Karen Barad, Meeting the Universe Halfway: Quantum Physics and the Entanglement of Matter and Meaning. Article (PDF Available) · April with Meeting the Universe Halfway has ratings and 35 reviews. In this volume, Karen Barad, theoretical physicist and feminist theorist, elaborates her theory of. Meeting the Universe Halfway is an ambitious book with far-reaching In this volume, Karen Barad, theoretical physicist and feminist theorist.

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This here’s the book for you and even if you don’t, you ought to!

According to Barad, the deeply connected way that everything is entangled with everything else means that any act of observation makes a “cut” between what is included and excluded from what is being considered. A work, moreover, that promised to rethink and reconceptualize our ideas of “space, time, matter, dynamics, agency, structure, subjectivity, objectivity, knowing, intentionality, discursivity, performativity, entanglement and ethical engagement.

Dec 11, Lori Kelly rated it it was amazing. That said, while at first I dove into this as a fascinating and dense work that would reveal its intricate parts as the pages flew by — I was really enjoying it for the first pages — it eventually began to feel more and more diffuse.

Meeting the universe halfway: A human consciousness can provide an apparatus of measurement but the larger reality as a whole including consciousness provides conditions for knowing itself. Feminism, Theory, Technoscience and Signs: Her methodological lessons from the diffraction of light and her convincing interpretations of familiar puzzles and recent experimental results in quantum physics also display how science and science studies can genuinely learn from one another.

Meeting the Universe Halfway: Quantum Physics and the Entanglement of Matter and Meaning

I highly recommend this book. Subject and object or rather, the “agencies of observation” meeeting the “object of observation” are not independently existing individuals, but exists on in their “intra-action. Yes, it is mind-boggling and YES it has great implications for epistemology and ontology in any subject area.

Barad’s agential realism is at once an epistemology theory of knowingan ontology theory of beingand an ethics. There’s also a fascinating, 2 or 3-page section toward the end of the book about the wholeness of the universe that was a highlight of the book. Oct 01, Christy rated it it was amazing Shelves: Barad’s description of agential realism is interesting but, like those it argues against, it remains an idea.


In this way, agential realism is a way of noting how the universe meets itself half meering, to constantly create the conditions for which unit-hood is registered and made distinct through its own materially discursive interactions. She doesn’t adhere to an univesre subjective account of reality but rather mentions that the marks of an apparatus of measurement makes on existing bodies serves as the objective mark, one that is often itself registered in terms of the agencies of observation.

However, this book merely comprises of fashionable concoctions of feminist jargon that miraculously crop up with her main buzzword Agential Realism so often and so iteratively as a deux ex machina – getting past a paragraph is painful, let alone the scientific relevance is questionable or maybe just univegse.

This is as true for electrons as it is for brittlestars as it is for the differentially constituted human. Drawing its inspiration from the ‘philosophy-physics’ of Niels Bohr Einstein’s contemporary and sometime theoretical rivalBarad here works halfqay elaborate upon just the kind of world implied by the startling discoveries of quantum theory, all the while being attendant to some of the deepest, most pressing puzzles of modern metaphysics.

There is so much more I can add, but I think this sums up what the book does and is about, enough for anyone who wants to read about this kind of barqd to pick it up.

Barad serves on the advisory board for the feminist academic journals Catalyst: If there is a way out of this problem, I’m not sure an appeal to science and evidence, as Barad does in chapter 7 especially, is effective again, see Al-Ghazali ; in fact, this use of evidence seems to contradict her other challenges to empiricism in the first place. Offering an account of the world as a whole rather than as composed of separate natural and social Meeting the Universe Halfway is an ambitious book with far-reaching implications for numerous fields in the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities.

Oct 16, amelia added it Shelves: As Deleuze would say, differentiation isn’t what happens to cytoplasm, rather cytoplasm contains all the differentials which create a given differentiation of a baby as a complete whole. Meteing was definitely one of the best books on my feminist theory reading list. Open Preview See a Problem? Find us on Facebook. Journal of Women in Culture and Society. Thanks for telling us about the problem. While I’ve papered over some of the more ‘philosophical’ considerations in this review, rest assured that if you like your Foucault, your Butler, your Donna Haraway, or your Ian Hacking, there’s plenty of that in here too.


Plus, despite being about quantum physics, this is one of the clearest works of feminist theory I’ve read lately. Agential realism is the way of the future.

Karen Barad – Wikipedia

While science is suspect to conception theoriesBarad want show that what’s at stake in agential realism is that our conception of the entire situation doesn’t simply highlight the terms of the concept but it also highlights the condition upon which we presume truth to be available.

But it did not quite live up to my expectations. Barad’s original training was in theoretical physics. In the process, she significantly reworks understandings of space, time, matter, causality, agency, subjectivity, and objectivity. Barad explicitly states that diffraction is the nature of her methodological approach, but, while some scholars do a wonderful job of writing similarly with many nuances, puzzles, and intellectual meanderings along the way I think of Talal Asad or Gil Anidjarit is very hard for me to appreciate Barad on that level.

True, she contends that ideas are ultimately “marks on bodies,” — but I would say that that description in itself is also an idea; how would we even know what these marks were if we are all entangled? Retrieved from ” https: Taking the writings of the great physicist Neil Bohr, Barad dehumanizes his writing by removing what Meillasoux calls “Ptolomey’s Revenge” in which the sciences and philosophy take the human account of things to be the end point of justification.

Wilson, Feminist Review Blog.