Taking as a starting point the challenge in finding ways of treating autoimmune disorders, this article constructs a hypothetical frame for enquiry that explores the connections between bioscience and, in a different register, the techniques of cultural memory. Putting the question of the long development and inheritance of immune functions (phylogenesis) in touch with that of cultural inheritance (epiphylogenesis), the article questions lines of continuity between somatic mutation, consciousness, technics, time, and media. For instance, drawing on a tradition that acknowledges Immanuel Kant, Edmund Husserl, Theodor Adorno, and Martin Heidegger, Bernard Stiegler’s attempt to mobilize the structure of the trace in the philosophy of Jacques Derrida results in a profound challenge to a technics that can be regarded as a powerful complement to biological evolutionary inheritance. The article proposes a critical reading of these traditions that would be sensitive to the political and biological implications of the paradoxical structures of immunity in the current climate of global biopolitics.
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John W. P. Phillips; Force and Vulnerability in Philosophy and Science: Husserl, Derrida, Stiegler. Cultural Politics 1 July 2015; 11 (2): 145–161. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/17432197-2895723
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