Thursday – Sept 2nd!!!

pretty paintings

11 UTC

In an effort to decenter the so-called human, we’re confronting Karen Barad’s framework of agential realism. They propose a performative understanding of matter. The author is a theoretical particle physicist playing with time and space to propose the inseperability of ‘intra-acting agencies’. For Barad, all phenomena emerge through intra-action. Their coming-into-relation is a condition for their existence.

Barad’s wider project is concerned with the legacies of Niels Bohr, Judith Butler, Michel Foucault, Merleau-Ponty, Ian Hacking, Bruno Latour, Donna Haraway, and others. By Barad’s account, entanglements breed responsibilities, and acknowledging that one is a part of reality demands a response in turn. Avowedly concerned with power, which they describe as an immanent set of force relations. Starting from the basic propositions of quantum physics, Barad troubles any categorical faith in the stability of things, or faith in their representations. All is intra-acting, moving, shifting.

“We are responsible for the world in which we live, not because it is an arbitrary construction of our choosing, but because it is sedimented out of particular practices that we have a role in shaping.”

Agential Realism, Karen Barad: (chapter 4, pages 132-185) (pdf pages 149-202)

Reading 132-161 for Thursday, stopping right before subsection “The boundaries of an apparatus”