> Srnicek and Williams introduce the concept of synthetic freedom in their new book Inventing the Future. For them, left modernity should reclaim the value of freedom from the right rather than only fighting its ideological battles on the more familiar territory of equality. However, this does not mean we should acquiesce to dominant liberal understandings of freedom as a negative liberty requiring only a lack of interference from others. Instead, Srnicek and Williams propose a refitted leftist alternative which holds that formal rights do not secure freedom without the material capacities to meaningfully exercise those rights. This freedom is synthetic insofar it must be artificially produced through the provision of the necessary cognitive, institutional, and physical infrastructure, rather than being the natural residue that remains when social interference is eliminated.
> The backfire effect is a name for the finding that, given evidence against their beliefs, people can reject the evidence and believe even more strongly.
> the adversary method, described by feminist philosopher Janice Moulton as the defining feature of the Western philosophical canon. As Moulton explains, the goal of this method is to be cool, calm, and unflinchingly rational; to forward specific claims; and to check those claims against potential counterarguments, all in the service of defeating or otherwise outmaneuvering one's opponent(s). Although seemingly unassailable (how else might we hope to argue things, one might ask), the adversary method provides a textbook example of androcentrism and in the process exemplifies the subtle ways in which male-focused thinking is naturalized. Specifically, in addition to establishing the ground rules for "proper" argumentation, the adversary method presupposes the superiority of male-gendered traits (rationality, assertiveness, dominance) over female-gendered traits (sentimentality, cooperation, conciliation). In the process, it privileges and in fact reifies an explicitly androcentric worldview while simultaneously delegitimizing less confrontational discursive modes.