Bruno Latour’s ‘An Inquiry into Modes of Existence’

Latour’s latest book, ‘An Inquiry into Modes of Existence’ (AIME), has been sitting on my ‘to read’ pile for a while now. ‘We Have Never Been Modern’, published in 1991, is sometimes seen as Latour’s last attempt to construct a general ontology. I was quite looking forward to reading AIME after encountering an essay by Latour on Etienne Souriau in an edited volume on speculative realism, ‘The Speculative Turn’, in which Latour openly displays the more ontological inclinations of his recent writings.

Since I decided to plunge into AIME again, I looked at some additional resources on the web that will accompany me on my journey through this work. There are quite a few worth looking at. I decided to share them, since other readers might find these resources helpful as well.

A good place to start is perhaps the blog accompanying AIME. Adam Robbert tends to post occassionally about AIME and Latour more generally on his blog Knowledge Ecology. Lovely stuff. There’s even a reading group: the AIME Research Group, although things have been a bit quiet over there over the winter. I hope they continue their discussion in the coming months. Finally, there were a couple of book reviews that I think are worthwhile, one in the LA Review of Books and another one in the Interstitial Journal.

May these resources come in handy. I’ll consider posting more about AIME if I feel I can add anything to present discussions. However, I recently purchased Jacques Bertin’s ‘Semiology of Graphics’, which is also begging for my attention. Time will tell.