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Jonathan Basile
University of British Columbia
  1. Other matters: Karen barad’s two materialisms and the science of undecidability.Jonathan Basile - 2020 - Angelaki 25 (5):3-18.
    Karen Barad’s Meeting the Universe Halfway relies on mutually incompatible grounding gestures, one of which describes the relationality of an always already material-discursive reality, while the other seeks to ground this relation one-sidedly in matter. These two materialisms derive from the gesture she borrows from the New Materialist (and other related) fields, which posits her work as an advance over the history of “representationalism” and “social constructivism.” In turn, this one-sided materialism produces a skewed reading of the quantum mechanical phenomena (...)
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  2. The New Novelty: Corralation as Quarantine in Speculative Realism and New Materialism.Jonathan Basile - 2018 - Derrida Today 11 (2):211-229.
    The foundational gesture of New Materialism and Speculative Realism dismisses vast swaths of past philosophy and theory in order to signify their own avant-garde status. The violence of this gesture, which tries to corral difference within past texts in order to feign its own purity, can be considered as a theoretical quarantine. Examples of medical and spiritual quarantine, the 2014 ebola epidemic and Jesus’ temptation, are analyzed to show that the figure is inherently compromised – the harder one fights to (...)
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  3. Misreading Generalised Writing: From Foucault to Speculative Realism and New Materialism.Jonathan Basile - 2018 - Oxford Literary Review 40 (1):20-37.
    Misreadings of Derrida's Of Grammatology were prevalent from the time of its debut, up to the present day. For fifty years, Derrida's generalised textuality has been misread as though he meant there was nothing outside text in the traditional sense. This misreading always serves to re-institute notions of linear temporal progress, either among self-styled avant-garde authors who would like to break with past traditions, or among self-styled conservatives who hope to repeat them. If the binaries that divide these works from (...)
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  4.  57
    Life/Force: Novelty and New Materialism in Jane Bennett's Vibrant Matter.Jonathan Basile - 2019 - Substance 48 (2):3-22.
    Among those speaking in the name of materialism, whether speculative, dialectical, or "new," it is commonplace to dismiss with a single gesture a vast field of theoretical and philosophical endeavor, indicated as the last 50 or 250 years of theory and philosophy. Self-styled "speculative" writers who would surpass all philosophy since Kant, and various New Materialists who sequester decades of thought under the heading of "constructivism," manufacture the avant-garde status of their own work by claiming to delineate a simple break (...)
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  5. Kant's Parasite: Sublime Biodeconstruction.Jonathan Basile - 2019 - CR: The New Centennial Review 19 (3):173-200.
    In Kant's Critique of Judgment, his exploration of how something like life (organized matter) can appear to the faculties of a finite consciousness makes life as possible as it is impossible. A passing reference Kant makes to the idea that every organ of an organism can be seen as a parasite is taken as a lever to deconstruct his notion of organized beings as forming an ultimately coherent nature (an ethicoteleological whole). This reading is placed alongside Paul de Man's deconstruction (...)
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    The Epic of Genesis: Catherine Malabou and the gêne of Epigenetics.Jonathan Basile - 2023 - Derrida Today 16 (2):99-113.
    This article examines the conflicting representations of plasticity and epigenetics in the work of philosopher Catherine Malabou and evolutionary theorists Mary Jane West-Eberhard and Eva Jablonka. In order to speak of a new biological ‘paradigm’ and to attribute values of novelty or inventiveness to life itself, Malabou has to suppress the unsettled debates within the life sciences. The aporias of evolutionary narrative and causality reveal a necessary differentiality and textuality that belongs neither to life nor science itself, but leaves a (...)
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  7.  20
    Stijn De Cauwer, ed. Critical Theory at a Crossroads: Conversations on Resistance in Times of Crisis.Jonathan Basile - 2019 - Environmental Philosophy 16 (1):230-233.
  8. Symbioautothanatosis: Science as Symbiont in the Work of Lynn Margulis.Jonathan Basile - 2021 - Síntesis Revista de Filosofía 4 (2):60-86.
    Lynn Margulis’s writing about symbiosis has profoundly influenced contemporary evolutionary theory, as well as continental and analytic philosophy of science, the materialist turn, and new materialism. Nonetheless, her work, and all symbiosis or evolution, is founded on a paradox: symbiosis fictionalizes customary accounts of the origin and evolution of species, yet it is impossible to speak of symbiosis (cross-species association) unless species-boundaries have been posited in advance. Thus, a tension is legible throughout Margulis’s work between the drive to surpass the (...)
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  9.  27
    Jacques Derrida, Life Death. [REVIEW]Jonathan Basile - 2021 - Philosophy Today 65 (2):409-415.
  10.  8
    Francesco Vitale. Biodeconstruction: Jacques Derrida and the Life Sciences. Trans. Mauro Senatore. Albany: SUNY Press, 2018. 256 pp. [REVIEW]Jonathan Basile - 2019 - Critical Inquiry 46 (1):236-237.
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