My Fall seminar with The New Centre for Research & Practice.  It will probably begin the first week in October.  Please consider joining us!

Ontologies of the Fold:  Leibniz, Simondon, and Deleuze

This seminar explores Simondon’s concept of individuation and Deleuze’s account of the fold as models of how being is to be thought. Responding to Graham Harman’s object-oriented philosophy and his thesis that beings are withdrawn and never relate, it is argued that the concept of the fold avoids the twin perils of undermining and overmining by preserving the singularity of beings, while also accounting for their relatedness and providing a rich account of subjectivity. It is argued that beings are pleats or folds within being that integrate other beings in their ongoing processes of individuation. For example, a sun tan is a sort of origami where sunlight is pleated into the body producing a quality in the form of the shade of the skin. What emerges is a profoundly ecological conception of being where entities can never be thought in isolation, but rather must always be thought in communication and relation to other beings.

Readings will include Leibniz’s Monadology, selections from The Discourse on Metaphysics, the first two chapters of Muriel Combes’s Gilbert Simondon and the Philosophy of the Transindividual, and Deleuze’s The Fold:  Leibniz and the Baroque and Foucault.