Félix Guattari | Militant Incidences

  1 On the Question of “Primordial Bureaucratic States”1 Since you have asked me to elaborate on my thoughts about stylites and other dendrites, I will take a stab at laying out some of the connections here. Mystics—Coptics, Syrians and other, express their desire to return to the roots, the roots of the primordial Empire: the Ur-State (there is a wordplay like this in the book by Lacarrière).2 In their own way, they’re championing the Asiatic State. The Egyptians and the sons of Trojan warriors never could take being fucked with and eliminated by barbarians and pirates like the Greeks,…

riots and/or poetics [3/2020]

  Lisa Robertson | The Baudelaire Fractal I’d never had an idea for writing a novel before, though I’ve been curious about the form. I’m a poet who has always loved writing prose. Essay writing and the writing of verse have been overlapping and interchangeable activities, and the shape of the sentence has always been at the core of my writing practice. This Baudelaire idea was very funny to me, and it kept opening up more pathways of inquiry the more time I spent with it. It was a way to write a bildungsroman in the feminine; it opened questions of…

artaud-theatre-du-vieux-colombier*.com

  Die wahre Geschichte von Artaud-Mômo, tête-à-tête. Als würde man ein Bild unterhalb des Augenlids verschliessen. Gewisse Dispositionen zu entziffern, die ausschliesslich Teil eines poetischen Feldes sind [weil Poesie immer Opposition ist]. Abrechnung mit denen, die ihn 9 Jahre in einer geschlossenen Anstalt einsperren //3 Jahre davon in Einzelhaft// während der Zeit seiner Internierung in Sotteville-lès-Rouen [Oktober 1937 – März 1938] systematische Versuche der Intoxikation [vergessen die 40.000 Toten //ein Index verschämter Skelette// der psychiatrischen Anstalten Frankreichs während der deutschen Besatzung]. Sozialer Vampirismus, willkürlich konstruierte Diagnosen, Elektro- & Insulinschocks, weil er sich einer Logik entzieht, die von einzelnen Elementen auf…

Paolo Javier | Fel Santos: Violent Affection

    I. Perhaps one could speak of language experiences which are an embarrassment to literature. They embarrass literature because while they are not of it, they encroach upon it. Such experiences may be as embarrassing to the encroacher as they are to those who are encroached upon. Think of Antonin Artaud, who spent his life wondering how to escape personal and public hells, and yet writes in a letter, a form we may already think of as para-literary, too intimate to be conveyed directly, “Someone who does not know depression, who has never felt the soul encroached upon by the body,…

Mehdi Belhaj Kacem, Philippe Sollers | What is the Meaning of the Avant-garde’s Death?

FIRST PUBLISHED: DIAPHANES How could Dante be avant-garde? Mehdi Belhaj Kacem: Mr. Sollers, for 23 years you were the editor of Tel Quel, doubtless the very last important literary review that can be considered “avant-garde.” It published some of the biggest “avant-garde” writers of its time, like Pierre Guyotat, Maurice Roche, Jean-Jacques Schuhl and yourself, as well as still-unknown academics like Jacques Derrida, Roland Barthes and Gérard Genette. You also published Pierre Boulez and Jean-Luc Godard, who, like the writers and thinkers I just mentioned, were the leading avant-garde figures in their respective fields. In 1983 you left Les Éditions du Seuil,…

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,…

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…

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…

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…

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…

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…

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…

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…

Antonin Artaud | Alienation and Black Magic & Peter Valente | from ‘The Artaud Variations’

  ALIENATION AND BLACK MAGIC   Insane asylums are conscious and premeditated receptacles of black magic, and it is not only that doctors encourage magic with their inopportune and hybrid therapies, it is how they use it. If there had been no doctors there would never have been patients, no skeletons of the diseased dead to butcher and flay, for it is through doctors and not through patients that society began. Those who live, live off the dead. And it is likewise necessary that death live; and there is nothing like an insane asylum for gently incubating death, and for…

Alexander Trocchi | A Revolutionary Proposal: Invisible Insurrection of a Million Minds

And if there is still one hellish, truly accursed thing in our time, it is our artistic dallying with forms, instead of being like victims burnt at the stake, signalling through the flames. — Antonin Artaud, The Theatre and Its Double, 1958 Revolt is understandably unpopular. As soon as it is defined, it has provoked the measures for its confinement. The prudent man will avoid his definition which is in effect his death-sentence. Besides, it is a limit. We are concerned not with the coup d’etat [seizure of the state] of Trotsky and Lenin, but with the coup du monde [seizure of the world], a transition…

Antonin Artaud | Sylvère Lotringer; All Paranoiacs (Interview with Paule Thévenin)

Antonin Artaud | Post-Scriptum Who am I? Where do I come from? I am Antonin Artaud and if I say it as I know how to say it immediately you will see my present body fly into pieces and under ten thousand notorious aspects a new body will be assembled in which you will never again be able to forget me. Translated by Clayton Eshleman   False Witnesses Sylvère Lotringer: You never told me how you met Artaud. Paule Thévenin: No, and I won’t say anything. SL: Ah! It’s a secret. PT: No. People are false witnesses. SL: And you?…

Antonin Artaud | Manifesto In A Clear Language

If I believe neither in Evil nor in Good, if I feel such a strong inclination to destroy, if there is nothing in the order of principles to which I can reasonably accede, the underlying reason is in my flesh. I destroy because for me everything that proceeds from reason is untrustworthy.I believe only in the evidence of what stirs my marrow, not in the evidence of what addresses itself to my reason. I have found levels in the realm of the nerve. I now feel capable of evaluating the evidence. There is for me an evidence in the realm…

Antonin Artaud, Surrealism and the Void; by Stephen Barber

  Artaud believed that every birth coincides with a killing. Antoine Marie Joseph Artaud was born at eight in the morning of 4 September 1896, at 15 rue du Jardin des Plantes, near the Marseilles zoo. The rue du Jardin des Plantes has since been renamed the rue des Trois Frères Carasso. Artaud himself, on many occasions, was to change and distort the name under which he was baptised into the Roman Catholic Church. He adopted numerous pseudonyms, such as Eno Dailor for some of his early Surrealist texts. Before his journey to Ireland in 1937, he styled himself ‘The…

Henri Chopin

  Born in 1922 in Paris, Chopin is one of the key figures of the international neo-avantgarde. His career goes back to the fifties, and he was one of the founders of sound poetry. During World War II he was obliged to do forced labour in 1942, and a year later, the Germans deported him to Olomuk in Czechoslovakia. Between 1944 and 1945 he found himself on the ‘death march’ towards Russia. The terrible conditions during the war were a source of inspiration for his works, but 1955 saw a turning point in his poetical interests. On the island of…

Two Poets — Antonin Artaud & Roger Gilbert-Lecomte

The life and work of Antonin Artaud possess a raw power. Long after his death, Artaud’s body of work continues to ricochet strongly through contemporary culture. The facts of Artaud’s life are stark and austere. He was a writer whose work extended provocatively but disastrously into many unknown channels. His extreme challenge was […]

Antonin Artaud | Works on Paper

Antonin Artaud: Works on Paper (Full book)   ANTONIN ARTAUD: THE HUMAN FACE The human face is an empty power, a field of death. The old revolutionary claim to a form that’s never corresponded with its body, goes off to be something other than the body. So it’s absurd to reproach a painter for academically insisting in his time upon still reproducing the featres of the human face such as they are; for such as they are, they haven’t yet found the form they point to and specify to make more than a sketch; but from morning to evening and…

Félix Guattari; The Anti-Œdipus Papers

Félix Guattari; The Anti-Œdipus Papers Full book Notes and journal entries document Guattari and Deleuze’s collaboration on their 1972 book Anti-Œdipus. “The unconscious is not a theatre, but a factory,“ wrote Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari in Anti-Œdipus (1972), instigating one of the most daring intellectual adventures of the las half-century. Together, the well-known philosopher and the activist-psychiatrist were updating both psychoanalysis and Marxism in light of a more radical and “constructivist“ vision of capitalism:“Capitalism is the exterior limit of all societies because it has no exterior limit itself. It works well as long as it keeps breaking down.“ Few people…

Gilles Deleuze; Two Regimes of Madness (1975-1995)

Gilles Deleuze; Two Regimes of Madness, Revised Edition | Texts and Interviews 1975-1995 | Full book     Gilles Deleuze Edited by David Lapoujade | Translated by Ames Hodges and Mike Taormina The texts and interviews gathered in this volume cover the last twenty years of Gilles Deleuze’s life (1975-1995), which saw the publication of his major works: A Thousand Plateaus (1980), Cinema I: Image-Movement (1985), Cinema II: Image-Time (1985), all leading through language, concept and art to What is Philosophy? (1991). They also document Deleuze’s increasing involvement with politics (Toni Negri, terrorism, etc.). The texts of Two Regimes of Madness complete…

Gilles Deleuze; Desert Islands and Other Texts (1953-1974)

Gilles Deleuze | Desert Islands and Other Texts (1953-1974) (2003, Semiotext(e))/ Full book “One day, perhaps, this century will be Deleuzian,“ Michel Foucault once wrote. This book anthologizes 40 texts and interviews written over 20 years by renowned French philosopher Gilles Deleuze, who died in 1995. The early texts, from 1953-1966 (on Rousseau, Kafka, Jarry, Ponge, Artaud, etc.) belong to literary criticism and announce Deleuze’s last book, Critique and Clinic (1993). But philosophy clearly predominates in the rest of the book, with sharp appraisals of the thinkers he always felt indebted to: Spinoza, Bergson. More surprising is his acknowledgement of Jean-Paul…

The Secret Art of Antonin Artaud | Jacques Derrida & Paule Thévenin

Translation and preface by Mary Ann Caws Antonin Artaud – stage and film actor, director, writer, drug addict, and visual artist – was a man of rage and genius. The Secret Art of Antonin Artaud is the first English translation of two famous texts on his drawings and portraits. In one, Jacques Derrida examines the works that he first saw on the walls of Paule Thévenin’s apartment. His text, as frenzied as Artaud’s, struggles with Artaud’s peculiar language and is punctuated by footnotes and asides the reflect this strain (“How will they translate this?”). The more straightforward text of Paule…

Antonin Artaud | Interjections [Suppôts et Suppliciations]

  Wednesday 27 November 1946 at twenty-three hours in the evening beings that have not swallowed the nail, but have swallowed the point, and have held themselves between the hard and the soft, those one cannot disintricate because if one looks for them in the breath they take refuge in the body, and if one looks for them at one point on the body they claim to be braided there in breath, lightning gashing the body like a negation of body, having more body than all breath. They collect in the body, outside of the one who controls this body…

Jacques Rancière; Politics in Film

  Politics in Film Fireside Conversation: Straub and Others There is no politics of cinema, there are singular forms that filmmakers use to connect the two meanings of the word ‘politique’ which can be used to describe a fiction in general and a cinematic fiction in particular: politics in what a film is saying – the history of a movement or a conflict, exposure of a situation of suffering or injustice – and something more like ‘policy’, meaning the specific strategy of an artistic approach: a way of accelerating or slowing time, shrinking or expanding space, harmonizing or de-harmonizing gaze…

Antonin Artaud / Ivry – Blows and Bombs; by Stephen Barber

When Artaud arrived at the Austerlitz station in Paris and shook hands with Ferdière for the last time, he had twenty-two months still to live. The amount and intensity of work he was to accomplish in that time proved to be enormous. Until that point, Artaud had largely been preoccupied with each of his activities separately: writing, drawing, theatre direction, film projects and acting, and drug intoxication. This changed completely in the last period of his life. Certainly aware that he was pressed for time, he worked constantly, night and day, in all situations and surroundings – on metro trains,…

Lorenzo Chiesa; Lacan with Artaud

    The multiple theoretical overlappings between Artaud and Lacan are marked by the silent eloquence of a bio-graphical half-saying. It is possible to locate only a single place in the entire corpus of Lacan’s writings, seminars and conferences in which he speaks directly of Artaud: in “Raison d’un échec”, Lacan threatens to “sedate” those of his followers who would be inclined to behave like him. Indeed, their sole actual encounter had been a clinical one: Doctor Lacan visited the inmate Artaud in 1938, shortly after his hospitalisation in Saint Anne. On that occasion he declared: “Artaud is obsessed, he…

Deleuze/Guattari; How Do You Make Yourself a Body Without Organs?

  At any rate, you have one (or several). It’s not so much that it preexists or comes ready-made, although in certain respects it is preexistent. At any Tate, you make one, you can’t desire without making one. And it awaits you; it is an inevitable exercise or experimentation, already accomplished the moment you undertake it, unaccomplished as long as you don’t. This is not assuring, because you can botch it. Or it can be terrifying, and lead you to your death. It is nondesire as well as desire. It is not at all a notion or a concept but…

Jacques Rancière; Politics and Aesthetics

Peter Hallward: Sometimes you present political practice as a sort of ex nihilo innovation, almost like the constitution of a new world, even if the world in question is extremely fragile, uncertain, ephemeral. Don’t you need to consider political innovation alongside the development of its conditions of possibility? I mean, for instance, on the political side of things, the role played by civic institutions and state organisations, the public space opened up, in Athens, in France, by the invention of democratic institutions (that is, the sort of factors you generally relegate to the sphere of the police, as opposed to…

Jacques Rancière; The Emancipated Spectator (5th International Summer Academy)

  I gave to this talk the title: « The Emancipated Spectator » . As I understand it, a title is always a challenge. It sets forth the presupposition that an expression makes sense, that there is a link between separate terms, which also means between concepts , problems and theories which seem at first sight to bear no direct relation on each other. In a sense, this title expresses the perplexity that was mine when Marten Spangberg invited me to deliver what is supposed to be the “keynote” lecture of this academy. He told me that he wanted me…

Sean Bonney | Our Death

  Our Death / Abject 2 (after Baudelaire) Great love, that will crush the human world, I wish we could do something to help each other. But today we are separated by so many tedious enemies. They smile at us all day long and ask us about our fever. What is there to say?  That “fever”,  in the way they pronounce it, isn’t much more than a weird reflection of their smile, which in itself is a symbol of their sense of rightness within the so-called world. But that we feel that the five characters that make up the word…

Theater der Grausamkeiten [6.1 / 6.2]

              Ich hätte Blut durch den Nabel scheissen müssen, um zu erreichen, was ich will. Artaud   All das um zu sagen dass Tzara Artauds Stab berührte als berührte er seinen Schwanz wodurch er im Übrigen nur einen weiterer Schrein geistiger Masturbation errichtet, einen Schatten den man mit ein paar Nägeln im Kopf des Suchenden fixiert, dass Artaud während der neun Jahre die das Gesetz ihn festsetzt / einer Justiz die nur als letzter eitriger Ausfluss einer bourgeoisen Krätze auftritt / ihn bindet, 50 Elektroschocks aussetzt und ins hyperglykämische Coma spritzt, dass die Gesellschaft…

Antonin Artaud | The Return of Artaud, The Mômo

  The anchored spirit, screwed into me by the psycho- lubricious thrust of the sky is the one who thinks every temptation, every desire, every inhibition. o dedi o dada orzoura o dou zoura a dada skizi o kaya o kaya pontoura o ponoura a pena poni It’s the penetral spider veil, the female onor fur of either or the sail, the anal plate of anayor. (You lift nothing from it, god, because it’s me. You never lifted anything of this order from me. I’m writing it here for the first time, I’m finding it for the first time.) Not…

Theater der Grausamkeiten [5]

                Artaud ist der Ernstfall. Er hat die Literatur der Polizei entrissen, das Theater der Medizin. Heiner Müller   als ich spät abends auf die Strasse trete wird mir schnell klar dass ein Körper der in die Nacht eintaucht Chaos hervorbringt / vor ein paar hell erleuchteten Displays erkenne ich schemenhaft in sich verkeilte Silhouetten / junge Paare verdrehen ihre Arme und während es zu regnen beginnt ((ein schwarzer Regen zum äussersten Glanz des Mondes)) tragen andere auf ihren Schultern ein Klavier über die Alpen / vollkommene Maße ((kinematische Bewegungen und Tendenzen)) einer…

Theater der Grausamkeiten [1]

            „Nieder mit den Romantikern!” (Blanqui) jedes Detail unserer Bewegungen kadriert und in Nahaufnahme beweist / die Luft ist rot / das Licht keine Halluzination es ist nicht schwer zu erkennen, dass die neuen Kriege auf Ablenkung aus sind – wirksame Methode; / die Aufrechten unter uns sind aber die Schlimmsten: ihre Prophezeiungen des Unglücks, all die Beschränktheiten des Reichtums und der Liebe / als hätte uns das nicht immer kalt gelassen / ein blödsinniger Tick, in etwa wie Armenspeisung Richter:        Ich werde nicht zulassen, dass Sie in diesem Ton fortfahren. Angeklagte:…