Neither the politics of persuasion nor a presentation of facts. (The forms of rhetoric used by republikans and demokrats, respectively.) Rather, we propose insinuation as our form of political communication. Insinuation does not build the party, it spreads like a virus that mutates as it interacts with every new host. It brings about revolutions, yet not a revolution patterned after the swift seizure of the state, but a path that follows the strange drift of aesthetic revolutions — sometimes sudden, and at other times, a slow drift.
By persuasion we mean the art of bringing someone to your side. In our world, the lines in the sand disappeared long ago. There are friends, enemies, allies, and foes inside every one of us. Some paranoiacs try to draw lines for the rest of us to follow, but the result is always the same: infighting descends and people start striking too close to home. Persuaders are Southern Gentlemen still fighting for the Glory of the South, or soldiers forgotten in the Pacific.
Alternately, with the presentation of facts we mean the naive believe that the truth sets you free. We curse the worn motto ‘speak truth to power.’ For, the question is not why truth works but why illusion is so effective. Cynically, we think that truth-speakers desire being right over being effective. Some of us may have been know-it-alls as kids, but now we are more pleased with winning than living in a world of sour grapes.
Next installment: Nuts and bolts of insinuation.
Additional resources? Down the Rabbit-Hole, Alice!
This post contained an draft version of a dissertation section. A more recent version is now available on the works page.
Brian Massumi suggests in the introduction to his 2002 book “Parables For The Virtual” that the most Bergsonian form of argumentation follows from an “exemplary method,” by which he means supporting an argument through an example. There are three major arguments, which, while not stated explicitly, forms the subterranean structure by which Massumi makes his case for the example: singularity, detail, and connectability.
Continue reading “Leading By Example, or, the power of a good example”
Theories of power previous to Foucault were largely based in terms of sovereign or juridical power – roughly equivalent to the dynastic power of the monarch and the legal power of the social contract. The sovereign view of power imagines power as an original right held by the king to which the subject responds. As the state form emerged, power arrangements were recast according to a social contract that posits citizen-subjects that are afforded a minor autonomy that both limits and authorizes the power of government. While most political and social theory is stuck within these two types of power, Foucault emphasized two forms of power that he argues have displaced the importance of sovereign and juridical power: disciplinary power and biopower. Continue reading “Power: Breaking the Liberal Domination-Resistance Paradigm”
Is the era where ‘power produces more than it represses’ the Age of Sad Passions?
And, in an era that ‘produces more than it represses,’ why haven’t the large decentralized networks that expand at an exponential rate forced older more centralized systems of power into exile? Continue reading “Capitalism: The Age of Sad Passions?”
The domination-resistance paradigm has been replaced by modulation that de-centers power and makes it impossible to cut the head off of the king. Resisting the clutches of the school didn’t make one free of the police, or even the asylum for that matter. It was only vulnerable to entropy and sabotage. But when considered with the even more complicated relational network of control societies, formulating a radical political project on resistance to domination is inadequate. Contemporary resistance has to consider that governance thrives primarily off of transgression. Continue reading “resistance”
Too much peddling in ‘flat ontology’ when it should really be process ontology.
(not to even mention the impossibly pernicious ‘paracite‘ of D&G that claims ‘ontology first’ when it’s really ‘politics first’ –> “For politics precedes being. Practice does not come after the emplacement of the terms and their relations, but actively participates in the drawing of the lines […]” ATP, 203).
To put the false Deluezism of ‘flat ontology’ to rest, I present to you a wonderfully strong philosophical reading of the rapport between the molar/molecular in ATP. Note, this does away with any lingering base/superstructure that may have tinged Anti-Oedipus. Rather, it’s the ‘telescopic’ doubling also called reflexive clearly articulated through Hjemselv, but found in other places like Luhmann, and expanded into the general D&G metaphysics, but missed by DeLanda… Continue reading “death to “flat ontology””