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Showing posts from December, 2015

Limbale's last-minute-sex-change novel

Just finished reading a 2003-4 novel by Sharankumar Limbale, called Hindu. It is a dalit novel and, being such, it is novel of collectives and is interestingly mostly about public space events. It is about how dalits are forced by multiple powers to accommodate within the Hindu (and often Hindutva) order even years after the Ambedkar's struggles and the help of some legislation and federal institutions. The plot starts with the murder of a dalit leader and ends with the judicial acquittal of the savarna's perpetrators. In the meantime there are two elections, a lynching of a dalit women by savarna villagers, some episodes of betrayal and loads of soul-searching of dalit groups mostly around the convenience and efficacy of converting out of hinduism. The novel revolves around Gopichand and Manikchand, two brothers who act like one and appear as a double - two but acting as one, savarnas close to Hindutva and at the same time hanging out with dalits and providing money for their

First pages of the book on animism I'm concocting

The working title of the book is Linhas de Animismo Futuro , (Lines of future animism). What follows is just the preliminary opening paragraphs, as they are now: Não um espectro, mas um ancião cheio de plásticas ronda a Europa conceptual – esta que se espalha por uma geometria variável e que se encontra tanto nas academias quanto nos parlamentos, nas repartições de governo, nas corporações. Nem sequer um único ancião, mas muitos: os animismos. Eles são antigos e parecem fantasmagórico, mas parecem também biônicos, cibernéticos e protéticos. Espectros ciborgues talvez. Múltiplos, com muitas caras, muitas cabeças e muitas caudas. São os ecos daquilo que anima os outros: a atmosfera da terra, as populações animais, os insetos transmissores, a microbiota receptora, os equilíbrios ecológicos, o alcance das marés, o objeto qualquer. O não-humano, o natural, o que não passa de um objeto, enfim tudo aquilo que esteve por séculos posto a parte como não mais que um cenário ou uma paisagem de

Worlds and monads

The last sections of part 3 of Leibniz's Theodicy makes clear that interaction were part of what happened between the monads in the simulation process that takes place in the Palace of Destinies that Palas Athena guards. In fact, God had to consider all possible worlds in order to choose the right combination. Monads could be taken as building blocks that are agents or reagents. They have all their history encapsulated in themselves and therefore they are repositories of events. In Leibniz, there is an infinite number of them (and not an indefinite number). It is enough for God to choose a collection of monads in order to choose a world. God would consider the different classes of monads. Every contingent alternative was considered in the Palace: sinning Adam with the serpent and non-sinning counter-Adam with the iguana. God considered every counterpart of Adam and therefore the interactions between Adam and the rest of the world were played in the Palace before God. What is missi

Experience in a space of traces (or, more on Whitehead and Derrida)

I've been haunted by this strange and daunting crave to bring together Derrida and Whitehead. I've done that in several recent posts (such as this , and this and this or this ). I always do that often especially while reading Critchley's book on Derrida and Levinas ( The Ethics of Deconstruction ) with which I find myself agreeing with enthusiasm. In the last few days I came to think that if text is broader than language and written difference precedes (as conditions of possibility) not only meaning and the employ of symbols but also presence and whatever counts as the ontic itsel, writing is the territory where the ultimate object of experience lies. Experience is experience of traces (of writing marks). The Derridean correlate for the ontological difference is that between logocentrism (as in logic, physiology, psychology or ethology) as discourses and text, as the ontological is not the realm of presence - which is transcendentally constituted - but rather the space

Freedom to

Elizabeth Grosz calls attention to a conception of freedom that contrasts with that of the Kantian emancipation tradition where one is free if one is free from chains, from coersion. Freedom from is freedom to act in a self-determined way - it is freedom for agency, it is not agency itself. Grosz ascribes the idea of freedom to to Bergson´s freedom of action - it is connected to an act that has a drive and can be performed because spontaneity and contingency are present. Freedom to is what is done with spontaneity and contingency and is intrinsically non-indifferent. It is the positive side of freedom - and emancipation. This positive side is not the freedom from that Daniel enjoys in L'age de la raison , which is indifference, but rather the very possibility to act in a specific way. I think freedom to has to be thought in conjunction with Deleuze's claim in Pourparler (166): "si les oppressions sont si terribles, c'est parce qu'elles empêchent de mouvemen