have toI have to place this as a personal attack. It has really nothing to do with the content of their philosophy. The significance of a philosophy about objects is that is it it is a discussion about things that exist outside of human thinking. Which is to say, that it is not ‘thought’ that contains or otherwise only knows of objects, such that we enter enter into and stay within Kantian space.

The only way that the Real Object philosophers can say that they are now talking about objects, is to say that thought has nothing to do with what they are now talking about. And the only way to do that is to rely upon Wittgenstien Shift to language, and then all of the 20th century discussions that really comes down to how we use discourse. Which is to say here, that all we need to do is merely redefine any particular term and then we’re talking about something else.

In my mind, this really just says that they are really not talking about objects in themselves at all except in as much as we have been able to re-define what any set of terms may indicate. But what does that say about the supposed objects that they are talking about then? 

It also makes me wonder why they call this “realism”, when indeed no matter where I go in the world, if I say and I’m talking about a car, everyone knows what I’m talking about no matter what language I translate it into.

It seems to me, these philosophers are either only talking about language, or they are being dishonest and what they are doing, or they are relying upon a conventional and assumed understanding of philosophy in order to make careers for themselves.


Now, I’m not saying they are wrong by doing this, somehow they’re ethically wrong. But I am saying something about the nature of the philosophy that they’re doing. And this is why I say, for anyone that wants to start talking philosophically with me about things, then a fundamental and initial question has to be “what are we trying to do in this philosophical discussion?”

Sure it’s great if all sorts of people can make a living and stimulate discussions by talking about anything anyway we want to talk about anything. Sure there’s nothing wrong with that. There’s nothing wrong with saying like, hey, we live in a capitalistic world where people want to make a living, and I really enjoy mixing up thinking and thoughts and considering various arguments and whatever, and so I’m going to spend all this time and do all this work around learning how all these concepts and thinking and thoughts mixed together in language, and then I’m going to produce my own mixture of terms and words and concepts and make a name for myself. Nothing inherently wrong with that.

However, it merely argues or it shows me that they have not moved anywhere philosophically from the 20th century, or maybe perhaps phenomenalism in general.

It just shows me that they are going to produce an argument which justifies what they’re doing. Basically, they are going to produce arguments which describes how what they are doing is the only justification for philosophy itself, that indeed that is all philosophy is in itself as an object that has nothing to do with thinking. But by now, the institutionalization of philosophy serves to make the argument that significant philosophy assumes that one wants to make a living from it, and the proof of the significance is that money has been invested and been made from the activity, for them. It establishes the argument that everything is based in the use of language axiomatically. So then, like I said, I’m not sure how people can then talk about objects that exist outside of human thought if we associate human thought with language in anyway.

Are you picking up what I am laying down? 

It makes me think that maybe at one point the Realists were actually talking about and taking seriously this quest for real objects, but then somewhere along the line they got sidetracked. But because they are already in the limelight, because now they are “being supported by various other discourses”, or maybe Form the foundation upon which a whole network of new discourses are being formed, they are thus caught in a web of language and discourses that are not now talking about objects in themselves at all, but ultimately objects that are manifested Entirely in discourse, and thought for that matter.


Not sure How anyone could make any sort of argument that could escape this fundamental facet of modern conventional philosophy that I just described in the last few paragraphs.

Can you?


For me it all comes back to Laurellian Nonphilosophy. If we are really going to own and take hold of this project about objects that has nothing to do with what definition I might have to philosophically put forth — and I mean this in the sense Contrary to how people want to say that non-philosophy is either some sort of religious position, or it is some sort of radical non-Buddhism position. Because then what they are really saying is that these philosophers that are talking and thinking about objects that arise outside of the human center, are avoiding the issue that Laurelle puts right in front of their faces.

Hence, again: What are we trying to accomplish in our philosophical discussions?


Before we start down the rabbit hole of making definition of definitions, reference upon another horse historical reference, develop my philosophy amidst the field of other discourses of philosophical weight — now, if we are to be responsible to what philosophy is in-itself , and not merely another discourse by which to make careers and names for ourselves…and again, I’m not saying there’s anything wrong at all with people making a career out of philosophy…

…I am saying that if we are going to take philosophy and things that we call philosophical seriously, for example, a realist philosophy about objects in-themselves, and for-themselves, then the first thing we have to do is be honest about what we are trying to accomplish in our particular philosophical discussions.

For, it seems to me that the assumption is that any serious philosopher must be first concerned with making a name for themselves and having a house over their head through doing philosophy.

And if that’s what it is, then let’s just call a horse a horse! Let’s say that that is what philosophy is: it is a way to make a living. And that’s it. And if that is indeed what it is, then let’s just be honest about it. Let’s look at what we are doing in philosophy and be honest about what we are doing.

Perhaps if we can be honest about that, then there might be some substance to philosophy after all. whatever it is.

But then, I would have to wonder about philosophy that is going on where people are not trying to make a living being a philosopher.

It seems like there’s something else going on…philosophically…That the philosophers that wish to talk about objects that are not human thought centered are not being able to see, grasp, or even consider.

Maybe. There are two things occurring. Two kinds of real objects.


Wait! Isn’t this what Harmon says in his ontology ??



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