The breakup of the Platonist view of reality and discourse that has, as Wittgenstein suggested, held us ‘captive’ within a Cartesian/Lockean picture that seeks both an objective essence and a cohesive, coherent, self has been replaced in our time by a “Darwinian account of human beings as animals doing their best to cope with the environment – doing their best to develop tools which will enable them to enjoy more pleasure and less pain (p. xxiii, Richard Rorty, Philosophy and Social Hope).” Among those tools is language, words, which are no longer seen as ‘representations’ of an objective truth/reality, but as tools by which the human animal negotiates the complex horizon of social relations. Rorty sees this break with the idea that reality can be ‘represented’ as abandoning the correspondence ‘theory of truth’, which means that we no longer need to insist that truth, like reality is one and seamless.The post-nihilist impulse unabashedly rejects discourses motivated by sentimental allusions to universals. The advent of hypermediation via communication and digital technologies has combined with what Ray Brassier has called "the negative consummation of the enlightenment", as well as the ever-expanding assaults on the living flesh and ecological stability of humans everywhere to create a crisis of legitimacy for every existing linguistic and normative institution on the planet. We do not inhabit a modern or even ‘postmodern’ world, we subsist in an advanced industrial calamity. The future of our species will depend entirely upon the willingness of people to abandon our previous and varied delusions for intensely reflective strategies of praxis and collective habitation. We have to design new delusions for vastly more pragmatic ecologies. The all too human project of becoming, being and coping-with happens between and often beyond both hope and despair.
Read the rest of Hickman’s post: HERE