Ray Brassier and Iain MacKenzie

We regret to inform you that the conversation with Ray and Iain on 5 March has been postponed. The prep sessions on Monday 24 & Wednesday 26 February are still happening and we encourage you to still come along to these. We will have updates about a rescheduled date for the conversation soon.

Drawing inspiration from Brassier’s latest work, this conversation will offer insight into the current state of philosophy and it’s relation to other disciplines such as the arts. Fundamental issues about what it means to be human will be explored (for example, are we defined by our capacity for reason and, if so, how should we understand this?) alongside a range of other issues about our relation to non-humans and the inhuman forces of the contemporary world. One of the aspects joining these together will be an exploration of whether or not we can and should resist contemporary forms of power.

There will be two preparation sessions before this event where we will read through the texts together with Iain Mackenzie. These two sessions are not compulsory and you may come to just one or both of them, or you can read the texts at home. It is advised however that you do try to attend them, so that you may feel more prepared join in and ask questions during the conversation.

The reading for this conversation, a review of Ray’s book ‘Nihil Unbound’ by Knox Peden (himself a formidable theorist), and a chapter of Ray’s from 2010 that outlines his basic ontological position, may be found here and here.

Ray Brassier is a member of the philosophy faculty at the American University of Beirut, Lebanon. He is the author of Nihil Unbound: Enlightenment and Extinction (Palgrave Macmillan 2007). He is currently writing about Marx, freedom, and fate.

Iain MacKenzie is a member of the Centre for Critical Thought at the University of Kent with a longstanding interest in critical theory and poststructuralism. Recent publications include the article, ‘Totalising Institutions, Critique and Resistance’ in Contemporary Political Theory (2019), and the book, Resistance and the Politics of Truth (transcript Press, 2018).