Ep. 38 – Annemarie Mol on Ontology, Science, and Politics

Join John, Emily, and the lamp specter of B for this week’s discussion of some of the work of Dutch anthropologist and philosopher of medicine, Annemarie Mol. In this episode, we read several essays of Mol’s spanning three decades, and grappling with such questions as: who know what a woman is and how do the sciences both create and obscure her? What does Actor Network Theory (ANT) make of such terms as “coordination” and “order,” and can ANT make good on the promise of “theory” more generally? How are the “real” and “political” implicated in and through one another, and what is the ontological turn in Science and Technology Studies?

Our conversation asks about the relationship between epistemology and ontology, about the consequences of these views for democratic theory and democracy more broadly, and we even try our hand at engaging in a little Rawlsian thought experiment! We’ll leave it up to you to decide how well it plays out. The episode closes with a My Tumblr Friend from Canada question regarding some recents comments made by Bill Nye the Science Guy about the relevance of philosophy to science and in general.

We would also like to announce the launch of our new Patreon account. The first few minutes of the episode are replete with details regarding donating to the podcast, and rewards for our patrons. Please give it a listen, check out the site here, and consider sponsoring us if you are a fan! We are greatly appreciative and (we hope) appropriately humbled and reflexive by/about our neoliberal subjectivity. Thank you for your support!

Thanks to listener dmf of Synthetic Zero for suggesting we read these texts.  Requests for texts for us to discuss? Dreams for us to interpret? Advice questions for us to answer? Email us at alwaysalreadypodcast AT gmail DOT com. Subscribe on iTunes. Follow us on Twitter. Like our Facebook page. Get the mp3 of the episode here. RSS feed here. Thanks to Leah Dion and to B for the music.

 

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Ep. 19 – Maurice Merleau-Ponty, The Visible and The Invisible

On our episode this week we discuss The Visible and the Invisible (1968) by Maurice Merleau-Ponty, focusing specifically on “The Intertwining–The Chiasm” (whaaa! How do I pronounce that word?!). We first read salacious quotations peppered throughout this text, then explore what questions about objectivity, sensation and experience Merleau-Ponty attempts to answer throughout. We delve into what he potentially reveals about an ontology of the flesh, discussing the significance of his work for political transformation and feminist epistemology. We conclude this episode with two stellar questions, one from Izzy in Kentrucky dealing with the muddled yet fruitful world(s) of theory/practice/praxis, and the other from Sid in Canada, who poses to us some juicy hypotheticals. Stay tuned for our latest!

Thank you to Joe S. for suggesting we read this Merleau-Ponty! Requests for texts for us to discuss? Advice questions for the show? Email us at alwaysalreadypodcast AT gmail DOT com. Subscribe on iTunes. Like our Facebook page. Get the mp3 of the episode here. RSS feed here. This episode’s music by B and by Ricky Perry.

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Ep. 16 – Luce Irigaray

Guest co-host Amy Schiller joins John (and B, kind of) to discuss essays from This Sex Which is Not one by Luce Irigaray, as well as a short passage from her Marine Lover of Friedrich Nietzsche. The conversations open with Amy’s ‘vagina park’ overview of Irigaray’s project, seamlessly segueing into discussing Irigaray’s feminist critique of phallogocentrism in Western reason, ontology, and epistemology and the status of the feminine in her writing. The dialogue moves on to explore her appropriation of Marx in the discussion of the exchange of women as well as the critique of her essentialism and the ethics of redeeming problematic feminist pasts. The discussion ends by juxtaposing Irigaray with Nietzsche and with Beauvoir.

Requests for texts for us to discuss? Advice questions for the show? Email us at alwaysalreadypodcast AT gmail DOT com. Subscribe on iTunes. Like our Facebook page. Get the mp3 of the episode here. RSS feed here. This episode’s music by B.

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Ep. 6 – Genevieve Lloyd’s Man of Reason; Carol Gould Interview on Interactive Democracy Part II

Join B, John, and guest-host Cody Campbell for an enlightening discussion of the gendered and sexed nature of reason in western philosophy. Dealing with such topics as rationality, the role of embodiment in scientific thought, the project of feminist epistemologists, and the canonicity of the western philosophy canon, this meager assemblage of cisgender white men hopes to reveal the ongoing depths of this classic of feminism, The Man of Reason: ‘Male’ and Female’ in Western Philosophy, by Genevieve Lloyd. Who is a knower? What is knowing? And who gets to decided what constitutes knowing? Is Lloyd reinscribing some of that which she critiques? These are only a few questions we attempt to answer.

We also bring you the second part of our interview with Carol Gould  (Distinguished Professor of Philosophy and Political Science at The Graduate Center and Hunter College, CUNY) on her forthcoming book, Interactive Democracy: The Social Roots of Global Justice. This selection covers solidarity and empathy, the way Gould takes up feminist care ethics, social movements, and disciplinary boundaries between political theory and political philosophy.

Last but not least, we dispense advice on the social life of an academic and how to find the cool theory events in NYC.

Requests for texts for us to discuss? Advice questions to submit? Email us at alwaysalreadypodcast AT gmail DOT com. Subscribe on iTunes. Like our Facebook page. Get the mp3 here. RSS feed here. This episode’s music by B and by Jordan Cass.

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