What is the style of matters of concern?

Two lectures in empirical philosophy
Two lectures given in Amsterdam
April and May 2005 for the Spinoza Chair in Philosophy,
Bruno Latour

Nature at the cross-road: the bifurcation of nature and its end

p 3

The diagnosis [...] has been passed by Alfred North Whitehead under the name of "bifurcation of nature" [Concept of Nature, 1920].
Thus nature gets credit which should in truth be reserved for ourselves; the rose for its scent; the nightingale for his song; and the sun for his radiance.
The world is made of primary qualities for which there is no ordinary language but that of science a language of pure thought that nobody speaks in particular and which utters law from nowhere; as to ordinary language, it deals with secondary qualities which have no reality.

p 8

In an amazing feat of sociological metaphysics, Tarde proposes to replace "being" by "having": "So far, all of philosophy has been founded on the verb To be, whose definition seemed to have been the Rosetta's stone to be discovered. One may say that, if only philosophy had been founded on the verb To have, many sterile discussions, many slowdown of the mind, would have been avoided. From this principle 'I am', it is impossible to deduce any other existence than mine, in spite of all the subtleties of the world. But affirm first this postulate: 'I have' as the basic fact, and then the had as well as the having are given at the same time as inseparable."

See the change of perspective? A philosopher can write L'ETRE ET LE NÉANT, BEING AND NOTHINGNESS, but there is no sense in writing HAVING AND NOTHINGNESS.

The Aesthetics of Matters of Concern

Bruno Latour
Marc Girod