University of Virginia, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences

Graham Harman workshop and lecture (with NLH)

February 16, 2017

Professor Harman is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at SCI-Arc in Los Angeles and the founder of object-oriented ontology as well as a leading commentator on the work of Bruno Latour. His many books include Tool-Being: Heidegger and the Metaphysics of Objects, Toward Speculative Realism, Prince of Networks: Bruno Latour and Metaphysics, Weird Realism: Lovecraft and Philosophy, and Immaterialism.


Feb 16th at 5pm: Graham Harman will give a lecture “On Knowledge in the Arts and Taste in the Sciences" in Campbell 158 in the Architecture School. (Abstract provided below.)


Feb 17th from 10am-12pm: Harman will participate in a “seminar on formalism” intended mainly for graduate students (others are also welcome) in Wilson 142. If you intend to attend the seminar, please read Harman’s new book Dante’s Broken Hammer pp. 149-249.


“On Knowledge in the Arts and Taste in the Sciences”


In the 2012 essay “The Third Table,” I claimed that objects are irreducible to knowledge of any sort, whether it be knowledge of what a thing is made of or knowledge of what it does. I claimed further that the arts and design are well aware that they produce something other than knowledge, and that philosophy belongs on this side of the fence as well: Socrates’ constant assertions that he knows nothing are not just playful irony, but a direct statement of what philosophy really is. At the same time, I argued that what makes science a form of knowledge is its willingness to paraphrase things in terms of properties that truly belong to them. While this distinction between the arts and the sciences generally holds, we must also consider those cases in which art does transmit knowledge and in which science does yield something like an aesthetic experience. How does this recognition transform the basic concepts developed in “The Third Table”?

Homer Statue
Campbell 158
5:00 pm