>ect 8 Slaves to the Given?

“Natural philosophers have hitherto sought to understand meanings; the task is to change them” – Wilfrid Sellars

//Old Givens//Hidden Givens//Political Givens//

Originally an argument against naive empiricism, Wilfrid Sellars’ critique of the “Myth of the Given” has recently been taken up by philosophers interested in examining the foundations of phenomenology and post-structuralism.

In so far as they base themselves upon spurious concretions such as: “primordial,” “immediate,” or “pre-conscious” experience, currents in 20th-century continental philosophy  – like naive empiricism – appear enslaved by the given. >ect explores the implications of this and embarks on an attempt at un-enslavement.

Join us as we exit << inner subjective experience >> and enter into >> the space of reasons <<


Wilfrid Sellars “Empiricism and Philosophy of Mind”

Wilfrid Sellars “Philosophy and the Scientific Image of Man”

Ray Brassier “Nominalism, Naturalism, Materialism”

Ray Brassier “Concepts and Objects”

Richard Lewontin “(Not) Born This Way”

Matija Jelaca “Sellars Contra Deleuze on Intuitive Knowledge”

Carl Sachs “Phenomenology and the Myth of the Given: Sellars, Merleau-Ponty, and Some Myths About the Given”


‘Blue Sky and Yellow Sunflower’ by Susumu Yokota, Symbol (2004)

‘Surround’ by Hiroshi Yoshimura, Soundscape 1: Surround (1986)

‘Red Eyez’ by Lexxi, Elysia Crampton Presents: Demon City (2016)


Pronoia Diagramme by Patricia Reed.



3 thoughts on “>ect 8 Slaves to the Given?”

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