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Internationally known ‘materialist philosopher’ to lecture at Alfred University
2/01/12

Manuel DeLanda, who is internationally recognized as a "materialist philosopher," will deliver a lecture-presentation at 5:20 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 14, in Holmes Auditorium, Harder Hall, on the Alfred University campus. His talk is entitled "Symbolic and Material Culture: the Place of Craft in the Philosophy of Matter."

DeLanda is delivering the keynote lecture in a series of events to mark the opening of the McGee Pavilion, a new facility for Alfred University’s School of Art & Design. The event is open to the public, free of charge.

"DeLanda's philosophy of ‘material expressivity’ is relevant to anyone involved in work across disciplines in art and science," Barbara Lattanzi, associate professor in the School of Art & Design.

Described as an "internationally known philosopher of morphogenesis and emergence," DeLanda studied art in the 1970s and became an independent filmmaker. His underground films, which were circulated nationally and internationally, were inspired by critical theory and philosophy.

In the 1980s, he focused on programming, writing computer software and producing computer-based art. After being introduced to the work of the late Gilles Deleuze, a French philosopher, DeLanda realized the creative potential in philosophical texts, becoming one of the representatives of the "new materialism." His work focuses on diverse fields such as economics, nonlinear dynamics, chaos theory, geology, architecture, self-organizing autonomous systems, artificial intelligence, artificial life, and the history of science.

DeLanda’s published works include War in the Age of Intelligent Machines (1991); A Thousand Years of Nonlinear History (1997); Intensive Science and Virtual Philosophy (2002); New Philosophy of Society: Assemblage Theory and Social Complexity (2006); Deleuze: History and Science (2010) and Philosophy and Simulation: The Emergence of Synthetic Reason (2011).

The event is presented by the School of Art & Design at Alfred University, and is co-sponsored by the Division of Expanded Media, the Division of Ceramic Art, the Division of Art History in the School of Art & Design at Alfred University; the Interdisciplinary Art Program in the Division of Human Studies, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences at Alfred University; the office of the dean of the Inamori School of Engineering at Alfred University; the Digital Media and Animation Department of Alfred State College and the School of Architecture, Management and Engineering Technology at Alfred State College.