Strange Tools — Prof. Alva Noës neue Buch

Prof. Alva Noë hat ein neues Buch veröffentlicht: Strange Tools: Art and Human Nature (New York). Das Buch wurde vor der Veröffentlichung mit der Berliner Gruppe gründlich diskutiert.

(Aus der Buch-Präsentation:)strangetools

This is a book about art. What is art? Why is it so important? What does art tell us about ourselves? In Strange Tools: Art and Human Nature I engage these questions. 

The books has three animating ideas. First, art is not a technological practice; however, it presupposes such practices. Works of art are strange tools. Technology is not just something we use or apply to achieve a goal, although this is right to a first approximation; technologies organize our lives in ways that make it impossible to conceive of our lives in their absence; they make us what we are. Art, really, is an engagement with the ways in which our practices, techniques, and technologies, organize us and it is, finally, a way to understand that organization and, inevitably, to reorganize ourselves.

The job of art, its true work, is philosophical. This is the second animating idea. Art is a philosophical practice. And philosophy—however surprising this may seem—is an artistic practice. This is because both art, and philosophy—superficially so different—are really species of a common genus whose preoccupation is with the ways we are organized and with the possibility of reorganizing ourselves. 

A third and final animating idea is one that will only itself acquire meaning after we have advanced considerably: art and philosophy are practices, as I put it, bent on the invention of writing.

Art, according to the conception developed here, turns out to have a great deal to do with biology, that is to say, with human nature, for organization, so central to the account I offer, is, finally, a biological notion. In Strange Tools I also explain why scientific approaches to art—both neurobiological and evolutionary biological—have failed to be successful, despite so much fanfare.

This book is a work of philosophy. It is my hope that it will engage readers of very different backgrounds.

© Alva Noë

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