Monday, July 19, 2010


Make up response

The open: Man and animal

According to Descartes animal are machines and humans are machines with minds but he base his concept in his religious views of the man. To this Agamben answers “Surely Descartes never saw an ape” and agues how hard is to identify differences from the natural science point of view. Also Agamben talks about the unclear boundaries between anthropoid apes and primitives populations.

Linnaeus was the first to place man among primates without any specific identyfiying characteristic besides philosophical idea that humans recognize themselves. (know yourself) HOMO SAPIENS
“man has no specific identity other than the ability to recognize himself”

Agamben states that is impossible to assign a characteristic to “homo sapiens” he says we are only a machine for producing the recognition of human. An “optical machine” according to Linnaeus “man must recognize himself in a no-man in order to be human”

Agamben agues that the production of man appears through opposition man/animal, human/inhuman he says is a machine that works by means of exclusion and he wonders what’s at stake here. The missing link is only determine by language, by an animal without language? By a man without language? This is the bridge Homo alalus- a non speaking man.

It is difficult and confusing to separate man from animal and it is very interesting how the definition has evolve. It is a very important question to raise today when we start deciding who is human and who is not among humans, who deserve human rights, it goes along the same line as Faucoult discourse about war.

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