Sunday, February 10, 2013

Perception does not know the concept of infinity; from the very outset it is confined within certain spatial limits imposed by our faculty of perception. And in connection with perceptual space we can no more speak of homogeneity than of infinity. The ultimate basis of the homogeneity of geometric space is that aIl its elements, the "points" which are joined in it, are mere determinations of position, possessing no independent content of their own outside of this relation: it is purely functional and not a substantial reality. Because fundamentally these points are devoid of all content, because they have become mere expressions of ideal relations, they can raise no questions of diversity of context. Their homogeneity signifies nothing other than this similarity of structure, grounded in their common logical function, their common ideal purpose and meaning. Hence homogeneous space is never given space, but space produced by construction; and indeed the geometrical concept of homogeneity can be expressed by the postulate that from every point in space it must bc possible to draw similar figures in aIl directions and magnitudes. Nowhere in the space of immediate perception can this postulate be fulfilled. Here there is no strict homogeneity and direction each space has its own mode and its own value. Visual space and tactical space [Tastraum] are both anisotropic and unhomogenious in contrast to the metric space of Euclidian geometry: "the main directions of organization- before-behind,above-below, right-left - are dissimilar in both physiological spaces." [Ernst Mach] 
Ernst Cassirer, The Philosophy of Symbolic Forms. Quoted in Panofsky Perspective as Symbolic Form
"Seminar on The Priority of Democracy" Technocrats are philosophical elitists of ideas: mediocre people in search of the best of all possible rules, which in the end are "devoid of all content, because they have become mere expressions of ideal relations, they can raise no questions of diversity of context".
Adrian Vermeule [history here, then here ] is a participant.

...see also M. Foucault, Liberal Fascism.

William Heckscher on Panofsky. From his memorial essay at the end of Panofsky's Three Essays on Style.
Everything in humanistic scholarship, even the (to him somewhat comical) New Criticism, which he characterized with Pierrot's words, "Je sais bien écrire, mais je ne sais pas lire," he considered acceptable, so long as it was not "institutionalized."
In America,  it's always institutionalized, or the author is, if only under sedation.

It's absurd how much is lost when the goal of disinterest devolves into a fiction of objectivity.
But if “using rare words and tropes in place of common words and phrases” is a strategy of “deliberate transgression” of the norms of clear prose characteristic of the dominant classes and is opposed to “the hyper-correction strategies of pretentious outsiders,” then Bourdieu is a master strategist. Words such as lexis, allodoxia, chiastic, askesis, espace hodologique, hysteresis, and of course habitus (and, indeed, hysteresis of habitus) are scattered throughout the text.6 That a work of social science should—”unlike the sometimes illuminating intuitions of the essay”—require an effort on the part of the reader is fair enough. Here, however, reality disappears into the hypertrophied rhetoric of the Ecole Normale.
---

It's a footnote, and it's glorious.

No comments: