Individuality & Individuation

Whaddup Philosophers! I was invited to give a lecture The People’s Philosophy Colloquium in Portland, OR. They are an awesome organization. Check them out at:

The topic I choose was: Individuality and Individuation: Contemporary Selfhood in Art Transcendence and Social Justice. I have added my slides below so you can see them.


Here is the write up:

Lecture Title: Individualism vs. Individuality: The Implications of Contemporary Selfhood in Art, Transcendentalism and Social Justice

Overview: In this lecture we will explore the how the concept and creation of ‘self’ is structured in phenomenological praxis with media. We will discuss the current nuances of identity construction as influenced by the individual imperative to generate semiotic self-representations. How is the nature of identity shifting within the larger techno-social ecosystem of late capitalism? How does this depart from previous processes of understanding and participation in the creation of a ‘self?’ What are the implications of this regarding art, self-realization and the potential for social justice movements? There will be a presentation of theory, time for discussion and an experiential exercise.

-Rough historical review of the emergent notions of individuation and individuality from the Industrial Revolution in Western Europe up to contemporary late capitalism.
-Basic phenomenological model of perception and cognition as related to self-conception.
-Exploration of the development of self within the context of late capitalism and current cycles of semiotic self-representation.
-Forward looking implications of the interplay of ego-constructed individualism on the creation art and the potential influences on the viability, successful social movements and the spiritual dimension of human experience.

(Suggested Reading) Lecture Will Drawn On Theories By:
1. Ian Hacking, Making Up People, London Books, 2006.
2. Gilles Deleuze, The Fold: Leibniz and the Baroque, University of Minnesota Press, 1992.
3. John Berger, Ways of Seeing, Penguin Press, 1972.
4. Celeste Olalquiaga, Megalopolis: Contemporary Cultural Sensibilities, University of Minnesota Press, 1992.
5. Martin Buber, I and Thou, 1937.
6. Koltko-Rivera, Mark E., Rediscovering the Later Version of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs: Self-Transcendence and Opportunities for Theory, Research, and Unification, Review of General Psychology 2006, Vol. 10, No. 4, 302–317.

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