Stranded Review

Discovered this week (but actually published in 2015) another review of The Provoked Economy: long, thorough and detailed, authored by Bruno Ambroise, a specialist on Austin, speech acts and the pragmatics of language, but alas controlled by the author’s will to find in these pages an instance of his specialty. He rightly complains about the fact that the book does not care about that. “Who cares about Austin” could indeed have been a fair subtitle for a book that, yes, has the P word in it but that certainly does not abide by Austinian rules and certainly does not use the word as a concept (Ambroise does not want to engage with the concepts that are actually proposed in the book, which are certainly located elsewhere). Ambroise suggests that it is wrong to collapse language into technologies, things into signs, but, as it is clear from page one, that is unfortunately not a conceptual error but the exact purpose of the book. Too bad! But it is therefore quite understandable, as Ambroise signals, that the empirical investigations at the core of the book do just that.