The game of life. Narrative and ludic identity formation in computer games

The game of life. Narrative and ludic identity formation in computer games

Jos de Mul. The game of life. Narrative and ludic identity formation in computer games. In: J. Goldstein and J. Raessens,Handbook…

More...
Noble versus Dawkins. DNA Is not the program of the concert of life.

Noble versus Dawkins. DNA Is not the program of the concert of life.

Jos de Mul. Noble versus Dawkins. DNA Is not the program of the concert of life. Translation of Dutch review, published…

More...
Destiny Domesticated. The Rebirth of Tragedy Out of the Spirit of Technology

Destiny Domesticated. The Rebirth of Tragedy Out of the Spirit of Technology

Jos de Mul. Destiny Domesticated. The Rebirth of Tragedy Out of the Spirit of Technology. State University of New York (SUNY)…

More...
Romantic Desire in (Post)Modern Art and Philosophy

Romantic Desire in (Post)Modern Art and Philosophy

Jos de Mul. Romantic Desire in (Post)Modern Art and Philosophy. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1999, 316 p.…

More...
命运的驯化——悲剧重生于技术精神 内容简介 (Chinese translation of Destiny Domesticated\)

命运的驯化——悲剧重生于技术精神 内容简介 (Chinese translation of Destiny Domesticated\)

Jos de Mul. 命运的驯化——悲剧重生于技术精神 内容简介 (Chinese translation of Destiny Domesticated. The Rebirth of Tragedy Out of the Spirit of Technology). Guilin:…

More...
The Tragedy of Finitude. Dilthey's Hermeneutics of Life

The Tragedy of Finitude. Dilthey's Hermeneutics of Life

Jos de Mul. The Tragedy of Finitude. Dilthey's Hermeneutics of Life. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2010 (second edition - eBook), 424…

More...
Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.

Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.

Marxism according to Groucho     "Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog…

More...
序言 约斯·德·穆尔 In: Zha Changping. World Relational Aesthetics. A History of Ideas in Pioneering Contemporary Chinese Art

序言 约斯·德·穆尔 In: Zha Changping. World Relational Aesthetics. A History of Ideas in Pioneering Contemporary Chinese Art

序言 约斯·德·穆尔. In: Zha Changping. World Relational Aesthetics. A History of Ideas in Pioneering Contemporary Chinese Art. Volume One. Shanghai:…

More...
The game of life

The game of life

Jos de Mul. The Game of Life: Narrative and Ludic Identity Formation in Computer Games.  In: Lori Way (ed.), Representations of…

More...
Cyberspace Odyssey. Towards a Virtual Ontology and Anthropology

Cyberspace Odyssey. Towards a Virtual Ontology and Anthropology

Jos de Mul. Cyberspace Odyssey. Towards a Virtual Ontology and Anthropology. Castle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2010, 334 p. Translation of Cyberspace…

More...
The sovereign debt crisis or Sophie’s choice. On European tragedies, guilt and responsibility

The sovereign debt crisis or Sophie’s choice. On European tragedies, guilt and responsibility

Liesbeth Noordegraaf-Eelens and Jos de Mul, The sovereign debt crisis or Sophie’s choice. On European tragedies, guilt and responsibility. Heinrich…

More...
Plessner's Philosophical Anthropology. Perspectives and Prospects

Plessner's Philosophical Anthropology. Perspectives and Prospects

Jos de Mul. ( ed.), Plessner's Philosophical Anthropology. Perspectives and Prospects. Amsterdam/Chicago: Amsterdam University Press/Chicago University Press, 2014. Helmut Plessner (1892–1985)…

More...
Horizons of Hermeneutics

Horizons of Hermeneutics

Jos de Mul. Horizons of Hermeneutics: Intercultural Hermeneutics in a Globalizing World.  Frontiers of Philosophy in China. Vol. 6, No.…

More...
The Work of Art in the Age of Digital Recombination

The Work of Art in the Age of Digital Recombination

Jos de Mul. The work of art in the age of digital recombination. In J. Raessens, M. Schäfer, M. v. d.…

More...

Search this website:

Jos de Mul. Encyclopedias, hive minds and global brains.A cognitive evolutionary account of Wikipedia. In: Alberto Romele and Enrico Terrone (eds.) Towards a Philosophy of Digital Media. Basingstoke/New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2018, 103-119.

This book uses the conceptual tools of philosophy to shed light on digital media and on the way in which they bear upon our existence. At the turn of the century, the rise of digital media significantly changed our world. The digitizing of traditional media has extraordinarily increased the circulation of texts, sound, and images. Digital media have also widened our horizons and altered our relationship with others and with ourselves.

Information production and communication are still undoubtedly significant aspects of digital media and life. Recently, however, recording, registration and keeping track have taken the upper hand in both online practices and the imaginaries related to them. The essays in this book therefore focus primarily on the idea that digital media involve a significant overlapping between communication and recording. 

 

Published in Book chapters

城市花园,回归还是走向自然 作者:约斯·德·穆尔,鹿特丹伊拉斯姆斯大学 译者:吴寒啸,武汉大学,城市设计学院,设计学硕士 女士们先生们, 346-350.

 首先,我要感谢主办方,特别是陈望衡教授能邀请我在“环境美学和美丽的中国”会议上发言。这些都是非常重要和具有挑战性的学科,美丽的环境,特别是中国的环境,正面临着严重的威胁。在工业化的西方世界和像中国这样快速发展的国家现代化造成了非常严重的环境问题。因为在过去十年间中国工业化的惊人速度增长,中国的环境问题在世界上属于最糟糕的了。如果我们做个比较,例如世界上主要空气污染的工业区——东亚、欧洲以及北美,将变得非常清楚的是环境问题属于当今中国面临的最大问题,武汉亦是如此。据中华医学协会前任会长钟南山表示,空气污染甚至可能在不久的将来成为中国最大的健康威胁。

在我今天的演讲中,我想提出一些艺术、哲学以及与美学相关学科的看法,这些看法可能会有助于解决这些严重的环境问题。当然,我充分意识到这样一个事实就是艺术家和哲学家不去减少工厂排放和汽车尾气的绘画和写作。然而,两者都可以通过灌输思想和激动人心的想象力去改变人们的态度和行为,并且最终都可能领导一个更加健康、更加美丽的世界。在我的演讲中,我希望通过结合一些源自东方和西方艺术和哲学中卓有成效的思想来为这一任务尽一份微薄之力。

让我对自己的演讲做一个简短的概述。第一部分包括一个在对比的方式上的简短冥想,景观已经在东方和西方的绘画传统中被代表和理想化了。我将尝试用一些引人注目的例子去表明在过去两个世纪里山水画的发展反映了人与自然关系的改变,导致无论是在东方还是西方怀旧的渴望回归自然的表达,亦或是在现代,技术的世界中消失的自然的一种阴郁的表达。I

在我演讲的第二部分,联系“和谐” 这一关键的东方美学概念,以及在西方哲学中自然与技术的关系的一些思考,我会请求不同的后怀旧的自然和自然美的概念,自然和技术不再被视为对立的类别,而是因为在一个共同进化的过程中相互交织的两极。因为这个原因,我们不应该努力去“回归自然”, 而是要去“面对自然”并且在人与非人类自然与技术之间建立新的和谐关系。

在第三部分和最后一个部分,我会给一些例子来说明这种后怀旧的自然观怎样在包括中国以及世界其他地区引导我们走向一个更健康和美丽的环境的。

Published in Book chapters
Bruno Accarino, Jos de Mul und Hans-Peter Krüger (Hrsg.). Internationales Jahrbuch für Philosophische Anthropologie. Band 7 / International Yearbook for Philosophical Anthropology. Volume 7. Thomas Ebke und Alexy Zhavoronkov (Hrsg.). Nietzsche und die Anthropologie. Berlin: De Gruyter, 2017, 356 p.

Im Zentrum dieses Buches stehen die Fragen nach der systematischen Gestalt von  Friedrich Nietzsches Anthropologie und nach Nietzsches  Effekten  auf die philosophische Anthropologie. Im gegensatz zu der langen tonangebenden antrianthropologischen  Tradition der Nietzsche-Deutung soll der Band Impulse zu einer Lektüre von Nietzsche als einen anthropologisch sensiblen Denker setzen.

Published in Books
Jos de Mul. Encyclopedias, hive minds and global brains A cognitive evolutionary account of Wikipedia. 立命館言語文化研究29巻3号. Ritsumeikan Studies in Language and Culture. Volume 29, no.3 (2018), 143-153.

 

Abstract

Wikipedia, the crowd-sourced, hypermedial encyclopedia, available in more  than  290 languages and  consisting  of  no  less  than  40 million  lemmas,  is  often  hailed  as  a  successful  example  of  the ʻwisdom of  the  crowdsʼ.  However,  critics not only  point  at  the  lack  of  accuracy  and  reliability, uneven coverage of topics, and the poor quality of writing, but also at the under-representation of women and non-white ethnicities. Moreover, some critics regard Wikipedia as an example of the development of  a  hive  mind,  as  we  find  it  in  social insects, whose  ʻmindʼ rather than being a property of individuals is a ʻsocial phenomenonʼ, as it has to be located in the colony rather than in the individual bees. In this article an attempt is made to throw some light on this controversy by analyzing Wikipedia  from  the  perspective  of  the  cognitive  evolution  of  mankind.  Connecting  to Origins  of  the  Modern  Mind (1991) of neuropsychologist Merlin Donald, in which three stages in the cognitive evolution -  characterized by a  mimetic, an linguistic, and an external symbolic cognition  respectively  -  are  distinguished,  it  is  argued  that  the  development  of  the  internet,  and crowd-sourced  projects  like  Wikipedia  in  particular,  can be understood as a fourth, computer- mediated form of cognition. If we survey the cognitive evolution of hominids and the role played in this evolution by cultural and technical artefacts like writing, printing press, computers, and internet, we witness a process of increasing integration of individual minds. With outsourcing and virtualization  of  the  products  and  processes  of  thinking  to  external  memories,  and  the  fast development of implanted computer interfaces, we appear to be at the edge of the materialization of the  hive  mind  in a  ʻglobal brainʼ.  The article ends  with  some  speculative  predictions about the future of human cognition.

Keywords: encyclopedias, Wikipedia, wisdom of the crowds, cognitive evolution, hive mind, global brain

Thursday, 01 February 2018 12:57

Athens, or the Fate of Europe

Jos de Mul. Athens, or the Fate of Europe. Journal of Philosophical Research. Special supplement: Selected Papers from the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy. 2017: 221–227.

 

ABSTRACT: In his essay ‘The Idea of Europe’ George Steiner claims that European culture derives from “a primordial duality, the twofold inheritance of Athens and Jerusalem”. For Steiner, the relationship between Greek rationalism and Jewish religion, which is at once conflictual and syncretic, has engaged the entire history of European philosophy, morality, and politics. However, given this definition, at present the United States of America seem to be more European that ‘the old Europe’ itself. Against Steiner, it will be argued that in order to fathom the distinctive characteristic of European culture, we have to take a third European tradition into account, which is inextricably bound up with Athens: the tradition of Greek tragedy. If we may call Europe a tragic continent, it is not only because its history is characterised by an abundance of real political tragedies, but also because it embodies, as an idea and an ideal, a tragic awareness of the fragility of human life. Instead of reducing the ‘idea of Europe’ to a financial and economic issue, Europe should remain faithful to this idea and ideal.

 

First of all I like to thank the organizers for their invitation to join this symposium on Art and Cultures. As a tribute to the magnificent city of Athens and its inhabitants, I will talk about the relationship between European culture and the art form that is inextricably tied to the city of Athens: Greek tragedy. The thesis I will defend is that European culture distinguishes itself from other world cultures, and in particular from North-American culture, with which it shares both its Christian and its scientific worldview, by its deeply tragic character. This claim, I will argue, is neither a pessimistic nor an optimistic one, because tragedy is beyond this simple dichotomy. If I claim that Europe is a tragic continent, I refer both to its grandeur and pitfalls.

My talk consists of two parts. First, in a critical discussion with George Steiner, I will address the question of the identity of European culture. In the second part I will relate this identity to Greek tragedy.

Jos de Mul, Polycentricity and poly(ex)centricity - next levels of positionality? On telepresence, social insects, craniopagus twins & global brains. Invited lecture at the conference 'Natürliche Künstlichkeit’. Plessners anthropologisches Grundgesetz: Logik und Deutungskraft. Heidelberg: FEST, February 16.-17, 2018. 
 

Unsere Gesellschaft steht in den nächsten Jahren vor gewaltigen Herausforderungen. Bis 2050 soll die Transformation zu einer zukunftsfähigen Wirtschaft gelingen. Effizienz und Suffizienz sind hier die Schlagworte. In der politischen und praktischen Diskussion stehen beide Begriffe für unterschiedliche konzeptionelle Ansätze. Die Tagung will einen Beitrag zur Aufklärung dieser Konzepte leisten und Gestaltungsideen diskutieren. 

Bei Effizienz geht es primär um einen möglichst verbesserten Energie- und Ressourceneinsatz sowie eine minimale Umweltbelastung durch Emissionen und Abfälle. Dieses Konzept wird von Politik, Wirtschaft und Allgemeinheit zumeist positiv bewertet. Man glaubt, mit Effizienz die bisherige Wirtschafts- und Lebens-weise, ja sogar das Wirtschaftswachstum fortsetzen zu können, wenn auch in „begrünter“ Form und ohne größere Einschnitte. Dem stehen allerdings vielfach so genannte Rebound-Effekte entgegen: Mögliche Effizienzgewinne werden zunichte gemacht, weil Effizienzsteigerungen durch erhöhte Nutzung und Güterproduktion kompensiert werden.

Das Konzept der Suffizienz dagegen stellt das vorherrschende „Immer weiter, immer schneller, immer mehr“ bewusst in Frage. Dabei kommt neben der Warenproduktion und Erwerbsarbeit der informelle Sektor neu in den Blick – also Eigenarbeit, Selbstversorgung, gemeinsame Nutzung und Tausch von Gütern.
In der öffentlichen Debatte werden Effizienz und Suffizienz oft als gegensätzliche, sich ausschließende Strategien aufgefasst. Effizienz gilt häufig als wachstumsfördernd, Suffizienz dagegen vom Prinzip her als wachstumsmindernd. Wie so oft wird aber das Entweder-Oder der komplexen Realität nicht gerecht.

In dieser Veranstaltung sollen verschiedene Aspekte der beiden Strategieansätze und ihr Zusammenwirken beleuchtet und analysiert werden. Denn Effizienz und Suffizienz sind nicht immer trennbar, insbesondere nicht im Zeitablauf. Anhand konkreter Beispiele werden im Rahmen dieser Veranstaltung die Zusammenhänge veranschaulicht.

Published in Lectures
Jos de Mul. Exzentrische Positionalität 2.0. Lecture at the conference Mensch und Welt im Zeichen der
Digitalisierung. Leuphana Universität Lüneburg, January 18 & 19, 2018.

Digitalisierung ist ein ebenso prominentes wie vielfältiges Phänomen – man könnte nachgerade von einem empty signifier sprechen. Veränderungen von Kommunikationswegen über das Internet, Algorithmisierung der Arbeitswelt, digitale Überwachung, virtual reality, Selbstvermessung, Pflegeroboter, diet tracking, artificial intel-ligence – die Liste der mit Digitalisierung verbundenen Phänomene ist ebenso heterogen wie unabschließbar. 
Viel ist angesichts dieser unübersehbaren Veränderungen über Digitalisierung bereits geforscht worden – und wiederum entsteht eine heterogene Vielfalt unterschiedlicher Phänomenzugriffe. Die Tagung schlägt einen spezifischen Schnitt durch diese Vielfalt vor. Weder soll dabei die angedeutete Vielfalt empirisch (etwa durch Fokussierung auf eine Digitalisierung der Ernährung), noch durch eine Vorab-Definition des Digitalen eingeengt werden (etwa durch Fokussierung auf Algorithmen).
Vielmehr gilt es, Digitalisierung aus einer spezifischen Theorieperspektive zu betrachten: der Perspektive der philosophischen Anthropologie Helmuth Plessners. Es geht mithin um die Frage, inwieweit sich das Verhältnis von Mensch und Welt im Zeichen von Digitalisierung verändert.

Die Tagung ist als Nachwuchstagung konzipiert, die von Studierenden der Leuphana Universität aus einem Seminarkontext heraus gestaltet wird. Als key note speaker sind Prof. Dr. Gesa Lindemann und Prof. Dr. Jos de Mul an der Konferenz beteiligt.

Wir freuen uns über zahlreiches Erscheinen,

Johannes Burow, Lou-Janna Daniels, Gianna-Maria Henkel, Anna Kaiser, Clemens Klinkhammer, Josefine Kulbatzki, Alexander Lange, Yannik Schütte
und Anna Henkel

Published in Lectures
Jos de Mul. The Earth Garden: Going Back or Going Forward to Nature? Frontiers of Philosophy in China. Vol.12 (2017) 2: 237-248.

Abstract Against the background of a short meditation on the contrasting ways in which landscape has been represented and idealized in Eastern and Western painting traditions, the article will try to show, using some striking examples, that the development of landscape painting in the last two centuries reflects the changing relationship of humanity and nature, leading in both the East and in the West to either the expression of a nostalgic longing for nature to be back as it once was, or to a gloomy expression of the vanishing of nature amidst the modern, technological world. Connecting to both the concept of “harmony,” which is a key concept in Eastern aesthetics, and to some recent reflections in Western philosophy on the relationship of nature and technology, a post-nostalgic conception of nature and natural beauty is defended, in which nature and technology are no longer seen as opposing categories, but rather as poles that are intertwined in an ever-lasting process of co-evolution. It is argued that we should not so much strive to go “back to nature,” but rather to go “forward to nature” and establish a new harmony between human and non-human nature and technology. The article ends with some reflections on the role artists and aestheticians may play in this transformation.

Keywords environmental pollution, environmental aesthetics, philosophy of nature, comparative aesthetics, philosophy of technology

Jos de Mul. Turkish Delight. In: Ayşen Savaş & Sevin Osmay (eds.), Jale Erzen Testimonial. Middle East  Technical University (METU) Press, 2017, 146-152.

Of all the times I met with Jale Erzen over the last couple of decades, our meeting in May 2002 was perhaps the most memorable. Jale had invited me to take part in the 6th International Symposium of SANART about Art and Social Engagement, held at the Middle East Technical University (METU). The Symposium took place shortly after 9/11, a time when many heated discussions were held in Turkey, just as in other countries, about the political Islam, the role of religion in society, and the separation of church and state, and in Ankara the tension was running high between the Kemalists and the politicians inspired by the Islam.  

Following the conference, I went on a short trip with Jale and about ten other philosophers, from five different continents, to the east of Turkey, which was planned by Jale. We flew to Diyarbakir and then travelled on by bus and later by jeep through the northern part of the virtual state of Kurdistan. It was a memorable trip because of several reasons. In the first place because of the awe-inspiring endless bleak mountains around us, in which the only humans living there seem to be goatherds herding their flocks in search of the last remnants of vegetation. It was difficult to imagine a bigger contrast with the polders in Zeeland where I grew up.  The impression the vast and rugged landscape made on me was intensified by the realisation that we were surrounded by thousands of years of history. This vast region situated 'between the rivers', the Euphrates and the Tigris, used to be called Mesopotamia in ancient times and was full of fig-, olive-, walnut- and pomegranate trees, vines and oleander bushes. According to tradition here was once the Biblical Garden of Eden.

Published in Book chapters
序言 约斯·德·穆尔. In: Zha Changping. World Relational Aesthetics. A History of Ideas in Pioneering Contemporary Chinese Art. Volume One. Shanghai: Sanlian, 2017, xiv-xvi, xvii-xx.

序言约斯·德·穆尔(鹿特丹伊拉斯谟大学)

    2006年,我来中国参加学术讲座,访问了不同的城市。这些城市各具千秋,例如乌鲁木齐和上海。我也参加了国际美学协会在成都举办的会议。会上,我第一次见到查常平先生。介绍我们认识的是一位共同的朋友:上海的历史学者陈新。在成都逗留期间,常平和我有几次对话。我还记得六月一个炎热的夜晚,我们和雕塑家朱成以及我妻子格里(Gerry)一起坐在府河边的露台上,讨论中国和欧洲的当代艺术、宗教和政治的状况,一面享受着四川美食和冰啤,一面看着露台上小孩快乐地玩耍。真是一个美好之夜,让我难以忘怀。

    一晃十多年过去了。此间,常平和我保持着联系。他的出版物我都拜读过(可惜只能读翻译成英文的那些作品,因为我不懂中文)。他产出之多、涉猎之广,令我钦佩,从艺术批评和艺术史——如丰富多彩的《向上成都,身体美学与场景凸现》(2013)——到历史逻辑、日本历史、新约研究和一系列翻译作品。更令我印象深刻的是:他深谙西方艺术理论并且能够灵活应用于汉语语境中。常平确实是一位全面的人文学者,善于运用启发性的跨文化研究方法。

Published in Book chapters
Page 1 of 11