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Reified LifeSpeculative Capital and the Ahuman Condition$
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J. Paul Narkunas

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780823280308

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823280308.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM FORDHAM SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.fordham.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Fordham University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in FSO for personal use.date: 18 September 2021

The Hedge Fund of Reality

The Hedge Fund of Reality

Ontology and Financial Derivatives

(p.100) Chapter 3 The Hedge Fund of Reality
Reified Life

J. Paul Narkunas

Fordham University Press

The chapter elaborates how the Object Oriented Ontology’s universe of things works too closely with financial capitalism, as both generate a posthuman reality. The OOO seems too preoccupied with the industrial capital of modernity and its production of stuff (objects and services) to mark its postanthropocentric ontology to consider how financial capitalism, now accounting for over 33% of the profits in the economy despite 7% of the real economy and 4% of the jobs, operates ontologically not through physical objects but through leveraging debt and hoarding value. Indeed, the immaterial objects that the OOO celebrate may include derivatives and hedge funds (themselves often pools of immaterial value). The shift from industrial capitalism’s organization around the production of objects and capture of labor to financial capital’s debt and leveraging marks what I call a movement from the logic of the object and capture of labor to the logic of the derivative and hedging of debt/value. I discuss how the reification of life works in both these contexts, and show how reification is a necessary term for thinking humans rendered into a field of assets and shares of value.

Keywords:   Anthropocentrism, Financial Derivatives, Harman, Graham, Human, Lukacs, Gyorgy, Marx, Karl, Morton, Timothy, Objects, Object-Oriented Ontology, Reification

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