DPhil Seminar (Wednesday - Week 8, HT23)

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The blossoming literature on genealogy in Anglophone philosophy has come as somewhat of a pleasant surprise to the historically inclined among us. Perhaps unsurprisingly though, there have been some teething problems when it comes to the accurate apprehension of important genealogies by philosophers such as Nietzsche, Foucault, and Butler. As I see it, the literature on genealogy is guilty of two conflations, both of which are the result of inadequate typological maps used to organise genealogies according to perceived common features. Consequently, what makes many genealogies philosophically interesting and distinctive often remains obscure.

In response, I propose a new typology which helps us to avoid these conflations and, in so doing, to break free of the epistemological paradigm which has thus far stymied an accurate apprehension of many genealogies which populate the literature. By getting clear on what different genealogies are actually attempting to do, we can both get a clearer understanding of the problems they face and of their critical potential. It may also, with any luck, help us see what light some of the typically misapprehended genealogies can shed on issues in the philosophy of language such as natural language semantics and rule-following.

See the DPhil Seminar website for details.

DPhil Seminar Convenor: Mariona Miyata - Sturm