From: Tom Blancato <tblan@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 11 Oct 1996 14:24:16 -0400 (EDT)
On Thu, 10 Oct 1996 dionysus@xxxxxxxx wrote:
> Bataille's project is not at odds with what you say and no one explored
> these issues with more complexity and subtlety, but what passes under
> Bataille's name is usually a superficial understanding.
> Perhaps violence is not the right focus. Given that there is a drive, force
> or pulsion which cares nothing for human existence, how might this play
> itself out. Social groups of the past had a variety of methods for living
> this out - often through sacrifice. Girard and Levinas sought a
> Judeo-Christian transcendance of our mimentic desire through mutual
> recognition of the other. Perhaps this is a kind of loving. It is similar
> to the communist project following Hegel and Marx as well as various
> Eastern practices.
> Lacan did not believe this option was open to humanity - at least not to
> the West - and instead offered his practice of psychoanalysis as a
> consciously enacted/embraced living of one's own particular fate (enjoy
> your symptom).
> Artaud and Bataille were not too optimistic about rituals which did not
> engage the body whether judeo-christian or philosophical-scientific.
> Nevertheless their violence is one of "thought-action" and not "beating
> people up". The Theatre of Cruelty unites mutual recognition with the
> essential violence of human life confronted with death at every turn.
> Mutual recognition is no longer mediated by a code but comes through the
> shared anguish/ecstacy of existence. Each one of us is no longer part of
> the social as much as the world has imploded into each of us. They already
> knew that this is where the stakes would be played out. Bataille's
> practices of poetry, mysticism, desire, love, and faith render war,
> oppression, and psychic abuse redundant and turn anguish into ecstasy. The
> stories of Bataille, Blanchot, Duras, and Genet (like much of the 60s)
> appear as a moment lost in a world which has chosen the basest form of
> Speaking as objectively as possible, the movement of existence seems to be
> one of chaosmosis. Every event-process ends or dies. Change, mutation,
> individuation, fractalization - the unfolding of totality (nothing) is
> indifferent to its manisfestation as (what looks to us like) disease,
> death, loss. Nietzsche and DeSade had a glimpse of this higher picture as
> did some Zen masters and it informed their ethics of larger scope than the
> spiteful and cowardly bio-morality. Who isn't affraid to die?
> But to seize hold of a moment and alter the course of things - to
> reproduce, replicate, communicate, and create - this too happens and we as
> humans are placed in a priveleged position in the unfolding of space-time
> energy-momentum matter-spirit. Nietzsche and Bataille recognized this
> special middle ground and paved the way toward a new humanity.
> The above stories supply a mythos which satisfies my own particular
> jouissance, but Guattari's "Chaosmosis" - more than any DnG combo - reads
> like a map of the future that keeps me here.
> Why is it so hard to teach children what they already know? Because we have
> forgotten ourselves. Or rather our subjectivity was constructed in such a
> way through schooling (etc) to know nothing of it.
This stuff is pretty interesting and your frankness and rythm refreshing.
I'll have to think about it. I still haven't been able to get
_Chaosmosis_ on interlibrary loan as I'm not a student and it's too new,
and I can't afford to buy it. What I've read of interviews with Guattari
I've liked, but I've also felt it was a bit inadquate somehow, and his
despair heightens the feeling. I do tend to see the kind of support in
writers like Nietzsche and maybe Bataille, in many ways. Often, I find
that some of what is happening is *alienated* for itself. I tend often to
think that a reverse Nietzsche is something of a Gandhi, in certain ways.
This may seem odd, but there are many, many parallels, from diatetics, to
views (some) conerning women, etc. And the logics of reversal are very
interesting: The opposites: Nietzsche as loner, Gandhi as squatting with
everyone eating, making bread. Nietzsche as *antipolemos*, Gandhi as
*antipolemos*, but in a kind of reverse fashion. Christian influences,
"The sanctions are not spectacular, and operate slowly, but they kill and
maim as remorselessly as bullets and bombs, and are destroying a
generation of Iraqi children." Brad Lyttle, delegation to Iraq member.
"The characteristics of the treatment that caused people to be outraged
and shocked are now kind of masked so that the procedure looks rather
benign," said New York psychiatrist Hugh L. Polk.
As many permutations of molecules used in making psychiatric drugs can be
developed today in 2 hours as used to take a lifetime for a researcher.