It seems our lives are increasingly touched by, affected by, or otherwise sensed through / with / alongside things. On the surface, it might seem as though these various things serve at the pleasure of the human, to assist us in accomplishing our own dreams, drives, and desires. Yet everyone knows of a thing, an object, that offers more than a utilitarian convenience. Some-thing that accumulates meaning, exerts its own presence in the world, and presses upon us in a way that changes us. What would come of our thinking—and our being-in-the-world—if we approached these things, these objects, not as tools for our use but as animate presences in the world with their own histories, their own meanings, absent of, or perhaps alongside, that which we give them? In other words, what if understanding the human condition...

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