Cosmos Café Planning Session [Café 2022-01-06]


In our fourth session of Philosophy in a New Key we started penciling in essays, books and other media to add to the 2022 menu with the goal of reaching a consensus. This post is a wiki and can be edited by anyone reading this. Feel free to add your suggested reading/watching/listening below and join in on the conversation January 6th!

Note: Our typical Café time slot is every first and third Thursday @ noon Mountain Time. Discussion is forming around a second time slot on the second and fourth Mondays, time TBD. If the Zoom line is available then additional discussions can be held on most other dates/times. If interested in starting a reading group or in having a discussion at an alternate time email @Douggins .

Potential Media Explorations for 2022

Relevant to Susanne Langer’s Philosophy in a New Key:

Recent and previous suggestions:

Upcoming Cosmos Café events – Q1 & Q2, 2022

(to be filled after our January 6th discussion)

  • 1/6 – open
  • 1/20 – open
  • 2/3 – open
  • 2/17 – open
  • 3/3 – open
  • 3/17 – open
  • 4/7 – open
  • 4/21 – open
  • 5/5 – open
  • 5/19 – open
  • 6/2 – open
  • 6/16 – open

Seed Questions

How do you know when to develop a topic/essay/book/video for the Cafe?

What constrains you? What enables you?

And when you have reached a threshold, and you decide to make something happen, then what happens?

And when you get clear feedback then what happens?

And when you get ambiguous signs for the group, what do you do next?

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Since the focus has moved here from the Langer thread, I just wanted to add a follow-up to the Big History link I posted there. Here is a review of Graeber & Wengrow’s The Dawn of Everything: A New History of Humanity:

As I mentioned, I’m reading this in parallel with Harari’s Sapiens, and I must say, Graeber/Wengrow is the much more fun and insightful read. It’s a heavy tome, weighing in at 500+ pages (and therefore probably beyond the scope of a series of CCafés … most certainly, if only one person were to, as John phrases it, sponsor the reading), but the time spent getting a clearer view of what Gebser would have called our Magical and Mythical past would definitely be well spent, at least IMNASHO. Humanity’s past was much more diverse and richer than we thought and getting Gebser (for those of us who have engaged him) aligned to this rebooted view is both challenging and rewarding.

Wishing everyone einen guten Rutsch [“a good slide” (into the New Year)] …

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Good review! Since I mentioned this book in our last call I have had a chance to read a good portion of it with great interest. My feeling is that many Gebserians have already dipped into it and analyzed competently and I would have little to add. However, I am always open to your take on this comparitivist move you are making. I took a course with Harari years ago and found him a brilliant first tier thinker. Graeber is definitely more second tier. The whole field of Integral studies has become unhinged around developmental theories and the white man’s burden. Cognitive types score high on their SATs. In these sit down chat fests, conversing with flat screens they shine but can they make a bow and arrow and stalk wild game? Can they even sing and dance? As many of these guys, ( they are almost always guys ), rank themselves in hierachies they love to label and dismiss you. Do I sound bitter? If they can rank me, I can rank them. I feel, like Nora Bateson, that the notion of culture that these guys promote is pretty skewed towards top dogs at the head of the class. Having been a member of the starving class most of my life, I smell a rat. Maybe I 'm unfair. At any rate, Graeber, knocks down more than a few academic idols and I wish him the best as he parted from this world way too soon. This was to be the begining of a trilogy. Rather than read the whole text ( It is very readable) I would invite us to devote a Cafe or two to how we might update our own cultural offerings with Graeber’s creative research. What would he think about a Second Axial Age? I’m sure he would reject it. He is a very secular thinker. I would love to hear how we are changing our tunes when we talk about evolution, culture, and change. Clearly, we are in pretty big trouble at this juncture and the globalization mania is entering a senescent phase. What will happen next is anyone’s guess. I also would like to think about adding William Irwin Thompson to our roster. He was a Gebserian scholar, a great writer and community organizer. Lindesfarne, which he created, was a great social experiment in higher education. He recently parted as well and I miss his counsel in these turbulent times. Thompson, the myth maker, and Greaber, the debunker, would compliment one another. And what I really want to know , Ed, are you still putting applesauce on your strudel?

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I think I need to clear up a misconception … one that I’m pretty certain is traceable back to my sometimes not-so-clear enunciation (my wife says I’m a mumbler) … and, it’s much worse than you think:

As the only strudel I know – “real” (southern German or Austrian) strudel is always made with apples, topping it off with some additional fruit would be more decadent than unusual (given that whipped cream is the expected cultural choice). No, where I live in Germany, we eat applesauce on our noodles – you see, noodle/strudel … who expects the former? – that is, pasta, be it spaghetti, wide, egg types or good, ol’ everyday elbows, springs, bow-ties, whatever. Whereas Italians prefer red (tomato) sauce primarily (or no sauce at all, such as in spaghetti aglio e olio or cacio e pepe or alla carbonara) and Americans are known for their white sauces (i.e., Alfredo); here, in these parts, the first topping of choice is applesauce (which, I should add, drives my half-Italian son-in-law absolutely bonkers).

Truth be told, it is not culinarily all that far from “back home”. Americans, especially those down through Appalachia (I come from the NE corner of the region) ate lots and lots of apples. Fried apples are a favorite side to biscuits and gravy, to be sure. So, applesauce (cooked-down fried apples … OK, without the butter) also shows up in combination with (usually mashed) potatoes (which the Austrians still call – literally translated from the French – “earth apples”) which together is most often referred to as “heaven and earth”. Goes great with a nice chunk of fried blood sausage and fried onions. What is more, just down the road (about an hour to the south) is Frankfurt am Main which is the “apple wine” – or Appelwoi, as they say down there – (we’d say (hard) “cider”) capital of Germany.

Ah, the dovetails of culture.

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And William Irwin Thompson dovetails a lot in this conversation with Bruce Clarke. The entire interview can be found here. I quote just a small chunk to clarify my own sense of the confusion we are collectively experiencing.

BC: How can there be communication at that metaphysical level? I have no experience there.

WIT: Well, let’s just take a tentative answer with dimensions. There are four levels to mind. We can start with the world of objects, the glasses of beer in front of us, which are located in three-dimensional perspectival space, for some cultures, aperspectival, for others—according to guess who’s cultural history. Then there’s the transitional world of the hypnogogic, where the muscle inhibitors kick in so you no longer move in three-dimensional space. And in meditational yogic practice you watch your mind and your body, you notice the point at which the images surface, youfirst see just patterns of visual noise, and then they resolve into images, and then you notice that right when the images come in, the muscle inhibitors kickin. And you’ll have a proprioceptive perception of your body in the posture it’s in in meditation. And that’s called the hypnogogic in sleep research.

Then there’s the world of images, which are located in a much more plastic stretchable relativistic space, where your consciousness of self is not proprioceptively limited to your body and your posture. The first stage is you dissociate with the body, and you have a floating feeling, and you’re floating out of your body. Now, sleep scientists say they can produce that experience and so they’re trying to say,out-of-the-body travel is all nonsense, we can just activate that lobe and produce that experience. But they activate that experience, not the next one where I’m going.

So in the second ontic realm—the first being objects, the second being images, the hypnogogic being the transition between the two—you move freely in elastic space and time, and you will have the familiar surreal world of objects that melt together, beings that are two beings at once, you know it’s your Uncle Fred and it’s also your colleague Joe,and somehow they’re both two at once. nd this is the kind of surrealistic logic that some painters got into, like Dali and some of the other surrealists.And then you go off on all these archetypal adventures moving through time and space.

And you reach a certain point where that particular personality stops, and you confront another level of consciousness,that is not actually formed by your personality or your ego with its specific life history. Different traditions have different names for this. Steiner calls it das Ich—the I. Some people call it the Daimon, which is the name from Socrates and Plato picked up by Yeats in A Vision . Others will call it the Doppelgänger . And this being has its own agenda, and you can’t drive it like driving a vehicle. You notice in lucid dreaming you can change your dreams and say I want my beer to be red, and a second later it is red in the glass, and you realize then you’re lucid dreaming and these images are a construct of consciousness. And so that’s kind of a sleep-dream practice. Even non-yogis do lucid dreaming, there are even pop cults on that now.

A few comments about a clash between subtle and virtual and the Real. The above interview points to this. We are currently caught in a distortion by deficient mental strategies to label and contain efficient forms of the magical and the mythical . Most conversations about the virtual seems to be based upon models of exteriors. I have voiced this complaint before and will do so again. We are already operating within and through the human sensorium and at speeds that are way beyond any computational frameworks. Computational models are built upon schizoid versions of the human mind and is why so many of us find these physicalist accounts of everything to be partial and wrong. Beware of premature cognitve commitments. Language is not always your friend, nor are computers but they are necessary for this transition to a planetary culture to happen.

We can tune into aspects of our complex polyphasic nature to re-model our social worlds if we look at what’s happening during the liminal zones between dimensions. We can, I believe, re-train ourselves to give this kind of attention to our experience. Social Imaginaries have always done so. If our children were taught lucid dreaming a new kind of meta-cognition would arise that will make obselete computational models of the vitual cranked out by the hacks of the Metaverse. This battle is already happening. Thompson and Graeber, in their own different ways, were creating different kinds of attractors.

The next attractors for our emergent Cafe culture could perhaps take up where Graeber and Thompson left off? My feeling is ( and I may be premature) that we have created conditions for such an exploration to happen. That is my desired outcome for this consortium of comrades and for myself. And you need to use the “I” to be able to do this. There is no agency without the “I”.

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Put me down for Graeber whenever the time is right. Since I saw all the positive press around The Dawn of Humanity I had decided a couple weeks ago to finally finish reading Debt: The First 5000 years after having started and put it down a couple years ago. (I didn’t feel right about skipping to DoH without finishing the earlier book first.)

I am definitely a fan, and I also hear Johnny’s point that we don’t necessarily need to give this book many sessions (as it is being covered elsewhere), but it might be more productive those of us have read it (when we have read it) could bring it into dialogue with other thinkers and approaches to possible futures whom we’ve also read: McLuhan, Hoftstadter, Bergson, Thompson, et al. However, not having read it yet, I can’t say for sure.

Graeber came up previouslyin looking at the Rojava cooperative movement among the Kurds between Syria and Turkey: In the heart of Syria's darkness, a democratic, egalitarian and feminist society emerges. And I think there must be some connection between appreciating the diversity of past forms of social organizations and the ability to imagine alternative futures (and presents), and moreover, as Lindisfarne and various other social experiments have attempted, actually modeling how different (preferable) futures could be enacted from out of our social and technological contexts.

I look forward to reviewing our options, and feeling into the creative and collaborative possibilities, and making at least a provisional plan on Thursday. Thanks for getting the conversation underway… though I must say that the notion of applesauce on pasta strikes me as a crime against macaroni. I can sympathize with your son-in-law. Then again, I suppose it really does take all kinds!

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Social dreaming is about the social experiences the dreamer is engaged in. The organizations she works with, the cultural artifacts that her group is working with.

Last night I saw Farenheit 451 with Michael B. Jordan, an actor I much admire. I went to bed thinking about book culture. I woke up from a dream and took notes. I offer this reflection for the group to muse upon, my humble offering to our co-evolving emergent knowledge project. Feel free to project whatever you want onto the dream. In a deep sense it does not belong to ego. I am working out of particular social dynamic in fractal mandala of indeteminate size and shape, with a moving cast of characters, who are gender fluid

In the dream the " I am" writes massive clarity moving forward.

I consider these words and wonder " What is the deep structure?" I muse upon my question and am aware of an audience that is listening to my solo inpuiry. I see the following scene emerge.

Two men in a spacious room with lots of books are debating about a project. One man is smart and unreliable, the other man is dependable but overly earnest. They have a conflict about a project that is put on hold.

The unreliable one ( who is an actor) asks," Are we done?"

The dependable one replies," We are done." And exits the scene with a sense of resolve that the relationship is not working out.

As an observer I enter the scene, alone with the subject. I say to him," Actors have more access than most people to affects. It is for that reason that they are often more defensive."

I step out of the scene and return to waking phase and jot this down and reflect in the waking state upon the original words massive clarity moving forward

It occurs to me that this is a wobbly structure for there is no subject that wants anything.

I want massive clarity moving forward.

And is there anything else? I found this clip of the original film from 1966. I saw the film when I was twelve and didn’t understand it. Now I understand it all too well.

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This is precisely what I think is the value-added in seriously engaging Graeber.

(Yesterday I finished Harari’s tome, Sapiens. I gave up reading in parallel to Graeber/Wengrow (where I’m about halfway through), not because the tracks had diverged so much, but rather because he was, quite frankly, getting hard to take. Like with Langer, one has to read past his too often condescending (a felt arrogant) attitude and style and his fawning admiration for science and technology to get his point, which appears to me to be: we are where we are because that’s where we are. We’re little more than a biologically determined bundle of chemical and hormonal impulses who happen to have evolved to a place where we can jeopardize ourselves more than we threaten the planet, but most evolutionary trajectories have been set and, well, we’re just part of a much bigger picture we were never meant to truly understand , other than, that is, really big brains like Harari (no doubt a smart guy, but who strikes me as, well, being a bit full of himself). He reads a lot like Dennett and Wilson and Pinker and Dawkins: if you buy into their assumptions, presuppositions, and (physicalist/mathematical) worldview, it’s a convincing read, but if you don’t, it’s just another lecture about how foolish one is for thinking any of us have any real say in anything that matters.)

Bringing in Graeber from the margins is one possible approach. I have no particular preference. For me, there are many things that can (and maybe, should) be read, but as I have no real project other than a long-suffering personal one (the Zohar), I, too, am open for whatever makes the most sense.

(On a different note, one of the criticisms that Graeber never tires of bringing forth is that too often, critical and potentially insightful thinkers (I’m thinking here of Gimbutas, as she was the centerpiece of the section I read earlier today) are often rejected out-of-hand, without ever really reading or engaging them. Hence, I say if

one shouldn’t knock it, till one’s tried it. :smirk:)

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I credit two or three entities towards the shaping of my political outlook: the conversations shared here; Graeber and Tillich. As is often a repeated refrain in our choir: we have much to learn from each other. I appreciate that we are quite respectful of each individual stance in regard to the political realm and I appreciate when we are capable of expressing what we find to be important issues. While we do tend to focus upon a specific reading or text for our sessions, I wouldn’t mind filling in a few of the Café spots with some contemporary reflection. I think Graeber’s stance is a healthy one worth reflecting on.

Graeber’s (or the Davids’) take in Dawn of Everything does open up possibilities that had previously been left unearthed in the thinking of anthropologists and archaeologists (and the conversation at large). For me, the takeaway from the book is essentially this: that anything is possible at any time (in history) when minds come together; that we, as humans, have been a creative and complex species and can cross out the idea of savages (however noble); and that one can take this core idea (that of possibilities) into our current situation and reach some sort of creative consensus to approach challenges. I like Harari and others like Morris Berman and though there is a creative streak in their writing, there are also hints of pessimism or nihilism. Berman’s followers are WAFERS (why America failed -ers) and there is hardly talk about how to succeed. Harari is critical of technology in the wrong hands yet in Homo Deus and his many conversations see humans as destined for disaster. (and editing this in after reading Ed’s above words on Harari: I couldn’t agree more. I went from Harris to Harari and a few other similar “big thinkers” then after encountering Inf. Conversations, rereading Harari left me with a bad taste. He is very intelligent and influential. I highly admire that he takes one-month meditative retreat each year and is vegan and mindful and etc. Yet he has gotten lost in his own ideas and cannot think himself out of his own workings. This is when things become static or stagnant and where someone like Graeber is highly influential. end rant)

I would say that this would be the best approach. I see Graeber as a sort of talisman or spirit animal.

“we must burn the books” – I have been reading the Dog Man series with Miles. Some titles play on classics: “For Whom the Ball Rolls” “Lord of the Fleas” . . . in one of the books (a parody of 451) the villain decides that, since Dog Man is an avid reader and is smart and can solve the mystery of each crime, he will use a mechanism to erase all words from books. It works and all become dumb. Too dumb and the villain cannot live in such a world and invents another machine to rewrite all of the words.

This new year we can all take the mantra massive clarity moving forward

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He also happens to be gay and speaks publicly about his husband and I admire him for that. Would that I had been so lucky. If what he claims to be is true then " gay" is just another genetic variation, a view I find absurd. " Gay" is a social construct and it is also real. Harari’s marital bliss rides upon the suffering of activists like myself who created conditions for the over turning of the sodomy laws. Human beings in tandem ( gay and straight) created the conditions for this transformation in culture. None of this has anything to do with anyone’s genetic inheritance. I find Harari an admirable person but his social theory is naive at best and if followed would exhaust any possiblities of meaningful social justice efforts, efforts which he benefits from but totally denies as important. Persons with courage and a vision can implement that vision working with and shaping reality which is wonderfully slippery.

I still think Graeber and Thompson are more interesting. At first I suggested Thompson’s Time Falling Bodies Take to Light as it is about the same topics Graeber discussed but with a much stronger attunement to the psychic and the paranormal which obviously ancient people were much more efficient at than our current social landscapes indicate. But another good Thompson book is Imaginary Landscape: Making Worlds of Myth and Science. As much as I admire Graeber’s focus on the advanced cognitive development of ancient people, I feel he is not at ease with anything supernatural. Thompson is detailed about the Imaginal realms and how " primitives" were adept social dreamers. So, I would advocate a Graeber/Thompson match up. This study would support my major theme that is emerging during this winter of our discontent. How do I/we become a Versatile Critic?

Also, I want to leave space for McLuhan’s short book and for Matt to do some presentations on Bergson. I suggested rallying around Delueze’s Bergsonism ( very short book) to help us update certain streams of intellectual history that want to return with a different spin. We may need to revisit models of TIME.

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And what is the relationship between re-imagining forms of social organization as we also learn from the art of losing? Zak Stein, in this short segment, riffs on the the Post-Tragic and the transformation that Blues and Jazz invite( Miles Davis claimed that Jazz was social music). I hope we can weave some of Zak’s insights on music into our Cafe on Thursday, adding some complexity to the Langer study. Zak is also a big fan of Graeber’s work and has an interesting dialogue with Jeremy on the new book that is worth checking out.

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You wouldn’t happen to have a link to this that you could share?

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Here it is, Ed.

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These are the cluster of questions I am rehearsing as I prepare to re-enter today’s Cafe Society.

How do you know when to develop a topic/essay/book/video for the Cafe?

Why the Cafe? Is there another venue to bring forth your idea that is more appropriate?

What constrains you? What enables you?

And when you have reached a threshold, and you decide to make something happen, then what happens?

And when you get clear feedback then what happens?

And when you get ambiguous signs from the group, what happens next?

And what kind of future do you imagine the Cafe might have?

And what difference does any of this make?

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That is very true. For example, I had my doubts about chicken on waffles, but it was amazing.

This interests me. I recall that we’ve spoken about breath-based consciousness, “chunking down and chunking slow,” but also, the extreme displeasure of “watching paint dry.” Of course, anything could become interesting with enough single-pointed attention. Is the meta-crisis just one huge distraction? What about the actual crises, real and imagined, in our lives? What about our impending deaths?

I confess, I have grown weary with the genre of podcasts and YouTube interviews, even though I know the people who do them have very meaningful and interesting things to say. It all starts to sound the same after a while, though. What actually is being done? And what is the feeling being transmitted? I have always enjoyed the Cafés most when we’re weaving new thoughts and they feel like music.

Granted my taste in music is pretty electric and weird. I will listen to looping computer drones and experimental electronica, as much as rock, blues, folk, classical (from medieval to the minimalist, maximalist, and avant-garde), be-bop, hard-bop, post-bop and abstract-expressionist jazz. I don’t tend to like heavy metal or sappy, mindless, electronic dance, or country (with some exceptions). But I do like dance music, world rhythms, salsa, boleros… I’m also an occasional student of hop-hop beats and wordplay.

I like the cognitive music of the Café, when we have a good tempo and some deep reading to stimulate thought. I feel more awake, alive, and creative after a good conversation. It feeds my art. I don’t need us to get to an answer or a new theory, but I like the buzz of thinking, and I like to feel after the reading and the conversation that I understand something better—the topic or author or whatever was on my mind—and learned something new about the others in the conversation as individuals, and that the group has accomplished something, gone somewhere together in our consciousness, as well.

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A bit busy to give above responses a worthy return. Want to state that my afternoon is in flux with weather and family ‘stuff’ . . . good intentions on the full first hour; maybe the second; hopefully both; possibly neither. Just living up to the (n)either/(n)or; both/and mantra in real time! Matt did respond in an email he intends to participate, taking the backseat to get a feel for how this oddkin bus of ours navigates uncharted terrain. :bus:

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The Ship of Death (1933)
By D.H. Lawrence

1
Now it is autumn and the falling fruit
and the long journey towards oblivion.

The apples falling like great drops of dew
to bruise themselves an exit from themselves.

And it is time to go, to bid farewell
to one’s own self, and find an exit
from the fallen self.

2
Have you built your ship of death, O have you?
build your ship of death, for you will need it.

The grim frost is at hand, when the apples will fall
thick, almost thundrous, on the hardened earth.

And death is on the air like a smell of ashes!
Ah! can’t you smell it?

And in the bruised body, the frightened soul
finds itself shrinking, wincing from the cold
that blows upon it through the orifices.

3
And can a man his own quietus make
with a bare bodkin?

With daggers,bodkins, bullets, man can make
a bruise or break of exit for his life;
but is that a quietus, O tell me, is it quietus?

Surely not so! for how could murder, even self-murder
ever a quietus make?

4
O let us talk of quiet that we know,
that we can know, the deep and lovely quiet
of a strong heart at peace!

How can we this, our own quietus, make?

5
Build then the ship of death, for you must take
the longest journey, to oblivion.

And die the death, the long and painful death
that lies between the old self and the new.

Already our bodies are fallen, bruised, badly bruised,
already our souls are oozing through the exit
of the cruel bruise.

Already the dark and endless ocean of the end
is washing in through the breaches of our wounds,
already the flood is upon us.

Oh build your ship of death, your little ark
and furnish it with food, with little cakes, and wine
for the dark flight down oblivion.

6
Piecemeal the body dies, and the timid soul
has her footing washed away, as the dark flood rises.

We are dying, we are dying, we are all of us dying
and nothing will stay the death-flood rising within us
and soon it will rise on the world, on the outside world.

We are dying, we are dying, piecemeal our bodies are dying
and our strength leaves us,
and our soul cowers naked in the dark rain over the flood,
cowering in the last branches of the tree of our life.

7
We are dying, we are dying, so all we can do
is now to be willing to die, and to build the ship
of death to carry the soul on the longest journey.

A little ship, with oars and food
and little dishes, and all accoutrements
fitting and ready for the departing soul.

Now launch the small ship, now as the body dies
and life departs, launch out, the fragile soul
in the fragile ship of courage, the ark of faith
with its store of food and little cooking pans
and change of clothes,
upon the flood’s black waste
upon the waters of the end
upon the sea of death, where still we sail
darkly, for we cannot steer, and have no port.

There is no port, there is nowhere to go
only the deepening black darkening still
blacker upon the soundless, ungurgling flood
darkness at one with darkness, up and down
and sideways utterly dark, so there is no direction any more
and the little ship is there; yet she is gone.
She is not seen, for there is nothing to see her by.
She is gone! gone! and yet
somewhere she is there.
Nowhere!

8
And everything is gone, the body is gone
completely under, gone, entirely gone.
The upper darkness is heavy as the lower,
between them the little ship
is gone
she is gone.

It is the end, it is oblivion.

9
And yet out of eternity a thread
separates itself on the blackness,
a horizontal thread
that fumes a little with pallor upon the dark.

Is it illusion? or does the pallor fume
A little higher?
Ah wait, wait, for there’s the dawn,
the cruel dawn of coming back to life
out of oblivion.

Wait, wait, the little ship
drifting, beneath the deathly ashy grey
of a flood-dawn.

Wait, wait! even so, a flush of yellow
and strangely, O chilled wan soul, a flush of rose.

A flush of rose, and the whole thing starts again.

10
The flood subsides, and the body, like a worn sea-shell
emerges strange and lovely.
And the little ship wings home, faltering and lapsing
on the pink flood,
and the frail soul steps out, into the house again
filling the heart with peace.

Swings the heart renewed with peace
even of oblivion.

Oh build your ship of death, oh build it!
for you will need it.
For the voyage of oblivion awaits you.

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Great conversation everyone and happy that we filled in the Café spots so easily. The recording is now available above. This is how the calendar would fill out based on what was mentioned in the recording:

  • 1/20 –McLuhan Law’s of Media
  • 2/3 – McLuhan Law’s of Media
  • 2/17 – Strange Loop
  • 3/3 – Strange Loop
  • 3/17 – Strange Loop
  • 4/7 – Strange Loop
  • 4/21 – open frame / regroup / evaluate / etc.
  • 5/5 – Graeber + W.I. Thompson + others
  • 5/19 – Graeber + W.I. Thompson + others
  • 6/2 – Graeber + W.I. Thompson + others
  • 6/16 – Graeber + W.I. Thompson + others

. . . that is to say, everything after our 2/3 session remain tentative. This is a wiki so the times and content can be changed by anyone. @Lisa : hope you can make the times for McLuhan listed above (at noon mountain time on Thurdays).

A few additional notes:

  • Graeber has been influential to my political development in the past 3 or 4 years. I read Fragments of an Anarchist Anthropology after putting down Debt (knowing I was in too far over my head at the time) and greatly appreciated the text. In this post Cosmos Café [2/5] - TANSTAAFL or There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch - #29 by Douggins I had found a free copy of the book which is still available. I would love to focus on this one if we have the opportunity. I’ll add that to the reading list above.

  • Bergsonism is a very challenging text and Deleuze explicitly states up front that he is taking Bergson’s thought and makign a monster out of it. As a philosophical exercise on Bergson I would suggest the first chapter of Matter and Memory or “The Possible and The Real” is a great essay which Marco had referenced. The book Creative Mind also has “Introduction to Metaphysics” which Phil Ford and JF Martel explored in this episode of Weird Studies, another good entry point in to Bergson. The book I referenced on Bergson and PKD is The Philosophy of Science Fiction: Henri Bergson and the Fabulations of Philip K. Dick: James Burton: Bloomsbury Academic. I believe we can make something work out with Bergson during the Monday sessions once Matt has better vision on his work schedule.

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Yes, thanks for this reminder. I will put it in my calendar. I had a work project take a sudden left turn today…had to redo almost all of what I’ve done so far. Aargh.

And thanks, @Douggins, for the feedback! I’m already thinking of ways to bring in the notion of Paradise that pulls together other threads in the book.

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