Reza Negarestani: Prometheanism, Intelligence, Self-Determination

Southern Nights

Decided to revisit Reza Negarestani’s two-part essay on e-flux concerning What is Philosophy? here and here. Since his project implies a form of Left Prometheanism which I take to be – along with Ray Brassier’s Promethean and Posthuman Freedom (analysed succinctly by David Roden on Enemy Industry) – can be associated with the earlier Accelerationist Manifesto, Accelerationist Reader, etc.. In this post I will revisit both Negarestani’s and Brassier’s Prometheanism, which implies a critique of all those philosophies that have been based on forms of Will and Voluntarism.

Voluntarism: A Short History and its Critics

Our notions of voluntarism would arise out of the nominalist traditions of the late Middle Ages theology of such thinkers as John Duns Scotus (c. 1265-1308) and William of Ockham (c. 1288-1349) who inaugurated the modern secular separation of nature from the supernatural and the concomitant divorce of philosophy, physics, and ethics from theology that…

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