[-empyre-] OOO, the Grumbling Smurf and Outside-Oriented Philosophy

frederic neyrat fneyrat at gmail.com
Sun Jun 17 19:09:19 EST 2012

Hi Timothy,

Thanks for your answer. After I have read all these exciting emails, I
thought again about my nightmare post and suddenly I understood: I'm
in the bloody position of the grumbling smurf! It's a terrible
situation. Not only concerning the color, but vis-à-vis this
subjective position. I don't especially like it! So, why?

Maybe because every time I read things about OOO, I have the felling
that we can say everything. We can call together Glissant, Deleuze,
Whitehead, Heidegger, all he objects, all the positions. If someone
says relations, another will say withdrawal. If someone says
substance, the other no-substance. Flat? Not flat. And so on. The
grumbling smurf says. Who is always exaggerating.

But why is it possible? It think that the reason is the OOO
possibility to connect every object with every other object,
everything with everyone and everyone with everything, everywhere and
every time in every space (or non-space, natürlich) and time (or
no-time, it could be). Then of course it works (or not). All the time
(I mean, of course, mostly).

Against that, the green grumbling smurf says: "there are
inconsistencies (incompatibilités)!" and he says also: "there is some
Unconstructible (il y a de l'Inconstructible)!" and he says to
Zarathustra, his friend : "do we need an ontology at first or a
philosophy of the existences...". And he says: "it's very interesting
to apply the notion of arrivant to non-life, but what if life and
non-life don't arrive the same way? First solution: the use of a
hammer - but a hammer technologically augmented - able to smash
everything at the same level, the same substance, the same matter.
Second solution: to drop substance out and to accept to begin the
thought at the level of the singularities and not before (commencer à
partir des existences et non de l'être)".

Well, I stop my play. I'm happy to know that you dislike the idea of
flatness - that one can also find in poetry: cf. for example in France
Dominique Fourcade: "j’étale les choses, je mets la vie à plat, sans
commentaire". "A plat" = having no depth. But in this sense "la vie à
plat" = dead life...  (the poet didn't want to say that, but between
what we want to do and the real effects...). Against this flatness,
this claustrophobic immanency, we need outside (at least "out-side" as
Jane Bennett says in Vibrant Matter). In this regard, I argue for an
Outside-Oriented Philosophy.


Frederic Neyrat

2012/6/17 Timothy Morton <timothymorton303 at gmail.com>:
> Hi Everyone,
> This is my first (or possibly second if the other got through) message to
> the list, and I'm responding to a brief discussion of the notion of flat
> ontology initiated by Michael O'Rourke (hi Michael!) and Frederic Neyrat.
> OOO comes in various flavors and is not necessarily flat. Mine and Graham
> Harman's has two levels. Levi Bryant's and Ian Bogost's have one, but differ
> in how that one level works.
> Other forms of realism such as Manuel De Landa's are flat, or flatter, than
> OOO.
> Frederic I'm a Derridean and the idea of the singularity is my idea of the
> strange stranger, which is Derrida's arrivant.
> Just apply this notion of arrivant to non-life and you get the OOO "object."
> You can have all the singularities you want in a non-all and by definition
> non-hierarchical set, which is the OOO universe.
> Yours, Tim
> --
> Ecology without Nature
> _______________________________________________
> empyre forum
> empyre at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au
> http://www.subtle.net/empyre

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