Thursday, November 25, 2010

Rupturing Causality; Anti-Oedipus, Conclusion

"When a butterfly flaps its wings in one part of the world, it can cause a hurricane in another part of the world." Why do some people get off on this shit?

There has been one consistent theme throughout Anti-Oedipus, and that's been the extrication of the personality which can synonymously be understood as ideology. The incessant criticisms of psychoanalysis have been instinctively grounded in the idea that there are people who want you to be you, without tracing the phenomena of the personality to places like Platonic substantiality, and places much prior to that in the filiative structures of primitive civilization which D&G elaborate on in chapter three of Anti-Oedipus. Schizoanalysis as an attack on psychoanalysis can be summed up as criticizing the goal of analysis: to find your place within the social structure (Oedipus). Time and time again, D&G will state that psychoanalysis will make itself into its own truth without recognizing its own development and own metaphysics (even to the point of not recognizing who "Freud" really was, or wrote). To make it even more plain, analysis is really ignorant. Schizoanalysis will form itself by knocking out psychoanalysis as a truth unto itself. D&G's insistence on the disjunctive molecular aspects to vital life are directly opposed to the molar aggregate that sums things up, that sums up the body as a you. In psychoanalysis this "molar-gesture" is the process of "finding yourself." When taken to a phenomenological level, which D&G do without recognizing it (it's somewhat obvious that D&G have never really read the primary texts of phenomenology, and that their language would gain a clarity with this type of reading), they find causality as the sort of metaphysical operation that causes the personality as goal. This is an important step because it doesn't simply trace the aims of psychoanalysis to Plato, aggrandized mythology, or even surplus-value, but to a much more fundamental level of being in causality. With that being said, I think it's time to move onto anti-correlationist theory in my own reading with Speculative Realism. After this text, I will be taking on Brassier's Nihil Unbound to become acquainted with this thought. D&G get to this at the end of Anti-Oedipus but only after their focal interest is put in place (Schizoanalysis instead of psychoanalysis). This isn't because of a "lack" on their part (Deleuze wrote Difference and Repetition before his works with Guattari), but because of a "sociological move" in their thought and writing, the sociological move that Husserl implicitly warned against for philosophy in his Crises. In the end, Anti-Oedipus is one book that was influenced by sociology (Guatarri) as much as philosophy (Deleuze). It's an important book because sometimes theory without any examples in the socius is very difficult to understand. But make no mistake, Anti-Oedipus is proclaiming a way of being that is better off for being, in other words, it's being sociological. We can have fun with this book in its criticism of modern modes of being, but it's always important to realize that things will always phenomenally happen on their own regardless of a persons critique of anything. It's here where I stand faithful to phenomenology regardless of how powerful a book Anti-Oedipus was. The pure observation of the phenomenologist still stands as the most faithful to experience as is, even if it's obviously figurative in it's mode of expressing experience as is. Nonetheless, we can certainly learn much for ourselves as living beings living now with Anti-Oedipus. This book can help us avoid some pretty nasty traps while we have to live. For this, I respect this text and would easily recommend it. Lets move onto D&G finding their way into causality as the metaphysical grounds for personal interests and the personality in general.

"On the one hand, in fact, the investment of interest fundamentally conceals the paranoiac investment of desire, and reinforces it as much as it conceals it: it covers over the irrational character of the paranoiac investment under an existing order of interests, of causes and means, of aims and reasons; or else the investment of interest itself gives rise to and creates those interests that rationalize the paranoiac investment; or yet again, an effectively revolutionary preconscious investment fully maintains a paranoiac investment at the level of the libido, to the extent that the new socius continues to subordinate the entire production of desire in the name of the higher interest of the revolution and the inevitable sequences of causality." Something to understand right off the bat is the synonymous nature between "preconscious investment" and personal interest. The preconscious is a Freudian term signifying an archive of things that we can remember. It may be something that is in the back of our minds that we aren't consciously thinking of right now. One can take a personal interest into something, forget about it, but it still remains in their mind somewhere. This place where it remains and where it can be recalled is refereed to as the preconscious level. For D&G, when one invests themselves with a personal interest, they are concealing their natural desire. When one gives oneself a goal, something to specifically be interested in (in differentiation from others), this is opposed to the unconscious desire that has no interest, but simply has intensities. This irrationality becomes repressed under personality interests; things that you would like to see yourself doing. You have reason to believe that this is the proper course of action to take. You have means for achieving your goals. There are certain events that have caused you to have aims. For example, I had a dream (an "epiphany") of someone playing guitar. I think to myself that this must mean something. This epiphany causes me to aim towards being this epiphany. This sign showed the way. This sign signified my existence. This interest that I invested in myself by the cause of a random "meaning sequence" (please recognize the irony) can rationalize the unconscious intensity that happens to my body and this is easy to understand. Instead of seeing my body as going through a process of neuro-physiological intensity in the moment where things happened because of spontaneous breaks within a flow, I break with the break and stop the flow. I invest interest in that break where I stop to see what's going on. I don't break and continue on flowing. I like the break. I settle in the break. I am the break. I invest in the break and aggrandize the break. The break becomes an interest. I see it as something. At this point, the unconscious desire (desiring-machines) moves into preconscious desire. I remember the break because it satisfied me. It had value. I will add more value to it (surplus-value) by making a memory of the break. Again, I am the break. I will be the ideology of this break. The preconscious is a memory attached to the personality during a process of unconscious desire. Actually the personality happens because of this attachment. How the process of this attachment happens is a question put towards phenomenology. This new ideology, this new socius will continue to "subordinate the entire production of desire." Desire will be subordinated to ideology and revolutionary interests. Now, "revolutionary interests" does not simply have to have Marxian connotations. To be sure it can, but "revolutionary interests" can simply be taken as any preconscious interest at all, in other words, ideology. Anything that I take to be me and I solidify as me is a "revolutionary interest" in the sense that the unconscious break had enough power to create a personality. This is revolutionary on a purely physiological level; essentially the creation of the personality. On the other hand, we can take "revolutionary interests" literally and have it mean a personal ideology that wants to create a sociological revolution where the person thinks it would be "liberating the masses" for X,Y,Z, etc reasons (you fill in the blank of all the boring reasons that there could possibly be). Either way and in each case, we have something called "interested parties." Heidegger's ontology in Being and Time would strikingly understand this under the category of "looking around for something to do." We dive deeper into the foundations of the subordination of desire though when we understand the "revolution" in the first instance where what happens unconsciously becomes ideology in the most general sense. This will need to be addressed later on in other texts (again, phenomenology does this figuratively). This preconscious investment that manifests "interested parties," "subordinates the entire production of desire in the name of the higher interest of the revolution and the inevitable sequences of causality." The higher interest of the revolution and the inevitable sequences of causality. What does this mean? Again, the interest of the revolution is just that, an interest, not a desire. It's something that somebody thinks that they have to do, not what they love to do (eros). The break happened, the flow stopped, and revolution became idealized. Now what are the "inevitable sequences of causality?" These inevitable sequences of causality are everything that happens after desire becomes idealized into an interest. Desire becomes this. Because I think this way, I have to do this. Because I had this epiphany about this, I have to do these things. Because I see people earning a lesser wage than they're entitled to whom I never met, I have to protest on behalf of their struggle that I never experienced for myself. My life is devoted to a cause because its my sole interest in life. I am coded. I believe in this, so therefore I do this (I believe therefore I am: Ideology). After I do this, I do something else to further the cause. When I become ideology, pure causality follows in things that have to happen because of my personality. I'm coded to do things because I clinged onto a break in pure desire. D&G ask us, the preconsciously invested, to do something different. They ask us to "discover the necessity for a different sort of investment." They ask us to "perform a kind of rupture with causality as well as a calling in question of aims and interests." When we are preconsciously invested, we have shown that we are "interested parties." We are ideologies. We are personalities. But when we recognize this, we can discover a new way of investment. This investment is rupturing causality. What does this mean? This precisely means to break the break that has caused us to break and go back into the flow. Instead of finding "what to do next" after we are in a break that we somehow become satisfied in (value), we don't find what this ideology causes in is. Instead, we break with the ideology and let no cause happen to us in the name of the ideology that has broken us. We defer back to unconscious desire. What we do here is preconsciously invest into unconscious desire itself so we enter back into unconscious desire, in other words; enter back into the flow instead of breaking at the break. D&G aren't saying that one can't take a break. D&G aren't saying that the unconscious doesn't break in the flow. It's quite the opposite for D&G. There are breaks in the break-flow of unconscious desire. All of Anti-Oedipus has been grounded in the theory of the schizophrenic break-flow, but it must be noted that they have been using the flow against the breaks for obvious reasons. The breaks become satisfied (ideology is like taking a vacation from the unconscious). The flows keep moving while the breaks stop moving. When the breaks become anthropomorphized, it's here where being needs to invest back into itself, back into its unconscious desire. "This cannot be achieved except at the cost of, and by means of a rupture with, causality. Desire is an exile, desire is a desert that traverses the body without organs and makes us pass from one of its faces to the other." D&G refer back to the subject-group in distinction to the subjugated-group (which we discussed in the last post) where the subjugated-group is defined by "an order of causes and aims, and itself weaves a whole system of macroscopic relations that determined the large aggregates under a formation of sovereignty." This is in distinction to the subject-group who "have as their sole cause a rupture with causality." Certainly, this subject-group will have its own "objective factors" that can be traced in a causal series where we can find out how the rupture of causality was possible in the first place, but this account is for the "reality this rupture assumes at a given moment, in a given place." In other words, the "memory-traces" being done by the schizophrenic subject-group will be the task of finding out where and how intensities happen to the body. It won't investigate how a personality is formed. It will recognize where the body trembled. It won't idealize this trembling, but will simply mark it out as something that happened and move on. The subject group will find where desire has happened to itself. It will see where it happened and when it happened. It will constantly discover the intensity of unconscious desires and move onto other places. This "constant discovering" will be the breaks in the subject group. Discovering is breaking. When not discovering, it will be flowing. Being will be the unconscious desire of the schizophrenic break-flow in the subject-group. This is what Schizoanalysis would "look like." It will find things that are happening to "itself" and forget about them as quickly as them came. It won't ask "what do we do next with this?" There is nothing next to do. Something happened, and that's it. It would be an amnesiatic "work." For the unconscious doesn't have a memory. It simply reacts to an environment outside of itself...all together as a body without organs.

This is obviously a massive leap that D&G want us to take in Anti-Oedipus. They don't ask us to accomplish the Schizoanalytical task all in one time. It's obvious that they wouldn't ask this of the reader becomes it's not a task to be accomplished but a preconscious investment that will happen all the time. If it could be classified as a "task," it would be eternal much like phenomenology. As phenomenology never ends as a descriptive science of phenomena, schizoanalysis would never end as an understanding of momentary breaks within a flow. The key movement in schizoanalysis that is somewhat of a "radical" gesture is this modification of "preconscious investment." Instead of remembering something and storing phenomena for recall, the preconscious would invest into not remembering anything at all, except forgetting something that it may remember. It would literally invest into forgetting. Implied in forgetfulness is a motive to forget, meaning something was remembered. Something in phenomena happened to a body at a certain intense degree that had enough of an impact to be invested into a preconscious. In schizoanalysis though, the subject realizes this impact, opens itself up to it in its entirety, and then forgets it flowing back into phenomena. Schizoanalysis then could be understood as a different attempt at negating repression. While psychoanalysis tends to harbor on a "repressed feeling" by continually following the chain of this "repressed feeling" to a father-mother complex or an archaic mythology, schizoanalysis wouldn't harbor the "repression" or even call it a "repression." Instead it would say that an intensity happened to the body and would open itself up to that intensity. That intensity somehow was invested into the preconscious, but in schizoanalysis, the preconscious is programmed to forget the intensity to move on in the flow, instead of breaking in the break, which would define you as you. There is no "a-ha" moment in schizoanalysis. There is no "so this is what that meant!" in schizoanalysis. There is something that happened to a body which the body realizes and soon forgets once it's enlightened by this realization. It breaks, then flows, then breaks again, and flows again...on and on. As a final note, the last passage of Anti-Oedipus will fully clarify the "task" for D&G and schizoanalysis.
"The task of schizoanalysis is ultimately that of discovering for every case the nature of the libidinal investments of the social field, their possible internal conflicts, their relationships with the preconscious investments of the same field, their possible conflicts with these - in short, the entire interplay of the desiring-machines and the repressing of desire. Completing this process and not arresting it, not making it turn about in the void, not assigning it a goal. We'll never go too far with the deterritorialization, the decoding of flows. For the new earth is not to be found in the neurotic or perverse reterritorializations that arrest the process or assign it goals; it is no more behind than ahead, it coincides with the completion of the process of desiring-production, this process that is always and already complete as it proceeds, and as long as it proceeds. It therefore remains for us to see how, effectively, simultaneously, these various tasks of schizoanalysis proceed."

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Revolutionary Repression; Anti-Oedipus, Part 11

La Chinoise. When you have nothing to do and no imagination, you come up with shit hobbies.

As we are just about at the conclusion of Anti-Oedipus, we find D&G charmingly berating all forms of the Oedipus complex at the greatest distances that would seem protected under "social critique." Luckily for us as readers of D&G, we are warmed by the aggression of the Schizoanalytical tactic. It reaches everywhere. Wherever the despotic complex is formed in a territory, D&G move to unmask it. To their credit, they do this at a time when this would seem unfashionable (Paris: 1968-1972). Undoing the limits of Oedipus would have its limits for most people, those limits being fashion-sense (understood in the most abstract sense possible; ideology). For D&G though, they're sort of having an immense satirical laugh at the card carriers, much like the spectators we talked about in the last post who watch people in the ring throwing phantom punches at each other who didn't know that there was a small audience outside of them, laughing at them. Luckily for us, we get to join in the laughter if we're honest enough with ourselves like D&G have been able to accomplish. Yes, we are more alienated than ever before, but we are laughing like we've never laughed before. Almost at the end of Anti-Oedipus, D&G distinguish between the subject-group and the revolutionary-group. This will be a strong step forward for the idea of Schizoanalysis because it will negate the negative style that one thinks is being outside of Oedipus, opposed to Oedipus. In general, the opposing force will be someone in the ring we laugh at. Instead of Ivan Drago, it will be Glass Joe (Rock IV and Punchout!). It won't be the machine that destroys ("Whatever he is, He destroys!"), it will be the fighter who really doesn't know how to fight ("Watch the jaw!! Don't hit my jaw!"). A key to understanding this distinction made by D&G is the distinction between interest and unconscious desire. More specifically, it will be the area where unconscious desire trails off into an interest of any sort. Its most hilarious manifestation will be in the class-warrior who really has nothing to do (which actually isn't what's funny), and no imagination to go along with it (this is the funny part). It's here where interest as negation manifests. It's here where students pretend to empathize with labor unions. The laborers will labor for untold amounts of time unconsciously trying to grasp their sisyphean predicament while students have their summers off doing nothing but sitting around criticizing circumstances they aren't part of, in other words, people with bad hobbies (This phenomena was not just stationary to late 60's Paris, but is evident today in many different political structures). D&G go into this phenomena in a more appropriate and abstract way for the sake of Schizoanalysis. It would be easy to do what I just did, but it at least serves as a setup to what D&G want to describe in the interest-consciousness, and how it's most inconspicuous forms must be midwifed. With that being said, D&G are very trustworthy authors. They owe no allegiance to anything, and in turn do the "work" of Schizoanalysis faithfully.

"It is understandable, therefore, that a group can be revolutionary from the standpoint of class interest and its preconscious investments, but not be so - and even remain fascist and police-like - from the standpoint of its libidinal investment. Truly revolutionary preconscious interests do not necessarily imply unconscious investments of the same nature; an apparatus of interest never takes the place of a machine of desire." The investment into a class interest can remain fascist and police-like. The investment into any interest is an invested interest that breaks with a flow and stays in the break (there are plenty plenty plenty examples of this in modern feminist theory. Some of these thinkers are the exact definition of despotic). What at first seems like an opening of a flow that will break and flow on its own can quickly become a police-state dialogue where if one doesn't follow the codes, they will be shown how things are still backwards after all this time of thinking that "things have moved forward." This forcing forward (forced progression) is a code that doesn't flow, but breaks at an ideology of the marginalized, the ideology of the slave, the loser. What an unconscious investment would "be" is not this investment manifested into an interest. The machine of desire that flows and breaks forever is at a distance from an investment into a social field, the social field with interested parties. The unconscious desire, the desiring machine is not interested. It happens on its own without conception, without goal. When one has an interested goal, this is not to be taken as a molecular desire that happens at a schizophrenic "pace." It's to be taken as a molar aggregate of ideas trying to be accomplished, in other words, ideology. This apparatus of interest won't take the place of the eternal movement of the molecular desiring machines that flow and break at their own "pace." Certainly, pure desire can manifest into ideology, and this is how ideology is possible in the first place, but this unchecked ideology isn't the "purity" that one seeks when one is trying to find the naked body. It's a style that will clothe the nakedness that one was initially seeking. One takes off the pants, doesn't like what they see, so puts on thrift-store jeans. Again, having your cake and eating it to without knowing that you're as full as someone who regularly eats at Applebees. The question is checking the ideology when it becomes just that, and breaking right there, and flowing again wherever the unconscious desire takes it. "A revolutionary group at the preconscious level remains a subjugated group, even in seizing power, as long as this power itself refers to a form of force that continues to enslave and crush desiring-production. The moment it is preconsciously revolutionary, such a group already presents all the unconscious characteristics of a subjugated group: the subordination to a socius as a fixed support that attributes to itself the productive forces, extracting and absorbing the surplus value therefrom...the phenomena of group 'superegoization,' narcissism, and hierarchy - the mechanisms for the repression of desire." The group who seizes power for the betterment of what's already going on (the implicit logic of a group who wants to seize power) is subjugated under its own weight of wanting something different. The desire for difference (the interest for difference) is the opposite pole of unconscious desire, which may just appear the same to an outside perspective. When desiring-production becomes ideology, the agents are enslaved to their own ideology for the reason of being satisfied in the creativity found in their unconscious desiring-production. What they felt in that one moment, what they felt in that one break, was enough. The agents are full (they are fat). These revolutionary agents won't diet from their full feeling of being creative once. Instead, this spontaneous creativity of unconscious production will become an ideology trying to create that one moment as a memory that they hope will never cease. It will relive a moment in memory that will never be the same as the moment that wants to be created again. This privileged memory is ideology. This unchecked creativity is ideology. Ideology is fat. The unconscious desire that flowed is subjugated to the socius where it becomes a "fixed support." This "fixed support" is personal satisfaction. In the socius, the revolutionary memory is at home. It's at home in the negation of something that's ostensibly outside of itself. It defines itself in marginalization. It meets others who define themselves in marginalization. It becomes a power group of self-defined marginalized people (anyone who would tell you that they listen to indie music). The surplus-value that is gained in this revolutionary manifestation will have its own market. It's not just the kids who go to the clothing stores that sell the razor blade bracelets. It's the adults who are noticeably satisfied when eating a tomato from Whole Foods. The marginalized find their home in the surplus-market, the surplus-market that they thought was opposed to their unconscious desire. When did it happen that one man or one woman became satisfied in one creative act? When did they let ideology take the place of their unconscious desire? The satisfied personality: how did it happen? The satisfied marginalized group are coded to the degree of superegoization. If you don't like this band, you don't get the raw emotion of music! If you don't eat this organic egg from a chickens ass then you're eating bad food that's eating away at your soul! Don't do that! Don't do this! You should be doing this! You should be doing that! Ok....Mommy. Ok....Daddy. Or you could just get pregnant already and get it over with. Or you could just let the semen go, if you had the balls. How amazingly unnoticeable narcissism can be! How unnoticeable the mommy-daddy complex can be. You don't actually have to be mommy or daddy. You can be the super-mommy and daddy. You can be the infertile judge. The pride of abstinence and infertility, this hyper-mommy and daddy, this hyper-law and territory. The superego, the secret narcissism of the revolutionary...the salient repression of desire. Those who are prideful enough to take the position of the forward-movers are Oedipus. They know the way forward. They look into the sun in pictures. They look over the horizon. They run at the moment of real intensity. "A subject-group, on the contrary, is a group whose libidinal investments are themselves revolutionary; it causes desire to penetrate into the social field, and subordinates the socius or the form of power to desiring-production; productive of desire and a desire that produces, the subject-group invents always mortal formations that exorcise the effusion in it of a death instinct; it opposes real coefficients of transversality to the symbolic determinations of subjugation, coefficients without a hierarchy or a group superego." D&G define the subject-group contrary to the revolutionary-group. Think of it literally. What is a subject group? It's a group of subjects. Nothing more can be said of it. It's a group of people that have no reason for being in a group in the first place, yet, they're in a group. The revolutionary-group on the other hand has a very specific reason for their group. To create ideological revolution! The subject-group though without a formal definition have libidinal investments. They are vital, not ideological. They have energy. This vital energy is revolutionary. What manifests from this vital energy is not revolutionary. Nonetheless, this unconscious libidinal vital energy penetrates into the social field, but subordinates it's object to it's own desire. The social field is at the guidance of unconscious desiring production. The social field doesn't even exist. It's a byproduct of a molecular process. This molecular process, these disjunctions at the molecular level are ignorant of the molar aggregate (the socius). Desiring-production happens on a body without organs, and the production keeps producing and flowing while breaking at spots to flow other ways. This is the subject-group that goes on its own. It invents mortal formations, meaning that what it spontaneously creates doesn't become aggrandized into ideology. It doesn't become satisfied in one creative moment where it would create its own memory as an ideology. Instead, it moves away from its creative form no matter how "satisfied it felt" into something else that would happen ignorant of any personal satisfaction that would happen to it. It's forms are always mortal. They will always die because they will always break from points and flow to new places without recognition of a temporality (this subject-group is really schizophrenic in the fact that it would be without temporality). The subject-group will cross over multiple stable lines it doesn't know are horizontal at unknown multiplicities. The lines, the horizontal lines of symbolic determination can only watch in ignorance at the transversal nature of the subject/schizo-group. It can only watch in amazement, and then eventually in marginalization. Ideology and the horizontal watch things pass by. They watch phenomena pass by as unmovable rocks themselves. There's light speed, and then there's no speed. The subject-group has no hierarchy or a superego. There is no territory. There is no "frontier." There are places always crossed and creations always left behind with no trace of memory for those places. This schizo flows, breaks, creates, and never stops in some place called home, some territory that had always been waiting for me.

D&G are faithful to their anti-psychiatry instincts in Schizoanalysis by taking the revolutionary style to task. It's here where they find ideology at its most pervasive, and it's most perverted. It's here where they find the cult of negativity, the cult of misanthropy. The marginalized style always finds its home. It has its territory. It has it's law. It has its mother and father for however much it thinks it would like to displace these archetypes. It's in this marginalized style where repression is most prideful. It's where the marginalized style will never admit to being prideful while at the same time thinking it knows exactly what the world's woes are. Always a woe. Never a yes. Always something that needs to be changed. Never a placid and passing observation at something that will always pass. The pride in difference...the fascist personality. The mask of "purity" that can so easily be interpreted from another party fuels this repression. This repression of unconscious desire is hidden under the sunshine and lollipop image under the sun. "Images, nothing but images." Look at me being free. I am here, and you are there. You are at the center, and I am at the outside, but I can still have everything that you have, but I can do more! My surplus-existence is greater than yours! You see? I'm ahead of the game. You are behind. I was one of the chosen few amongst others in a group. You know when you see one of those people and think to yourself, "they just know." I have this instinct, and you don't. I am an angel. I am an angel brought down to the earth to save it from all its iniquities. I am the image of where things need to progress, and you, you are not the image of where things need to progress, and little do I know this is what makes me who I am. This is what gives me my angelic pride. This is what represses my unconscious desire; the fact that you are there and I am here, the fact that I think of you as a lowly being who should be more like me, but don't come to close to me, or there will no longer be a marginalized group of us angels anymore. I will have no outside to stand in. There will be no center to differentiate myself from. I won't be special. Actually, I'm not a sign of "purity" where you need to progress to. I am a forced difference in order to show you where you can't get to. You can't be me.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Myth to Infinity; Anti-Oedipus, Part 10

The desire to be the myth of desire (not illustrated: the future anxiety that happens when feeling one has to play the role of the hero).

The negation of psychoanalytical methodology as the starting point of Schizoanalysis will continue throughout the last chapter of Anti-Oedipus. Each negation serves as a movement away from classical psychoanalysis. A formal theory may not come to us. A formal theory of Schizoanalysis may be implicit in the repudiation of psychoanalysis by D&G. It may be so simple that it requires no formal methodology expect for understanding the methodology of psychoanalysis (the understanding negates its "axiomatic" premise). Myth as an objective material entity takes its final blow in the last chapter of Anti-Oedipus. We will find Myth as the privileged entity of psychoanalysis, and capitalize it in this post to point towards its privileged place in analysis. It will be important to understand Myth as the guiding factor of psychoanalysis and the analytical session between patient and analyst (slave and master). When this is understood, we will find D&G putting Myth in contrast to desiring-production in order to open up Schizoanalysis. Myth will be the stable entity in which man looks to understand its nature through the auspices of psychoanalysis. D&G will find this more than problematic. The myth is the image. It is the fantasy as opposed to spontaneous reality. This "stable signifier" will point all dreams towards a represented interpretation. This interpretation, this "dream book," will always be the case without knowing why one interpretation of a dream is stable. One privileges the archaic symbolism of Medusa for example and consigns their life and random dream-sequences to this representation without understanding the myth of Medusa. The Gods are alive in psychoanalysis. They are alive and well. The believer of interpretation will find this as a nuanced position after-Christianity. Why one God? How about many Gods (but only so many Gods that are able to fit in one book, in one analyst's mind, so as to put a limitation in this nuanced position in order to get to the eventual goal, the personality)? Pantheism will represent a new age of thinking, the old way of thinking; A nuanced position of a nostalgia no longer condemned to its previous history, but separated by a length of time whereby the subject is unaware of their nostalgic personality in general. What at once was antiquated becomes nuanced, and the inverse operation will happen over time. The dialectical slug fest will happen without anyone watching outside the ring for the dialectical personality. The Myth will reign supreme for the sake of the surplus-personality (the never ending enjoyment at looking to symbols of the past to see what one is like). This post then will attempt to dismantle Myth from being through the work of D&G in this last chapter of Anti-Oedipus. On the way, the implicit "idea" of Schizoanalysis will become more apparent. Schizoanalysis may always be implicit, but just because something is always implicit, doesn't mean that it won't be apparent.

"The ambiguity of psychoanalysis in relation to myth or tragedy has the following explanation: psychoanalysis undoes them as objective representations, and discovers in them the figures of a universal libido; but it reanimates them, and promotes them as subjective representations that extend the mythic and tragic content to infinity. Psychoanalysis does treat myth and tragedy, but it treats them as the dreams and the fantasies of private man, Homo familia..." For D&G, the Myth simply gets privileged over the materialist-reality that they see in desiring-machines partial objects. Myth is no longer simply a representation that has become an object for us. We no longer see Thanatos as a fun image of death that one happens to represent, but in turn don't take seriously because we are having fun with images; instead we see this figure through the analyst as a figure of a universal libido, a transcendental signifier that will give you an exact meaning to your life in this exact presence. Invested in these images is the energy of the world rather than a relative historical period with its own Gods, heroes, and villains. We will look back to these images to define ourselves and will pay the analyst to help us identify ourselves with antique images. These ultimate "subjective representations" go on infinitely. The content of these representations are infinitely meaningful, in other words, irreducible. The absolute limit of the Myth serves as its own infinite meaning. When I realize that I have Thanatos in me, I know who I am. I am Thanatos; a relative symbol of an age that had it's own way of interpreting phenomena. But for me, the symbol isn't relative; it's infinite and irreducible. I have found myself! I am Thanatos and nothing else. The personality has become fulfilled. I know now how to act, dress, and talk in the ostensible image of Thanatos. I'm settled. I have a dark vision of the world. Don't come near me! You don't want to feel my dark power! I am the power (masters of the universe)! But I may find someone like me. Another Thanatos. Male and female Thanatoses. I have my friends who are like me and my marriage with someone else who understands me (There was a time where we explored our myths more carefully, but only so much as to solidify and satisfy the personality). We are all settled together in distinction from others who have their own Myths who don't match ours. We're all having kids and visiting the psychoanalyst though. This we can share in common. Oedipus we can share in common. We can all be our own little Myths (our own little cartoons), and be in a slug fest in the dialectical ring where phantom punches are thrown without knowing who the spectators of the event are. Just throw another myth in the ring and we will keep talking on behalf of ourselves not knowing how or why we're talking on behalf of ourselves to other mythologies. At no point do either of us no who's outside the ring (the non-personality can imagine a crowd of laughter witnessing people throwing phantom punches at each other). Psychoanalysis won't show us other ways of being for D&G. Instead, myth and tragedy will become transferred to the "private person" as we have showed above. What am I personally? I am an irreducible myth from the past. As a personality, I dream of a myth. I dream to be a myth. I dream to be a tragedy. I fantasize about being the death desire incarnate no matter how shitty this feels, as long as I am this. No matter what happens to me, I am first and foremost a representation, a personality. I am of the same family, the same symbol, the same myth. How do I find out who I am? I learn about symbols from the past and ask nothing about their own development, their own myths. I don't see the infinite displacement of myths to previous myths, but rather find the myth that I like, and stay put. I find my territory in a symbolic past figure. The mother in me is satisfied in the home of Thantos's fatherly law. I will lay down the absolute nature of finitude and death, but only insofar as there's a feminine place for this to happen, over and over the same place, over and over again. I am in the territorial law. Death is my life. Who's out there who thinks that there's always only life? C'mon in the ring and lets argue about it. All the while we are getting roasted by people outside the ring at our over zealous enthusiasm for our personalities. I belong to a family in distinction from other families. We are each are our own private families in distinction from other families. We are all families. We are the myth of the family. "What acts in myth and tragedy at the level of objective elements is therefore reappropriated and raised to a higher level by psychoanalysis, but as an unconscious dimension of subjective representation (myth as humanity's dream)." Psychoanalysts aren't even aware of their own myth that they created. The representation of the Myth as the signifier of all vital life is lifted to that level while no longer recognizing this privileged level. Subjective representation is a myth. The subject can be stated simply as some sort of Myth that's irreducible. The unconscious has been given its substance for the subject. It's a stable symbol from the past. It's not a constant flow that always changes to different surroundings, contexts, and environments, but a stable personality that influences everything outside of itself. This is the dream of humanity; the stable personality. To be more precise; it's the myth of the stable personality. The unconscious desire that breaks with one "event" then flows to another is not the unconscious of being. The unconscious is always invested with representations that want to satisfy a settlement. The investments will be different settlements, but they will always be settlements (they will always be territories). I may be different from you, but I am just like you, so we're really the same. Horray! We're all settled in our differences. Now, lets make sure everyone stays put in their differences so we have an equal amount of different people making the world as flattened and horizontal as possible. Everyone gets the candy. Everyone has their cake and eats it too. Everyone hates and loves each other, and believes this is how phenomena has always happened! The belief of life and death. The grand judge believes in these things. The Hegelian judge watches the spectacle and mythologizes the spectacle. The observational myth; the scientist. The scientist who makes sure to let others know that they don't believe in anything without realizing they believe in their science and their disbelief (already two beliefs in one "non-believer"!). As D&G say, "the condition of a denial that preserves belief without believing in it." Psychoanalysis would like to free the subject from a "problem," but doesn't realize that this benevolent utilitarianism depends on an already written and unexplored book of myths and tragedies. The dreams and fantasies of the patient are understood in terms of Myth by the analyst. Is psychoanalysis that much different from dream interpretation? Dream interpretation is more sly with injecting a sense of "well-being" in the client by grounding it's practice in not letting the client know ahead of time that there will be "positive results" (even though this is the intention of the dream interpreter). The analyst on the other hand lets you know from the start that there is a problem and they are going to try to fix it (to be fair though, the patient, the slave, first finds a problem for themselves before seeking out a "cure" for the problem that they found for themselves). In general, what would happen to psychoanalysis if it didn't have an archive of myths to rely on (an archive of myths that it has no intention of tracing for itself)? But it does have any archive of myths, an archive of representations. "Images, nothing but images. What is left in the end is an intimate familial theater, the theater of private man, which is no longer either desiring-production or objective representation. The unconscious as a stage. A whole theater put in the place of production, a theater that disfigures this production even more than could tragedy and myth when reduced to their meager ancient resources." The patient is left with images. They are Medusa OR Thanatos. If the patient doesn't understand archaic images like the nuanced pantheist then these archaic images will simply be displaced to a more simple book of familial bonds. They all represent. They all create images for one who needs a satisfied personality as their "cure." Whether one likes understanding themselves by familial bonds or by archaic representation, it's all the same. It's all an investment in the unconscious of symbols in place of production. Instead of the break-flows of pure production, the theater takes its place in which there are roles that the patient needs to play in order to be "cured" of their own sicknesses. On the stage, one is the Father or Mother. One is the "bad child." One is the "good child." The "bad child" can find its archaic representation in Thanatos if it wanted to (if the patient wasn't satisfied so the analyst conferred to their internal myth book to ground familial relationships in Myth). One is never not nothing. One is always somewhere in Oedipus. The relative myth will confirm this. The analyst doesn't dive into the details of the Myth and the patient doesn't either because the patient trusts the analyst is under the assurance of an archaism (the long time that has separated the present from the past that gives the past an irreducible authority because it has been remembered). No one explores the authority of history. History will ground the "cure." History will find the "problem." Oedipus as image will be the unconscious as it displaces the pure production of breaks and flows that always happen to it.

D&G remark on how Nietzsche broke with The Birth of Tragedy when he stopped believing in tragic representation. Nietzsche who actually became sick when witnessing Wagner's anthemic and nationalistic operas in distinction to his tragedies knew that tragic representation was still representation. It was still raising an object to the Mother-Father status. It was still raising an idol to a place where a certain code is the law which we stated in this post. The idol would not "go away" after idealized tragedy though, it would move into non-belief. Non-belief becomes the idol of alienated modern man. The image of alienation becomes represented as the girl out in the street acting as if she were impoverished, and as the boy who understands her "troubles" who also attends protests for the sake of it. The myth of alienation would seem to be the final myth. It seems close towards there being no more representation. But how commercial can nothingness be! This still will be seen. And if the logic of representation is circular, then it could just as easily be the case that a more tangible idol will take the place of alienation eventually. If Myth finds its grounds in the nuance of pantheism (synonymous with proud ecology), then everything is just becoming more Greek and Egyptian. Where and when will representation no longer happen? When will the unconscious simply produce and flow? It's that simple. It is nothing; the nothingness that produces and flows and that's it. This production and flow as nothing is no longer a character. D&G will throw away their ladder to the unconscious as production. The unconscious will be somewhere with no center. It will happen on its own in a way that's passive to the point of there being no representation. There will be no theater. No one will be watching. No one will know that their unconscious is performing for an audience. No one will be clapping, and no one will be throwing phantom punches looking for approval for these phantoms (without knowing it: the Oedipus unconscious). The theater as the myth and grounds of the human unconscious; this is the case for the human all too human. The question is for how long? Forever? And if it's at one time not the case, will it be a question? Production will no longer be a question. There will be no answer, there will be no problem, and there will be no "cure." The unconscious will flow and break at its own speed with no concept applied to it. Conceptual existence as representative being will be something else that's not this dialect. It will happen on its own. There is no need to throw anything away, or to oppose anything, or to be anything.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Repression of Father and Mother; Anti-Oedipus, Part 9

Power Combo

The final chapter of Anti-Oedipus is D&G's introduction to Schizoanalysis. This is where we will throw off the shackles of psychoanalysis and move into another form of analysis. We will come to see that this form of analysis isn't meant to be seen as some development from psychoanalysis, mainly because how different it is in its purpose (Schizoanalysis doesn't give itself the purpose of "the cure"). It's a vastly different field. It's not a field actually, but a way of thinking that's at a large distance from psychoanalysis. In the first pages of this chapter, D&G continue to elaborate their theory based on repudiating psychoanalysis though, so Schizoanalysis is still the negation of Psychoanalysis, and as we come to the final pages of the book, we may find that this is precisely the purpose of Schizoanalysis; the negation of Psychoanalysis. As their analysis becomes more detailed, more insights will manifest. In this post, we will discuss how the first act of the child is the repression of the father and mothers unconscious. But as we learned before through this entire book and what we will discuss now, the flow of ones "life" isn't defined by familial structures. Instead, these familial structures serve as a derivative to desire investing itself into a social field. In other words, Mother and Father become manifest from a social field that desire has "found." As we learned before, Mother and Father are certainly relations in the flow of a "developing period" of a child, but doesn't come close to enveloping all the intensities that happen to the body experiencing these intensities. Classical Psychoanalysis which grounds ones relationship relative to ones family in the familial triangulation (Oedipus) is missing the grounds of the spontaneity of desire (Schizophrenia) which forms what is classically understood as a "person." D&G make sure to point this out, not only to deprivilege the throne of Oedipus in it's mythologizing of the paternal and familial complex, but to ground any analysis in general on the abstraction of a "social field." Analysis understandably becomes so general and large after this that it becomes impossible to ground analysis in a "cure" because of the relativity of the schizophrenic desire in the social field. Rather, by becoming aware of the social field in general as the grounds for desire's investment, the cure is negated by the general abstraction. (general enough to the point where there is no specific "cure.") The "cure" in there being no cure is the realization of the social field as the grounds for one's desire instead of a final step towards an acquiescence with the family. It remains to be seen if D&G will call the social field a relative "aggregate" of desires investment. In other words, did the world as we know it have to happen, or could something else, something wholly other, happen in the flow of desire. This we will find in the conclusion of the book, and if we don't we will discuss it in the final post on this book. For now, we will find neurotic repression in something grounding Father and Mother, not grounded in Father and Mother.

"It appears that, in the common social field, the first thing that son represses, or has to repress, or tries to repress, is the unconscious of the father and the mother. The failure of that repression is the basis of neuroses. But this communication of unconsciouses does not by any means take the family as its principle; it takes as its principle the commonality of the social field insofar as it is the object of the investment of desire. In all respects the family is never determining, but is always determined, first as a stimulus of departure, then as an aggregate of destination, and finally as an intermediary or an interception of communication." D&G does away at with the chicken and egg conundrum at the beginning of this chapter making the question of what comes first between the father and son a non-question (the argument for this on their behalf one will have to read for themselves). Instead, we have the social field where everything is already immanent. Father and son are already established (master-slave in another sense) in the social field. The son, as the formal slave, first represses the unconscious of the father and mother. The unconscious of the father and the mother we will see later on as the law and territoriality respectively. The son then is seen as a flow trying to repress the law and territorialization, and we can understand this easily. In a very concrete sense, the son as a newborn is schizophrenic. It moves where it wants to move and does what it wants to do without knowing its moving or doing. This flow becomes intercepted by the father and mother whereby the flow (the son) will try to repress it in order to do what it already does. When it fails to do this by continual insistence from a paternal-complex to form into a territorialized law, it will develop neuroses. In other words, it will develop fears with what to do with itself, feeling the weight of ambivalence towards it's first flow on one hand, and the law and territorilization on the other. This ambivalence, this indecisiveness will cause neuroses (which can be easily understood simply as fear in not knowing what to do.). The key for D&G though is that the paternal figures don't form neuroses by themselves. It's not as if paternal figures want their sons and daughters to become neurotic. The paternal figures don't know any better when they're acting dependent to a social field. They may think that "this is the right course of action for the son," but they don't ask how a "right course of action" is possible in the first place (possibly why children are born in the first place independent of "mistakes"). The family is not the principle of unconscious repression. Rather, the family is principled under the social field. One way to look at this directly is thinking about expecting parents who have an unconscious "knowledge" of how a child is going to be raised. They may even buy books on it and asks friends on upbringing. All of these characteristics belong to the unconscious of the paternal figures which is grounded in abstract social reality; the social field. In other words, before parents are parents, they were first in a social field. They were sons and daughters (schizophrenics) before becoming parents (neurotics). Desire is already invested into the social field. The "desire for children" for example is already invested in the social field. Even its negation in the form of "I don't want to have children," is an affirmation of the social fields desire to have children. The negation comes after the affirmation of the desire and supplements the reality by giving the substance another context (the negation), that nevertheless is affirmative (a "transcendental affirmation" that is both the affirmation and negation of a desire). Regardless of whether one "wants kids or not," this is dependent on the social field's first insistence that this is a desirable question to answer. This is what is common to the social field, in this case, a question. The family, mechanically speaking, is a "stimulus of departure." Desire is a stimulus. Desire are random stimuluses. Desire gets on its way with its investment in the social field through the mechanism of the family. The family is a mechanism of desire's investment (intention?) into the general and abstract social field. After the departure, it's finally an "intermediary or an interception of communication." The mechanics of the family mediates communication in general, and this mediation can be understood as an interception of the "communication" being done by the schizophrenic (child). The child is unaware of its "communication" with what is "outside itself." (It's important to put outside itself in quotations to signify a bracketing move that allows us as readers to try to understand what would be going on in itself, while at the same time understanding this impossibility of this ever being understood (gestures of Husserl and Derrida)). This child is the schizophrenic. The mediation of formal communication starts its path of neuroticism. The mediation is an interception. It's a difference. It's a change. "If the familial investment is only a dependence or an application of the unconscious investments of the social field - and if this is just as true of the child as of the adult; if it is true that the child, through the mommy-territoriality and the daddy-law, already aims for the schizzes and the encoded or axiomated flows of the social field - then we must transport the essential difference to the heart of this domain." The social field is the difference of mediation. Desire's investment into the social field manifests the family. The social field is not just the adult (acting as the mother and father) though, but the child. We talked about the child above as the schizophrenic, but here we now understand it as always and already on it's way towards a social field. It's born into a social field where the parents act out the social desire. Certainly there is a difference between the child potentially as parent and the child as parent (in other words, the parent). We are working in degrees here. The child is not "purely" schizophrenic. It works off degrees to where it's more schizophrenic from its inception towards its more-than-possible investment into the social field. Being between child and adult is being in-between schizophrenia and neurosis. The child plays its role in the social field without first knowing it in being under the auspices of the social field manifested in the social functions paternal mechanism. That the child is not culpable for its investment into the social field is the difference between it and the paternal mechanism of the social field. The domain of the social field in which desire "found" its way is the difference from the dependence and application of the familial mechanism within that very social field. The difference is between dependence and application. The application is dependent on the desire invested in the application. For clarity's sake, lets flesh out the "mommy-territoriality and the daddy-law" in hopes of making the above more understandable. The "daddy-law" is obvious enough. It's the male paternal figure (who can either be "organically" male or female) who establishes the law to the child or slave. It's the word and book that is followed for the function of the social field. "Mommy-territoriality," on the other hand is the place for the law. If law is time, territoriality is space. If the father is time, the mother is space. The female paternal figure (who can either be "organically" male or female) literally sits at home. It provides the stable place for teaching. It provides the home for the child. It unconsciously provides the sense-of-home to the child by providing a place for it to always be. The child is being invested in not moving from a place. The law needs space for its time. It finds it in the maternity of home. Being in a home is being in a territory. Being in a home (territorialization) is different from not being in a home and being deterritoralized constantly like gypsies (who we can obviously say does not operate in Oedipus, who provide an interesting case of desire investing in something different than the social field, than Oedipus). The child, father and mother are all invested in the social field. The schizophrenic on it's way towards the social field, the territorial-neurotic, and the neurotic-law are all in the social field. The social field as the domain of desires investment is the object of all dependencies, that no one consciously knows about, until the unconscious is opened.

With that being said, Schizoanalysis operates by telling people that they are grounded not in a reality of the family, but in an already invested social field. That the family is a mechanism of the social field shouldn't make the family into an aggrandized mythical signifier. The mechanism should certainly be observed like anything else, but not seeing it's grounds in something more abstract than law and territoriality is the work of psychoanalysts; not just the psychoanalysis of psychoanalysts, but of the western metaphysics of being. As D&G continually say, psychoanalysis is just the final destination of the signifier of Oedipus in the form of the analysts couch. Classical psychoanalysis opens up the idea of analysis which classically finds it's grounds in the family. The analysis does go deeper in psychoanalysis. It investigates the myths that it thinks constitutes the human being. Its problem for D&G and Schizoanalysis is in aggrandizing these myths to the meaning of a problem. Not only is the presupposition of a "problem" a relative insistence of people going to psychoanalysts, but the meaning itself supplements the problem making the problem more than a problem. In other words, "the cure" isn't something merely sought out, but something that's given a meaning (a transcendental meaning). Everyone's sick and they need to be healed. We need to find a cure. This platitude is dispersed to homes everywhere in the social field. This platitude is the law, our law. As D&G will ask us though, "Why Myths?" And when they ask this, they ask us why we believe in myths. It's one thing to read and understand myths (myths amongst many other myths), but it's another thing to privilege Myth to a way of being. The unconscious desire of the social field doesn't open itself up to the agents in this field, until certain agents explore it. Once it's explored thoroughly a process happens whereby you get Philosophy, Psychology, and in this text, Schizoanalysis (amongst thousands of other sciences). Each time that thought broaches the ostensible ground of an experience, it slices through the myth of a supposed "reality." No longer am I constituted first and foremost by my specific mother and father, but the general idea of mother and father everywhere. In other words, I'm constituted by a social field. As I move from the specific family to the generalized family, I move into the general social field. The psychoanalyst is now out of a job. With the ease of a cure, with the ease of the cure that shows that "the cure" is something no longer to be sought out, many people lose their jobs, their homes, and their Heideggerian circumspection (looking around for something to do). The next questions become one of ontology, or a materialist-theory, or in this text, Schizoanalysis. In these three forms of thought alone, parallels are easy to draw.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Réponse à un amour pas retourné par l'ambivalence

Les hommes de Francais ne sont pas tous les waffles.

MICHEL: C'est vraiment louse.
PATRICIA: Qu'est ce qu'il a dit?
VITAL: Il a dit que vous êtes vraiment "une louse".
PATRICIA: Qu'est ce que c'est "louse"?

- Breathless