An Inquiry into Modes of Existence: An Anthropology of the by Bruno Latour

By Bruno Latour

In this new booklet, Bruno Latour bargains solutions to questions raised in We Have by no means Been smooth, a paintings that interrogated the connections among nature and tradition. If now not smooth, he requested, what have we been, and what values should still we inherit? during the last twenty-five years, Latour has constructed a examine protocol diverse from the actor-network idea with which his identify is now associated--a examine protocol that follows the different sorts of connectors that offer particular fact stipulations. those are the connectors that steered a weather scientist challenged by means of a captain of to attract the institution of technological know-how, with its military of researchers and mountains of information, instead of to ''capital-S Science'' as the next authority. Such modes of extension--or modes of life, Latour argues here--account for the various alterations among legislations, technology, politics, and different domain names of knowledge.

although medical wisdom corresponds to simply one of many many attainable modes of lifestyles Latour describes, an unrealistic imaginative and prescient of technology has develop into the arbiter of truth and fact, seducing us into judging all values through a unmarried common. Latour implores us to get better different modes of life so that it will do justice to the plurality of fact stipulations that Moderns have came upon all through their heritage. This systematic attempt of creating a brand new philosophical anthropology provides a very assorted view of what Moderns were, and offers a brand new foundation for establishing diplomatic encounters with different societies at a time while all societies are dealing with ecological crisis.

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Extra resources for An Inquiry into Modes of Existence: An Anthropology of the Moderns

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Its own particular mode of displacement. There is thus a definition of “boundary” that does not depend on the notions of domain or network. 27 An investigator goes off to do fieldwork among the Moderns � L et us imagine an anthropologist who has come up with the idea of reconsti- tuting the value system of “Western societies”—a terrain whose precise boundaries mat- ter little at this stage. Let us imagine as well that, informed by reading good recent authors, she has overcome the temptation to limit her studies among the Moderns to the aspects that superficially resemble the classical terrains of anthropology—various folklores, village festivals, ancient patrimonies, assorted archaic features.

In other words, there is an opacity proper to the Moderns with which comparative anthropology will have to reckon sooner or later. This opacity is all the more enigmatic in that it contrasts with the Moderns’ claim to practice self-awareness, self-analysis, critique, lucidity—and also with the odd idea that the “other cultures” would be the ones that are opaque and in great need of ethnography. It is to combat this opacity—or this false transparency, perhaps—that I have needed to develop a special protocol for inquiry.

Without respecting Let us suppose that, by chance, she comes domain boundaries, across the notion of network—and even, the thanks to the notion hypothesis is not so absurd, that of actor-network. of actor-network, � Instead of wondering, for example, if Science is a domain distinct from Politics or The Economy or Religion, the investigator will be content to start with some arbitrary sequence of practices. ” But then, with a certain obstinacy, she begins to note the origins of the successive ingredients that her informants need in order to carry out their work.

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