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  1. Understanding living beings by analogy with computers or understanding computers as an emanation of the living

    Understanding living beings by analogy with computers or understanding computers as an emanation of the living

    trópoς. Rivista di ermeneutica e critica filosofica

    A new look at theoretical computer sciences by changing perspective with a biological approach.


    The analogy between living beings and computers was introduced with circumspection by Schrödinger and has been widely propagated since, rarely with a precise technical meaning. Critics of this perspective are numerous. We emphasize that this perspective is mobilized to justify what may be called a regressive reductionism by comparison with physics or the Cartesian method.
    Other views on the living are possible, and we focus on an epistemological and theoretical framework where historicity is central, and the regularities susceptible to mathematization are constraints whose existence is fundamentally precarious and historically contingent.
    We then propose to reinterpret the computer, no longer as a Turing machine but as constituted by constraints. This move allows us to understand that computation in the sense of Church-Turing is only a part of the theoretical determination of what actually happens in a computer when considering them in their larger theoretical context where historicity is also central.

  2. Disruption, care and knowledge

    What does it mean and what would it take to: “establish, without hierarchy, all “that” which cannot be stolen from us: silence, a future, caring for the dead, daily freedoms, quality of life, physical and psychic health, long spans of time, the possibility of living and becoming; but also the ways that make it possible to prevent such thefts from taking place: proof of care, a climate of care, field surveys, the right to experiment, the productivity of vulnerability, and, more generally, furtivity—the clever and imaginative ways of dealing with life's and systems' hurdles” (Cynthia Fleury and Antoine Fenoglio 2022)? This colloquium is devoted to the need for imagining other ways of thinking health and care, ethical approach to health, patient-oriented and institutional care, interrogating medicalization and equally the chasms between the clinic and the world in a time of exacerbating inequalities and erosion of welfare.

  3. Technology and biology in the anthropocene: Overcoming the stasis

    Technology and sciences, notably biology, have entered a stasis whereby the nature of the answers provided are remarkably unchanging. For example, most of biological technoscientific research aims to fix problem by finding a molecule that would interact with an intended target. We argue that this stasis is the result of a decline in theoretical work, and notably a weak relationship with philosophy. Then theoretical shortcomings and contradiction are no longer overcome by renewed perspectives, instead outdated frameworks remain undead leading to inconsistent discourses. To overcome this stasis, we propose to introduce a bastardized epistemology, both in biology and technology, that would articulate both systemic and historical reasoning.

  4. Penser au-delà de l’identité : Philosophie et sciences

    Penser au-delà de l’identité : Philosophie et sciences

    Philosophy World Democracy

    Si la philosophie est entrée en stasis et se porte vers un nécessaire Autre Commencement de la Philosophie, alors les sciences aussi sont à un autre commencement.


    Ce texte est le séminaire public donné le 31 mai à l’École Normale Supérieure de Paris. Les sciences se sont écartées de la philosophie. Si la philosophie est entrée en stasis et se porte vers un nécessaire Autre Commencement de la Philosophie, alors les sciences aussi sont à un autre commencement. L’Anastasis des sciences exige une enquête sur la persistance des concepts théologiques en leur sein et en même temps la découverte de nouveaux principes par lesquels les sciences peuvent recommencer de telle manière qu’elles soient libérées des fardeaux métaphysiques. Les homologies d’un autre commencement des sciences sont déjà visibles dans les crises conceptuelles, y compris dans les concepts de singularité en physique et d’immunité en biologie. Pour commencer à nouveau, une épistémologie bâtarde est proposée comme nouveau rapport entre les sciences et la famille bâtarde de la déconstruction.

  5. La disruption du vivant dans l’anthropocène

    Les biologistes évoquent souvent la disruption des organisations biologiques ou des écosystèmes. Il s'agit par exemple de la disruption des relations écosystémiques par le changement climatique ou des perturbateurs endocriniens, endocrine disruptors en anglais. La notion de disruption correspond-elle a un phénomène original ? Elle devrait être alors distincte du concept de perturbation tel que développé en physique et utilisé pour analyser toute sorte de système. Nous montrerons comment cette question de la disruption en biologie soulève et demande de traiter des questions fondamentales en biologie théorique et discuterons plusieurs cas.

  6. How should we think scientifically about biological objects?

    • M Montévil
    • en
    • Recording available
    • Seminar of the history, philosophy and biology teaching lab
    • History, Philosophy and Biology Teaching Lab, Universidade Federal da Bahia

    Scholars used Aristotelian reasoning in combination with theology to understand living beings, leading to natural theology, where god was the guarantee of biological norms. Transformism, notably Darwin, provided an alternative to this view; however, this alternative had to be acknowledged by scientists when the model of science was classical mechanics. It followed that thinking about biological objects remained similar to physics thinking, where norms are laws, or at least invariants and symmetries. The recurring analogies with technological objects, recently computers, as viewed by engineers (and not users or anthropology) also contributed to this theoretical and epistemological bias and confusion. On the opposite, we can think about biological objects differently, on renewed theoretical bases, by starting from theoretical principles that are sound in this field. Then, instead of fast analogies, numerous new questions, methods, and reasoning have to be fleshed out.

  7. The anastasis of philosophy — seminar

    The multiple crises of philosophy (conceptual, institutional, vocational, political, economic) which have constituted a situation of more than crisis—a criticalisation—from which philosophy will not be able to recover into anything resembling what it was in the past. However, these moments of crises also offer a chance to question what were properly philosophical evils and initiate an inventive era of philosophy which will be able to comprehend a new relation with other disciplines including the sciences, psychoanalysis, politics, and technology. The analytic of the stasis of philosophy began with the tradition of deconstruction through Jacques Derrida, Jean-Luc Nancy, and Bernard Stiegler. Today we already have glimpses of philosophy in anastasis, or the experience of philosophy coming over stasis. The four speakers will outline and discuss the other beginning of philosophy.

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