Process-relational and object-oriented philosophers, as far as I can tell, share the idea that things have an interiority, a “one’s own-ness,” that is not accessible to others in the way that it is to oneself. We can argue about where that interiority is located — whether in one’s experience (which is where we access it, for PRists) or somewhere more withdrawn than that, and maybe even inaccessible to one’s own experience; and whether it’s what withdraws from relations (as it seems to be for OOOists), or what enacts relations (as it is for PRists). And we can argue about what possesses it — whether only active unities (Whiteheadian “actual occasions” and “societies”) or aggregates of all kinds (rocks, discarded snakeskins, toothpicks and shopping carts, etc.). But that’s a significant agreement.

For process-relationists, the fact that there is interiority (the subjective prehension of objects) means that there is semiosis (the generation of meaning, since those objects take on meanings for subjects), and that, for me, is where things get really interesting. I don’t fully understand how object-oriented philosophy deals with semiosis; I’m sure I haven’t read enough on that yet. But I’m very interested in seeing what kind of object-oriented cultural criticism (which  has been mentioned a number of times now on OOO blogs) will emerge and how it will differ from the cultural-studies and production/consumption/ecological life-cycle analyses of objects that I’m more familiar with. (I’ve tried to combine those in my own process-relational methodology.) Much to look forward to.

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