Pharmakon seminar 2014-2015


Introduction by Bernard Stiegler:
The pharmakon.fr seminar of this year focused on the question of a new criticism of anthropology. It took place at 4 pm on Tuesdays April 15, April 29, May 13, June 10 and June 24 in Paris – in the “Salle Triangle” at the disposal of IRI on the forecourt of the Centre Pompidou, in videoconference for the searchers who have been registered on request, and in delayed on pharmakon.fr.

It was followed by the summer academy which took place from 18th to 20th of August 2014 in Epineuil and had for theme “Dreams, Cinema, Brains”. The summer academy was followed on August 21st by a workday with the members of the seminar who were still present.

The new criticism of anthropology here proposed is obviously linked to what I have called the new criticism of political economy, as well as to what I formerly announced in Technics and Times 3: Cinematic Time and the Question of Malaise, and to what I specified more recently in Etats de choc: Bêtise et savoir au XXIème siècle, that is: a criticism of post-structuralism (“criticism” has here to be understood both with Kant and with Marx) – structuralism itself being historically and fundamentally linked to anthropology.

The new criticism of anthropology the contours of which I would like to outline includes the questions – already explored in the seminar during the three previous years – of organology and pharmacology in the context of the digital tertiary retention and of the development of neurosciences as well as of the automation of intensive calculation (big data).

But it more explicitly focuses on anthropology both
– by coming back to Durkheim (The Elementary Forms of the Religious Life) and the question of categorization we evoked last year (which is in a direct relationship with the Digital Studies seminar that IRI dedicates to categorization);
– by referring to the work Métamorphoses de la parenté Maurice Godelier published in 2004,
– by coming back to some questions previously approached, either in the seminar or in the course of this year, regarding the archi-cinema of grammatization, the organology of mathematics, the organology of dreams, the organology of brain and the criticism of idealism.

The seminar is henceforth linked to a program of cooperation with the Ecuadorian Ministry of Higher Education and Research. In this context, it contributed this year to the constitution of an online laboratory dedicated to the digital studies in cooperation with the University of Yachai (80 km North of Quito). In this context, we asked the participants of the seminar to contribute to the discussions on the basis of a protocol which has been communicated and commented by Paul-Emile Geoffroy to the searchers who requested.

Sessions and information: website pharmakon.fr