What Makes Life Worth Living: On Pharmacology

What Makes Life Worth Living: On Pharmacology

Bernard Stiegler

within the aftermath of the 1st international conflict, the poet Paul Valéry wrote of a ‘crisis of spirit’, caused through the instrumentalization of information and the damaging subordination of tradition to benefit. contemporary occasions display all too truly that that the inventory of brain, or spirit, keeps to fall. The economic system is toxically equipped round the pursuit of momentary achieve, supported via an infantilizing, dumbed-down media. advertisements applied sciences make relentless calls for on our realization, lowering us to idiotic beasts, not able to residing. Spiralling charges of psychological disorder express that the delicate lifetime of the brain is at breaking point.

Underlying those a number of indicators is purchaser capitalism, which systematically immiserates these whom it purports to free up. Returning to Marx’s thought, Stiegler argues that consumerism marks a brand new degree within the heritage of proletarianization. it truly is now not simply labour that's exploited, driven less than the bounds of subsistence, however the hope that's attribute of human spirit.

The treatment to this malaise is to be present in what Stiegler calls a ‘pharmacology of the spirit’. right here, pharmacology has not anything to do with the chemical vitamins constructed by way of the pharmaceutical undefined. The pharmakon, outlined as either remedy and poison, refers back to the technical gadgets during which we open ourselves to new futures, and thereby create the spirit that makes us human. by means of connection with a number of figures, from Socrates, Simondon and Derrida to the kid psychoanalyst Donald Winnicott, Stiegler indicates that technics are either the reason for our anguish and in addition what makes existence worthy living.


"Stiegler's name is daring, yet make no mistake: this ebook particularly is ready what makes existence worthy dwelling. we will overlook this measurement – disastrously – or we will act to maintain it. A survival guide for the twenty-first century, this can be additionally modern philosophy as a choice to arms."
Martin Crowley, collage of Cambridge

"This paintings, an outstanding primer at the newest section of Stiegler’s undertaking and a very good creation to his writing, makes an attempt to show a taking into account the pharmakon from its resonance as poison to that of a therapy to the pan-toxicity he reveals within the robo-interiorities of the current and their hyperlink to eco-catastrophic results. What this booklet additionally monitors is that Stiegler has lengthy been the most efficient serious reader of Derrida's legacy this day – and this at a time whilst something like authentic 'deconstruction' gasps for relevance.’"
Tom Cohen, nation collage of latest York at Albany

About the Author

Bernard Stiegler is Director of Cultural improvement on the Centre Pompidou in Paris. His many books in English contain Technics and Time, For a brand new Critique of Political economic climate, The Decadence of business Democracies and Uncontrollable Societies of Disaffected contributors.

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