TCRG June 4: Platonic Dialogue (Serres)

by lukevanryn

Kicking out the jams.

“To hold a dialogue is to suppose a third man and seek to exclude him” (67)

This week we’re discussing a short essay by Michel Serres titled “Platonic Dialogue”. In it, Serres treats the exclusion of noise as the problem that links science and philosophy, at the same time as it divides them.

“Serres’s major interest is the parallel development of scientific, philosophical, and literary trends. In a very simplified manner, one might say that Serres always runs counter to the prevalent notion of the two cultures -scientific and humanistic-between which no communication is pos­sible. In Serres’s view ‘criticism is a generalized physics,’ and whether knowledge is written in philosophical, literary, or scientific language it nevertheless articulates a common set of problems that transcends aca­demic disciplines and artificial boundaries.” (René Girard, quoted in Harari and Bell’s introduction to Hermes).

5pm, Pierre Gorman Rm, 1888 Building.

[PDF] Serres, M. (1982). “Platonic Dialogue” in Hermes: Literature, Science, Philosophy (pp. 65-70). Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press.