Philosophical Perspectives on the Commons

11 September 2015, 19:30–21:30 / Casco HQ

Casco is happy to host a special roundtable with philosophers on the commons where we will rethink the political – and cultural – means to posit anew the problem of commons and collective organization in a time of “neoliberal onslaught.”

Two major questions will be addressed during this evening, namely:

1. Theories of the commons, communization, etc., are, certainly, in the autonomist/operaist tradition directed against the State. Yet in our neoliberal context (at which theories and practices of the commons are pointed), the State might exactly be what is at stake. For Wendy Brown, neoliberalism is a battle concerning the role and meaning of the State. Are we giving up too easily on the State?

2. Perhaps we could address a tension concerning the commons between, say, ontology and history. This is prominent in Roberto Esposito’s work on “communitas” and Giorgio Agamben’s work on “use.” Additionally, Antonio Negri seems to oscillate between a (socio)historical definition of the commons (historically determined practices of use and sharing as opposed to property) and the commons as a marker of ontology – as being-in-common (a kind of anthropo-ontology).


This event is organized in collaboration with Center for Art and Philosophy (CAP)

Contributors include: Érik Bordeleau, Researcher, SenseLab, Concordia University, Montreal and author of “Comment sauver le commun du communisme?” (2014); Rick Dolphijn, Assistant Professor of Media and Cultural Studies, Utrecht University and co-editor of This Deleuzian Century: Art, Activism, Life (2015); ;Aetzel Griffioen, Ecosophy Teacher, Rotterdam Vakmanstad/Skillcity; Sjoerd van Tuinen, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Erasmus University, ;Rotterdam and Coordinator of the Centre for Art and Philosophy; Joost de Bloois, Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Cultural Analysis, University of Amsterdam; and Merijn Oudenampsen, Sociologist and Political Scientist, Tilburg University; Pieter Lemmens, Philosophy and Ethics teacher, Radboud University Nijmegen.

Casco’s program is made possible with financial support from City Council of Utrecht, Mondriaan Fund, DOEN Foundation, and European Union Culture Programme.

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