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Dirty Modernism: Ecological Objects In American Poetry, Michael D. Sloane Dec 2014

Dirty Modernism: Ecological Objects In American Poetry, Michael D. Sloane

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

This dissertation examines how early-to-mid twentieth century American poetry is preoccupied with objects that unsettle the divide between nature and culture. Given the entanglement of these two domains, I argue that American modernism is “dirty.” This designation leads me to sketch what I call “dirty modernism,” which includes the registers of waste, energy, animality, raciality, and the sensual. Reading these registers, I turn to what I call “ecological objects,” or representations of how nature and culture come together, which includes trash, natural resources, inanimals, and tools. Through an ecocritical mode of analysis, I introduce dirty modernism with the Baroness Elsa ...


Love And Ethics In The Works Of J. M. E. Mctaggart, Trevor J. Bieber Dec 2014

Love And Ethics In The Works Of J. M. E. Mctaggart, Trevor J. Bieber

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

This dissertation attempts to make contributions to normative ethics and to the history of philosophy. First, it contributes to the defense of consequentialist ethics against objections grounded upon the value of loving relationships. Secondly, it provides the first systematic account of John M. E. McTaggart’s (1866-1925) ethical theory and its relation to his philosophy of love.

According to (maximizing) consequentialist ethics, it is always morally wrong to knowingly do what will make the world worse-off than it could have been (i.e., had one chosen one of the other courses of action available to one at the time). Many ...


Space, Territory, Occupy: Towards A Non-Phenomenological Dwelling, Brett Mommersteeg Oct 2014

Space, Territory, Occupy: Towards A Non-Phenomenological Dwelling, Brett Mommersteeg

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

This thesis analyzes the relationship between the body and space through the works of Henri Lefebvre, and Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari. The aim of the project is to move beyond Lefebvre’s theory of the production of space, which relies on a phenomenological understanding of the body and space. In order to do so, it will find in Deleuze and Guattari’s concept of ‘territory’ a non-phenomenological and constructivist concept of space that does not posit the ‘lived body’ as a transcendent ground. As a result, it will also attempt to trace out a non-phenomenological concept of ‘dwelling’ that ...


Epistemology Of The Cartesian Image, Mikhail Pozdniakov Oct 2014

Epistemology Of The Cartesian Image, Mikhail Pozdniakov

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

This study is an examination of the epistemological history of the image. Its first strands are to be found in the Christian concept of profanity, in the difference of the world to the divine. The highest form of intelligibility profanity could have, second only to theology, was mathematics. Derived from the problems surrounding this concept are the techniques of inquiry that eventually resulted in the development of analytic geometry by Descartes. The latter marked a new sensibility regarding the physical universe and its constitution, one that is coterminous with the development of exact procedures in science. Being that exactitude regards ...


Experiencing Nothing: Anxiety And The Philosophy Of Alain Badiou, William E. Rankin Iv Sep 2014

Experiencing Nothing: Anxiety And The Philosophy Of Alain Badiou, William E. Rankin Iv

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

This thesis proposes to supplement the philosophy of Alain Badiou with an existentialist account of anxiety. After identifying a “phenomenological deficit” in Badiou’s thought, I argue that Kierkegaard, Heidegger, and Sartre provide the conceptual resources for theorizing the affective emergence of subjectivity from within the confines of a determinant situation. My contention, simply, is that anxiety is a rare and unsettling experience of nothing that makes apparent the underlying contingency of all situations, thereby prompting new modes of subjective behavior. In this sense, I treat anxiety as the in-situation experience of an event that may occasion the transition from ...


Literature In The Archive Of Terror: Badiou, Blanchot, Beckett, Christopher Langlois Sep 2014

Literature In The Archive Of Terror: Badiou, Blanchot, Beckett, Christopher Langlois

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

This dissertation conjoins the two most dominant trends in the secondary criticism of Samuel Beckett today: the philosophical and historicist approaches to his work. It explores how the Reign of Terror that erupted during the French Revolution acts as a traumatic catalyst for key developments in modernist literature and continental philosophy of which the philosophical writing of Alain Badiou, the literary-critical writing of Maurice Blanchot, and the literary-narrative writing of Beckett are perhaps the most exemplary expressions. The overarching thesis that this dissertation defends is that Beckett’s post-war prose work in The Unnamable and Texts for Nothing is overshadowed ...


Deleuze's Apocalypse, Grant Dempsey Sep 2014

Deleuze's Apocalypse, Grant Dempsey

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

Deleuze refers to the apocalyptic both positively, declaring retrospectively that Difference and Repetition was apocalyptic in its purpose, and negatively, sharing the horror expressed in D. H. Lawrence’s Apocalypse. Deleuze scholars, for their part, tend either to find in Deleuze a manner of living resistance that compels a certain apocalyptic appreciation, or to fear in Deleuze the very same and wonder how a philosophy that seems largely purposed for the promotion of disruption could be anything but escapist at best and socially-politically counterproductive at worst. This thesis is a Deleuzian investigation into the concept of apocalypse: how apocalypse can ...


Crossing The Law: Trans Activism, Aleatory Materialism, And The Analyst's Discourse, Christopher M. Bomba Sep 2014

Crossing The Law: Trans Activism, Aleatory Materialism, And The Analyst's Discourse, Christopher M. Bomba

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

This thesis examines contingency to elucidate transgender activism’s leadership in radical politics. I take up Louis Althusser’s theory of aleatory materialism to politicize everyday encounters. Trans activists gain a parallax view through gendered (mis)recognition that reveals the structure of ideology’s vanishing points. By contrast, I criticize a cisgendered viewpoint and demonstrate the logical errors that result in transphobic behavior through Jacques Lacan’s version of the prisoner’s dilemma. I conclude to theorize trans activism’s engagement with the state through Lacanian analytic technique. This technique does not result in traditional “treatment,” but instead fuels activism ...


A Space Without Memory: Time And The Sublime In The Work Of Janet Cardiff And George Bures Miller, Margherita N. Papadatos Sep 2014

A Space Without Memory: Time And The Sublime In The Work Of Janet Cardiff And George Bures Miller, Margherita N. Papadatos

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

The central question of my investigation is: how do artists present the unpresentable when presentation itself is impossible? Concentrating solely on Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller’s artworks Opera For a Small Room (2005) and The Killing Machine (2007), I redevelop Jean François Lyotard’s concept of the sublime as put forth in his The Inhuman: Reflections on Time, in order to ask how Cardiff and Miller give shape to the unpresentable in their work. Opera and Killing are works that dynamically problematize and play with ideas of presentation, subjectivity, memory, and time. Thus, I explore my central question ...


Deleuze Through Wittgenstein: Essays In Transcendental Empiricism, M. Curtis Allen Sep 2014

Deleuze Through Wittgenstein: Essays In Transcendental Empiricism, M. Curtis Allen

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

This thesis undertakes a comparative study of the philosophers Gilles Deleuze and Ludwig Wittgenstein to elaborate three related problems in what in Deleuze calls ‘transcendental empiricism’. The first chapter deals with the problematic of the dimension of sense in language, and culminates in a concept of the event. The second details the immanence of stupidity within thought and culminates in a practice of showing through silence. The third investigates the consequences of aesthetics for the theory of Ideas, and culminates in the concepts of ‘late intuition’ and of a form of life. Each argues for a new way of broaching ...


"The Almost Nothing Of The Unpresentable": The Experience Of "My Death" In The Thought Of Jacques Derrida, Derek Liu Sep 2014

"The Almost Nothing Of The Unpresentable": The Experience Of "My Death" In The Thought Of Jacques Derrida, Derek Liu

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

This thesis argues that the understanding of Derrida’s major concepts of différance, trace, and writing requires the reference to the impossible experience of my death as having always already occurred. The thesis tries to make this experience explicit with reference to the work of Blanchot and Heidegger. Having argued that an experience of “I am dead” is the bedrock of Derrida’s early concepts and the deconstruction of the metaphysics of presence, the last chapter shows the centrality of this experience to the undoing of the animal/human binary. Coterminous with an experience of a disjointed temporality, the radical ...


William James' Theory Of Emotion, James Southworth Aug 2014

William James' Theory Of Emotion, James Southworth

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

William James’ theory of emotion has had a profound impact within philosophy and psychology over the last 130 years. While his counterintuitive James-Lange theory has been widely criticized, it has also had its supporters over the years, including recently. In part one, I argue that critics and advocates alike have misinterpreted James due to a neglect of his overarching framework as developed in The Principles of Psychology. The James-Lange theory remains silent on a number of philosophical questions, including the relationship between emotion and consciousness and the nature of an emotional feeling. By considering James’ views on these and other ...


A Philosophical Analysis Of Ethics Education In The Canadian National Coaching Certification Program For Rowing, Mark M. Williams Aug 2014

A Philosophical Analysis Of Ethics Education In The Canadian National Coaching Certification Program For Rowing, Mark M. Williams

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

This dissertation applies a conception of rationality from the philosophy of science to the coaching education context. The purpose of this dissertation is to present an account of how the exercise of judgment by coaches facing ethical dilemmas can be rational. The discussion in this dissertation begins with a traditional account of rationality that has long been a staple of moral philosophy. Next, the influence of this model in the current Canadian rowing coach education program are highlighted, as are its limitations in providing a complete account of rational ethical-decision making in the coaching context. After establishing these limitations, an ...


Language, Mind, And Cognitive Science: Remarks On Theories Of The Language-Cognition Relationships In Human Minds, Guillaume Beaulac Aug 2014

Language, Mind, And Cognitive Science: Remarks On Theories Of The Language-Cognition Relationships In Human Minds, Guillaume Beaulac

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

My dissertation establishes the basis for a systematic outlook on the role language plays in human cognition. It is an investigation based on a cognitive conception of language, as opposed to communicative conceptions, viz. those that suppose that language plays no role in cognition (its only role being to externalize thought). I focus, in Chapter 2, on three paradigmatic theories adopting this perspective, each offering different views on how language contributes to or changes cognition. In Chapter 3, I criticize current views held by dual-process theorists, and I develop a picture of the complex interaction between language and cognition that ...


Hypothetical Necessity And The Laws Of Nature: John Locke On God's Legislative Power, Elliot Rossiter Jun 2014

Hypothetical Necessity And The Laws Of Nature: John Locke On God's Legislative Power, Elliot Rossiter

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

The focus of my dissertation is a general and comprehensive examination of Locke’s view of divine power. My basic argument is that John Locke is a theological voluntarist in his understanding of God’s creative and providential relationship with the world, including both the natural and moral order. As a voluntarist, Locke holds that God freely imposes both the physical and moral laws of nature onto creation by means of his will: this contrasts with the intellectualist perspective in which the laws of nature emerge from the essences of things. For Locke, there are no intrinsically necessary laws in ...


Thinking Across Worlds: Indigenous Thought, Relational Ontology, And The Politics Of Nature; Or, If Only Nietzsche Could Meet A Yachaj, Jarrad Reddekop Apr 2014

Thinking Across Worlds: Indigenous Thought, Relational Ontology, And The Politics Of Nature; Or, If Only Nietzsche Could Meet A Yachaj, Jarrad Reddekop

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

This study undertakes a cultural critique of dominant, modern relationships to “nature” through a cross-cultural philosophical engagement with certain Indigenous American traditions of thought. This is done through a focus on questions of ontology: what kind of ontological presuppositions inform our own dominant, modern philosophical heritage? What kinds of relations do these at once enable and foreclose? And what alternate possibilities for thinking and living might be opened through different ontologies? I argue that grappling with modernity’s legacy of anthropocentrism and ecologically disastrous relationships forces us to rethink an existential terrain set by an atomistic ontology that reflects a ...


A Feminist Defense Of Moderate Moral Intuitionism, Bill Jc Cameron Apr 2014

A Feminist Defense Of Moderate Moral Intuitionism, Bill Jc Cameron

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

The three integrated articles of this dissertation are concerned with the epistemic status of moral intuitions. The first article argues in favour of moderate moral intuitionism, the view that while any successful moral epistemology must be intuitionist to at least some extent, it must also take intuitions to be fallible. This is accomplished by synthesizing work by Robert Audi and George Bealer into a view of moral intuitions which is capable of overcoming some major contemporary objections against intuitionism, particularly from Sharon Street and Peter Singer.

The next article raises a more powerful objection to intuitionism, applying feminist ethics and ...


Food Ontology And Distribution: Ethical Perception And The Food Object, Siobhan M. Watters Mar 2014

Food Ontology And Distribution: Ethical Perception And The Food Object, Siobhan M. Watters

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

In predominantly service and information-based economies, the pivotal role food plays in the maintenance of life has arguably become neglected as an object of ethical and political contemplation. We often fail to realize that the incarceration of food by the commodity form degrades the food object itself as well as guaranteeing continued dependency on the wage. In a generalized commodity society, labour power is the only thing a person has to sell in order to buy her bread. This leaves us vulnerable in the event of an environmental crisis because we do not have direct access to food sources.

The ...