A talk presented by Aragorn Eloff at the 2015 Deleuze and Guattari and Africa conference (www.deleuzeguattari.co.za).
“Nothing more can be said, and no more has ever been said: to become worthy of what happens to us, and thus to will and release the event.” – Gilles Deleuze, The Logic of Sense
“What is an anarchist? One who, choosing, accepts the responsibility of choice.” – Ursula Le Guin, The Dispossessed
Read it here
WILD ECOLOGIES - Featured Post #3: Edmund Berger with an in-depth analysis of Guattari's 'ecosophy' and possible points of connection, overlap and divergence from anarchist thought.
How does one begin to broach the question of linkage, passage, and reflexivity to be found in the theories and practices of anarchism, the radical post-psychoanalysis of Felix Guattari, and the ontological framework that has been ushered in the necessity of acknowledging the forces that we label “the Anthropocene”? The overlaps between each are undeniable: in was ecological concerns that late in his life Guattari turned his mind to; the field that his work is commonly situated – the school of post-structuralism – is often affiliated with anarchism of the so-called “post-left” variety. That Guattari was closely aligned with the Italian Autonomia, which the post-left anarchists owe much of their discourse to, is no passing coincidence. We can also note the presence of “green anarchism” under the post-left label, alongside the controversial, anti-civilizational stance espoused by anarcho-primitivism. Yet we can see clearly that this triad of eco-ontology, Guattari, and anarchism have yet to really have the dialogue that they deserve.
On even a surface level reading the commonalities between each point is immediately clear: none points to a resolving synthesis in thought or being. The Anthropocene has brought us full circle and pried open what was also present but shunted aside by the progress of the West – that civilization and nature are not separate, and that civilization and culture exist entangled in the complex web of the ecology itself, defined as it is by various states of emergence. Anarchism, regardless of which of the many monikers it adapts, is at its core a program that is constantly evading and contesting the centralizing and homogenizing forms of the state itself. Guattari, meanwhile, shifts these focuses to the levels of individuals and group’s subjecthood, looking to move from fixed and stable states to ones far from equilibrium. Keeping in tune with the manner in which each point in this triad presents itself as an ongoing unfolding, this essay will attempt no resolute synthesis. I am more concerned in this moment with simply tracing out a constellation of convergences and patterns, looking for possibilities of a minor politics for the Anthropocene.
WILD ECOLOGIES - Featured post #2: Here Bill Rose summarizes and interprets Guattari's 'ecosophy' as it is laid out in the book and elsewhere, on the way to a quasi-anarchic approach to becoming.
by Bill Rose
A strategy that bypasses politics as usual is required of us if the biosphere is to survive; a strategy that isn’t reducible to social-environmental reforms but goes down deeper and spreads far wider than any party or player could take us. The object of concern turns out to be not an object at all but relationships held together by systemic interactions forming a field whose limits only seem to expand or shrink.
This field is precisely what needs to be put into question: the borders, the shape, the constitution of our setting are due for a rethinking. This problem has been creeping up on us for too long now and it is time to fashion the tools required to relate to our environment, society, others, and ourselves in non-destructive ways. The Three Ecologies by Felix Guattari provides a good place to start on this daunting task (though it is probably already underway on some level) for a number of reasons but uniquely because it is a short and accessible work of around 25 pages. The areas of concern in the project of transforming relationships at a fundamental level (crucially without falling into social utopian planning) are plainly laid out in three easy pieces:
News from the The New Centre for Research & Practice
The New Centre for Research & Practice is very pleased to announce the the first book release by &&& Publishing.
What is Grounding? is Gilles Deleuze’s first seminar, and is distinguished in that, rather than “taking an author from behind and giving him a child that would be his offspring, yet monstrous”, the work focuses instead on the question of grounding, defined both as “the sufficient reason for concrete entities”, and “the point of departure for philosophy”, in translator Arjen Kleinherenbrink’s terms. Rather than foregrounding method, in which human subjective experience remains primary, here Deleuze affirms the centrality of system, of things and the relations between things.
“Nothing less than the ur-text for Deleuze’s pre-1970s philosophy, an original sketch of his main themes and problems, which are all present in intensely compacted form” – Christian Kerslake (Radical Philosophy)
Cover art: Robert Smithson, #7 Red Sandstone Mirror, 1971
Gilles Deleuze What is grounding?
Translation by: Arjen Kleinherenbrink
This translation is from transcripted notes taken by Pierre Lefebvre.
Copyright (1956-57): Emilie Deleuze and Julien.
&&& Series: Mémoires Involuntaire
Publication Date: 25 May, 2015
eBook, 185 pages.
“Nothing less than the ur-text for Deleuze’s pre-1970s philosophy, an original sketch of his main themes and problems, which are all present in intensely compacted form . . . What is Grounding? is the only one of Deleuze’s lecture courses to devote itself directly to fundamental
philosophical themes, rather than ventriloquising through the ideas of a philosopher of the canon . . . [and] concerns grounding, the great theme of modern philosophy: the starting point, the beginning. How does one begin in philosophy?”
– Christian Kerslake (Radical Philosophy)
This ebook is exclusively intended for Open Access online distribution. It is not to be sold or republished in any physical form.
Constitutional democracies – moving beyond abstraction and reflection – a politics of bodies, things and relations
Part of an unpublished paper by Linda Stewart
“These days it’s the rights of man that provide our eternal values. It’s the constitutional state and other notions everyone recognizes as very abstract. And it’s in the name of all this that thinking’s fettered, that any analysis in terms of movements is blocked. But if we’re so oppressed, it’s because our movement’s being restricted, not because our eternal values are being violated. In barren times philosophy retreats to reflecting “on” things. If it’s not itself creating anything, what can it do but reflect on something? So it reflects on eternal or historical things, but can itself no longer make any move (Deleuze Negotiations 121-122, emphasis added).”