This essay claims that Stiegler’s sense of metaphor gives his work an overlooked rigour. Part one argues that La Faute d’Epiméthée’s key claim (that technics is philosophy’s “unthought”) opens an excess of potential that threatens to overwhelm Stiegler’s work. Part two looks at two metaphors (the pharmakon and organ). Part three argues that a focus on Stiegler’s technique of metaphor mitigates suspicions that his work is trivial or jargonistic, and allows it to emerge as a counterbalance to a positivistic tendency in contemporary philosophy of technology. This tendency is the legacy of an “empirical turn” in philosophy of technology in the late 1990s; it is problematic, I argue, because it threatens to turn philosophical engagements with technologies into endorsements of Zeitgeist-seizing artifacts (smartphones or social media, for example), to the detriment of what Stiegler’s sense of metaphor allows him to address as the broader “pharmacological” and “organological” implications of technologies for society.
- Philosophy of Technology
ASJC Scopus subject areas