Philosophies of Nature in the Differentials of Iain Hamilton Grant and Ray Brassier

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In this paper, I attempt to look at the differential (as in interventionist) readings undertaken by speculative realists (A school of contemporary thought reacting against post-Kantian 'Correlationism') Iain Hamilton Grant and Ray Brassier, with the former concentrating on reading Schelling's naturalism relating to reason, while the latter claiming the constancy of thought's connection to thought. For Brassier, thought must be transcendentally separate from nature, or what he calls 'exteriority', and Grant insists on nature's thinking as plain nature. This doesn't mean 'interiority' is given weight in Grant's thought, but, on the contrary isn't a concern, as for him, the limiting factor of thinking (dichotomy in subject-object relationality) is the regionality of a particular identity attempting to grasp nature's infintude. Brassier maintains scientific statements as capable of supplying reasons for believing in the possibilities of determining thought's tracking and missing nature. He accomplishes this by clarifying notions of concept and distinguishing objects from concepts. This alien-ness of thought generates the possibilities of questioning the human production as against nature. This cardinal issue tries to answer the repercussions probably generated in the wake of either apathetic aspects of mind or the deepest powers of speculation. Not only that, a simultaneous questioning of the legitimacy of ontology and epistemology in the natural world is encountered. Grant advocates the objectifying of the self to grasp the productivity of self's thinking, but at the same time considering objectifying as an ongoing process, a kind of 'becoming'. In other words, it is the questioning of the limits of 'being' in the creation of episteme that takes precedence in Grant. Brassier on the other hand is concerned with the doing away of the dichotomy of being and thinking of meaning. This tension raises the issue of nature philosophy in a duel of 'eliminativism' and 'materialism', between the extent that calls for grounding nature without reliance on a structure undermining the discovery of contemporary science or supporting an anthropic view.
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Archival date: 2011-01-28
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