Thank you very much for your thoughts and references I think the comment is
very interesting but specially appealing, meaning it has made me think
about the issue in a slightly different way...
It would seem to me both art and science might share a bit of colonial
spirit, I would say, in an organic form of speaking. Both are by definition
alien to nature itself, if we consider nature whatever alien to the human
being, as I would frame it if we use the very europcentric 19th century
history as reference point but also the very global/universocentric 21st as
current date for the discussion. I don't mean that's necessariously bad, I
would say indeed is good for science for art and for ourselves (public and
transducers in between) to practice recognition and acceptation.
On the other hand, one would say Beauty can be intrinsic to nature but we
can also point out its deeply related to art (both as motive and target)
but I would say also to science (both as motive (to understand) and target
(beautiful explanations as resolution to technical misterys)). Beauty both
in caos and order has moved humans to create art from the very begining,
beauty understood as anything caughting our eye and so our questions is
also in the very reason of science...
As for the "external world" I agree very much with what I think to
understand you express. Only I would say, and I think thats a mistake both
science and art have recently committed repeatedly, we are not able to
control it. I would say both A&S are impregnated by that present you
describe, maybe we are able to see it already, might be we'll realize in
some years time but anycase it is there by definition. As alien languages
to "Nature" our beloved AS are, they are, on the other hand, deeply related
to human "nature" which we should recognize is a fundamental part of the
first one ("Nature"). That's how our very artificial languages feed in
their origin with which they appear to fight often but is the only reason
for their true importance, to be a very powerful trans-temporo-spacial
communication tool. That's how I would accept years of going through, back
and for, similar topics and discussions, as "voyeurs" of that phenomenon we
can be a vital piece of it by the only effort of "being", participating,
taking place, arguing, cause the "importance" of the facts, events, pieces
or discoveries is long too far of our capacity but is in ourselves at the
Sorry about the disgression on a point you might have discussed before.
Sorry for my english.
Thank you because by appointing an "external" enemy you made me find so
many things A and S share.
2015-11-30 18:40 GMT+01:00 <email@example.com>:
> Paris 30 November 2015
> Dear Roger,
> I Trust all is well, and I thank you for your protean activity in Yasmin
> and around. Allow me to share a few thoughts with you that I have been
> chewing over the past few months and in particular after an interesting
> meeting in la Laboral in Gijon on the occasion of the opening of Materia
> Prima (
> In a nutshell the point is that, after following and participating for a
> number of years in the discussions in yasmin and many other fora that you
> know well and animate with great style and generosity, I have developed a
> few impressions:
> One is that the same arguments and ideas are repeated again and again in
> slightly modified formats, without much condensation, hypothesis testing,
> synthesis or advancement , in a sense rather perpetuating and enforcing the
> dichotomy A/S, as opposed to dis-inventing it and working towards a world
> where creative thinking (and creative thinkers, intellectuals if you want)
> cooperate and discuss to address, analyze in an active, astute, critical
> and intelligent manner the vast, social, political and environmental
> problems all societies are confronted with today.
> These problems are complicated and are seen differently form different
> positions in society and in different places in the world. The discussions
> (ie in Gijon a few weeks ago, etc) give the impression or are based on the
> shared assumption, that the A/S debate is eternal and universal, grouping
> all people in two internally homogenous groups: As and Ss, and an external
> population composed eventually of all non A and non S who are not
> considered. This configuration makes this environment progressively more
> autistic to the outside world where As and Ss and everybody else are
> fighting for their lives in a world progressively more violent, unfair and
> polluted that is at the same time endowed today with unbelievable
> competences, tools and power to face these problems in a cooperative and
> effective manner or, alternatively to amplify them.
> One line that might help us disentangle this in a logical way is the
> consideration that the A/S dichotomy has a history and an origin in a given
> period of time say 17 century and geographical location say Europe, it is
> there and then that this cognitive structure was put in place, propagated
> and perpetuated since, in parallel, simultaneously and organically together
> with the colonial effort and the domination and eventual destruction of any
> external agent.
> The A/S dichotomy is one central element of the us/them dichotomy at the
> base of hegemonic colonial domination, in consequence integrating these
> elements in a coherent critical analysis might help in moving on to a new
> set of practices and problems.
> I was reading this morning the paper of Koen Vermeir (Historicizing
> Culture,A Revaluation of Early Modern Science and Culture) a chapter for in
> a book in press (K. Chemla and Evelyn Fox-Keller (eds) 2016.Cultures
> without culturalism) preparing for a seminar at SAW (
> http://sawerc.hypotheses.org) next Thursday under the title Rethinking
> Practices and Cultures in the history of science, I thought the paper was
> quite consistent with the argument above and might be useful to work on it,
> and it contains a number of interesting references that might help us in
> working out operative proposals. I think you will find it interesting
> All the best, cordiallyr
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