Author(s): Karen Barad: Published: July Pages: Illustrations: 1 table, . physicist and feminist theorist, elaborates her theory of agential realism. diffraction. e flesh out Barad’s o erarching position of ‘agential realism’, hich contains a New Materialism; Karen Barad; Cultural Theory; Ethics; Ontology;. As developed by Karen Barad, agential realism is a performative theory of the irreducible entanglement of matter and discourse that relates knowing and being .

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She states admiringly that “Bohr rejects the atomistic metaphysics that takes ‘things’ as ontologically basic entities. The number of copies requested, the school and professor requesting For reprints and subsidiary rights, please also note: The aential is always what it appears to be, and is not some vague thing-in-itself outside the fray of the world.

For Barad, by contrast, individuals are purely derivative. Society and Space University of California, Santa Cruz. This book contributes to the founding of a new ontology, epistemology, and ethics, including a new understanding of the nature of scientific practices This has always been the basic research program of physics and has led to tension including accusations of “physics envy” with practitioners in sciences such as chemistry who deal with higher-level beings such as molecules, not to mention the even more macroscopic realities covered by geology, biology or sociology.

I doubt that Barad overstates the case, since if one were to accept her ontology, there would indeed be significant consequences in all of these areas. Pollock – – In Quentin Smith ed. These points on science, agency, ethics, and knowledge reveal that Barad’s work is reaoism to the projects of other science studies scholars such as Bruno LatourDonna HarawayAndrew Pickeringand Evelyn Fox Keller. According to Democritus, the properties of all things derive from the properties of the smallest unit—atoms the ‘uncuttable or ‘inseparable ” —9.

Bravers History of Varad Thought. Page numbers if excerpting, provide specifics For coursepacks, please also note: It deserves wide analysis and discussion. Whereas “atomism” normally means just what Statement 1 says it means, Barad now uses a terminological sleight of hand to suggest that the belief in any individuals at all is itself a form of atomistic reductionism.

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Karen Barad – Wikipedia

We know that “‘things don’t preexist; they are agentially enacted and become determinately bounded and propertied within phenomena” Feminist Reflections on Embodiment. In agential realism, realism is not about something substantialized and fixed or demarcated. Even if we ignore the vastly different meanings of “realism” in politics, mathematics and literature, the strictly philosophical uses of the term already seem to be scattered across agentiql map.

Reality is not independent of our explorations of it; and reality is not a matter of opinion, but of the material consequences of some cuts and not others made in the fabric of the world. She provides an excellent overview of akren studies.

Mudde University of Regina. Yet, second, in order to explain how this landscape could ever be transformed, we are told of the undermining pre-individual fertility of a dynamic folding and unfolding cosmos.

Although undermining works validly in many cases as when correctly reducing “morning star” and “evening star” to the planet Venusit fails as a global debunking effort that seeks to reduce everything to a pampered caste of tiniest particles or primordial structural fields.

A Situated Critique of Representation. Lorraine Code – – Oup Kraen.

It is performative practices, also known as intra-actions, which make an “agential cut” in the world so as to generate such boundaries First the world is depicted as a highly differentiated, overmined landscape of performative, intra-active, and entangled apparatuses configured into specific phenomena through agential cuts.

Title of the journal article or book chapter and title of journal or title of book 3. Deliberating for Our Far Agentixl Selves.

Agential Realism – New Materialism

Yet even if we confine ourselves to the purely ontological sense of the term, the polysemy continues: The complex interaction among multiple forces discursive, material, political and a range of other forces forming the social and the subjective, as Michel Foucault emphasized with his conceptualization of the dispositif the apparatusspawns and reconfigures in the new materialist and post-human thinking.

By indicating that individual humans do not pre-exist the practices through which they are co-constituted by the rest of the world, this ontology also suggests the poverty of classic political liberalismwith its possible Thatcherite consequence that “society does not exist” and that only individual human voters and consumers are real.


Everyday objects such as tables, chairs, horses, and trees are not to be taken seriously, but must be reduced to the simpler root from which they all come. There is a “dynamic process of intra-activity and materialization Barad’s agential realism is at once an epistemology theory of knowingan ontology theory of beingand an ethics. That is, in contrast to the usual “interaction,” which assumes that there are separate individual agencies that precede their interaction, the notion of intra-action recognizes that distinct agencies do not precede, but rather emerge through, their intra-action.

Sign in to use this feature. Quantum Physics and the Entanglement of Matter and Meaning. Retrieved from ” https: In this volume, Karen Barad, theoretical physicist and feminist theorist, elaborates her theory of agential realism. Self-Knowledge, Misc in Philosophy of Mind. Statement 1 criticises what is commonly known as “reductionism. Undermining is the intellectual strategy launched by the pre-Socratics, those inventors of Western philosophy and science alike.

Anna Mudde, Karen Barad’s Agential Realism and Reflexive Epistemic Authority – PhilPapers

Intra-actiona neologism introduced by Barad, signals an important challenge to individualist metaphysics. This is not the case for the “agential realism” of Karen Barad, one of whose features is the view that entities emerge from their interactions rather than pre-existing them. In this section, the heart of her philosophical position is made lucidly visible. In this book Karen Barad puts her expertise in feminist studies and quantum physics to superb use, offering agential realism as an important alternative to representationalism.