Category Archives: Schizoanalysis
[This may be cited as Laruelle, F.; Wolfe, C. (trans.). (1993). “Fragments of an Anti-Guattari.” Long News in the Short Century 4, pp. 158-164. Retrieved from linguisticcapital.wordpress.com/2013/03/13/laruelles-fragments-of-an-anti-guattari.
The following is reproduced with permission. A pdf version is available here.]
1.1 It was the Post-Modern times
Image-debris in a state of fixed surview
Thinkers were then producing the Real
A bachelor philosopher a bachelor analyst
A dyad of bachelors was inventing
The reversibility of desire and the concept
The “D-G” desiring-machine
Consider the following diagram
1.2 About-face inversion of the Greek horizon
Great Desirers they went down to the Heraclitus stream
Bathed once-for-two in the same flux
Foreswearing the One-logos of the hospital-schizos – The Sensible
In the Collective-logos of schizo-processes – The Senseless
“The right to madness, superhuman right of the human”
“Take into consideration desire in its entirety”
“A thousand Oedipuses do not make one incest”
“The Same is the Desired and the Desiring—by one machine more or less”
“The stream is the self-production of the stream”
Only one ‘flash’ can set fire to a thousand plateaus”
“Emblem of necessity
Supreme constellation of Desire
Eternal Yes of Desire
Forever I shall be your Yes”
Thus they spoke of the eternal and cunning speeches
Tautologies linking past and future
New theory of indiscernables – the concept as bridge
1.3 Transcendental cartographers of the thousand eternities of Being
To the proximity constellations Mythos and Logos
Their extinction has not yet reached us -
They have added shining-obscure
The so-called “Chaos” constellation
A stream of neighbouring stars
“Chaosmos”, “Chaosmosis”, “Chaology”, “chaosmology”
And the most recent “Ecology-of-Chaos” also known as “Echaology”
- Its birth has not yet been announced
1.4 A philosopher – an analyst up to one auto-position
An analyst – a philosopher up to one unconscious
Reversible up to an “up to an X”
Naming their common non-sense “Desire”
The archaic originary One-Two of “desiring Desire”
Oh mythology which never ceases to bring back
The D(i)eux [D(y)ei] of grammar
1.5 We have loved these transcendental tautologies
Stretched out like a temple over our heads
Worlding World/nullifying Nothingness/speaking Speech/desiring Desire
Merry-go-round spun around by a Leibnizian ritournelle
“The philosopher, turning, so to speak, the general system of these tautologies that he deems suitable to be produced to manifest his thought, from side to side and in all ways, and looking over all the facets of this ‘fourfold’ in all possible ways, since there is no relation which escapes his omniscience; the result of each view of this system, as seen from a certain place up to a turn, is a philosophy which expresses this total, if the philosopher deems it suitable to render the thought effective and to produce this philosophy.” From which 12 founding statements [follow]: “take into consideration …
the nullifying world
the speaking world
the desiring world
the worldifying nothingness
the speaking nothingness
the desiring nothingness
the worldifying speech
the nullifying speech
the desiring speech
the worldifying desire
the nullifying desire
the speaking desire … in its entirety”
For 12 new philosophers among the thousand
Coming up from the bottom of the Future
2.1 I call “One (of) desire” desire as One rather than One as desire
Consider the One (of) desire …
(up to a point, more or less, up to a being more or less, not
approximating “as close as X”, not on the basis of any
desire, before it disjoins itself into desired and desiring,
and blends in the concept and the unconscious)
… What is called thinking?
2.2 I call “Desiring desire” the doublet which opens analysis
and the difference which implodes it in super-analysis
Either it desires itself
Inverts reverts itself into super-analysis
Big with a thousand desired-desiring amphibologies
Either it ceases in the One (of) desire to desire itself
Emerges to its own manifestation
As three states (of) desire
Categories of a non-analysis
- The One (of) desire
- or the Desired-without-desire
- the order of the real
- The Being (of) desire
- or the Desirings which are [the] multitude
- the order of the symbolic
- The Entity (of) desire
- or desiring Desire
- the order of the imaginary
2.3 I call “One (of) desire” or Desired the Enjoyed (of) jouissance
The One (of) jouissance rather than the jouissance of the One
That which in desire is enjoyed from both ends
That to which desire does not give its share
That part of desire which appears to desire alone
Its absolutely un-desirable and just so desired phenomenon
The Enjoyed suspended in its own immanence
What begins and completes itself with no circle
Begins there without departing from it
Completes itself there without return
Deserted without desire
Too simple the desert is not rare
Desired, absolute past of desire
Enjoyed, absolute past of enjoyment
As the Lived
Precedes the living the Affected
Affection the Enjoyed
Solitude of closed eyes before
The confinement of solitude
Reduced form enjoyment spark of desire
The Ir-reduced of the Enjoyed, the intense Extinguished of the Desired
Are a mystical razor
An ante-essential rather than supra-essential state
2.4 If as Desirings it is still possible to say of desire that it desires
Being (of) desire
It is suspended in-
The Desirings remain
I call Desirings the multitude (of) axioms
Of the void beyond the Desired
On this side of the desire-Entity
Make Being void of desire
Prepare the dwelling of the Desirings
Of the Desired the axiom is never stated
Unless it is also the cause of the axiom
And insofar as it is
The axiomatics of Desirings adds nothing to the Desired
Just itself to itself
The axiom seen-in-full
Consider the fluxion of desired-desiring connections
Its suspension like a photograph
Reveals to the unclear side of the stream
A strict identity between the source and the mouth
The frozen flux of an eidetic Heraclitus
Frozen-in-One like a sky of eternal axioms
Desired is the non-moved and the non-moving
Desirings are the mobile or the flying moved once each time
Desire-desiring is the moved motor
The One (of) desire gathers without division all possible (undividable)
The Being (of) desire gathers without division all possible division
Being is particular – oh Desirings
Particle is the partition with nothing to part
A partition from one end to another
Without mixing with the Desired as is
The undiscernable molecule
of desiring Desire
Desire receives thinking not from thinking itself
From the grace of the One (of) desire and then thinking
Thinking receives desire not from desire itself
From the grace of the in-Desired and then of desire
Translated by Charles Wolfe†
“Desired”: past participle of ‘desire’, which I make into a noun.
“in-Desired”: en rather than dans, indicating an interiority or a radical inherence/immanence.
“Sensés”-Senseless: translation of Heraclitean terms.
“Fourfold”: Heideggerian term (Cf. “The Thing”).
“Jouissance”/“Enjoyment”: Lacanian term. I extract from it the past participle Joui (Enjoyed) which I make into a noun.
“Reduced”-“spark”: mystical terms. (Cf. Meister Eckhart).
“Ir-reduced”: not opposed to “Reduced”; cf. “irreducible”.
“Extinct”/“Extinguished”: past participle of ‘extinguish’, which I make into a noun.
“razor”: Cf. Ockham’s razor.
“ante-essential”: cf. the mystical term ‘supra-essential’; before Essence (=Being), above or beyond Essence (=Being).
†: Editor’s notes:
I have emended the second term in §1.3’s antepenultimate line. It originally read ‘Chaosmose’, while Laruelle doubtless means ‘Chaosmosis’, the title of one of Guattari’s books. Cf. the French osmose, which translates to the English ‘osmosis’.
In §1.4, ‘self-position’ has been changed to ‘auto-position’, in keeping with standard translations of Laruelle.
“Nullifying nothingness” (1.5) refers to Heidegger’s statement “The nothing nothings.” Laruelle clearly has in mind the meaning ‘nothinging nothingness’, which unfortunately does not parse well into English. — G.J.
Science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke visited [Claude Elwood] Shannon’s house a number of times. A device Shannon called the “ultimate machine” left him unnerved. “Nothing could be simpler,” Clarke later wrote. “It is merely a small wooden casket, the size and shape of a cigar box, with a single switch on one face. When you throw the switch, there is an angry, purposeful buzzing. The lid slowly rises, and from beneath it emerges a hand. The hand reaches down, turns the switch off and retreats into the box. With the finality of a closing coffin, the lid snaps shut, the buzzing ceases and peace reigns once more. The psychological effect, if you do not know what to expect, is devastating. There is something unspeakably sinister about a machine that does nothing—absolutely nothing—except switch itself off.”
Patterson, S. (2010). The Quants. New York: Crown Business, pg. 25
One is aware of that species of self-torture which, in the absence of any external or social constraints, was then the order of the day, afflicting precisely those possessed of most exceptional minds. Things which torment ordinary people only in passing and which, because unengaged in self-contemplation, they seek to banish from their thoughts, were instead acutely registered and observed by the better sort, and set down in books, letters, and diaries. But now the strictest moral demands placed upon oneself and others were commingled with an extreme negligence in one’s own actions, and the vague notions arising out of this semi-self-knowledge encouraged the strangest proclivities and most outlandish behavior. This unremitting work of self-contemplation was further abetted by the rise of empirical psychology, which, if unwilling to describe anything that causes us inner unrest as wicked or reprehensible, could nonetheless not entirely condone it; and thus was set into motion a permanent, irresoluble state of conflict. Of all the full- or half-time idlers intent on digging into their innermost depths, Lenz excelled in cultivating and perpetuating this state of conflict, and thus he suffered in general from that tendency of the age to which the depiction of Werther was meant to put a stop; but he was cut from a different cloth, which set him apart from all the others, whom one had to admit were thoroughly open, decent creatures. He, by contrast, had a decided propensity for intrigue, indeed, for intrigue pure and simple, without any particular goal in view, be it reasonable, personal, or attainable; on the contrary, he was always concocting some twisted scheme, whose very contortions were enough to keep him wholly entertained. In this way, throughout his life his fancies played him for a rascal, his loves were as imaginary as his hates, he juggled his ideas and feelings at whim, so that he would always have something to do. By these topsy-turvy means, he would attempt to impart reality to his sympathies and antipathies, and then would himself destroy this creation again; and so he was never of use to anybody he loved, nor did he ever do harm to anybody he hated, and in general he seemed only to sin in order to punish himself, only to intrigue in order to graft some new fiction onto an old one.
His talent, in which delicacy, agility, and extreme subtlety all vied with each other, proceeded from a genuine depth, from an inexhaustible creative power, but, for all its beauty, there was something thoroughly unhealthy about it, and it is precisely talents such are these that are the most difficult to evaluate. One cannot fail to appreciate the outstanding features of his works; they are suffused with by something quite sweet and tender, but this is intermixed with instances of buffoonery so baroque and so asinine that, even in a sense of humor this all-pervasive and unassuming, even in a comic gift this genuine, they can hardly be pardoned. His days were occupied by airy nothings to which, ever assiduous, he managed to give meaning, and if he was able to idle away his hours in this fashion, it was because, given his outstanding memory, the time he actually devoted to reading always proved to be most fruitful, enriching his original way of thinking with a great variety of materials.
- Goethe, J.W.; Oxenford, J. (trans.). (2003). Poetry & Truth. Pennsylvania State University;
- excerpted in Büchner, G.; Sieburth, R. (trans.). (2004). Lenz. New York: Archipelago Books, pg. 135, 137, 139.
Lenz eventually came to suffer from paranoid schizophrenia, which inspired Georg Büchner to write a speculative biographical novella based on the diaries of Johann Friedrich Oberlin, at whose house Lenz lodged for a period of three weeks as his mental health steadily deteriorated. I post the above excerpt here due to its incisive analysis of Lenz’s personality, which I admire both for its perspicaciousness and the way it highlights Lenz’s relation to the Romantic zeitgeist. As well, Deleuze & Guattari refer to Lenz in the opening pages of Anti-Oedipus. See here for an excellent synopsis of Lenz’s life and place within schizoanalysis.
[I recently had to type this out for an acquaintance, so I figured that I might as well post it for fellow confuzzled readers of D&G. One should, however, note the suspicion of 'tautological' definitions explicitly posed by Bourdieu, evidently adopted from Wittgenstein, who decried the assumption of Western metaphysics that every word references a distinct object. Rather, says Wittgenstein, we should look at words in terms of what they do: as a 'toolbox'. Here, then, is a glimpse into some of the tools utilized by Guattari and Deleuze, though these are by no means exhaustive, tautological definitions, but merely two-dimensional renditions of multifaceted concepts. For other renditions, the reader is directed to this and this, as well as the following books:
- Parr, A. (Ed.). (2005). Deleuze Dictionary. Edinburgh, Scotland: Edinburgh University Press.
- Bonta, M. & Protevi, J. (2004). Deleuze & Geophilosophy: A Guide & Glossary. Edinburgh, Scotland: Edinburgh University Press.]
Chaos and instability, concepts only beginning to acquire formal definitions, were not the same at all. A chaotic system could be stable if its particular brand of irregularity persisted in the face of small disturbances. [Edward] Lorenz’s system was an example…. The chaos Lorenz discovered, with all its unpredictability, was as stable as a marble in a bowl. You could add noise to this system, jiggle it, stir it up, interfere with its motion, and then when everything settled down, the transients dying away like echoes in a canyon, the system would return to the same peculiar pattern of irregularity as before. It was locally unpredictable, globally stable. Real dynamical systems played by a more complicated set of rules than anyone had imagined. The example described in the letter from Smale’s colleague was another simple system, discovered more than a generation earlier and all but forgotten. As it happened, it was a pendulum in disguise: an oscillating electronic circuit. It was nonlinear and it was periodically forced, just like a child on a swing.
It was just a vacuum tube, really, investigated in the twenties by a Dutch electrical engineer named Balthasar van der Pol. A modern physics student would explore the behavior of such an oscillator by looking at the line traced on the screen of an oscilloscope. Van der Pol did not have an oscilloscope, so he had to monitor his circuit by listening to changing tones in a telephone handset. He was pleased to discover regularities in the behavior as he changed the current that fed it. The tone would leap from frequency to frequency as if climbing a staircase, leaving one frequency and then locking solidly onto the next. Yet once in a while van der Pol noted something strange. The behavior sounded irregular, in a way that he could not explain. Under the circumstances he was not worried. “Often an irregular noise is heard in the telephone receivers before the frequency jumps to the next lower value,” he wrote in a letter to Nature. “However, this is a subsidiary phenomenon.” He was one of many scientists who got a glimpse of chaos but had no language to understand it. For people trying to build vacuum tubes, the frequency-locking was important. But for people trying to understand the nature of complexity, the truly interesting behavior would turn out to be the “irregular noise” created by the conflicting pulls of a higher and lower frequency.
~Gleick, J. Chaos: Making A New Science, pg. 48-9.
My question: what if van der Pol could not have noticed the patterns he did if he had simply used a graph? What if the structures of music (e.g. chord progressions, key, octaves) can allow insight into patterns that cannot be fully conveyed via visual media, i.e. graphs?
There is a flash game which is quite pertinent to this context here. Though I normally frown upon such frivolous things, this one is quite simple, yet allows for a great amount of creativity. I highly recommend it to all. If Noam Chomsky could develop syntax out of a little grammar game he would play between sessions of ‘serious’ linguistic work, so, perhaps, one might be able to gradually come up with some practical application for a plaything like this…
Intellectuals’ seemingly inherent attraction to games is something that I still don’t understand, but it is nevertheless quite fascinating, not to mention (potentially) useful, as is the case here.
Trying to Get Immanence Out of a (Philosopher’s) Stone: Archetypes, Sociobiology, & Harry Potter, And What They Have To Do With The UK Riots
[This is too late in the game to do anyone much good, I realize, but I feel that I still ought to put in my two cents regarding the August riots in the UK. I wrote this during my breaks at work when I was on 12-hour shifts, so all that I had time to do when I got home was to read blog entries about the riots; nobody hailed the end of them, so I (amusingly) did not realize they were over until the 23rd, after reading the Wiki page. To my credit, at least, I successfully predicted its outcome (though I feel silly in saying that); I will therefore leave the tense unaltered. In order to make my linking of Harry Potter to the Tottenham riots seem less farfetched, I recommend readers to first peruse this.]
There are a number of popular (i.e. non-academic) intellectual movements whose objective is to find an immanent basis for the meaning of signifiers. One such example is Jungian archetypes, which states that various symbols are innate in the human mind, and thus that symbols are “universally recognizable.” As well, the sociobiology of Desmond Morris seeks to ground social phenomena in biological instinct (once again, innate), e.g. he ascribes the tradition of women coloring their lips red to the fact that when a woman becomes aroused, her lips become engorged with blood, appearing fuller and redder; thus lipstick is a display of availability for mating, just as is the peacock displaying its feathers. A third, more contemporary instance of this tendency can be found in the Harry Potter series. In Hogwarts, students of witchcraft & wizardry are taught combinations of signifiers (e.g. a “swish & flick” of one’s wand combined with the words “Wingardium Leviosa” pronounced in a specific way) which are somehow inherently connected to their magical function. There is no talk of ‘inventing’ spells; presumably experimental wizards merely spout out Latin-sounding words in hopes that they’ll bring a result connected to their etymology. This essay will outline the three views described above; show how meaning is in fact not immanent, but for the most part purely arbitrary; and show how this immanent treatment of signifiers resonates within the UK riots, perhaps to the point of precluding any significant cultural change.