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Tag Archives: Evolutionary Biology

Socrates

DEMOCRACY IN EVOLUTION

Call for Papers
Democracy in Evolution
First International Conference
Los Angeles, Saturday July 16, 2011
http://www.condition.org/confer.htm

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“We don’t have too many choices now. We are a society that is one hundred percent dependent on science. We’re going to go up in our population in the next 40 years; we can’t deal with the population we have without destroying our environment.”
-J. Craig Venter -60 Minutes -November 22, 2010
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We are a small group researching the further evolution of democracy as a function of underlying evolutionary biology. Our findings tell us that democracy is, in fact, a stage into a further and inevitable mode of human interaction.

This is a call for papers for that first international conference tentatively scheduled for Los Angeles, Saturday, July 16, but subject to change per response – further notices continuing.

BRIEFLY STATED
1 – All government/economy so far has evolved out of the neonate ignorance and pecking order of human origins as warm-blooded, cerebrating vertebrates -but-

2 – Continuing existence under genetic imperative defaults to science as the best and only agency of that existence.

Findings so far are broadly laid out in the two short essays: – Democracy and Further   http://www.condition.org/oped.htm and (more detailed) – How We Came to ‘Democracy, The Best Form of Government’ – Why It Isn’t and Where It’s Going, http://www.condition.org/democ.htm

These findings take us into considering evolution of democracy well beyond the Constitution. Given such ‘aperture into the unknown’, papers are expected to cover a lot of territory.

MISSION STATEMENT
The continuing evolution of democracy entails successively greater interaction with science. What are the dynamics of that interaction? What are the implications of those dynamics and the consequences and logistics entailed?

ABSTRACT
Deadline is May 16, but the sooner we receive abstracts and responses, the better we understand the nature of this singularly new inquiry and the earlier our updates and communications.

Abstracts should be limited to 250 words – all formats accepted.
OPENING SPEECH
Dr. David Scholler will discuss the evolutionary nature of problems and their frequently conflicting institutionalizations as they exist in democracy today.

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It is our intention to hold this exploratory, no-fee conference in a Los Angeles centrally-located area on Saturday, July 16 of 2011. Material and discussion coming from the natural sciences primarily and their governmental relationships in general -biology, anthropology, environmental science, economics, political science, social science, legislative process et cetera.

Your response in any aspect of this unique undertaking would be greatly appreciated.

Perry Bezanis

For the DH Group
perryb@condition.org
(310)833-8231

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Human Revolution

AN INTRODUCTION TO ANTHROPOLOGY – THE HUMAN REVOLUTION

Tuesdays, 6.45-9pm St. Martin’s Community Centre, 43 Carol St., NW1 (2 mins from Camden tube).

It is now known that symbolic culture began emerging in Africa some 100,000 years ago, in a social revolution whose echoes can still be heard in mythic narratives and ritual traditions from around the world.

This course is a general introduction to anthropology including the latest findings from evolutionary biology, primatology, rock art research and archaeology. The course should also be enjoyable: there are good local pubs, and there is always time for discussion and socialising.

Sep 21 – Sleeping Beauty and other fairy tales, Chris Knight

Sep 28 – Introduction to anthropology, Chris Knight

Oct 5 – Revolutionary origins of society, Chris Knight

Oct 12 – Primitive matriarchy, Chris Knight 

Oct 19 – Early human kinship, Chris Knight

Oct 26 – Noam Chomsky, language and its origins, Chris Knight

Nov 2 – Hunters’ moon, Chris Knight

Nov 9 – Why the Human Revolution theory is wrong, Zoao Zilhan

Nov 16 – Behavioural origins of modern humans, Chris Stringer

Nov 23 – Origins of art, Camilla Power

Nov 30 – Mbenjele hunter-gatherers of central Africa, Jerome Lewis

Dec 7 – What future for the African forest people? Jerome Lewis

Dec 14 – Christmas fairytale, the shoes that danced themselves to pieces, Chris Knight

The Human Revolution theory is summarised in articles at http://libcom.org/tags/hunter-gatherers and at http://www.radicalanthropologygroup.org

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Gilles Deleuze

Gilles Deleuze

DELEUZE & RACE

 

Jason Adams

While the relevance of Gilles Deleuze for a materialist feminism has been amply demonstrated in the last two decades or so, what this key philosopher of difference and desire can do for the theorization of race and racism has received surprisingly little attention. This is despite the explicit formulation of a materialist theory of race as instantiated in colonization, sensation, capitalism and culture, particularly in Deleuze’s collaborative work with Félix Guattari.

Part of the explanation of why there has been a relative silence on Deleuze within critical race and colonial studies is that the philosophical impetus for overcoming eugenics and nationalism have for decades been anchored in the conventional readings of Kant and Hegel, which Deleuze laboured to displace. Through the vocabularies of psychoanalysis, deconstruction, and moral philosophy, even the more sophisticated theorizations of race today continue the neo-Kantian/neo-Hegelian programme of retrieving a cosmopolitan universality beneath the ostensibly inconsequential differences called race.

Opposing this idealism, Deleuze instead asks whether the conceptual basis for this program, however commendable, does not foreclose its political aims, particularly in its avoidance of the material relations it seeks to change. The representationalism and oversimplified dialectical frameworks guiding the dominant antiracist programme actively suppress an immanentist legacy which according to Deleuze is far better suited to grasping how power and desire differentiate bodies and populations: the legacies of Spinoza, Marx and Nietzsche; biology and archeology; Virginia Woolf and Jack Kerouac; cinema, architecture, and the fleshy paintings of Francis Bacon. It is symptomatic too, that Foucault’s influential notion of biopolitics, so close to Deleuze and Guattari’s writings on the state, is usually taken up without its explicit grounding in race, territory and capitalist exchange. Similarly, those (like Negri) that twist biopolitics into a mainly Marxian category, meanwhile, lose the Deleuzoguattarian emphasis on racial and sexual entanglement. It would seem then, that it is high time for a rigorous engagement with the many conceptual ties between Foucault’s lectures on biopolitics, Deleuze and Guattari, and Deleuze-influenced feminism, to obtain a new materialist framework for studying racialization as well as the ontopolitics of becoming from which it emerges. While it will inevitably overlap in a few ways, this collection will differ from work done under the “postcolonial” rubric for a number of important reasons.

First, instead of the mental, cultural, therapeutic, or scientific representations of racial difference usually analyzed in postcolonial studies, it will seek to investigate racial difference “in itself”, as it persists as a biocultural, biopolitical force amid other forces. For Deleuze and Guattari, as for Nietzsche before them, race is far from inconsequential, though this does not mean it is set in stone.

Second, as Fanon knew, race is a global phenomenon, with Europe’s racism entirely entwined with settler societies and the continuing poverty in the peripheries. The effects of exploitation, slavery, displacement, war, migration, exoticism and miscegenation are too geographically diffuse and too contemporary to fit comfortably under the name “postcolonial”. Rather, we seek to illuminate the material divergences that phenotypical variation often involves, within any social, cultural or political locus.

Third, again like Nietzsche, but also Freud, Deleuze and Guattari reach into the deep recesses of civilization to expose an ancient and convoluted logic of racial discrimination preceding European colonialism by several millennia. Far from naturalizing racism, this nomadological and biophilosophical “geology of morals” shows that racial difference is predicated on fully contingent territorializations of power and desire, that can be disassembled and reassembled differently. That race is immanent to the materiality of the body then, does not mean that it is static any more than that it is simple: rather what it suggests is that its transformation is an always already incipient reality.

Possible themes:

CIVILIZATION AND ITS DISCONTENTS – Oedipus and racialization – fascist desire – civilization, savagery and barbarism – earth and its peoples – delirium and hallucination as racial – miscegenation

CAPITALISM – faciality – colonization and labor migration as racializing apparatuses of capture – urban segregation – environmental racism

POLITICS – hate speech and law as order-words – D&G, May ’68 and the third world – Deleuze and Palestine – Guattari and Brazil – terrorist war machines and societies of control – Deleuzian feminism and race

SCIENCE – neuroscience and race – continuing legacies of racist science and the “Bell Curve” debate – kinship, rhizomatics and arboreality – animals, plants, minerals and racial difference – miscegenation – evolutionary biology and human phenotypical variation – vitalism and Nazism

ART – affects of race (sport, hiphop, heavy metal, disco…) – primitivism (Rimbaud, Michaux, Artaud, Tournier, Castaneda, etc.) – vision, cinema and race – music, resonance and bodies

PHILOSOPHY – geophilosophy: provincializing canonical philosophy – race and becoming – decolonizing Spinoza, Leibniz, Hume, Schelling… – the effect of criticisms of Deleuze (Badiou, Zizek, Hallward) on antiracism Chapters will be between 4000 and 7000 words long.

Arun Saldanha will write the introduction and a chapter called “Bastard and mixed-blood are the true names of race”.

Jason Michael Adams will write the conclusion.

For more details on this project, contact Jason Adams at: adamsj@HAWAII.EDU

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