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Bruno Latour in PiecesAn Intellectual Biography$
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Henning Schmidgen

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780823263691

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823263691.001.0001

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Of Actants, Forces, and Things

Of Actants, Forces, and Things

(p.68) Five Of Actants, Forces, and Things
Bruno Latour in Pieces

Henning Schmidgen

Fordham University Press

This chapter aims at clarifying some fundamental concepts of Bruno Latour’s philosophical sociology. It shows that the concept of “actor,” or “actant,” was derived from the semiology of Algirdas Julien Greimas. In addition, it depicts Latour’s gradual shift from the semiological to a pragmatist notion of “actors.” This shift occurs in Latour’s dialogue with Michel Serres and Isabelle Stengers that he increasingly engages in in the late 1980s.

Keywords:   Bruno Latour, Actor-network theory, Algirdas Julien Greimas, Semiology, Pragmatism, Michel Serres, Isabelle Stengers

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