Money and Mnemotechnics

When:18 Oct 2016, 12:30pm - 2pm
Venue:Morven Brown 209 (map ref C20)
Who:Jon Roffe (UNSW)
Jon Roffe

Philosophy Seminar. All Welcome


It is broadly agreed that money plays three key roles: as a means of exchange, a store of value, and a unit of account. Depending on a variety of other presuppositions, however, which of these functions is primary (historically, functionally, and logically) differs a great deal. The goal of this paper is to consider a necessary condition for any use of money that is rarely the object of economic thought, namely the form of social memory in which the inscription of monetary activity is inscribed. The importance of this condition is particularly prominent in new digital forms of currency, such as Bitcoin, and the blockchain protocol that it makes use of. I will consider this problematic in light of Nietzsche’s analysis of memory in the second Essay of the Genealogy of Morals, which outlines the nature and advent of social memory through just such an act of inscription.

About Jon Roffe

Jon Roffe is a Vice-Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellow in Philosophy at the University of New South Wales. His most recent book, Abstract Market Theory (Palgrave 2015) advances a new philosophy of the market.

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