︎ Integrated Credit Program Fall Semester 2023-2024

The School of Materialist Research (SMR) is proud to announce its official call for enrolment for its Fall semester 2023 of online Integrated Credit Program (ICP) offered by the following illustrious faculty: Paul Reynolds, Thomas Nail, Amanda Beech, Samantha Bankston and Tarvo Varres, Daniel Sacilotto, Laura Tripaldi, Benjamin Woodard, John Ó Maoilearca, Paul Cockshott and Katerina Kolozova. As always, our faculty will focus on their own research, and will cover such topics as: Marxism, materialist theory of Eros, non-Marxism as in non-philosophical radical Marxism, radicalising critique of anthropocentrism through theories of the non-human, "Matter and the birth of Chaos", Deleuze and "fragile metaphysics", materialism in sciences and early Marx and his atomism, materialist theories of gender, art, and epistemologies beyond discourses of crisis, and much more. In the Spring Semester of 2024, we will have Frank Ruda, Patricia Reed, Jonathan Fardy and others to be announced soon, with a separate call for applications.

Registration for all courses is now officially open and all interested applicants can find the link to apply at the end of this page. The courses themselves will begin in the Fall of 2023, and last throughout the Winter. The deadline for applying is September 11th, 2023, and all applicants will be informed of their status by September 15, 2023.

Below, you will also be able to find important information on the ICP, including general requirements, information on fees, waivers, and the type of certificates we offer.

SMR’s Integrated Credit Program are executed by the Center for Philosophical Technologies at Arizona State University and the Institute of Social Sciences and Humanities, Skopje.

Information on Courses/Speakers:

Paul Reynolds

Title of Course: Eros, Erotics and Marxism

Description of Course: This short course of three 90 minute and 1x2 hour session builds upon the course last year on 'Thinking a Marxist Approach to Sex and Sexuality', and registrants will have access to those lectures.

In this course, which will be discussed based on prescriptive readings, we will explore the relationship between Eros and Marxism, both in its conception of eros as a cathartic revolutionary force and as a source of pleasure, seeing both as critical to a Marxist project.

The first three sessions will use  and briefly introduce edited extracts from Alexandre Kollontai, Wilhelm Reich and Herbert Marcuse to critically explore the relationship between Eros as pleasure and revolutionary thought. In the final session, I will share and overview a draft of an article on Marxism and Eroticism to prompt discussion. Students will be expected to have read the extracts/article prior to the session. A short reading guide will give some context to the sessions and their content.

It is anticipated that discussion will coalesce around three questions:

- Is Eros really a basis for cathartic revolutionary politics?
- Why should sexual pleasure be of interest to Marxists?
- What would a Marxist erotics look like?

Thomas Nail

Title of Course:
Matter and the Birth of Chaos

Description of Course: Before the philosophy of materialism there was chaos. In this class we will read the oldest recorded myths in the world to see how their vision of cosmogonic chaos gave birth to form and order from what we now call “matter." We will track the birth, rise, and fall of creation stories from chaos and identify what may have caused these major shifts, including the rise of philosophy, the state, and imperialism. Readings will draw on Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Indian, Greek, Chinese, Japanese, Norse, Mayan, and Uralic creation stories.  

Amanda Beech

Title of Course:
Art and Epistemology after Crisis

Description of Course: The artistic, critical and scientific technologies we employ to advance our capacity to know what reality is, have, as we know, been constrained to principles and techniques that are rooted in capitalist ideologies. The possibility for any artwork to speak to the question of scientific realism has been deemed not only impossible but also politically dangerous for it can only invite the false promise of freedom. The artwork has historically symbolized the limits and crisis of the human in this respect, and has demarcated the trauma of critical epistemology. Art has been indelibly to the subject, expressivism, the mimetic bounds of metaphysics, the primacy of the mind-world relation and the problem of false consciousness. The naturalization of artistic epistemologies to subjective idealism has invited new critiques in, through and of crisis. On the one hand, we see this in ironic strategies where art’s predilection for unity is instrumentalized to resist capitalist normativity. On the other hand, we see attempts to recuperate art as an unconscious and blind act which returns us to the realm of the sublime.

Between normativity and conventionalism we will explore in four sessions various texts, look at art, and discuss our own artistic/theoretical practices, that cross the question of the artistic, political and scientific image. Here we will debate the mythologies of artistic production as an automated state of techno-nature, and
examine the propositional force of art as realism in new epistemological conditions.

Samantha Bankston and Tarvo Varres

Title of Course: Fragile Metaphysics

Description of Course:
At the junction of art and philosophy new modes of ideation and sensation emerge from within the fog of the unconditioned. Invoking Friedrich Nietzsche’s figure of the artist-philosopher, this course sets art and philosophy into a conceptual symphony via the notion of fragile metaphysics. In each session, Tarvo Varres (artist) and Samantha Bankston (philosopher) will migrate from conceptual analysis to aesthetic intuition across fragile landscapes of becoming and time. We will examine the aesthetic ontology found in Gilles Deleuze, Henri Bergson, and Friedrich Nietzsche as a foundation for the liminal time described by Simone Weil, Maurice Blanchot, Gaston Bachelard, Clarice Lispector, among others. To this end, the long history of the non-self, nonlinear time, and vertical time will be discussed in concert with contemporary art, including works created by Tarvo himself. In our delineation of aesthetic ontology, special attention will be dedicated to newly published translations of lectures that Deleuze gave on the theory of time at the University of Paris-VIII. Between considerations of works in philosophy, literature, and contemporary art, we uncover the relationship between the fragile and temporality. As opposed to structural tools of dialectical resistance, fragile time destabilizes pre-existing forms, dogmas, and institutions without resorting to opposition through identity. Looking toward Melville’s figure of Bartleby, we develop a theory of destitutive time, an extra-logical aesthetics that steps outside of the shadow of that which came before. The positivistic, instrumental rationality critically theorized by the Frankfurt School over 50 years ago has only intensified, and we need new tools to liberate the world from the hollowing out of Being in our era’s technocratic deification of data, metrics, and algorithms. Instead, we initiate aesthetic process and philosophical investigation that unearth fundamental temporal-ontological errors that are rooted in forms of control. As a consequence, we experiment with extra-logical means to destitute schematic structures of time in the everyday. Our forged notion of fragile metaphysics serves as an experimental ground for new sign systems and modes of being, expanding the horizon of the imagination at the edges of art and philosophy.

Daniel Sacilotto

Title of Course: Materialism and Eschatology: A Genealogy of Modern Thanatropism

Description of Course: This seminar explores how modern philosophy conceives of different eschatological narratives in exploring methodological conditions to realize a materialism that traverses the consequences of the critical turn and its anti-realist consequences. Radicalizing the tenets of Kant’s attempt to think of the conditions of all possible experience as the limits of cognition in a philosophy of finitude, we shall see how different thinkers sought to traverse the idealist or “correlationist” results of transcendental idealism, in order to think of the material conditions that present a limit to life, and even to materiality itself.

To begin, in the first week, we revisit the classical Freudian naturalized eschatological inversion of organic teleology alongside Nietzsche’s anti-humanist program, according to which a disruption of humanist narcissism is of a piece with a derogation of the classical philosophical Western values, the better to enact a “transvaluation of all values” capable of overcoming the ‘weary nihilism’ of European modernity. In the second week, we examine two attempts to radicalize the Nietzschean and Freudian diagnosis against nihilism in the twentieth century: first, in Martin Heidegger’s account of death as the condition for Dasein’s individuation, giving way to a conception of being-historical thinking that would ameliorate the wound of metaphysics; second, Gilles Deleuze’s transcendental empiricist embedding of the Freudian death-drive into the morphogenetic powers of a new kind of “larval” subjectivity. In the third week, we explore Lyotard’s libidinal economy and Bataille’s energetic materialism, in their attempt to desecrate any residual vitalism and historicism from the attempts to free thinking from vitalism, the better to produce a generalized solar thanatropism that pulverizes the valences of the intentional stance, and integrates the human subject into a causal, mechanistic degenerative order of unbecoming. In the fourth week, we examine Nick Land’s attempt to formalize the tenets of Bataille’s solar thanatropism in an energetic materialism inspired by Ludwig Boltzmann and Deleuze & Guattari’s machinic ontology, and in which the dissolution of all materiality follows a coordinated vector of technocapitalist industrialization and artificial intelligence takeoff. In the fifth and sixth weeks, we examine attempt by neo-rationalist thinkers to reincorporate Land’s solar eschatology into a philosophical register, focusing on Ray Brassier’s account of cosmic extinction in an attempt to overcome at once the subjectalist-correlationist philosophies of finitude characteristic of the post-Kantian turn, as much as the anti-philosophical nihilist position advanced by Land’s entropic materialism. In doing so, the thought of extinction the condition to rekindle the valences of rationalist and naturalist philosophy, inspired by the works of Wilfrid Sellars, Francois Laruelle, Alain Badiou, and Quentin Meillassoux.

Laura Tripaldi

Title of Course: Materializing technologies of gender

Description of Course: From the speculum to the birth control pill, from the pregnancy test to ultrasound, the relationship of the gendered body with the technological gaze is a complex and ambiguous one, encompassing both emancipatory and oppressive aspects. Beyond their social and political implications, the histories of these “technologies of gender” problematize our understanding of the body as a natural and self-evident reality, highlighting the vast network of both human and non-human agencies that contribute to its materialization. How can “technologies of gender” help us navigate the debate between constructivism and essentialism in contemporary feminisms? Can they assist us in constructing new “ontologies of the body”? In this course, the interface of gender and technology will be explored in light of new materialisms and feminist epistemology. Some of the most significant contemporary technologies of gender will be discussed in their historical, socio-political, onto-epistemological, and techno-scientific meanings.

Benjamin Woodard

Title of Course: Embryonic Wagers: The History and Politics of Epigenetics

Description of Course: This course will look at the history of epigenetics (the study of how environmental changes affect the expression of genes) and its numerous connections to political theory and political desires. While within the humanities the discourse has been taken up most recently as a means of materializing trauma and history in the body, its relation to the history of Marxist biology and the capacities of the organism presents complex theoretical problems.

The course will move through the conceptual prehistory of the discipline looking at epigenesis in the work of Kant and Naturphilosophie before moving onto the work of Nikolai K. Koltzoff and the earliest forms of epigenetics in the Soviet Union. It is through socialist and Marxist interpretations that the work of Lancelot Hogben came to emphasize environmental effects on development that in turn was picked up the ‘red scientist’ C.H. Waddington. Grounded largely in Waddington’s work modern  discoveries in epigenetics have been viewed as too political, too anti-Darwinian, or as merely a minor complication of a gene-centric worldview. We will conclude by examining how biopolitics can be surpassed by a biophilosophy that engages with the material effects of history by way of epigenetics in numerous works of feminist and black studies.

John Ó Maoilearca

Title of Course: The Matter of Philosophy: Laruelle, the Supernormal, and Hyperbolic Thought

Description of Course: Building on my recent work on the ‘meta-spiritual’, I will discuss the concepts of the ‘hyperbolic’ and the ‘supernormal’ as extrapolations or generalisations of François Laruelle’s ‘philosophical decision’ and ‘non-standardisation’ (or the ‘Ordinary’) respectively. These mutations will be used to interrogate a number of contemporary materialisms and their varying figures (contingency, plasticity, vibration, algorithm), at a meta-level materiality of thought. Such meta-materialisations will be extended into certain artforms and socio-cultural objects through a temporalizing effort that renders them simultaneously meta-material and meta-spiritual.

Paul Cockshott and Katerina Kolozova

Title of Course: Materialism, Ancient and Modern: In Sciences, Philosophy and Computing

Description of Course: Course  based on the l monograph co-written by the instructors and Greg Michaelson: Materialism Ancient to Modern. We will discuss the fundamental differences between the notion of dialectic/dialektike in antiquity and that characteristic of modernity beginning with Hegel. Also we will examine the status of "space" in the beginnings of European and/or Greek philosophy and its intertwining with the ontology (of the impossibility of) nothingness, discussing Parmenides, Aristotle, Epicurus, Lucrecius and Marx's Doctoral dissertation.  Interaction between classical materialism and practice:  Lucretius  observations of processes going on in the real world, from the dripping of water , wearing away of gold rings ->   atoms, so small as to be invisible. Archimedes: 'mechanical method',  anticipated the calculus of Newton, first formal treatment of mechanical materialism with its underlying theme of conservation laws. In Galen  an alternative,   materialist view , 'pneumatic' theory of  nervous system  distorted by Xtians to  idealist notion of the spirit. Materialism in time: the determinism of Hamilton; the replacement of teleology by Darwinian notions of selection; the notion of successive modes of material production in Smith and Engels.

Time's arrow fundamental challenge to mechanical materialists like Maxwell and Boltzman. The revival of atomism by the latter theorist encountered a robust opposition in the late 19th century from Mach and Poincare. Einstein and Lenin demolish Machist objections. This then opens the quantum mechanics. In what sense is this Mehanical materialism?

Reconciling EPR paradox with Bell and Hamiltonian determinism?

Hegelian influence on Marxism has been overstated, Marx's early  atomism underestimated. 1930s Soviet debate between the Deborinists and the  Mechanists, Mao and Stalin on Dialectical materialism, in the context of this controversy, Mao's restating the principles of the Newtonian materialist method. Althusserian school for retained relict idealist themes despite critique of Hegel , should have relied on Soviet writers like Markov.

Katerina Kolozova

Title of Course: Non-Philosophy and Marxism: The Non-Human, Animal and Technology

Description of Course: The course offers an introduction to the foundations of François Laruelle's non-standard philosophy also called non-philosophy focusing on explaining the "non-" before philosophy. Laruelle proposes a method which treats philosophical ideas simply as precisely -- "ideas," products of human cognitive activity which constitute a form of reality but not the Real. Building on Lacan while positioning his non-philosophy far from any postructuralist and postmodern appropriation of the Lacanian theoretical legacy, applying a non-Euclidean transformation of psychoanalysis, Laruelle affirms Real's foreclosure to Thought yet insists that there must be language of and around the Real. There is also an equation between the Real and the One. But, I argue, the One is not substance, ontologically speaking, but modus or tropos, it refers to a "how" not a "what" an outside reality presents to a "signifying automation," which is also called the (human) Subject. Following Laruelle and Marx, I argue that (any) outside reality that invites interpretation constitutes an instance of the Real which can be made either of "transcendental material" (concepts, ideas, language, discourse) or of a physical or material reality, which, by definition, always already escapes language. To speak of it though philosophy without the "principle of philosophical sufficiency" is to assume a "scientific posture of thought", Laruelle argues. This is why Laruelle and Althusser are not as similar - if at all - as some have claimed. This course will present arguments that Laruelle inspired “scenticity” corresponds with Marx's notion of science of the "species being of humanity" far more directly than obvious at first glance. We shall call this non-philosophical rendition of Marx's thought non-Marxism, following Laruelle's legacy, and expand it to the realms of critique of anthropocentrism, androcentrism and techno-teleology. Building on Marx's anti-anthropocentrism, we will present the concept of the non-human. Our main sources will be Marx's own writings, Laruelle's writings and Luce Irigaray's work

Further Information About the ICP:

Deadline for Applying:
September 11th, 2023.

Deadline for Admission Notification:
September 15, 2023.

Graduate level preparation for courses. Applicants do not necessarily need to have the formal level of education that is equivalent to second and third cycle university study programs or MA/PhD level course work in the European Higher Education Area (Bologna Signatory Countries in Europe that issue ECTS credits, which include all of our European HEI partners at SMR) and North America. Intensive Credit Program is co-organized by ISSHS (EHEA/ECTS institution) and ASU-CPT, in the frameworks of SMR. In case applicants do not, the motivation statement embedded in the application form and the short bio should suffice to assess ability to follow the course. When you are applyinig for a given semester there is an application form in which you can fill out all relevant information.

ECTS/US credit certificates of up to 4/2 credits are offered by SMR which is a digital informal study platform of European and US accredited higher education institutions; this Fall’s ICP (Integrated Credit Program) are organized and offered by ISSHS and CPT-Arizona State University. Note: ISSHS, just as the other founding SMR institutions from Europe—CIL- Design Academy Eindhoven and ATTP-Technical University of Vienna—is a holder of an Erasmus Charter for Excellence of European Higher Education Institutions 2021-2027. Arizona State University is a top US institution in the area of research innovation across a vast array of fields: At No. 6 on national level in research, ASU ranks alongside MIT, University of California-Berkeley, Georgia Tech and Purdue University and ahead of Carnegie Mellon University, Princeton and the University of Georgia, and has been ranked the most innovative university in the US for six consecutive years.  

Certificates and Fees

Please note: 1) if you are from the Global South, a list of countries that is not so much geographical as economic, updated annually by the UN and/or World Bank, you receive an automatic 50% discount on all the fees presented below 2) if you are a participant from Ukraine you get a full waiver 

220 euro - for one (1) certificate course for students

440 euro - for one (1) certificate course for university, science institutes staff and postdocs (as well as all other professionals interested in LLL/life long learning)

    Discount for combined multiple courses:

A package of 2 courses: 380 euro for students, and 630 for staff

A package of 3 courses: 490 euro for students; and 720 for staff

A package of 4 courses plus 1 for free: 670 for students, and 900 for staff


4+ package with at least two courses for free: 720 for students, and 950 for staff, with more than 2 courses for free (which will provide you with a 4 ECTS certificate and 2 to 3 free courses)

Auditing 170 euro (per course)

Scholarships for the Global South

Instead of offering partial and full scholarships for the Global South, since 2023, the Integrated Course Program offers an automatic 50% discount to the applicants from the Global South, which has been called by the UN, since late 2022, also the "China +77" group of countries. Please, note that it is not so much geographical category as it is also a socio-economic one, updated annually by the UN and/or World Bank. You can check the status of your country here. As a shortcut, we would, however, point out that the category does coincide with geography to a considerable extent, esp. when it comes to Europe and North America: the entire continents belong to the Global North (except for Bosnia and Herzegovina in the case of Europe).

Payment instructions will be sent to all successful applicants at the same time they receive their acceptance letters. If anyone is financially unable to make the payment, please contact us directly, and we will do our best to make sure we work it out together. Likewise, all applicants are eligible to pay on installment plans if they are otherwise unable to cover the fees. If you wish to pay on installment plans, please be sure to check the relevant box in the application form.

How to Apply:
Interested applicants can find the full application form here, as well as at the very bottom of this page. All application forms must be filled out in full and sent in by September 11th , 2023, in order to be considered valid. If you have any inquiries please send them to all of the following email addresses:

Isidora Hennig and Silvia Neretti at schoolofmaterialistresearch@gmail.com



About SMR:
The School of Materialist Research is an international platform, founded by the Center for Philosophical Technologies at Arizona State University, the Institute of Social Sciences and Humanities, Skopje, the Department for Architecture Theory and Philosophy of Technics at TU Vienna, which, in cooperation with the Critical Inquiry Lab at the Design Academy Eindhoven, functions as a global online school combining education, research, and mentorship to advance academic study at the intersection of the social sciences and humanities (SSH) and the STEM sciences.

The question schedule prior to completion of enrollment: The hour of each class/seminar begins at 18.30 CET/12.30 EST normally; the exact dates cannot be announced now as they are still subject to scheduling and SMR runs as a school with multiple streamlined courses, so once established dates can also be subject to change (even though these changes happen quite rare). We cannot finalize a schedule before we complete the selection process. Please, consider SMR more as a school even though informal than a series of events.

Application form