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Technic and Magic


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Table of Contents

PREFACE, 'The Keymaker' by Timothy Morton INTRODUCTION CHAPTER ONE - TECHNIC'S WORLD - Crisis of Reality - Technic - Measure and Infinity - No Outside - Crisis of Action, Crisis of Imagination CHAPTER TWO - TECHNIC'S COSMOGONY - Defining Terms - 1 Absolute Language - 2 Measure - 3 Unit - 4 Abstract General Entity - 5 Life As Vulnerability - Upper and Lower Limits: Ego Absconditus and Double Affirmation - Conclusion INTERMISSION - WHAT IS REALITY? - Between India and the West - Why Seek Reality? CHAPTER THREE - MAGIC'S COSMOGONY - Defining Terms - 1 The Ineffable as Life - 2 Person - 3 Symbol - 4 Meaning - 5 Paradox - Upper and Lower Limits: Double Negation and Deus Absconditus - Conclusion CHAPTER FOUR - MAGIC'S WORLD - Outside Within - Secret - Initiation - As if - Happy Ending Bibliography Index

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Presents an alternative reality-system to the dominate, Western approach of technology, through an exploration of the notion of magic in the role of reality-engineering, drawing on Islamic and Hindu philosophies.

About the Author

Federico Campagna is an Italian philosopher based in London. He is the author of The Last Night: anti-Work, Atheism, Adventure (2013) and What We Are Fighting For: a Radical Collective Manifesto (2012) and visiting lecturer at Royal College of Art, UK.


Federico Campagna's book is a brilliant tour de force that oscillates between lucid analyses of philosophical concepts, bridging the gap between Eastern and Western frameworks, and radical propositions for alternative worlds. By attempting to galvanize human perception out of its paralyzed and bordered state, what William Blake refers to as 'the narrow chinks of [our] cavern', Campagna expertly unravels the very foundations upon which our contemporary reality sits. Technic and Magic gradually builds towards a new and striking reconfiguration of reality that merges together the past, present and future. -- Hans Ulrich Obrist, Artistic Director at the Serpentine Galleries, London, UK
Federico Campagna's brilliant Technic and Magic is essential reading for our desperate times. This stunning historical and philosophical exploration radically transforms our understanding of the global technological culture we now inhabit. -- Jonathan Crary, Meyer Schapiro Professor of Modern Art and Theory, Columbia University, USA, author of 24/7
Both Technic and Magic are used by us to change the world. However, as Frederico Campagna argues, Technic serves the accumulation of power whereas Magic, on the contrary, protects life and its value. In his fascinating book Campagna makes a parcours through the Indian, Islamic and old Gnostic sources to discover the hidden, hermetic tradition of magical thinking that keeps its relevance also for our contemporary condition. -- Boris Groys, Global Distinguished Professor of Russian and Slavic Studies, New York University, USA
Campagna takes us on a philosophically rich journey that is signposted by new terms and concepts discussed with due reference to other philosophical settings, including as they developed in Persia. His engaging prose promises to make a distinct contribution to emerging fields of knowledge. -- Arshin Adib-Moghaddam, Professor in Global Thought and Comparative Philosophies, SOAS, University of London, and Chair of the Centre for Iranian Studies at the London Middle East Institute, UK
This is a book not only for philosophers but also for poets and their readers and for all those who try to uphold the dignity of their spiritual existence. Is magic still a liveable territory? Federico Campagna asks fundamental questions but also has original suggestions how to keep this high flame alive in a radically non-magical world. -- Adam Zagajewski, poet, novelist and translator, author of 'Mysticism for Beginners: Poems'
Campagna breaks with tradition by advancing scholarship that explores a common past and common understandings of meta-philosophical concepts, crossing the geopolitical barriers between the East and the West. Rarely does one see such ability to discuss complex, metaphysical and philosophic themes in a light and poetic manner - Outstanding. -- Ghoncheh Tazmini, Centre for Iranian Studies, SOAS University of London, UK

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