Pragmatic/Machinic: Discussion with Félix Guattari [by Charles J. Stivale]

  The following discussion with Félix Guattari took place in his apartment in Paris. With the help of a number of friends, I had prepared a set of questions, and had contacted him to see if he might be available to answer some of them.\1 He responded immediately, and left messages with the friend in Paris in whose apartment I would be staying. Prior to the trip, I also had contacted Gilles Deleuze to arrange an extended interview, and although his schedule and health prevented him from agreeing to a long session, I did visit him at his apartment the…

Alèssi Dell’Umbria | Full Metal Yellow Jacket

“Oh shit!” – Louis XVI, 21 January 1793.     Let’s make the most of a good thing! The Zeitgeist reveals itself in revolt, each time in new forms. With the movement against the Labor Law in spring 2016, there was the cortège de tête; in Spring 2018, it was the defense of the communized rural territory of the ZAD; most recently, in Autumn 2018, the Yellow Vests movement erupted into uncontrolled blockades and demonstrations, which are still ongoing. An unknown but familiar territory has begun to take on a political existence. The yellow vests have situated themselves in a peripheral…

riots and/or poetics [01/2019]

Since the 17th of November, from the smallest rural village to the largest city, we have risen up against this deeply violent, unjust and unbearable society. We will not let this continue! We rebel against the excessive cost of living, precariousness and misery. We want our loved ones, our families and our children, to live in dignity. 26 billionaires own as much as half of humanity; this is unacceptable. Let’s share the wealth and not the misery! Let’s finish with social inequalities! We demand the immediate increase of wages, social assistance, allowances and pensions, the unconditional right to housing and…

Gilets jaunes: Between horizontal autonomies and vertical unity | Yellow Letters

A journalist, seemingly sharing the illusions of politicians, writes “it’s time for the gilets jaunes to decide who and what they want to be”. (The Guardian, 29/01/2019) The politicians of france (and of everywhere, faced by a similar insurrection) are eager to have a “who” and “what” behind every rebellion, for it is in this manner that rebellions can be induced to negotiate, to be domesticated and subdued. Many of the gilets jaunes, even in the face of their divisions, continue to refuse unifying identification and thus representation. And the chimera of unity is nothing but a desired instrument of…

César Vallejo | Cuneiforms

No biographer or scholar can avoid the imprisonment that César Vallejo suffered between November 6, 1920, and February12, 1921, in Trujillo, an episode that stakes out an indubitable before and after in the life and work of the Santiaguino.
The first section of ‘Scales’, ‘Cuneiforms,’ and several poems of ‘Trilce’ were composed in his cell of Trujillo Central Jail. In effect, Vallejo wrote from and about the prison.

Gilles Deleuze | Postscript on the Societies of Control

1. Historical Foucault located the disciplinary societies in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries; they reach their height at the outset of the twentieth. They initiate the organization of vast spaces of enclosure. The individual never ceases passing from one closed environment to another, each having its own laws: first, the family; then the school (“you are no longer in your family”); then the barracks (“you are no longer at school”); then the factory; from time to time the hospital; possibly the prison, the pre-eminent instance of the enclosed environment. It’s the prison that serves as the analogical model: at the…

Gilles Deleuze | Control and Becoming

Negri: The problem of politics seems to have always been present in your intellectual life. Your involvement in various movements (prisoners, homosexuals, Italian autonomists, Palestinians), on the one hand, and the constant problematizing of institutions, on the other, follow on from one another and interact with one another in your work, from the book on Hume through to the one on Foucault. What are the roots of this sustained concern with the question of politics, and how has it remained so persistent within your developing work? Why is the rela­tion between movement and institution always problematic? Deleuze: What I’ve been interested in…