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Showing posts from 2018

Levinas, Kierkegaard, OOO and indexicalism

Finally back to Deictic Absolutes . This is a piece that contrasts indexicalism and the metaphysics of the others on the one hand to monadology and OOO on the other. It is about transparency and what escapes any system. I compare the contrast to that between Kiekegaard and Levinas. The bit goes like this: To take interruption metaphysically seriously is also to take metaphysics to be driven by the capacity of what is outdoors to interfere. Metaphysics is itself vulnerable to interruption. In any case, the interrupted nexus of each actual entity by the Other is what makes each agent's agenda hostage to what is exterior. The interruption coming from the Other drives the agent away from an agenda. If monadological agents are driven towards satisfaction, agents in a metaphysics of the others are subject to interruption. The metaphysics of the others can be described as an interruption in the metaphysics of subjectivity – an interruption in transparence but also in the agenda formed b

Nihilism, prometheism, capitalism

The history of nihilism, prometheism and capitalism are in many ways intertwined and recent debates around accelerationism have made this clear (see work by Nick Land, Ray Brassier and Reza Nigarestani for example). These processes are mutually illuminating in many respects. First, they all draw on lack of bounds: capital closes no cycle and is always seeking room for expansion while the limitless technological advances defended by prometheism requires no circumventing authority from anything that could be grounded in nature and nihilism paves the way for groundlessness. Second, they have rich connections to the history of Western metaphysics in its effort to make universal principles explicit and in its endeavor to present reality as something that admits fully exposure. Third, they all somehow connect to artificial devices capable of control – nihilism severs the connection between controlling stances and their scopes, prometheism promises to turn intelligence into artifact and capit

The tragedy of South America and Mary Daly's patriarchal cycle

This blog was silent and me absent for the whole of last month. I was too shocked with the local elections in Brazil and too sad for the terrible fate of Abya Yala in the coming years. We live terrible days were capitalist realism seems to be the only reasonable explanation - that will run in terms of how collective intelligence works these days when there is no culture beyond the dogma of capital - for the increasing choice for more control and greater misery and for the boosted stupidity that is making this continent give up anything that was communal, interesting, creative or inspiring. There is a cyclic historic scheme that I believe is Mary Daly's (didn't read the end of Gyn/Ecology yet, but Robin Morgan in Demon Lover quotes Berit Äs as the author of the scheme and Berit tells me is all Daly's). The cycle has that patriarchy is a system with three stages, it is successively preparing for the war, waging war and recovering from the war. The third phase, surely, i

Nigarestani and the space of the inhuman

The inhumanists claim that reason which is autonomous can be automated; that humans can be redefined by a navigation in the space of norms where institution and application is always simultaneous. Nigarestani gets from Brandom the idea that we are norms and in that sense we are open to modification while we apply the very norms by which we recognize ourselves. He intensifies the political element in Brandom´s construction by pressing autonomy towards automation. (It is a move that makes the space of norms similar to the space of desires where human practices are changes and reshaped.) The question here concerning AI is whether capital is already a norm-mongering which institutes and applies - maintains and modifies - directly or indirectly the existing (human but not all too human) norms. Does the Nigarestanied Brandom us include already the prothetic capital?

Deictic Absolutes 3

Another part - the bit on Proximity. Proximity is about what is almost the same but not quite. It could be a species of the genre 'almost' if the latter is a genre of the order of the other. When we depart from sameness, proximity is the sole guide and in that sense it is a projection of sameness into the other. Friendship is often thought as a figure of proximity: Aristotle thought friends were one soul in two bodies and Montaigne thought friends have everything in common and responsibilities between them are no longer felt as such. Bojana Kunst understands friendship as a departure of the sameness of my identity – of the idiocy of my own endeavors. An interruption. It is through those who are in proximity that I find my neighborhood I can only cease to be an idiot if I find somebody who is like me, who is almost the same. What we have here is a kind of a paradox: I cannot find who I am only with myself, yet I can find who I am with somebody who is almost like me [...]1

Deictic Absolutes 2

A first bit of the book in a draft, on speculation and its problems. It contrasts Meillassoux's views with the doctrine recommended by the book - indexicalism, the view that sees deixis as the main components of what there is. The section is called: After speculation Meillassoux has his own way to overcome correlationism which is different from the other alternatives he mentions. He intends to seize what is beyond what is for-us. Rejecting any metaphysics of subjectivity, he rejects what is without-us in the sense of being for-the-others and settles for what is in-itself or for-nobody (or rather, for-nothing). It is not enough to embrace what is without-us by being for-someone-else (or for-something-else) – the absolute that is hidden behind any (factual) correlation is for-nothingness. Meillassoux seeks this for-nothingness precisely in the relation between occultation and facticity. He claims that the absolute is what makes occultation possible, that is facticity. In other

Deictic Absolutes 1

Been to Olhos D'água for most of this week working on the book that is now called 'Deictic Absolutes - on the proximity of the Great Outdoors'(It was previously called 'The interruption', 'The deictic universe' and 'The interrupted nexus').In the next few posts, more about the book including bits of it. In the images the house of writing and the tree of feeding.

Cyberpositive sanctity

Hashtag LevinasDeleuze. There is an element of cyberpositive in the idea of infinite responsibility (as much as in the ideas of substitution, transcendence of the Other and an-archaic proximity, all of which in the Levinasian sense). If there is no end to satisfying the Other as my responsibility is infinite, there is no sense of self-preservation. I give, I give and stop caring about my survival. Positive cybernetics. Levinas introduces the idea that I need to be independent of the Other in order to be guided by transcendence, in order to be substituted - this is the territory I start out with and the limits of deterritorialization. But as long as I have a house, I can host more and more to an infinite drift, except I need to have a house to host. In any case, doing for the Other points towards an infinite drift (infinite responsibility).

Accelerationist lines

I was distinguishing between different lines in my class on accelerationism today: Left ------------------------------------------------- Right (The traditional politics line) Esquizo ---------------------------------------------- Paranoid (The DG line) Cyberpositive drift ---------------------------------- Imuno-identity or human security system (The CCRU line) Weak ------------------------------------------------- Strong (The Nietzsche line) Bodies ----------------------------------------------- Organs (The Artaud line) Now, there is a sense in which the Nietzsche line, the Artaud line and the DG line anticipate elements of the cybernetic line, the CCRU line. Now, what happens if we take the traditional politics line to be perpendicular to the CCRU line? ................Cyberpositive drift ..........................| ..........................| .....................\ | / .............leftaccel\ | / Nick Land .......................\ | / ........

Der Spruch des Anaxagoras

Starting my lectures on metaphysics ans speculation on tree-like and other graph structures of connection between Same and Other. I started with one and many and the different ways to see how they relate. To the idea of an arché which is origin and government expressed in the thoughts of Anaximander, I contrasted the idea of an assemblage or a composition from different things. I dwelt in the contrast between Anaximander and Anaxagoras I drawed in a now six years old paper on the idea of horizon in Anaxagoras and Anaximander. In fact, Anaximander can be read as suggesting a very different project, different from the ones reducing the different to the same, the multiple to the unity. Reality is composed of multiple elements and not constituted from one or few ingredients. There is no foundation or ground, there is just composition, assemblage; he states that "[f]or none of the other things either is like any Other. And these things being so, we must hold that all things are in th

Artificial transcendental subject - or is transcendental philosophy artificial intelligence?

Under the spell of Nick Land old and new (first texts on Kant from the late 80s where Kant appears in line with colonialism in making us immune from the other and recent interview with Justin Murphy where he compares the critique of metaphysics to the endeavor of capital, both infectious, both non-ending) I started my course on contemporary philosophy talking about Kant and the correlationisms of the late 20th century. I then found myself drifting towards a post-anthroplogical, cybernetic Kant who describes a transcedental structure as a normative structure that has to be in place for experience (empirical judgments) to be possible. This transcedental structure is not an anthropology and therefore it is not quite that he never woke up from an anthropological slumber. His description of the transcendental subject is a kind of reverse engeneering of empirical judgments - almost as if he´s trying to pass a transcendental Turing test for the capacity to have experience. As such, it is also

Accelerationisms and the Federici argument

Been very much exposed by accelerationist ideas, mainly through reading the old Fisher´s Capitalist Realism (a great book, a great way to diagnisticize what is going on after post-modernity), preparing the course I´m lecturing on the history of accelerationism from Marx to the 2013 manifesto, following the recent interview of Nick Land by Justin Murphy and getting to know some texts by Justin Murphy including this one . This latter text makes the point of how to best interpret D&G quite nicely: The whole point of D&G’s project, in my view, is to identify very general mechanisms; such that they can serviceably explain the perpetuation of systemic oppressions but also serve as actionable maps for spinning new, non-linear systemic dynamics (world-historical transitions) from the most micro-scopic mechanisms. If “decoding” meant “commercialization,” why are their texts otherwise quite clearly anti-capitalist? In other words, while I think these readings of D&G are often qui

The supplement

The idea of a supplement in the Grammatology can be traced back to Levinas in T&I and can be found resonating in the notions of recurrence and substitution in Autrement qu'être . I can be substituted because my subjectivity can be supplemented, something can take my place not because I am incomplete, but because the other can supply a subjectivity to me, the other can be a surrogate which is not someone who takes an established role - not a complement - but an uncontrollable (an-archic) other that replaces, substitutes me. Therefore, my decisions can be taken for the others, I can be substituted and it is only as a recurrent me that I am me - I'm not me all the time, but I come back to myself, I come back to my burden as an existent. Derrida understands the supplement as the exterior that replaces an element in something that is neither complete not faulty - such is Nature for Rousseau: something that can be supplemented, something that can have a replacement that adds

Bodies without organs and inorganic bodies - the necropolitics of accelerationism

Writing about the molecular unconscious in the fourth part of the Anti-Oedipus , Deleuze and Guattari notice clearly that the body without organs and its intensities are matter itself. The unconscious is physical - they intend to give a fully materialistic account of what takes place unconsciously. Matter is not organized in organs, it is pure body - and it transmit intensities. Intensities goes from bodies to bodies - temperature is contagious, as colors in the wet paint, as rhythms is transmitted through different media. The machinic molecular unconscious describes the physical world but also the schizo who is doing no more than (almost) aimless production and therefore decodifying the existing codes of registration and consumption. Decodification of flows is to approach the body without organs in the sense that intensities replace codes and the molecular is made explicit. Such is the flow of capital, such is the movement of the body without organs - of the schizo - that decodifies w

Accelerationism and wages for housework

In my course on Whitehead and Deleuze we're discussing the Anti-Oedipus . Discussing accelerationism (it is hard to read the book without seeing it coming from more or less everywhere) lead us to compare Deleuze and Guattari's emphasis on the limits to schizophrenization that capital has to maintain - it is not a body without organs and the Oedipus separates it from a full schiza - with the idea, that Land (and others) have defended, that capital is the ultimate decoder of flows and therefore that the limits of capital can only be overcome by capital itself. The main issue is then whether the Oedipus - nuclear family-oriented desire, private life, the individual, reproduction placed outside the socius where production and distribution takes place - is really a limit of capitalism (D&G talk about relative limits...). This is the main contention that separates their position from a full-blown capitalist accelerationism (or unconditional accelerationism) that understands that

Salanskis, transparency and the Other

I have been connecting Meillassoux's criticism of the metaphysics of subjectivity (or subjectalism) that takes it to be committed to the absolute character of the correlation with the criticism of the transparency of reality. Under these lights, Harman's outright rejection of transparency (as much as Meillassoux's) would not qualify as a metaphysics of subjectivity for there is a real object that places reality away from what is transparent. On the other hand, I started suspecting that when the bifurcation that Whitehead denounced - the one between experience and nature, between our image of the world built from our experience and what is real - is rejected, one is heading towards assuming reality is transparent and this is enough to lead to a metaphysics of subjectivity. Further, I even suspected that maybe any thorough ontology of events such as Whitehead's - a commitment to the idea that events and not objects and their qualities are the main constituents of everythi

Hoje no Formas da Razão

Totalidade, galáxias e metafísica paradoxal 1. Episódios de medida são ocasiões em que a espontaneidade (de quem mede) e a receptividade (do que fica medido) podem aparecer em fricção. Meço a parede em metros e ela tem exatamente 4 jardas; trata-se de uma parede de 4 jardas apenas se a meço em jardas. Além disso, quando posiciono minha fita métrica nas duas pontas da parede para medir, dependo de se o material da fita é elástico – dependendo do material posso obter o resultado de 10cm. Um instrumento de medida deve ser feito do material apropriado (e Ludwig Wittgenstein, seguindo os passos de Alfred Whitehead em The Concept of Nature, se pergunta em Remarks on the Foundations of Mathematics se não é apropriado a um vendedor de tecido a metro usar um medidor de elástico). O material da medição tem um impacto no resultado. Também as suposições associadas a uma geometria métrica alteram as medições – por exemplo, se endossamos ou não as suposições de uma geometria euclidiana. Henri Poi

Paradoxical-transcendental philosophy

In the first part of the Grammatology, Derrida notes at some point that the ultratranscendental resembles the precritical. In other words, the transcendental recoil could go far enough to reach what is beyond the pale. What is deemed inaccessible for some reason can end up being accesses if we dwell too much on the very reason that precludes access. It is as if the plane where the critique of metaphysics takes place is round and what is beyond the pale can be reached by going backwards without ever crossing the pale. Paradoxico-metaphysics as I conceive it is a way to provide a total view according to which no total view is possible. Indexucalism and the metaphysics of the other - see previous posts here - are convenient examples but surely one can think broadly in terms of how Cogburn analyses Garcia's claim that the universe is never an object. So, the critique of the total view - the metaphyisical effort to explain why a total view is impossible - engages in transcedental ende

O realismo especulativo e a metafísica dos outros

Texto para a chamada da ECOPOS sobre realismo especulativo (primeira versão): O realismo especulativo e a metafísica dos outros 1. O realismo especulativo e a metafísica da subjetividade O realismo especulativo nasceu de um desconforto. Ou, pelo menos de um desconforto percebido. Desconfortos (percebidos), em filosofia, produzem agendas, dão prioridade a certas questões ou maneiras de apresentá-las e apresentam, ou insinuam, uma história, por vezes épica, do tempo recente que passou. O desconforto do realismo especulativo é com um estado de coisas em que a impossibilidade de que possamos ter acesso por pensamento ou conhecimento de alguma coisa para além da nossa correlação com elas – para além do modo como elas se apresentam à nós. Trata-se de um desconforto (percebido) que é facilmente dividido em dois: o desconforto com a falta de tentativas de ultrapassar a correlação e o desconforto com o caráter central atribuído à algo tão demasiado humano como a correlação. Este duplo de