Language: Français | Number of pages: 299 | Format: Others
Isbn-10: 2736000366 | Isbn-13: 9782736000363 | Publish date: 01/01/1986
Aussi disponible comme: Mass Market Paperback
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"Long unavailable, Félix Guattari's writings are progressively beginning to be published or republished and to become the object of ever more numerous commentaries. In fact, the thought of this militant - a psychoanalyst and atypical, uncategorizable philosopher (long obscured by the much more prestigious and captivating figure of Gilles Deleuze, his co-author for "Anti-Oedipus" in 1972 and "A Thousand Plateaus" in 1980) offers the conceptual tools for understanding the present political, technological and existential changes as well as the complexity of the new "winter years" that we are now living through. This volume is a collection of articles and interviews written between the end of the 1970s and the beginning of the 1980s, years experienced as tragedy by the author, who witnessed the conclusion, the rejection and the forgetting of the powerful social and creative experiments of the 1960s and 70s.
During that era of triumphant capitalism, of market omnipresence and the progressive resurgence of the right on the political scene, Guattari chose to asset a sort of "desperate optimism" and to remain faithful to convictions and practices that seem to us today strangely inopportune and irrelevant in the Nietzschean sense. On the one hand, they seemed "outmoded" already in 1986, when the book was first published, swept away by history with all the hopes of the preceding decades; on the other hand, they have an almost prophetic quality, since all these texts bring to the surface the questioning and the problems the forward-looking bearing of which we are just now beginning to glimpse. The work's three sections ("Politics," "Molecular" and "Processual Art") constitute an excellent entry into Guattari's work, which, in most of his main texts ("Psychoanalysis and Transversality," "The Three Ecologies," "Chaosmosis" and "Schizoanalytic Cartographies") is expressed through an austere, rough style, full of technical terms and neologisms, borrowings from the sciences, linguistics and psychoanalysis, that may easily discourage the neophyte reader."
"Crisis" and "Recovery"
Among the recurrent themes in these pages, one finds a critique - more relevant now than ever - of the perpetual "crisis" discourse which has become a tremendous instrument of "governance" and "normalization." Already in the introduction, Guattari reminds us that the "crises" (the multiple crises that capitalist societies unceasingly experience among which the one we are living through today is but the latest) are not inescapable inevitabilities, but the direct consequence of the economic order, supported by capitalist political strategies on a planetary scale. Consequently, we never stop "mistaking the effect for the cause" and justifying political arbitrages by the harsh necessities of an economy that is now escaping all governmental control, by pretending to forget that deregulation of the economy and the financial sector on a global level was made possible only by the prerequisite political choices. In this way, everything is implemented so as to present the crisis to us as an "obvious apodictic Fact:" "Unemployment, poverty rain down on humanity like Biblical plagues. Under these conditions, one can no longer conceive of any but a single - with a few variants - possible economic policy in response to the sole conceivable description of economic policy. (p. 56)
The specter of the crisis (the power of which is increased tenfold in the biopolitical domain today by the media one-upsmanship over mutant viruses and pandemics that threaten us from all sides) is associated with the myth of "emergence from the tunnel," of the "great recovery," the precursors of which are unceasingly detected in order to mask the irreversible character of the situation. That's how one aims at obscuring and warding off the necessity for a radical change in economic policy, for an in-depth transformation of social subjectivity that would be in a position to confront the continual acceleration of techno-scientific revolution without leading to ever more mutilating and paralyzing effects. For a long time, according to Guattari, the crisis has no longer been a transitory phase destined to lead to a miraculous "recovery," but the sign of a radical malfunction in the mechanisms managing production and wealth flows: "Even the most narrow-minded economists are discovering with amazement a sort of madness to these systems and feel the urgency of alternative solutions. (p. 131)
Democracy as a Processual Passion
In the 1980s, Guattari's political diagnosis already concluded that traditional parties - in general and on the left, the Socialist Party, in particular - would fail: the traditional parties' time had passed since they are ever less adapted to the speed and significance of technological transformations, as well as to the new planetary dimensions of political, social and economic issues. Former class wars have also been outstripped by the transformations that now have "secure" employees, well integrated in relationship to production (who are, moreover, ever less numerous), coexisting with a heterogeneous multitude from all social classes, who are marginalized by the economic context or who still dare to reject the production modes and lifestyles offered to them. It is no longer possible to conceive of a "common program" for the classic political groups that could effectively represent such complex and heterogeneous realities in their totality and organize adequate responses to industrial and financial capitalism's great planetary strategies.
Instead of endeavoring to perform an in-depth reform of a developed capitalist society and to restore the forms of democratic expression, instead of privileging emancipating social practices and soliciting a collective reflection on the complex problems of a technologically advanced society, the left has gotten bogged down in obsolete power struggles. By opting for ambitionless technocratic management, it has irremediably distanced itself from the people it was supposed to represent. Like the left, democracy is never a definitive achievement for Guattari, "a transcendental virtue, a Platonic ideal, floating outside reality." It must remain a processual passion that may not be reduced to an exclusively electoral issue, but which continuously demands that otherness, the divergence between desires and interests, continuously-renewed confrontation, negotiation and experimentation procedures be taken into account: politics must take precedence over the economy and not vice versa." (...)
Article written by Manola Antonioni. Read more: http://www.truth-out.org/1124097
UT dit le Feb 09, 2011, 23:04