Original Research

Michel Serres’ multidisciplinary philosophy of information and knowledge

Fanie de Beer
The Journal for Transdisciplinary Research in Southern Africa | Vol 10, No 1 | a12 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/td.v10i1.12 | © 2014 Fanie de Beer | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 23 February 2016 | Published: 30 July 2014

About the author(s)

Fanie de Beer, Department of Information Science, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa

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This paper is a tribute to the formidable multidisciplinary philosophy of information of the French philosopher, Michel Serres. His approach is to an extent based on his statement: “Let us nevertheless try to see on a grand scale, to enjoy a multiple, and by times connective, intellection”. His main focus is on the notion of intellection which can be related to human spirituality, perception, understanding and comprehension. This human quality is urgently required if we want to reflect on knowledge as a multiple phenomenon. His view of knowledge differs in a substantial way from currently held views on knowledge and information and hence his plea: Let the new knowledge come. The human quality of intellection is equally important when it is realised that the phenomenon of knowledge in its multiplicity can only be properly grasped when viewed from the perspective of the extensive transdisciplinary connectiveness between knowledges, which creates room for what can significantly be called the world-mapping of knowledge and which strongly suggests the spatial character of knowledge and information. Thanks to the quality and capacity of intellection it becomes possible to demonstrate certain deeply theoretical and immensely practical issues in the embracement of the idea of a new conception of knowledge.


Intellection; connectivity;multiplicity; new knowledge; invention


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