Inside SCI-Arc


09.18.13 | W.M. Keck Lecture Hall
Graham Harman: Strange Objects Contra Parametricism

Wed, September 18, 7pm
W.M. Keck Lecture Hall

Intro by Hernan Diaz Alonso

Graham Harman's lecture develops the central themes of object-oriented philosophy, with special attention to their implications for architecture.

Objects come in two varieties: the real and the sensual, both of them in permanent tension with their own qualities and with each other. Real objects also have the additional feature of withdrawing from all relations, meaning that objects make contact with each other only in an indirect way.

The current intellectual fashions for relationality, flux, becoming, and materiality cannot be maintained, and must be replaced by a form of realism. But whereas traditional realism was an often middle-aged standpoint designed to police speculative fancy with hidebound scientific fact, object-oriented philosophy entails a weird realism, in which objects are so real that they can never be directly known or touched.

The architectural implications of this philosophy will be developed by way of contrast with Patrik Schumacher’s two-volume treatise The Autopoiesis of Architecture, the magnum opus of parametricism so far.

Graham Harman is the founder of object-oriented philosophy and a co-founder of the Speculative Realism movement. He launched his career with a breakthrough interpretation of Heidegger as a thinker of withdrawn objects– objects with a resonant surplus deeper than any relations in which they might become involved. Along with numerous lectures and articles, he is the author of the following books: Tool-Being (2002), Guerrilla Metaphysics (2005), Heidegger Explained (2007), Prince of Networks (2009), Towards Speculative Realism (2010), Circus Philosophicus (2010), The Quadruple Object (2011), Quentin Meillassoux: Philosophy in the Making (2011), The Prince and the Wolf [w. Bruno Latour & Peter Erdélyi] (2011), Weird Realism (2012), and Bells and Whistles (forthcoming 2013). He is currently completing the following books, all forthcoming in 2014: Prince of Modes: Latour’s Later Philosophy (, Bruno Latour: Reassembling the Political (Pluto), and On Epistemism: Žižek, Badiou, and Others (Open Humanities Press).