Steven Shaviro pulled a delightful quote from Bruno Latour’s recent book Enquête sur les modes d’existence. Une anthropologie des Modernes, which will be published in English next month as An Inquiry into Modes of Existence: An Anthropology of the Moderns. I haven’t yet read the book in either language, but I’m reposting this quote in a QFT sort of vein.

S’il y a, vraiment, une chose que le matérialisme n’a jamais su célébrer, c’est la multiplicité des matériaux, cette altération indéfinie des puissances cachées qui donne de l’astuce à ceux qui vont les explorer.

Something like this in English (with some license, if you’ll allow it):

Really, if there’s one thing materialism hasn’t ever celebrated, it’s the multiplicity of materials, that endless contortion of hidden powers that tips off those who would bother to explore them.

published June 15, 2013