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Constructing Artifacts That Do Philosophy

(p.85) [4] Carpentry
Alien Phenomenology, or What It's Like to Be a Thing
Ian Bogost
University of Minnesota Press

This chapter provides an overview of philosophical creativity. Philosophical creativity can take many forms, and each philosopher’s approach to carpentry will differ. In addition to increasing playfulness, variety, and earnestness of discourse, carpentry has the added benefit of inviting thinkers to exercise and develop their natural talents in a manner akin to Heideggerian dwelling. As Ian Thomson suggests, “we come to understand and experience entities as being richer in meaning than we are capable of doing justice to conceptually.” In the context of alien phenomenology, “carpentry” borrows from two sources. First, it extends the ordinary sense of woodcraft to any material whatsoever. Second, it folds into this act of construction Graham Harman’s philosophical sense of “the carpentry of things.”

Keywords:   philosophical creativity, philosopher, carpentry, thinkers, natural talents, Ian Thomson, Graham Harman

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