Wednesday, April 08, 2009

ontological politics and multiple realities

Establishing a talking familiarity with the jargon.

Annemarie Mol(in Actor Network Theory and After, 1999, pages 74-75) describes
"Ontological politics as a composite term. It talks of ontology - which in standard philosophical parlance defines what belongs to the real, the conditions of possibility we live with. If the term ontology is defined with that of politics, then this suggests that the conditions of possibility are not given. That reality does not precede the mundane practices in which we interact with it, but is rather shaped within these practices."
and that the term politics refers to this shaping.

The politics then of 'whats real'.
And of what 'reals' are enacted.
It is this second question that opens the discussion to consider the multiple realities that are being enacted, concurrently.


  1. Hi Ailsa,

    I happened to come across your blogs while I was browsing on "onto politics". Yes, for me the notion of ontological politics seems to offer a challenge for grasping what happens in my research site. I am a PhD student at Latrobe Univ melbourne and still grappling with "on site observation". My topic is about land use in Jakarta.

    It's nice to find that other students are also on the same boat with me (as to ANT).


  2. HI I am a PhD student in London and I am studying Web 2.0 and Women's movements online. I am finding it very useful but...have you got any docs where Mol explains the Multiplicity? I have the ANT and After and a book from noortje Marres but little is written about Mol.


  3. Anonymous10:57 AM

    Thank you,
    this has been a great help!

  4. Hi Chiara, the book I found most useful of Mols for talking about multiplicity is The body multiple

  5. Thanks - just what I was looking for since the After book was elsewhere. I re-posted your blogpost on my blog. See here if you like: I hope that was okay. /Henrik