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Walter Benjamin | The Author as Producer

    II s’agit de gagner les intellectuels “la classe ouvriere, en leur faisant prendre conscience de l’identité de leurs de-marches spirituelles et de leurs conditions de producteur. – Ramon Fernandez   You recall how Plato treats the poets in his projected State. In the interest of the community, he does not allow them to live there. He had a high idea of the power of poetry. But he considered it destructive, superfluous – in a perfect community, needless to say. Since then, the question of the poet’s right to exist has not often been stated with the same insistence;…

Devin Fore | Soviet Factography: Production Art in an Information Age (Sergei Tret’iakov)

  If facts destroy theory, then all the better for theory. —Viktor Shklovsky, “In Defense of the Sociological Method,” 1927   Any discussion of factography first has to deal with the conspicuous strangeness of the word “factography” itself, an awkward and selfconsciously technicist term coined in Russia in the latter half of the 1920s to designate a certain aesthetic practice preoccupied with the inscription of facts. Those who are familiar with contemporaneous avant-garde movements in other countries and who may also be skeptical of the early Soviet zeal for linguistic invention will wonder if factography is not simply another word…

Best Books of 2019

    Miyó Vestrini | Grenade in Mouth Those who write are not even of a race. Nor a caste. Nor a class. Nor are they one. They ruin the point of living, like women in a world of science. Behind thick lenses, the court is never dull. They have all privileges: from philosophy up to anger, passing through conjugal relations, and the length of the paragraphs. Between the rights of man it is figured that the writer should write largely for himself first, then for the others, with a purpose well or poorly defined: to flood the window displays,…

PORNO-TEO-KOLOSSAL ((nach Pasolini))

  Die Verweigerung ist schon immer eine essenzielle Geste gewesen. Denk nur an die Heiligen, die Eremiten, aber auch an die Intellektuellen. Die Wenigen, die die Geschichte gemacht haben, das waren diejenigen, die Nein gesagt haben, nicht die Höflinge oder die Diener der Kardinäle. Pier Paolo Pasolini   I.     5:11 am Nachmittag: das Gefühl, dass der Geist, das Bewußtsein wie ein Sprengsatz explodieren / ich schwöre :: die einfachsten Bewegungen des Körpers nicht mehr zu kontrollieren sind und der Blick beginnt sich um sich selbst zu drehen — Einverständnis ist eine Falle.     Zeit und Raum ineinander…

Sean Bonney | Heroes

  Heroes 1. Mustapha Khayati, I got a question. When you were writing your dictionary, did you have any sense which words might be snitches and which might be scabs. While the Eiffel Tower continues to mean what it does, sending out signals no-one could ever translate, these questions continue to matter. Mustapha Khayati, say something. Fascism does what it does without a need for language. 2. Jean Genet, if alive today, would be somewhere at the bottom of the ocean, entwined with all the other human bones. No-one would say his name. His fingerprints would be stored in an…

Pasolini on de Sade: An Interview during the Filming of ‘Salò or the 120 Days of Sodom’

  by Gideon Bachmann It is reputed that Donatien Alphonse François, Marquis de Sade, spent only 37 days, writing from seven to ten every evening, in composing his masterpiece, the unsurpassed 120 Days of Sodom, the first psychopathia sexualis ever written, and preserved only in fragmentary form. More than half of what has been left are just lists of perversions, lacking that deep sociological and political insight which characterizes most of the Marquis’s other work, and which assured him his ranking place in prerevolutionary French literature. Nobody has ever used a de Sade book as material for a film. It is therefore all…

Roland Barthes | Sade – Pasolini

  SALÒ does not please fascists. On another side, since Sade has become for some of us a kind of precious patrimony, many cry out: Sade has nothing to do with fascism! Finally, the remainder, neither fascist nor Sadean, have an immutable and convenient doctrine that finds Sade boring. Pasolini’s film therefore can win no one’s adherence. However, quite obviously, it hits us somewhere. Where? In SALÒ, what touches is the letter. Pasolini has shot his scenes to the letter, the way that they had been described (I do not say “written”) by Sade; hence these scenes have the sad, frozen and rigorous beauty…

Harun Farocki | Peter Weiss On Display (The Aesthetics of Resistance)

  We were visiting Peter Weiss in Stockholm on 17th and 18th June 1979. We talked about his work on the book The Aesthetics of Resistance. Two volumes have already been published and P.W. is currently on the third. He has been working on it for over ten years and not one sentence is unfounded. Weiss has performed an unbelievable amount of research, studied the lives of people serving as models down to the tiniest detail, and attaches great importance to visiting the scenes of the action. The film gives an impression of his work. Harun Farocki, 1979     Harun Farocki:…

Pier Paolo Pasolini | A Desperate Vitality

  I (Draft, in a cursus in present-day jargon, of what has just transpired: Fiumicino, the old castle, and a first real idea of death.) As in a film by Godard: alone in a car speeding down the motorways of Latin neo-capitalism — returning from the airport — [where Moravia stayed behind, a pure soul with his bags] alone, “racing his Alfa Romeo“ in sunlight so heavenly it cannot be put into rhymes not elegiac — the finest sun we’ve had all year — as in a film by Godard: under a sun bleeding motionless unique, the canal of the…

Athena Farrokhzad | White Blight

    My family arrived here in a Marxist tradition   My mother immediately filled the house with Santa knick-knacks Weighed the pros and cons of the plastic Christmas tree as if the problem were hers   During the day she distinguished between long and short vowels as if the sounds that came out of her mouth could wash the olive oil from her skin   My mother let bleach run through her syntax On the other side of punctuation her syllables became whiter than a winter in Norrland   My mother built us a future consisting of quantity of…

Athena Farrokhzad | A Letter to Europe

    A Letter to Europe   Europe, I’ve given you all and now I’m nothing. Europe, 260 Euro and 76 cents January, 2018. I can’t stand my own mind. Europe, when will you end the human war? Go fuck yourself with your Christ complex. I don’t feel good, don’t bother me. I won’t write my poem till I’m in my right mind. Europe, when will you retire? When will you take off your clothes? When will you look at yourself through the grave? When will you be worthy of your millions of guest workers? Europe, why are your libraries…

Danielle Collobert | It Then

      I met Danielle Collobert in a cafe on the boulevard Saint-Germain in March or April 1958, at which time she was not yet eighteen. We immediately spoke of the essentials: writing, death. Theses two things—or is it one single thing—seemed to occupy her exclusively and with such rigor that one felt from the outset she would proceed in this single and unique direction, that no one could divert her or deceive her as to its end. At most, out of love for her, one could hope, idiotically of course, that sooner or later she would lose track, that her…

Jerome Rothenberg | Revolutionary Propositions & A Personal Manifesto

1) I will change your mind;
2) any means (=methods) to that end;
3) to oppose the “devourers” = bureaucrats, system-makers, priests, etc (W. Blake);
4) “& if thou wdst understand that wch is me, know this: all that I have sd I have uttered playfully—& I was by no means ashamed of it.” (J. C. to disciples, The Acts of St. John)

Notes on Events ((Lamentation))

  Published by: Burning House Press (Guest Editor: Johannes Göransson)   “The language of tragedy for the Greeks is lethally factive, because the body it seizes hold of does really kill” — Friedrich Hölderlin   Without a doubt this is the most repulsive of repulsive moments :: it’s no longer enough to say :: the goal is the abolition of capitalist realism or to hammer verses on the door of a cell the way you drive a nail into a wall / when disinhibition is rampant among the elite / they engineer new humiliations daily/ & the crumbs left over…

Jazra Khaleed | Poems (“Smashing Fascist Heads”)

    REFRAIN My name is J-A-Z-R-A Here I’m illegal, in spite of the Left I was born in the dusk of the West And this evening is just splendid For smashing fascist heads TRANSLATED BY SARAH MCCANN       SOMEWHERE IN ATHENS Somewhere in Athens December the Sixth The kid will kill the cop before sunup Somewhere in Athens December the Seventh On the streets the banks are burnt one by one Somewhere in Athens December the Eighth Let’s cut a rug in Parliament’s rubble Somewhere in Athens December the Ninth The poets in the streets eulogize fires…

Lyn Hejinian | From ‘Positions of the Sun’

The book pivots around the disorientation of the “aesthetics of minutiae, with their promise of infinitude”; a pointed and inconclusive protest against an “awareness of orders of magnitude that include atrocity, war, capitalism , and perhaps—though it may be mortality’s saving grade—death.”

Esther Leslie | Fear Eats the Soul: Walter Benjamin & Baader Meinhof

  Neither of the figures in my title – Walter Benjamin and The Baader Meinhof Group – are in any direct way associated with 1968 – indeed each brackets it in time. The one, Benjamin, was long dead by the time of the student and worker revolts, that would undoubtedly have thrilled him, even if they did not thrill his old friend Adorno, who called in the police on his revolting students. Benjamin’s adult thought emerges in the years of the Russian Revolution of 1917 and it reaches its final formulation in the dark days of Nazi rule, his death…

riots and/or poetics [10/2019]

TRILCE XXVII    That flood frightens me, / good memory, strong sir, implacable / cruel sweetness. It frightens me. / This house does me complete good, complete / place for this not knowing where to be. // Let’s not go in. It frightens me, this favour / of returning by minutes, by blown up bridges. / I’m not going ahead, sweet sir, / brave memory, sad / singing skeleton. // What content, of this haunted house, / gives me deaths by mercury, and blocks / with lead my conduits / to sheer reality. // The flood that doesn’t know how…

Martin Bakero | Militancy of Poets

  The first revolutionary action that people from the Commune of Paris did in 1871, was to break all the clocks of the city. That action engaged the possibility to revolutionaries to go beyond all the limits that reality imposes upon us. Centuries before, the troubadour poets, the “Knights of Joyful Knowledge”, met together once a year to find a new word or neologism in the manner of an antidote for words that limited the freedom of people. One of them was the word “mors” (dead), the poet who were chose for that task, Truc Malec, returns the next year…

Disruptions — An interview with Jacques Rancière

  Dwaipayan Chowdhury with Jacques Rancière (Spring 2019) LATERAL | JOURNAL OF THE CULTURAL STUDIES ASSOCIATION   I Nor is there singing school but studying Monuments of its own magnificence W. B. Yeats With this reference from Sailing to Byzantium the art historian Clement Greenberg takes us to a quandary.1 This quandary pertains to the efficacy of (western) art in general with regard to the operations of artistic systems. With “of its own” Yeats takes us to the magnificence of the monuments. For Greenberg, what is at stake in this journey to magnificence is the establishment of the cleavage, within the integrity of…

Antonin Artaud | Van Gogh the man suicided by society

  Apropos of Van Gogh, magic and spells: all the people who, for two months now, went to see the exhibition of his works at the Musée de l’Orangerie, are they really sure they remember everything they did and all that happened to them every evening of the months of February, March, April and May 1946? Was there not a certain evening when the atmosphere of the air and the streets became liquid, gelatinous, unstable, and when the light from the stars and the heavenly vault disappeared? And Van Gogh who painted the café in Arles was not there. But…

Miyó Vestrini | It’s a Good Machine

    THE TRIP I’ll tell you how I know what I am: they say that I was conceived without sin my cries were answered with other cries people went on vacation and left me gave away my New Year’s clothes disowned the shame when I was absent I had no mourners for my trespasses threw breadcrumbs at watery graves placated my own desires held the ground between myself and the penumbra bought a dog and let it out paid César Vallejo to love me passed without glory or pain beneath the Mirabeau Bridge I don’t have a single friend…

George L. Jackson | Blood In My Eye

  My dear only surviving son, I went to Mount Vernon August 7th, 1971, to visit the grave site of my heart your keepers murdered in cold disregard for life. His grave was supposed to be behind your grandfather’s and grandmother’s. But I couldn’t find it. There was no marker. Just mowed grass. The story of our past. I sent the keeper a blank check for a headstone — and two extra sites— blood in my eye!!!     Amerikan Justice   For their freedom to prey on the world’s people . . . whatever the cost in blood.  …

Etel Adnan | MAYAKOVSKY

  1 Mayakovsky, where are you? I can go to the train station and pick you up. we can speak of the weather on the way back, and if you’re coming by bus I can wait for you at the terminal and in case that you found enough money to have taken the plane I will get up early and wait for you. Don’t tell me dear Vladimir that you lost my address, and that you won’t come, not tomorrow, not ever, I still wait for you because we’re feeling miserable here, and elsewhere, in Europe or in California. We…

Karen Brodine | Woman Sitting at the Machine, Thinking

  Karen Brodine: Feminist Poet and Revolutionary KAREN BRODINE was barely 40 years old when she died of cancer on October 18, 1987. Her death was a shock, a misery, an abrupt and unwarranted end to an exceptionally dynamic and productive life. The horrible thing is that Karen’s death was unnecessary. Cancer killed her because the medical profession was too profit-motivated, too sexist, to catch it in time, when they could and should have. And she was mad as hell at the medical automatons who prescribed the massive doses of poison known as chemotherapy when an ounce of prevention could have saved…

Félix Guattari | Schizoanalytic Cartographies

Schizoanalytic Cartographies represents Félix Guattari’s most important later work and most systematic and detailed account of his theoretical position and his therapeutic ideas. // Andrew Goffey identifies the text as being “perhaps one of the last big books of French ‘theory’ – that extraordinary efflorescence of thinking that occurred in the wake of the events of 1968 …

Claire Fontaine | Human Strike Within The Field Of The Libidinal Economy

  The possibility of keeping together autonomy and an affective life is a tale that hasn’t been written yet. – Lea Melandri, Una visceralità indicibile, 2007   In 1974 François Lyotard published the surprising book entitled Libidinal Economy where he attacked Marxist and Freudian simplifications and he opened a new perspective on the connection between desires and struggle. What starts to crumble at that time under the offensive of the two essential weapon-books by Deleuze and Guattari Anti-Oedipus and A Thousand Plateaus is the fetishisation of consciousness as the organ that will lead the revolution. As the myth of the…

Félix Guattari and Radio Alice

La Radio Siamo Noi Félix Guattari | Millions and Millions of Potential Alices Félix Guattari | Popular free Radio etc. ⇒ PDF   Provocative Alloys: A Post-Media Anthology ⇒ PDF     Félix and Alice in Wonderland: The Encounter between Félix Guattari and Franco Berardi and the Post-Media Era Michael Goddard Introduction: The Enigma of the Post-Media Era   Towards the end of his life, Felix Guattari made several enigmatic suggestions about the emergence of a Post-Media era that would have the effect of displacing or at least decentring the hegemony of the mass media as we still know them today. Some of these…

Jean-Marie Straub / Danièle Huillet | Hölderlin, That Is Utopia

  Jean-Marie Straub: Hölderlin experienced the birth of the Wilhelmine Age. He was a young poet, full of high-flying plants; he said that himself. He was twenty-eight years old when he wrote The Death of Empedocles. In Germany between 1789 and 1798 all kinds of things had happened. Things had gone well for the ruling class, less well for other people. Büchner had had to flee, and some others as well . . . Hölderlin dreamed of the revolution—let’s call it that, even if the word is no longer in fashion today—a revolution that did not take place. As an…

Mehdi Belhaj Kacem | Tomb for Guy Debord

Guy Debord was the avant-garde’s Christ. Guy Debord was the avant-garde’s Christ. He was immolated by his own ideology, which he more than anyone (Tzara, Duchamp, Artaud, the Viennese Actionists…) had pushed to its extremes. He covered all of its possibilities, all of its impasses. His extreme attempts were neither successes, nor failures. Today, his path should be evaluated through other methods: the ones left to us in the wake of the avant-garde’s disappearance. To put it as Reiner Schürmann does: truth is a “conflictuality without agreements.” It is within Debord’s insurmountable contradictions, whose political, aesthetic, and existential preoccupations were…

riots and/or poetics [8/2019]

The exact link is uncertain. But we know the Nazis loved / America; Hitler yearned to paint a twin, // a green room where the dead are everywhere. / Asked Abraham before the flame, to the obedient tribe // What are these statues you cling to? // Why calico, why Spanish moss, why the crickets scream. / Confederates raise the undead everywhere. // In a segregated graveyard, no stone reads / private or public; the local jail is everywhere. // Before another body is buried, a window is broken. / A window was broken. The window is broken. // I look everywhere for Fanon’s knife, waiting for…

Esther Leslie | Walter Benjamin

Esther Leslie | Walter Benjamin  ⇒   PDF (Full book)       For a Marxist Poetics of Science: An Interview with Esther Leslie First published in Historical Materialism Can you tell us a bit about your intellectual and political formation? I come from a political family — my parents were Trotskyists, my grandparents on one side were anarchists and, on the other, one grandfather had been involved in unemployment marches. There was a strong sense of class consciousness and political engagement at home. My anarchist grandfather, who was German, was a book publisher and bookseller in London and so we were…

Jerome Rothenberg | Autobiography 1977 The First One Hundred

     1  Archipelago of the wandering dream    2  A castle with two bodies    3  The figure of Rosa Luxemburg among the animals in cages    4  Midnight forest    5  Trains circling below the icy waters    6  A meeting in the bourse    7  The men come into the small locker room & order drinks    8  Picasso wears a hat with roses    9  He has shoes aglow with little lights 10  Electricity runs along the floor & in between the tables 11  Picasso & Rosa Luxemburg converse 12  Her face is the face of our…

César Vallejo | From ‘Art and Revolution’

    THE REVOLUTIONARY FUNCTION OF THOUGHT Confusion is a phenomenon with a permanent, organic character in bourgeois society. Confusion grows ever thicker when it is addressed as already confusing problems by the very historical terms of its utterance. The latter occurs with the brand new and, at once, very old problem of the intellectual’s obligations with regard to revolution. As posed by historical materialists, this problem is already a tangle. When formulated or simply outlined by bourgeois intellectuals, it acquires the aspect of insoluble chaos. *** “The philosophers,” Marx says, “have only interpreted the world in various ways. The…

Two Poets — Marion Bell & Jasmine Gibson

  Marion Bell   You’re one of the only poets I know who dropped out of a prominent MFA program. Why? Ok, so I’ll try to answer as candidly as possible. I will have to travel back in time to 24/25 year old me. (I’m in this position a lot lately – I’m working with my past, my younger self in writing – the self I like to think is more fucked up and vulnerable than my present self. What is that relationship – how can I be accountable for the choices I’ve made even when they seem like the…

Jean-Marie Straub | My Key Dates

  I’m older than Baudelaire when he said he was a thousand years old, so: 1842. The German forest is forbidden to the poor (dead wood, mushrooms, chestnuts, etc.); it becomes a place for indus- trial exploitation. A young Karl Marx protests, costing him his position as a journalist at the Rheinische Zeitung. Winter 1942. I go ice-skating on the frozen Moselle. STALINGRAD! “Finally, the beginning of the end,” says my father. 1945. A few days before the end of the war, just to impress Stalin, American B17s bomb Dresden, one of the most beautiful German cities, twice, destroying it and…

César Vallejo | The Complete Poetry (A Bilingual Edition)

THE COMPLETE POETRY CÉSAR VALLEJO EDITED AND TRANSLATED BY CLAYTON ESHLEMAN AN INTRODUCTION BY EFRAIN KRISTAL AND A CHRONOLOGY BY STEPHEN M. HART ⇒ PDF       This first translation of the complete poetry of Peruvian César Vallejo (1892-1938) makes available to English speakers one of the greatest achievements of twentieth-century world poetry. Handsomely presented in facing-page Spanish and English, this volume, translated by National Book Award winner Clayton Eshleman, includes the groundbreaking collections The Black Heralds (1918), Trilce (1922), Human Poems (1939), and Spain, Take This Cup from Me (1939). Vallejo’s poetry takes the Spanish language to an unprecedented level of emotional rawness and stretches its grammatical…

Galina Rymbu | Devoid of signs (fragments)

  DEVOID OF SIGNS (FRAGMENTS) devoid of signs, not men not women beyond categories and tribes   desolate landscapes  devoid of the power of recognition their memories are short and remembering matter impregnating spaces disconnected from the bodies that inhabit the disaster zone ( . . .) this is the book of decay, it loads the limits of memory, a plane bearing the shards of creation, devoid of signs, that are swept by the winds of transfiguration. devoid of signs – a mother and the vein that pulses in her neck. a small, cramped bar. its walls are painted black. drowsing…

DIE PROZESSE — Ein faktographisches Poem

ENGLISH TRANSLATION (part 1) BY DAVID VICHNAR & TIM KÖNIG ALIENIST 5   “Mehr als 1000 Menschen wurden bereits willkürlich verurteilt und inhaftiert. Und jetzt soll das neue so genannte “Anti-Randalierer- Gesetz” uns auch noch darin hindern zu demonstrieren. Wir verurteilen jede Gewalt gegen Demonstranten durch die Polizei. Nichts wird uns aufhalten! Demonstrieren ist ein Grundrecht. Schluss mit der Straflosigkeit für die Ordnungskräfte! Amnestie für alle Opfer der Unterdrückung!” Aufruf der ersten Generalversammlung der Gilets Jaunes “Ich werde ein Arbeiter sein: Diese Idee hält mich zurück, wenn die wahnsinnige Wut mich hin zur Schlacht von Paris drängt, — wo doch…

Sergio Raimondi | Poems

  When the world changes, literature must as well. This is the credo motivating the thinking and writing of Argentine poet Sergio Raimondi, born in 1968 in Bahia Blanca. A somewhat gruff genius loci inhabits this place: the nearby port of Ingeniero White is one of Argentina’s main seaports; the nation’s most important petrochemical complexes is also located here. But Sergio Raimondi draws his very inspiration from this genius loci: even in his early work Poesía civil (published in German as Zivilpoesie in 2005), Raimondi—who teaches contemporary literature at the Universidad del Sur in Bahia Blanca—examines in depth Argentina’s changing…

Antonin Artaud : Years of Incarceration | by Stephen Barber

The asylum incarceration which Artaud underwent in the years from 1937 to 1946 has as much contradiction and productivity as the other phases of his life. But it was certainly the most deeply painful phase. The internment began with a period of self-preoccupation which Artaud broke only to berate his doctors and to demand external confirmation for the hallucinations he was experiencing. During the early part of Artaud’s internment, at Rouen and Sainte-Anne, his behaviour gives the impression of great austerity and of a profound, self-sufficient calm. Although he spent his time in the company of the many different kinds…

RIMBAUD FABRIK / 3 »Anywhere out of the World«

Das Dichten muß als menschliche Tätigkeit angesehen werden, als gesellschaftliche Praxis mit aller Widersprüchlichkeit, Veränderlichkeit, als geschichtsbedingt und geschichtemachend. Der Unterschied liegt zwischen ›widerspiegeln‹ und ›den Spiegel vorhalten‹. Bertolt Brecht   (i) überdrüssig der eingeschleusten Ideologen & Verschwörer von Scheinheiligkeit und Sentiment auf facebook und anderswo / abgestürzt in der heroischen Zeit ihrer Phrasen-Pamphlete, dem Lorbeer eifersüchtig entworfener Fahndungsplakate, sind sie bemüht die eigene revolutionäre Legende aufrecht zu halten / :: so als seien sie an ein Seil gebunden für das es kein Messer gibt / :: einsam und ausgestreckt zwischen den Enden einer hierarchischen Ordnung der Dinge weiß man…

Arthur Rimbaud | Illuminations (1872-1874)

AFTER THE FLOOD After the idea of the Flood had receded, A rabbit rested within swaying clover and bellflowers, saying his prayers to a rainbow spied through a spider’s web. Oh what precious stones sunk out of sight, what flowers suddenly stared. On the dirty main drag it was back to business; ships went to sea, piled on the water like a postcard. Blood flowed—at Bluebeard’s, in slaughterhouses, in circuses— wherever God’s mark marred windows. Milk and blood flowed. Beavers dammed. Steam rose from coffee cups in small cafés. The mansion’s windows were still streaming, mourning children within contemplating amazing…

RIMBAUD FABRIK / 2

»Alle Bürger sind nämlich, genau betrachtet, Rassisten, gleichgültig, wann und wo, gleichgültig, welcher Partei sie angehören.« Pier Paolo Pasolini (Lutherbriefe)   macht euch nichts vor :: ich bin ein Tier, gehöre nicht zu eurer Rasse, betäubt vom tödlichen Glanz der Städte, den impassiblen Routen des Calais-Dschungels :: erbaut in den Demenzen & Delirien goldener Jahrhunderte aus Kartons und Krätze und abgezählten Sargnägeln ah, ich sah die Schuppen des Ungeziefers in menschlicher Gestalt, das Weiß der Augen, die große Narbe blutgestillter Nächte, auf meiner Stirn die schabenden Hände um sich selbst kreisender künstlicher Intelligenzen / die in bürgerlichen Laboratorien erzeugten Seinsweisen …

Raúl Zurita | The Sea

  Strange baits rain from the sky. Surprising bait falls upon the sea. Down below the ocean, up above unusual clouds on a clear day. Surprising baits rain on the sea. There was a love raining, there was a clear day that’s raining now on the sea.   They are shadows, bait for fishes. A clear day is raining, a love that was never said. Love, ah yes, love, amazing baits are raining from the sky on the shadow of fishes in the sea.   Clear days fall. Some strange baits with clear days stuck to them, with loves that…

Roger Gilbert-Lecomte | Necessity of Revolt: The Power of Renunciation

  That’s agreed then. Tabula rasa: everything is true — there is nothing else. The great vertigo of Revolt has sent the phantasmagoria of appearances reeling and tumbling. Illusion shredded, the material world deforms, reforms, appears and disappears at the mercy of the rebel. A black gulf now swirls in place of what was the self, consciousness, the autonomy of the individual. His rolled-back eyes look between strained temples to where a vast, empty steppe stretches out, barred at the horizon by the floes of the old, bleached senses. He who has renounced everything outside himself just as he has…

Nanni Balestrini | “I close my eyes and start to sing”

NANNI BALESTRINI (1935-2019)     I close my eyes and start to sing threads are entangled and transformed into spots whose dance moves ever more slowly I sang my repertoire then I started monologues with my eyes closed I walked back and forth in the cell four steps forward four steps back I invented dialogues for two characters that spoke different languages like at the cinema when the film ends there are those who make love who smoke there are those who merely exist   Nanni Balestrini, the radical Italian experimental visual artist, poet, and novelist known for recombinatory, revolutionary…

RIMBAUD FABRIK / 1

O Märchen in Fabriken grau versperrt!  Georg Trakl Stoß ich auch, was geht’s mich an, an Grenzen, die ich einst beschwor, Ordnungen stürzen, faulende Gesetze, das Selbst-Mitleid von Nationen, die angedachte Flaute vor dem Verfall gärt schwärzlich vor sich hin, doch die Irr- und Wirrsal-Niederschläge steh ich durch, wer zeigte dir, so überheblich zu sein, gegen jede Strömung, kurz bevor du nachts um drei die letzte Zweideutigkeit lebtest, die Wiege meiner Erniedrigung — der Vogel-Schiss liegt klar in eurem Feld Schluss mit den Spektakeln, von Saison zu Saison, ich vermisse nichts — ach ja, die Sehnsucht nach guten Dichtern mit…

Georges Didi-Huberman | The Supposition of The Aura: The Now, The Then and Modernity (Walter Benjamin)

Walter Benjamin and History Edited by Andrew Benjamin Continuum 2005  

Nathalie Quintane | SI LA LITTÉRATURE EST UNE NICHE

  Souvent, les écrivains s’autorisent de ce qu’ils écrivent en disant que c’est un engagement (un engagement suffisant). Etant engagés dans la littérature, ils n’ont pas besoin de produire une littérature engagée — ce serait un pléonasme, comme « sortir dehors » ou « monter en haut ». D’abord, la littérature engagée, ou la poésie engagée, telle que nos souvenirs de collège nous l’offrent, est un peu ronflante. Elle eut comme fonction de donner du cœur à l’ouvrage (à l’époque, des sabotages) mais aujourd’hui elle ronfle. Je ne voudrais pas écrire des livres ronflants ; ce serait gênant. Quand les écrivains disent qu’ils sont engagés…

Jean-Luc Godard’s “Militant Filmmaking”; by Irmgard Emmelhainz

Irmgard Emmelhainz | Between Objective Engagement and Engaged Cinema: Jean-Luc Godard’s “Militant Filmmaking” (1967–1974)   It is often argued that between 1967 and 1974 Godard operated under a misguided assessment of the effervescence of the social and political situation and produced the equivalent of “terrorism” in filmmaking. He did this, as the argument goes, by both subverting the formal operations of narrative film and by being biased toward an ideological political engagement.1 Here, I explore the idea that Godard’s films of this period are more than partisan political statements or anti-narrative formal experimentations. The filmmaker’s response to the intense political climate that…

Kleine Poetik des Aufstands (Erstes Manifest)

  Das gegenwärtige Frankreich versetzt mir einen Schwindel, aber einen, der in Ekel gekleidet ist. Paris und sein elegantes Gesindel,  mit seinen parfümierten und gemeinen Ratten, halte ich nicht aus. René Char     1. im Winter 2018 steigen wir in den Zug nach Paris — was uns erwartet ist ungewiss — aber die Bilder zerschlagener Schaufenster, Feuer in der Banque de France und ein zorniger Christophe Dettinger, kurz: Paris in Flammen, erscheinen uns Nacht für Nacht in unseren Träumen in einer Welt, die in immer kürzeren Zyklen auseinanderfällt ist nichts handlicher als ein Buch oder eine Waffe (das Archiv eine…

Katerina Gogou | Sui generis

  Look how the streets disappear amid people… how the kiosks get cold from the wet newspapers the sky how it is punctured by the wires and the end of the sea by the weight of the ships how sad the forgotten umbrellas are at the last bus and the mistake of the one that got off one stop too early the clothes left in the laundry and your shame two years after you made money and found out how to ask for it how bit by bit slowly, methodically it twists us to determine our stance on life by…

Ten Lessons from the Yellow Vests

By Étienne Dolet As has happened so often in the history of social movements and revolutions, actually existing history has once again outstripped the ready-made concepts and theories that we have for understanding it. The “yellow vests movement,” which was sparked earlier this fall but clearly has much deeper roots, has left many bewildered by the lack of party or union alignments on the part of the participants, the combination of extreme left and extreme right elements, its remarkable resilience and growth since November, and its ongoing creativity and dynamism in the face of massive state repression. The anonymous collective…

Mark Fisher | We Need a Post-Capitalist Vision | Interviewed by AntiCapitalist Initiative

AntiCapitalist Initiative : Paul Mason recently argued that in light of the Arab revolutions, capitalist realism has come to an end. 2 Do you agree? Mark Fisher : I think that is going too far. I understand why Paul made that claim, but capitalist realism is very tenacious. Certainly, things look very different to how they did a few years ago during the high pomp of capitalist realism — when it was thought that the age of revolutions was in the past, that no great change will ever happen again, that every part of the world will eventually end up…

Mark Fisher | Hauntology, Nostalgia and Lost Futures | Interviewed by V. Mannucci & V. Mattioli

When, a bit over a year ago, we had the pleasure of meeting with British writer and theorist Mark Fisher in Rome, his book Ghosts of My Life: Writings on Depression, Hauntology and Lost Futures was about to come out and we took the opportunity in order to talk with him about the future — not about his future or our future, but about the idea of the future itself in present-day society. Now with the lapse of time, then, one might ask wether it is still an interview about the future or rather about the past.  According to the perspective discussed below,…

Mark Fisher | Acid Communism (Unfinished Introduction)

  “The spectre of a world which could be free” “[T]he closer the real possibility of liberating the individual from the constraints once justified by scarcity and immaturity, the greater the need for maintaining and streamlining these constraints lest the established order of domination dissolve. Civilisation has to protect itself against the spectre of a world which could be free. […] In exchange for the commodities that enrich their lives […] individuals sell not only their labour but also their free time. […] People dwell in apartment concentrations — and have private automobiles with which they can no longer escape…

The Gilets Jaunes: Understanding the resistance of an insurrection

A background analysis of the yellow vests movement, after five months of mobilisation. A return to the salient points of this long sequence of struggle: the articulation strike-blockage and economic struggle-political struggle; the centrality of democratic issues; and the prospects of Commercy/Saint-Nazaire. We propose here an abridged version of an article from the Plateforme d’enquêtes militantes (12/04/2019) that takes stock after five months of mobilisation. We have tried to highlight the elements which seem to us particularly important: the articulation between strike and blockage, as well as between economic struggle and political struggle; the centrality of the democratic stakes raised by the…

Jacques Rancière | History, Politics, Aesthetics (Edited by Gabriel Rockhill & Philip Watts)

→  PDF Editor(s): Gabriel Rockhill, Philip Watts Contributor(s): Gabriel Rockhill, Kristin Ross, Alain Badiou, Eric Mechoulan, Giuseppina Mecchia, Jean-Luc Nancy, Étienne Balibar, Todd May, Yves Citton, Peter Hallward, Bruno Bosteels, Solange Guenoun, Tom Conley, Rajeshwari Vallury, Andrew Parker, James Swenson, Jacques Rancière, Philip Watts The French philosopher Jacques Rancière has influenced disciplines from history and philosophy to political theory, literature, art history, and film studies. His research into nineteenth-century workers’ archives, reflections on political equality, critique of the traditional division between intellectual and manual labor, and analysis of the place of literature, film, and art in modern society have all constituted major contributions to contemporary thought. In this collection, leading scholars in the fields of philosophy, literary theory, and cultural criticism…

riots and/or poetics [4/2019]

December Journal / 2017 secret idea / of yours / that you / could become a better person / if you read the right books // at the ica fred moten speaks of “battling with identity against / the backdrop of the denial of identity” // yes yes yes // I have to fight against my urge to ascetism and self-sacrifice / but I’m reading about simone weil again – she seems like the / most beautiful / she says, “when you decide something always do what will cost / you the most” // I would like there not to be grants / no crowdfunding / no paperwork to prove your need / no application to decide who…

The Gilets Jaunes: Understanding the movement(s) beyond final defeat or victory

The political soothsayers and diviners will cynically proclaim the yellow vests’ movement dead: Act XXI brought less than 25,000 people into the streets this last Saturday. We however refuse to be political accountants. And rebellions and revolutions have never been about numbers, but about the intensity of the desires and creativity unleashed. And we will continue to share the movement(s)’ voices. Gilets Jaunes Victory Communique Nº 1 Victory: the anger that everyone thought was theirs to feel alone, was found to be felt by the greatest number! Victory: the yellow vests shattered in the population the feeling of despondency and…

Velimir Khlebnikov | October on the Neva

Early in the spring of 1917, Petnikov and I took the train to Moscow. ” We alone have rolled up your three years of war into a single spiral, a terrifying trumpet, and now we sing and shout, we sing and shout, drunk with the audacity of this truth: the Government of Planet Earth already exists. We are It. We alone have crowned ourselves with the evergreen wreaths of Presidents of Planet Earth, inexorable in our sunburnt audacity. We are potters who fire the wet clay of humanity into vessels, containers of time, we organize hunting expeditions for the souls…

Noura Wedell | To Hold a Wild Basket [on Fernand Deligny]

  We can understand why there have been such few networks like this one: they require the abolition of privileges, an abolition that seems to be at the center of any serious attempt to escape what lies in wait for anyone who follows the path traced by the state, the family, school and everything else. —Norbert Z, Au défaut du language The modernist model of heterosexuality is coming to an end. Clearly, this is what is signaled by the current proliferation of discourses and acts constituting alternative genders and sexual orientations. According to Foucault, Federici and other theorists, the model of…

Alain Badiou | Philosophy for Militants

Philosophy for Militants: PDF   An urgent and provocative account of the modern ‘militant’, a transformative figure at the front line of emancipatory politics. Around the world, recent events have seen the creation of a radical phalanx comprising students, the young, workers and immigrants. It is Badiou’s contention that the politics of such militants should condition the tasks of philosophy, even as philosophy clarifies the truth of our political condition. To resolve the conflicts between politics, philosophy and democracy, Badiou argues for a resurgent communism – returning to the original call for universal emancipation and organizing for militant struggle.    …

Vladimir Mayakovsky | Order to the Army of the Arts

  Order to the Army of the Arts [1] (1918) Threadbare men of the old brigade bore on about this and that. Comrades! To the barricades! Barricades of minds and hearts. Only those who have burnt their boats are true communists. You can’t just stroll on, you futurists, the Future requires a leap! It’s not enough just to build the engine — you need a head of steam: wheels turn, we’re off. If there’s no music to lead us on, why bother with AC or DC? Pile sound on sound and for the lyrics we’ve some great phonemes in Russian:…

Antonin Artaud | Letter to Peter Watson

    Paris, 27 July 1947   Dear Sir, I entered into literature by writing books in order to say that I was unable to write anything, my thought when I had something to say or to write was what was denied me most. I never had any ideas and two very short books, 70 pages each, revolve around this profound, inveter- ate, endemic absence of any idea. They are l’Ombilic des Limbes and le Pèse-Nerfs. At the time they seemed to me full of cracks, of faults, of platitudes, and as if stuffed with spontaneous abortions, of abandonings and…

DIE AFFÄRE LEBOVICI | PSYCHOGEOGRAPHIE [ACTE XVIII]

  Zum Umsturz aller bestehenden Ordnung aufzurufen / Scheint furchtbar. / Aber das Bestehende ist keine Ordnung. // Zur Gewalt seine Zuflucht zu nehmen / Scheint böse. Aber da, was ständig geübt wird, Gewalt ist / Ist es nichts Besonderes. Bertolt Brecht   Die ganze Affäre [wie auch der modus operandi] ist geprägt von einem Klima persönlichen Verrats und politischen Hinterhalts: Gérard Lebovici [Herausgeber der Editions Champ Libre, Produzent und Freund Guy Debords] in einer Tiefgarage in der Avenue Foch, Chaillot. Porte Dauphine mit vier Kugeln im Hinterkopf auf dem Vordersitz seines Wagens; Polizei, D.S.T. & Renseignements généraux zeichnen eine…

Bertolt Brecht | The Reader for City Dwellers

    1 Cover your tracks Split from your mate at the train station Go into town in the morning with your coat buttoned up Find a place And when your mate knocks, Don’t, oh, don’t open the door Instead Cover your tracks! If you bump into your parents in the city of Hamburg Or anywhere else (for that matter) Pass them like strangers, turn the corner, don’t acknowledge them Pull the hat, which they gave you, over your face Don’t, oh, don’t show your face Instead Cover your tracks! Eat the meat that’s there! Don’t save anything! Enter any…

Farocki / Godard: Film as Theory; by Volker Pantenburg

Farocki / Godard | Film as Theory  PDF  Volker Pantenburg   There is a tension between the requirements of theoretical abstraction and the capacities of the film medium, where everything that we see on screen is concrete: A train arriving at a station, a tree, bodies, faces. Since the complex theories of montage in Soviet cinema, however, there have continuously been attempts to express theoretical issues by combining shots, thus creating a visual form of thinking. This book brings together two major filmmakers-French New Wave master Jean-Luc Godard and German avant-gardist Harun Farocki to explore the fundamental tension between theoretical abstraction…

Mario Santiago Papasquiaro | Infrarrealist Manifesto & Selected Poems

INFRARREALST MANIFESTO   WHAT DO WE PROPOSE? NOT MAKING ART INTO A CAREER SHOWING THAT EVERYTHING IS ART AND ANYONE CAN MAKE IT CONCERNING OURSELVES WITH “INSIGNIFICANT” THINGS / WITH NO INSTITUTIONAL VALUE / PLAYING / ART SHOULD EXIST IN LIMITLESS AMOUNTS / AFFORDABLE FOR EVERYONE, AND IF POSSIBLE, MADE BY EVERYONE   !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   ATTACKING ART / ATTACKING EVERYDAY LIFE (DUCHAMP) AT A TIME THAT SEEMS ALMOST ENTIRELY CLOSED TO PROFESSIONAL OPTIMISTS TRANSFORMING ART / TRANSFORMING EVERYDAY LIFE (OURSELVES) CREATIVITY / THE OUTSIDERS’S LIFE AT ANY COST (MOVING OUR HIPS TO THE PRESENT WITH EYES BLINKING FROM THE AIRPORTS…

Antonin Artaud

  This is the first solo exhibition dedicated to the work of Antonin Artaud to be staged in the UK, and more significantly to focus on the rarely seen notebooks which Artaud began working on from the time of his arrival at the Rodez mental asylum in 1945, until his death at the Ivry clinic in 1948. The eventual 20,000 pages of image-text amalgam constitute one of his most significant bodies of work. An unclassifiable volume of writing and drawing. Portraits, names, calculations, glossolalia, sigils, lists of drugs and foods stuffs, formulae, totems, lexicons, anatomies, objects, (boxes, chains and nails), machines and implements of obscure purpose. There…

The Gilets Jaunes: An ultimatum

In anticipation of Act XVIII (March 16) of the yellow vests in Paris. On the street, Algerian power responds with the same gas as French power, and the same gaseous speech. “It’s us or chaos” … “watch out, you’re infiltrated” … “how dare you speak on behalf of the people?”… there is a framework to express yourself: democratic elections!”, and without waiting it weaves intrigues. In Algeria too, there is talk of launching a “great national debate”. This is the basis of the counterinsurgency: to launch false debates on the one side, and a real repression on the other, and…

Fernand Deligny | The Arachnean and Other Texts

The originality of Deligny’s theoretical and practical position consists precisely in what can be called a “suspension of interpellation,” in which one can also see a fundamental point of intersection with the inaugural gesture of psychoanalysis, over and beyond the explicit oppositions, as will become clear. One might say that to “the theoretical anti-humanism” professed by Althusser, Deligny opposed an authentic “practical anti-humanism” that dismissed “men,” the humans-that-we-are, shored up by what Deleuze called a “thought image” of themselves, a flattering, ready-made image, dominating and exclusive, in favor of a narcissistically and socially less satisfying “human,” possibly mute and idle, but in reality more richly endowed with practical recompositions.