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Putting Speculation and New Materialisms in Dialogue

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle

Publication date5/02/2019
Number of pages5
JournalPalgrave Communications
Original languageEnglish


Over the past decade, numerous disciplines have taken on speculation as a method for research, a tool for thought, or a topic of study. In so doing, sociology, politics, design, geography and other disciplines have all helped to readdress the nature and potential of speculation, as a way of thinking, but also as a way to bridge the gap between theory and practice, something that often plagues philosophy. Despite the variety of perspectives in this range of disciplines, they often draw upon a common philosophical canon. This paper explores current discussions of speculation in the context of speculative philosophy, as well as work in new materialisms from Karen Barad, and Jane Bennett, to address some potential exchanges between new materialisms and speculation. The paper concludes with a brief description of a symposium held in 2018 that explored these themes across disciplines. It advocates further exchanges between speculative and new materialist approaches, as one way of figuring the place of matter in theory.