AB: I was very thrilled to read your dialogue with cognitive linguist George Lakoff and philosopher Mark Johnson, because cognitive science, dealing in almost ahistorical and universal terms with the wide-ranging influence of our body upon various cognitive activities, seems so distant from the realities of our culture at the moment, bodies and minds being increasingly compartmentalized by political correctness and some unsophisticated versions of feminism and postcolonialism. Perhaps you will briefly summarize part of the discussion here? What made you wish to discuss Lakoff and Johnson's book "Philosophy in the Flesh" in particular?
DD: First of all, I have been talking to George Lakoff about these issues with great joy for a long time. Second, the attempt made by George and Mark Johnson in their new book, Philosophy in the Flesh, to locate language and thought within a material rather than purely immaterial "idealist" context...thrilled me. It seemed to be running in place with MetaBody itself--and particularly with the essay on the site, written in 1997 before I heard about the new book. But of course George and Mark have many other concerns in their text and a rhetoric that rigorously avoids touching on sex, gender, or the body as an esthetic object. In my dialogue with them, you find me trying to peel away this rhetoric and bare the links between their brilliantly documented premise and the premise of metabody. I succeeded only partly. They probably know better than I what
explosive turf this is right now and how easily the right-wing, puritannical Christian and feminist minority can be set off, with fearsome academic consequences (some of the american sponsors of metabody feared a similar backlash: it never occurred). But the dialogue is lively, filled with surprises, and I am proud to offer it on the site.
AB: What other discussions would you like to lead in the MetaBody forum, with whom, and why?
DD: I want to hear more from women--though the 1998 dialogue with the female founders of Project Erotica in New York is marvelous--from Asia, from Europe, from Africa, from one of the moons of Jupiter. The gay and bisexual views, material and immaterial of the body are equally desired.