Rick Dolphjin

“New Materialism”

Rethinking Dualism and Academic Responsibility Today

Maria Caletti, Senza titolo (dettaglio), 2020


Since the mid-1990s, scholars from across academia have been working with a “new materialism”. Critiquing the dualisms that had been organizing thought since Modernity (f.i. mind versus body, human versus animal, man versus woman, white versus black, culture versus nature), and that, thus, gave form to modern man, they aim to liberating thought (and the world!) from this self-centered idea of man, only interested in increasing its profit (through machines, through Others) and that has lost its interest in searching for balance in every way. Inspired by the critique of modern man coming from feminism and postcolonial theory, but also from how fields like biochemistry and quantum physics are increasingly interested in a “more than human world”, new materialist scholars today, are urging us to open our eyes to the ecological (and capitalist, and humanitarian) crises that mark our world today. 


Dr. Rick Dolphijn is an associate professor at Media and Culture Studies, with an interest in transdisciplinary research at large. He published widely on continental philosophy (Gilles Deleuze and Michel Serres) and the contemporary arts. He studies posthumanism, new materialism, material culture (food studies), and ecology. He coordinates the Humanities Honours Program, is involved in interfaculty cooperation concerning Community Based Research, Open Cities, and COVID-19. Since 2015 he runs an undergraduate exchange with the University of Hong Kong (themed “The More-Than-Human City”), a graduate exchange (themed “The Lives of the Delta”) commenced in 2021. Rick Dolphijn is an Honorary Professor at the University of Hong Kong (2017-2023) and a Visiting Professor at the University of Barcelona (2019/2020). His books include Foodscapes  (Eburon/University of Chicago Press 2004), New Materialism: Interviews and Cartographies (Open Humanities Press 2012, with Iris van der Tuin). His academic work has appeared in journals like Continental Philosophy Review, Angelaki, Rhizomes, Collapse, and Deleuze Studies. He edited (with Rosi Braidotti) This Deleuzian Century: Art, Activism, Life (Brill/Rodopi 2014/5) and Philosophy after Nature (2017), and Michel Serres and the Crises of the Contemporary (Bloomsbury Academic 2019/20). His monography, The Philosophy of Matter: a Meditation, appeared with Bloomsbury Academic in 2021, and was published as a trade book in Dutch (Filosofie van de Materie, Noordboek) in 2022. He just published Deleuze and Guattari and Fascism, Edinburgh University Press 2022. He is a PI in two international research projects: Food2Gather (HERA funded 2019-2022) and IMAGINE (Norwegian Research Council 2021-2024).