The blog name & purpose
Theories as engines is a simile I came across at Rival Voices(@RivalVoices) – “Theories As Cameras, Theories as Engines”. This post observes:
In the soft sciences (that is, sciences that study human-made systems, or systems made up by humans)… the observer and what the observer is doing (theorising) affect the phenomenon. Your observations (and their being published and spread out) change the system you set out to observe. Your theories in this domain are not a camera, but an engine.
I’ve observed this mechanism with some of my favourite “Continental” /”postmodern” /”post-structuralist” philosophers, such as Michel Foucault and Judith Butler. In particular, Butler’s theories of gender have had a huge effect on the trans* movement.
It excites me that describing human things can make humans change. I like change. It’s one of my comforts in a difficult world. Spreading ideas that (might) bring about change is the purpose of this blog.
I do not seek to control the direction of change since I don’t think that’s possible, but I do have preferences with regard to what I want to write about. I think change in general is good, in the sense that change at least means movement, evolution and growth.
What I write about
I am intellectually influenced by:
- continental and postmodern philosophy,
- “theory” in all its forms
- social science
- political science
- literary theory
- theory of art
- latest science understandings
- the modern rationalist (LessWrong)
- the modern meta-rationalist / sensemaking movement on Twitter, particularly David Chapman’s entire online oeuvre, especially Meaningness
- science fiction
- my own community and social experiences, particularly non-hetero sexualities.
My writing interests are:
- Meaning making / life / human condition
- Sexuality & relationships
- Memes and the culture war
- The many ways I think everyone else is wrong
Head over to the personal blog for a more personal bio: About Me
Ways to read
To read this blog, you can read chronologically forwards, reading only new posts. Or to read everything posted in the past you can read chronologically backwards.
If you lose your place chronologically, I recommend using the categories, I look after them very strictly. Every single post has at least one category, and there are only about 10 categories, so it should be easier to remember what you have and haven’t read.
NB: I use tags too, but they are all over the place. I do not recommend using tags to navigate.
Start a conversation with me on Twitter: @ssica3003
My Youtube Channel for funny rants and “everyday” philosophy: MetaJess
My personal blog where I talk even more about sex: My So-Amazing Life