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Translated and

by

Hugh

Tomlinson

Barbara

Habberjam

Bergsonism
Gilles Deleuze

Z O N E

B O O K S

N E W

Y O R K

1 9 9 1

1988 Ur/one, Inc. ZONE BOOKS 611 Broadway New York, NY 10012 All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any lorni, or by any means including electronic, mechanical, photocopying, microfilming) recording, or otherwise (except lor that copying permitted by Sections 107 'and 108 of the U.S. Copyright law and except bv reviewers for the public press) without written permission from the Publisher. Printed in the United States of America Originally published as Lc Bergsonisme 1966 Presses Univcrsitaircs de France Distributed by The M I T Press Cambridge, Massachusetts, and London, England

Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data Deleuze, Gilles. [Bergsonisme. English] Bergsonism / Gilles Deleu/.e; translated by Hugh Tomlinson. p. cm.

Translation of: Bergsonisme. Bibliography: p. ISBN 0-942299-06-x ISBN 0-942299-07-8 (pbk.) 1 . Bergson, Henri, 1859-1941. [.Title. B24)0.B4JDJ{13
194<lci9

1988

87-34051
CIP

9 412 7 5 4 4

Contents

Translator's Introduction

References to Rerason's Works

11

Intuition as Method

13

II

Duration as Immediate Datum

3 7

III

Memory as Virtual Coexistence

51

IV

One or Many Durations?

7 3

HIan Vital as Movement of Differentiation

9 l

.1 Return to Rerc/son

11 5

Sous

ll9

Index

13 7

Translators'

Introduction

T h i s b o o k was originally p u b l i s h e d in 1 9 6 6 as part ol a series ol short studies k n o w n as " I n i t i a t i o n P h i I o s o p h k | u e . " On lirst impression, the subject m a t t e r appears unpromising. Although I lenri Bergson was o n e of t h e most important and widely read p h i l o s o p h e r s o l t h e lirst d e c a d e s o l t h e t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r y , nowadays his work seems to be almost forgotten. As Kolakowski says, ' T o d a y ' s philosophers, both in t h e i r research and in their t e a c h i n g are almost e n t i r e l y indifferent to his legacy."
1

Berg-

sonism is reduced to t h e status of a f o o t n o t e in histories of philosophy, m a k i n g a brief a p p e a r a n c e in studies of " v i t a l i s m " or " i r r a t i o n a l i s m . " But this first impression is misleading, I or D e l e u z e , Bergson forms part of a " c o u n t e r history" of philosophy. I le was a writer like L u c r e t i u s , Spinoza, H u m e o r N i e t z s c h e " w h o s e e m e d t o be part of t h e history of philosophy, but w h o e s c a p e d from it in o n e r e s p e c t or a l t o g e t h e r . "
2

In t h e 1 9 5 0 s and 1 9 6 0 s , it was

writing a b o u t p h i l o s o p h e r s of this kind that e n a b l e d D e l e u z e t o m a k e his e s c a p e from t h e s c h o l a s t i c i s m o f post-war F r e n c h a c a d e m i c philosophy. H e has d e s c r i b e d this task o f escaping the history of philosophy as follows:

BERGSONISM

My way of g e t t i n g out ol it at that t i m e , was, I really think, to c o n c e i v e of t h e history ol philosophy as a kind ol buggery or, w h a t c o m e s t o t h e s a m e t h i n g , i m m a c u l a t e c o n ception. I imagined m y s e l f getting o n t o the back of an author, and giving him a c h i l d , w h i c h would be his and which would at the same t i m e be a monster. It is very important that it should be his c h i l d , b e c a u s e t h e a u t h o r a c t u allv had to say everything that I m a d e h i m say. But it also had to be a m o n s t e r b e c a u s e it was necessary to go through all kinds of d e c e n t e r i n g s , slips, break ins, secret e m i s s i o n s , w h i c h 1 really e n j o y e d . My b o o k on Bergson s e e m s to me a classic c a s e o f t h i s . '

But Bergson is not j u s t an e x e m p l a r y target lor t h e p h i l o sophical perversion o f t h e early D e l e u z e . Bergson's w o r k has provided D e l e u z e w i t h m a t e r i a l s lor his o w n t o o l b o x , lor t h e m a n u f a c t u r e of his o w n c o n c e p t s and his o w n war m a c h i n e s . As he said to C l a i r e Parnet,

B e r g s o n , of c o u r s e , was also caught up in F r e n c h - s t y l e history of philosophy, and yet in him there is s o m e t h i n g which cannot be assimilated, w h i c h enabled him to provide a shock, to be a rallying point for all the opposition, the o b j e c t o f s o many hatreds: and this i s n o t s o m u c h b e c a u s e o f t h e t h e m e o f duration, a s o l t h e t h e o r y and p r a c t i c e o f b e c o m ings ol all kinds, of c o e x i s t e n t m u l t i p l i c i t i e s .
4

D e l e u z e has himself taken up and transformed these Bergsonian n o t i o n s in his o w n errant c a m p a i g n s lor c o n s t r u c t i v e plurali s m , r e c e n t l y d e s c r i b i n g h i m s e l f as an e m p i r i c i s t engaged in t r a c i n g t h e b e c o m i n g s o f w h i c h m u l t i p l i c i t i e s are m a d e u p . '

TRANSLATOR'S

INTRODUCTION

T h e allinities between Deleuze and Bergson led Ciillian Rose to speak of his work as " t h e new B e r g s o n i s m . " But this may lead to a m i s u n d e r s t a n d i n g as D e l e u z e ' s work is c h a r a c t e r i z e d n o t by a f i d e l i t y to any m a s t e r , b u t by a s e r i e s of transform a t i o n s of c o n c e p t s b o r r o w e d from a range of w r i t e r s from many d i s c i p l i n e s . N e v e r t h e l e s s , D e l e u z e and Bergson do have a n u m b e r of i m p o r t a n t " p r o b l e m s " in c o m m o n . In particular, D e l e u z e ' s w o r k has b e e n i n c r e a s i n g l y p r e o c c u p i e d w i t h t h e p r o b l e m s o f " m o v e m e n t " and " t i m e " w h i c h s o c o n c e r n e d Bergson. His r e c e n t isolation of the c i n e m a t o g r a p h i c c o n c e p t s o f t h e " m o v e m e n t - i m a g e " and t h e " t i m e - i m a g e " g r o w s o u t o f four " c o m m e n t a r i e s " on Bergson's notions of m o v e m e n t , image, r e c o g n i t i o n and t i m e .
7 6

T h e t r a n s l a t i o n o f t h e B e r g s o n i a n t e r m s i n t h e b o o k presents a s p e c i a l difficulty. Bergson's m o t h e r was from t h e north of I n g l a n d and he s p o k e t h e language from c h i l d h o o d . Many of his m a j o r w o r k s w e r e translated during his lifetime and personally revised b y h i m . W e have n o t followed t h e t e r m i n o l ogy a d o p t e d in t h e s e translations in t h r e e r e s p e c t s . First, in the authorized translations, the key t e r m "elan Vitaf is r e n d e r e d as "vital i m p e t u s . " T h i s version is not an e n t i r e l y happy o n e and has o f t e n b e e n c r i t i c i z e d . T h e F r e n c h word "clan" has a m u c h b r o a d e r r a n g e o f s e n s e than t h e F.nglish " i m p e t u s , " from " m o m e n t u m " through "surge" t o "vigor." W e have thus followed t h e p r a c t i c e o f r e c e n t writers o n Bergson and have left "elan vital" in t h e F r e n c h . S e c o n d , t h e authorized translations do not make a systematic distinction between " r e c o l l e c t i o n " and " m e m o r y " in t h e English. We have invariably r e n d e r e d "souvenir" as " r e c o l l e c t i o n " and "me'moire" as
8

" m e m o r y " and have a l t e r e d e x t r a c t s from t h e Bergson translations accordingly. T h i r d , t h e authorized translations have used

BERGSONISM

a n English n e o l o g i s m " d e t e n s i o n , " a s t h e i r r e n d e r i n g o f t h e word "detente." However, this only suggests o n e ol t h e range of senses in w h i c h Bergson uses t h e word, that is " r e l a x a t i o n , " in c o n t r a s t to " c o n t r a c t i o n " ( i n o t h e r words, " d e - t e n s i o n " ) t h e N i x o n - B r e z h n e v s e n s e . I t d o e s n o t , however, c o n v e y t h e m o r e a c t i v e senses o f t h e w o r d : m e a n i n g " s p r i n g " o r " e x p a n s i o n . " B e r g s o n o f t e n draws o n t h i s last s e n s e w h i c h i s used t e c h n i c a l l y in t h e r m o d y n a m i c s to mean t h e expansion ol a gas that has b e e n previously s u b j e c t to pressure. We have t h e r e fore r e n d e r e d "detente" by e i t h e r " r e l a x a t i o n " or " e x p a n s i o n " d e p e n d i n g o n t h e c o n t e x t , w i t h t h e original i n p a r e n t h e s e s . We have followed t h e authorized translations in translating "duree" as "duration" and adopting " e x t e n s i t y " and " e x t e n s i o n " to translate Bergson's t e r m s "e'tendue" and "extension." We have translated b o t h "e'eart" and "intervalle" as " i n t e r v a l " w i t h t h e F r e n c h word i n p a r e n t h e s e s . D e l e u z e o f t e n uses K a n t ' s d i s tinction between the "quaestio quid juris" and the "quaestio

quid facti" b e t w e e n

the "question de droit" and

the "question de

fait:** We have translated "en fait" and "en droit" by "in f a c t " and "in p r i n c i p l e . " W e are grateful t o l l r z o n e , I n c . and particularly t o R a m o n a Naddaff for suggesting that we translate this b o o k . A n u m b e r of friends and colleagues have made suggestions and c o m m e n t s and tried to r e m i n d us how English is supposed to read. In particular we would like to thank: Caroline Davidson, R o b e r t Cialeta, Martin J o u g h i n and R i c h a r d W i l l i a m s .

I lugh T o m l i n s o n Barbara I l a b b e r j a m London, D e c e m b e r 1987

10

References

to

Bergson's

Works

T F Time and Free Will, t r a n s l a t e d by F . L . P o g s o n , L o n d o n :


G e o r g e Allen & Unvvin Ltd. New York: M a c m i l l a n & C o . , 1919.

Essai sur les donnees imme'diatcs de la conscience, 1 8 8 9 .


MM Matter and Memon, translated by Nancy Margaret Paul and W. S c o t t P a l m e r , L o n d o n : G e o r g e A l l e n & U n w i n L t d . , 1911.

Mattered Memoire, 1 8 9 6 .
CE Creative Evolution, translated by Arthur M i t c h e l l , New York: Henry H o l t & C o . , 1911 ( N e w York: M a c m i l l a n & C o . , 1 9 4 4 ) . l.'Evolution creatrice, 1907.

M E Mind-Eneryv, t r a n s l a t e d b y I I . W i l d o n Carr, N e w York: Henry Holt & C o . , 1 9 2 0 . L'Eneryicspiritucllc, 1 9 1 9 . DS Duration and Simultaneity, translated by L e o n J a c o b s o n , Duree ct Simultaneity, 1 9 2 2 . translated by R.

Indianapolis: B o b b s - M e r r i l l , 1 9 6 5 . MR The

Two Sources of Morality and Religion,

Ashley Audra and C l o u d e s l e v B r c r c t o n with t h e assistance ol VY. 1 lorslall Carter. N e w York: Henry H o l t & C o . , 1 9 3 5 . Les deux sources de la morale et de la religion, CM 1932.

The Creative Mind, t r a n s l a t e d by M a b e l l e L. A n d i s o n ,

Westport, C o n n e c t i c u t : G r e e n w o o d Press, 1 9 4 6 . La Pensc'e ct lcMouvant, 1941.

11

BERGSONISM

References to the original French are in parentheses. T h e 1)S r e f e r e n c e s are t o t h e 4 t h E d i t i o n . For all t h e o t h e r w o r k s , t h e F r e n c h r e f e r e n c e s are, first, to t h e C e n t e n a r y E d i t i o n (Presses LIniversitaires de F r a n c e ) , and then to t h e 19 3 9 - 1 9 4 1 reprints.

12

C H A P T E R

Intuition as Method

Duration, Memory, lllan Vital mark the major stages of Bergson's p h i l o s o p h y . T h i s b o o k s e t s o u t t o d e t e r m i n e , first, t h e relationship b e t w e e n t h e s e t h r e e notions and, s e c o n d , t h e progress they involve. Intuition is t h e m e t h o d of B e r g s o n i s m . I n t u i t i o n is n e i t h e r a feeling, an inspiration, n o r a disorderly sympathy, but a fully d e v e l o p e d m e t h o d , o n e o l t h e m o s t lullv d e v e l o p e d m e t h o d s in philosophy. It has its s t r i c t rules, c o n s t i t u t i n g t h a t w h i c h Bergson calls "precision" in philosophy. Bergson emphasizes this point: Intuition, as he understands it methodologically, already presupposes duration. " T h e s e conclusions on the subject ol durat i o n w e r e , as it s e e m e d to m e , d e c i s i v e . S t e p by s t e p they led m e t o raise i n t u i t i o n t o t h e level o f a p h i l o s o p h i c a l m e t h o d . I he use of t h e word intuition, however, caused me s o m e degree of hesitation." And to llotfding, he writes: " T h e theory of intuition w h i c h you stress m o r e than that of duration only b e c a m e c l e a r t o m e long afterwards."
2 1

But first and second have many meanings. Intuition certainly is s e c o n d in relation to duration or to memory. But while these n o t i o n s by t h e m s e l v e s d e n o t e lived realities and e x p e r i e n c e s .

BERGSONISM

they do not give us any m e a n s ol knowing (connaitrc) t h e m with a precision analogous to that ol s c i e n c e . We might say, strangely e n o u g h , that duration would remain purely i n t u i t i v e , in t h e ordinary sense of the word, if intuition in the properly B e r g s o n i a n s e n s e w e r e not t h e r e as m e t h o d . T h e lact is that Bergson r e l i e d o n t h e i n t u i t i v e m e t h o d t o establish p h i l o s o phy as an absolutely " p r e c i s e " d i s c i p l i n e , as p r e c i s e in its field, as capable ol b e i n g prolonged and t r a n s m i t t e d as s c i e n c e itself is. And w i t h o u t t h e m e t h o d i c a l thread ol i n t u i t i o n , t h e relat i o n s h i p s b e t w e e n D u r a t i o n , M e m o r y and Ulan Vital w o u l d t h e m s e l v e s r e m a i n i n d e t e r m i n a t e from t h e p o i n t o l v i e w o l k n o w l e d g e . In all of t h e s e r e s p e c t s , we m u s t bring i n t u i t i o n as rigorous or precise m e t h o d to t h e forefront of O u r discussion.
5

T h e m o s t g e n e r a l m e t h o d o l o g i c a l q u e s t i o n is this: H o w is intuition w h i c h primarily d e n o t e s an i m m e d i a t e know ledge (connaissance) capable of forming a m e t h o d , o n c e it is a c c e p t e d that the m e t h o d essentially involves one or several mediations? Bergson often presents intuition as a simple act. But, in his view, s i m p l i c i t y d o e s not e x c l u d e a q u a l i t a t i v e and virtual m u l t i plicity, various d i r e c t i o n s in w h i c h it c o m e s to be a c t u a l i z e d . It is in this s e n s e , t h e n , that i n t u i t i o n involves a plurality of m e a n i n g s and i r r e d u c i b l e m u l t i p l e a s p e c t s .
4

Bergson distin-

guishes essentially three distinct sorts of acts that in turn determ i n e t h e rules o f t h e m e t h o d : T h e lirst c o n c e r n s t h e stating and c r e a t i n g o l p r o b l e m s ; t h e s e c o n d , t h e discovery o l g e n u ine differences in kind; the third, the apprehension ol real t i m e . It is by s h o w i n g how we m o v e from o n e m e a n i n g to a n o t h e r and what t h e " f u n d a m e n t a l m e a n i n g " is, that we are a b l e to r e d i s c o v e r t h e s i m p l i c i t y o l i n t u i t i o n a s l i v e d a c t , and t h u s answer t h e g e n e r a l m e t h o d o l o g i c a l q u e s t i o n .
* *

'4

INTUITION

AS

METHOD

FIRST

R U L E : Apply the test of true and false to problems themselves. and reconcile truth and creation at the level

Condemn false problems of problems.

We are w r o n g to b e l i e v e that t h e true and t h e false can only be brought to bear on s o l u t i o n s , that they only begin with solutions. T h i s prejudice is social (lor society, and the language that transmits its order-words [mots d'ordre], "set up" [donnent]

ready-made p r o b l e m s , as if they w e r e drawn out of " t h e city's a d m i n i s t r a t i v e filing c a b i n e t s , " and f o r c e u s t o " s o l v e " t h e m , leaving us only a thin margin of f r e e d o m ) . Moreover, this preju- ' d i c e g o e s back to c h i l d h o o d , to t h e c l a s s r o o m : It is t h e s c h o o l t e a c h e r w h o " p o s e s " t h e p r o b l e m s ; t h e pupil's task i s t o disc o v e r t h e s o l u t i o n s . In this way we are k e p t in a kind of slavery. T r u e f r e e d o m l i e s i n a p o w e r t o d e c i d e , t o c o n s t i t u t e problems t h e m s e l v e s . And this " s e m i - d i v i n e " power entails the disappearance of false p r o b l e m s as m u c h as the creative upsurge of true o n e s . " T h e truth is that in philosophy and even e l s e where it is a q u e s t i o n of finding t h e p r o b l e m and c o n s e q u e n t l y of positing it, even m o r e than of s o l v i n g it. F o r a s p e c u l a t i v e problem is solved as soon as it is properly stated. By that 1 mean that its s o l u t i o n e x i s t s t h e n , a l t h o u g h it may remain hidden and, so to speak, c o v e r e d up: The o n l y thing left to do is to uncover it. B u t stating t h e p r o b l e m is n o t s i m p l y u n c o v e r i n g , it is i n v e n t i n g . Discovery, or u n c o v e r i n g , has to do w i t h what already e x i s t s , actually or virtually; it was t h e r e f o r e c e r t a i n to happen s o o n e r o r later. I n v e n t i o n gives b e i n g t o what did n o t e x i s t ; it m i g h t n e v e r have h a p p e n e d . Already in m a t h e m a t i c s , and still m o r e in m e t a p h y s i c s , t h e effort of invention c o n s i s t s m o s t o f t e n in raising t h e p r o b l e m , in c r e a t i n g t h e t e r m s in w h i c h i t will b e s t a t e d . T h e stating and solving o f t h e prob-

'5

BERGSONISM

I c m are h e r e very c l o s e t o b e i n g e q u i v a l e n t : T h e truly great p r o b l e m s are set forth only w h e n they are s o l v e d . "
5

It is n o t just t h e w h o l e history of m a t h e m a t i c s that supports B e r g s o n . W e m i g h t c o m p a r e t h e last s e n t e n c e o f this e x t r a c t from Bergson w i t h M a r x ' s f o r m u l a t i o n , w h i c h is valid for p r a c t i c e itself: " H u m a n i t v o n l y sets itself p r o b l e m s that it is c a p a b l e of s o l v i n g . " In n e i t h e r e x a m p l e is it a c a s e of saying that problems are like t h e shadow of pre-existing solutions ( t h e w h o l e c o n t e x t suggests t h e c o n t r a r y ) . Nor is it a case of*saying that only t h e p r o b l e m s c o u n t . On t h e contrary, it is t h e solut i o n that c o u n t s , but t h e p r o b l e m always has t h e s o l u t i o n it deserves, in t e r m s of" t h e way in w h i c h it is s t a t e d ( i . e . , t h e c o n d i t i o n s u n d e r w h i c h it is d e t e r m i n e d as p r o b l e m ) , and of t h e means and t e r m s at o u r disposal for stating it. In this s e n s e , t h e history ol man, from t h e t h e o r e t i c a l as m u c h as from t h e practical point of view is that of t h e c o n s t r u c t i o n of p r o b l e m s . It is here that humanity makes its own history, and the b e c o m ing c o n s c i o u s o f that a c t i v i t y i s like t h e c o n q u e s t o f f r e e d o m . ( I t is true that, in Bergson, t h e very n o t i o n of t h e p r o b l e m has its r o o t s beyond history, in life itself or in t h e elan vital: Life is e s s e n t i a l l y d e t e r m i n e d i n t h e act o f avoiding o b s t a c l e s , stating and solving a p r o b l e m . T h e c o n s t r u c t i o n ol t h e organism is b o t h t h e s t a t i n g of a p r o b l e m and a s o l u t i o n . )
6

But h o w c a n this c o n s t i t u t i v e p o w e r w h i c h resides i n t h e p r o b l e m be r e c o n c i l e d with a n o r m ol t h e true? W h i l e it is relatively easy to d e l i n e t h e true and t h e false in relation to s o l u t i o n s w h o s e p r o b l e m s have already b e e n s t a t e d , it s e e m s m u c h m o r e difficult to say in what t h e true and t h e false c o n sist w h e n applied to t h e p r o c e s s of s t a t i n g p r o b l e m s . T h i s is how many philosophers fall into c i r c u l a r arguments: C o n s c i o u s ol t h e n e e d to take t h e t e s t of true and false b e y o n d s o l u t i o n s

INTUITION

AS

METHOD

into p r o b l e m s t h e m s e l v e s , they are c o n t e n t to define the truth or falsity of a p r o b l e m by t h e possibility or impossibility of its being s o l v e d . Bergson's great v i r t u e , on t h e o t h e r hand, is to have a t t e m p t e d an i n t r i n s i c d e t e r m i n a t i o n of t h e false in t h e e x p r e s s i o n "false p r o b l e m . " T h i s is t h e s o u r c e of a rule that is c o m p l e m e n t a r y t o t h e p r e c e d i n g general r u l e .

COMPLEMENTARY RULE:

Take problems arc of two sorts, "nonexistent whose very terms contain a confusion

problems," defined as problems of the "more" and the because their terms

"less"; and "badh badlv

stated" questions, so defined

represent

analv/ed composites.

Ib illustrate t h e first kind of p r o b l e m Bergson c i t e s t h e probl e m s o f ' n o n being, o f disorder o r o f t h e possible ( t h e p r o b l e m s of k n o w l e d g e and b e i n g ) ; as e x a m p l e s of t h e s e c o n d type, t h e r e are t h e p r o b l e m s of f r e e d o m or of i n t e n s i t y . His analyses of these are famous. In t h e first c a s e , they c o n s i s t in showing that t h e r e is not less, but more in t h e idea of n o n b e i n g than that of being, in disorder than in order, in the possible than in t h e real. In t h e idea of n o n b e i n g t h e r e is in fact t h e idea of b e i n g , plus a logical o p e r a t i o n ol g e n e r a l i z e d n e g a t i o n , plus t h e particular p s y c h o l o g i c a l m o t i v e for that o p e r a t i o n ( s u c h as w h e n a being d o e s not c o r r e s p o n d to o u r e x p e c t a t i o n and we grasp it purely a s t h e l a c k , t h e a b s e n c e o l what i n t e r e s t s u s ) . I n t h e idea ol disorder t h e r e is already t h e idea ol order, plus its negat i o n , plus t h e m o t i v e lor that n e g a t i o n ( w h e n w e e n c o u n t e r an o r d e r that is not t h e o n e we e x p e c t e d ) . And t h e r e is m o r e in t h e idea ol the p o s s i b l e than t h e r e is in t h e idea of t h e real: ' T o r t h e p o s s i b l e is only t h e real w i t h t h e addition ol an a c t ol m i n d that throws its i m a g e b a c k i n t o t h e past o n c e it has b e e n e n a c t e d , " and t h e m o t i v e o f that act ( w h e n w e confuse
7

'7

BERGSONISM

t h e upsurge of a reality in t h e universe w i t h a s u c c e s s i o n ol s t a t e s in a c l o s e d s y s t e m ) .


8

W h e n we ask " W h y is t h e r e s o m e t h i n g rather than nothi n g ? " o r " W h y i s t h e r e o r d e r rather than d i s o r d e r ? " o r " W h y is there this rather than that ( w h e n that was equally p o s s i b l e ) ? " w e fall i n t o t h e s a m e error: W e m i s t a k e t h e m o r e lor t h e less, we behave as though n o n b e i n g e x i s t e d before b e i n g , d i s o r d e r before order and the |*>ssible before e x i s t e n c e . As though being c a m e to lill in a void, o r d e r to organize a p r e c e d i n g disorder, t h e real to realize a primary possibility. Being, order or the exist e n t are truth itself; but in t h e false p r o b l e m t h e r e is a fundamental illusion, a "retrograde movement ol the true," according to w h i c h b e i n g , o r d e r and t h e e x i s t e n t are supposed to prec e d e themselves, or to p r e c e d e t h e creative a c t that c o n s t i t u t e s t h e m , by p r o j e c t i n g an i m a g e of t h e m s e l v e s b a c k i n t o a possibility, a disorder, a n o n b e i n g w h i c h are supposed to be primordial. T h i s t h e m e is a c e n t r a l o n e in Bergson's p h i l o s o p h y : It sums up his c r i t i q u e of t h e negative and of n e g a t i o n , in all its forms as s o u r c e s of false p r o b l e m s . Badly stated p r o b l e m s , t h e s e c o n d type of false p r o b l e m , introduce a different m e c h a n i s m : This t i m e it is a case of badly analyzed c o m p o s i t e s that arbitrarily g r o u p things that differ in kind. Take for e x a m p l e , t h e q u e s t i o n ol w h e t h e r happiness is r e d u c i b l e t o pleasure o r n o t : Perhaps t h e t e r m pleasure subs u m e s very varied i r r e d u c i b l e s t a t e s , just like t h e idea of happiness. II the terms do not correspond to "natural articulations" then the p r o b l e m is lalse, lor it does not affect " t h e very nature ol things.'"' I lere again, Bergson's analyses are famous: for e x a m p l e , t h e o n e in which he c o n d e m n s i n t e n s i t y as s u c h a c o m p o s i t e . W h e t h e r t h e quality ol t h e sensation is confused w i t h t h e muscular s p a c e that c o r r e s p o n d s to it, or with t h e quan-

18

INTUITION

AS

METHOD

tity ol t h e physical cause that produces it, the n o t i o n of intensity involves an i m p u r e m i x t u r e b e t w e e n d e t e r m i n a t i o n s that differ in kind, so that t h e question "by how m u c h d o e s t h e sensation g r o w ? " always g o e s b a c k to a badly stated p r o b l e m .
1 0

l i k e w i s e the problem of freedom, in which t w o types ol "multip l i c i t y " are c o n t u s e d : that ol t e r m s j u x t a p o s e d in s p a c e and that o f states w h i c h m e r g e t o g e t h e r i n duration. L e t us return to t h e lirst type of false p r o b l e m . I lere, Bergson says, t h e m o r e is m i s t a k e n for t h e less. But t h e r e are also t i m e s w h e n Bergson says that t h e less h e r e is m i s t a k e n lor t h e m o r e : j u s t as d o u b t a b o u t an a c t i o n only apparently adds to t h e a c t i o n , when in reality it indicates a half-willing; negation is n o t added to what it denies, but only i n d i c a t e s a weakness in the person who denies. " F o r we feel that a divinely c r e a t e d will o r t h o u g h t i s t o o full o f itself, i n t h e i m m e n s i t y o f its reality, to have t h e slightest idea of a lack of o r d e r or a lack of b e i n g . T o i m a g i n e t h e possibility o f a b s o l u t e disorder, all t h e m o r e t h e possibility of n o t h i n g n e s s , would be tor it to say to itself that it m i g h t not have e x i s t e d at all, and that would be a weakness i n c o m p a t i b l e w i t h its nature, w h i c h is force It is n o t
11

something m o r e but s o m e t h i n g less; it is a deticit ol t h e w i l l . "

Is there a c o n t r a d i c t i o n b e t w e e n these t w o formulations, where n o n b e i n g is s o m e t i m e s presented as a m o r e in relation to being and s o m e t i m e s as a less? T h e r e is no c o n t r a d i c t i o n if we bear in mind that what Bergson is c o n d e m n i n g in n o n e x i s t e n t probl e m s is t h e o b s e s s i o n in all its aspects w i t h t h i n k i n g in t e r m s of m o r e and less. T h e idea of d i s o r d e r appears w h e n , instead of seeing that there are t w o or m o r e irreducible orders (for example, that of life and that of m e c h a n i s m , each present when the o t h e r is a b s e n t ) , we retain only a general idea of o r d e r that we c o n f i n e ourselves t o o p p o s i n g t o d i s o r d e r and t o t h i n k i n g i n

"9

BERGSONISM

c o r r e l a t i o n w i t h t h e idea o f disorder. T h e idea o f n o n b e i n g appears w h e n , instead o f grasping t h e different realities that are indefinitely s u b s t i t u t e d lor o n e a n o t h e r , we m u d d l e t h e m t o g e t h e r in t h e h o m o g e n e i t y of a B e i n g in g e n e r a l , w h i c h can only IK- opposed t o nothingness, b e related t o nothingness. T h e idea of the possible appears w h e n , instead of grasping each e x i s t e n t in its novelty, t h e w h o l e of e x i s t e n c e is related to a preformed e l e m e n t , from w h i c h everything is supposed to e m e r g e by s i m p l e " r e a l i z a t i o n . " In short, e a c h t i m e that we t h i n k in t e r m s of m o r e or less, we have already disregarded t h e differences in kind b e t w e e n the t w o orders, or b e t w e e n beings, b e t w e e n e x i s t e n t s . In this way we can see how the first type of false problem rests, in the final analysis, on the second: T h e idea ol d i s o r d e r e m e r g e s from a general idea of order as badly analyzed c o m p o s i t e , e t c . And c o n c e i v i n g e v e r y t h i n g in t e r m s of m o r e and less, s e e i n g n o t h i n g but diff e r e n c e s in d e g r e e or differences in intensity w h e r e , m o r e profoundly, there are differences in kind is perhaps the m o s t general error of thought, t h e error c o m m o n to s c i e n c e and metaphysics. We are therefore v i c t i m s of a fundamental illusion that c o r r e s p o n d s t o t h e t w o a s p e c t s o f t h e false p r o b l e m . T h e very n o t i o n o f t h e false p r o b l e m i n d e e d i m p l i e s that w e have t o struggle not against simple mistakes (false solutions), but against s o m e t h i n g m o r e profound: an illusion that carries us a l o n g , or in w h i c h we are i m m e r s e d , inseparable from o u r c o n d i t i o n . A mirage, as Bergson d e s c r i b e s t h e p r o j e c t i o n backward of t h e possible. Bergson borrows an idea from Kant although he c o m pletely transforms it: It was Kant w h o showed that reason d e e p within i t s e l f engenders not mistakes but inevitable illusions, only t h e e f f e c t o f w h i c h c o u l d b e warded off. A l t h o u g h B e r g s o n d e t e r m i n e s t h e nature of false p r o b l e m s in a c o m p l e t e l y dil-

20

INTUITION

AS

METHOD

lerent way and although t h e Kantian c r i t i q u e i t s e l f s e e m s to him t o b e a c o l l e c t i o n o f badly stated p r o b l e m s , h e treats t h e illusion in a way s i m i l a r to K a n t . T h e illusion is based in t h e deepest part of the i n t e l l i g e n c e : It is n o t , strictly speaking, dispelled or d i s p e l l a b l e , r a t h e r it can only be repressed.^ We tend to think in t e r m s of m o r e and less, that is, to see d i l l e r c n c c s in degree where there are differences in kind. We can only react against this i n t e l l e c t u a l t e n d e n c y by bringing to life, again in the intelligence, another tendency, w h i c h is critical. But where, precisely, d o e s this s e c o n d t e n d e n c y c o m e from? O n l v intuition can p r o d u c e and a c t i v a t e it, b e c a u s e it rediscovers dilterences in kind beneath t h e differences in d e g r e e , and conveys t o t h e i n t e l l i g e n c e t h e c r i t e r i a that e n a b l e i t t o d i s t i n g u i s h b e t w e e n true and false p r o b l e m s . Bergson shows c l e a r l y that t h e i n t e l l i g e n c e is t h e faculty that states p r o b l e m s in general ( t h e instinct is rather a faculty for finding s o l u t i o n s ) . " But only intuition d e c i d e s b e t w e e n t h e true and t h e false in t h e probl e m s that are stated, even if this m e a n s driving t h e i n t e l l i g e n c e to turn b a c k against itself. * * *
2

S E C O N D R U L E : Struggle against illusion, rediscover the true differences in kind or articulations of the real.
14

I he B e r g s o n i a n d u a l i s m s are f a m o u s : d u r a t i o n - s p a c e , q u a l ity-quantity, h e t e r o g e n e o u s - h o m o g e n e o u s , c o n t i n u o u s - d i s c o n tinuous, t h e t w o m u l t i p l i c i t i e s , m e m o r y - m a t t e r , r e c o l l e c t i o n p e r c e p t i o n , c o n t r a c t i o n - r e l a x a t i o n * (detente), i n s t i n c t - i n t e l l i g e n c e , t h e t w o s o u r c e s , e t c . Even t h e r u n n i n g heads that

Tor a discussion of the problem of translating detente, see Preface (Trans.).

21

BERGSONISM

Bergson puts at t h e t o p ol e a c h page ol his h o o k s i n d i c a t e his taste lor dualisms - w h i c h do n o t , however, have t h e last word in his philosophy. W h a t , there-lore, do they m e a n ? A c c o r d i n g to B e r g s o n , a c o m p o s i t e must always he divided a c c o r d i n g to its natural a r t i c u l a t i o n s , that is, i n t o e l e m e n t s w h i c h differ in k i n d . I n t u i t i o n as m e t h o d is a m e t h o d ol d i v i s i o n , P l a t o n i c in inspiration. Bergson is aware that things are m i x e d t o g e t h e r in reality; in (act, e x p e r i e n c e itsell oilers us n o t h i n g but c o m p o s i t e s . But t h a t is not w h e r e t h e difficulty lies. F o r e x a m p l e , we m a k e t i m e into a representation i m b u e d with space. I he awkward t h i n g is that we no l o n g e r know how to distinguish in that representation t h e t w o c o m p o n e n t e l e m e n t s w h i c h differ in k i n d , t h e t w o pure presences ol duration and e x t e n s i t y . W e m i x e x t e n s i t y and duration so thoroughly that we can now only o p p o s e t h e i r m i x t u r e to a p r i n c i p l e that is assumed to be b o t h nonspatial and n o n t e m p o r a l , and in relation to w h i c h space and t i m e , duration and extensity, are now only d e t e r i o r a t i o n s .
15

To

take yet a n o t h e r e x a m p l e , we m i x r e c o l l e c t i o n and p e r c e p t i o n ; but w e d o n o t k n o w how t o r e c o g n i z e what g o e s b a c k t o perc e p t i o n and what goes back t o r e c o l l e c t i o n . W e n o longer dist i n g u i s h t h e t w o pure p r e s e n c e s o l m a t t e r and m e m o r y i n r e p r e s e n t a t i o n , and we no l o n g e r see a n y t h i n g but d i f f e r e n c e s in degree b e t w e e n p e r c e p t i o n - r e c o l l e c t i o n s and r e c o l l e c t i o n p e r c e p t i o n s . In short, we measure t h e m i x t u r e s with a unit that is itsell i m p u r e and already m i x e d . We have lost t h e g r o u n d of c o m p o s i t e s . T h e obsession with the pure in Bergson goes back to this r e s t o r a t i o n ol differences in kind. O n l y that w h i c h differs in kind can be said to be pure, but only tendencies differ in k i n d . " ' T h e c o m p o s i t e must therefore b e divided a c c o r d i n g t o q u a l i t a t i v e and qualified t e n d e n c i e s , that is, a c c o r d i n g to t h e way in w h i c h it c o m b i n e s duration and e x t e n s i t y as they are

22

INTUITION

AS

METHOD

defined as movements, d i r e c t i o n s of m o v e m e n t s ( h e n c e durat i o n - c o n t r a c t i o n and m a t t e r - e x p a n s i o n [detente]). Again, t h e r e is s o m e r e s e m b l a n c e b e t w e e n i n t u i t i o n as m e t h o d of division and transcendental analysis: If the c o m p o s i t e represents the fact, it must be divided i n t o t e n d e n c i e s or into pure p r e s e n c e s that only e x i s t in principle (en droit).
17

W e g o beyond e x p e r i e n c e ,

toward t h e c o n d i t i o n s of e x p e r i e n c e ( b u t t h e s e are n o t , in t h e Kantian manner, the c o n d i t i o n s of all possible e x p e r i e n c e : T h e y are t h e c o n d i t i o n s of real e x p e r i e n c e ) . T h i s is t h e Bergsonian l e i t m o t i f : P e o p l e have seen only diff e r e n c e s in d e g r e e w h e r e t h e r e are d i f f e r e n c e s in k i n d . And B e r g s o n g r o u p s his m a j o r c r i t i q u e s , w h i c h take many differe n t f o r m s , u n d e r this h e a d i n g . His f u n d a m e n t a l c r i t i c i s m o f m e t a p h y s i c s is t h a t it s e e s d i f f e r e n c e s in d e g r e e b e t w e e n a spatialized t i m e and an eternity w h i c h it assumes to be primary ( t i m e as d e t e r i o r a t i o n , r e l a x a t i o n [detente] or d i m i n u t i o n of b e i n g . . . ) : All beings are defined on a scale of intensity, b e t w e e n the t w o e x t r e m e s of perfection and nothingness. But he directs a similar criticism at s c i e n c e ; there is no definition of mechanism o t h e r than that w h i c h invokes a spatialized t i m e , a c c o r d i n g to which beings no longer present anything but differences of degree, o f position, o f d i m e n s i o n , o f proportion. There i s even " m e c h a n i s m " in e v o l u t i o n i s m , to t h e e x t e n t that it postulates a unilinear e v o l u t i o n and takes us from o n e living organization to a n o t h e r by s i m p l e i n t e r m e d i a r i e s , transitions and variations o l d e g r e e . T h e w h o l e s o u r c e o f t h e false p r o b l e m s and t h e illusions that o v e r w h e l m us lies in this disregard for true diff e r e n c e s in k i n d : As e a r l y as t h e first c h a p t e r oi Matter and Memory, B e r g s o n s h o w s how t h e f o r g e t t i n g of d i f f e r e n c e s in kind on t h e o n e hand b e t w e e n p e r c e p t i o n and a f f e c t i o n , on t h e o t h e r hand b e t w e e n p e r c e p t i o n and r e c o l l e c t i o n gives

23

BERGSONISM

rise to all kinds ol falsi- p r o b l e m s by m a k i n g us t h i n k that o u r p e r c e p t i o n is i n e x t e n s i v e in c h a r a c t e r : ' T h e r e are, in t h e idea that we project outside ourselves states w h i c h are purely internal, so many m i s c o n c e p t i o n s , so many lame answers to badly stated questions "
I K

No t e x t shows m o r e c l e a r l y than this lirst c h a p t e r oi Matter and Memory h o w c o m p l e x t h e m a n i p u l a t i o n of i n t u i t i o n is as a m e t h o d o f d i v i s i o n . T h e r e p r e s e n t a t i o n has t o b e divided i n t o t h e e l e m e n t s that c o n d i t i o n it, i n t o pure p r e s e n c e s o r tende n c i e s that differ in kind. I low does Bergson proceed? He asks, first, b e t w e e n what t w o things t h e r e may b e ( o r may n o t b e ) a d i f f e r e n c e in k i n d . His lirst r e s p o n s e is that, s i n c e t h e brain is an " i m a g e " a m o n g o t h e r i m a g e s , or e n s u r e s c e r t a i n m o v e m e n t s a m o n g o t h e r m o v e m e n t s , there cannot he a d i f f e r e n c e in kind b e t w e e n t h e faculty of t h e brain w h i c h is said to be perc e p t i v e and t h e reflex functions of t h e c o r e . Thus, t h e brain d o e s not m a n u f a c t u r e r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s , but only c o m p l i c a t e s the relationship b e t w e e n a received m o v e m e n t ( e x c i t a t i o n ) and an e x e c u t e d m o v e m e n t ( r e s p o n s e ) . B e t w e e n t h e t w o , it establ i s h e s an interval (ecart)., w h e t h e r it d i v i d e s up t h e r e c e i v e d m o v e m e n t infinitely or p r o l o n g s it in a plurality of p o s s i b l e r e a c t i o n s . Hven if r e c o l l e c t i o n s take advantage- ol this interval or, strictly speaking, "interpolate themselves," nothing changes. W e c a n , lor t h e m o m e n t , d i s c o u n t t h e m a s b e i n g involved i n a n o t h e r " l i n e . " On the line that we are t r a c i n g , we only have, we can only have m a t t e r and m o v e m e n t , m o v e m e n t w h i c h is m o r e o r less c o m p l i c a t e d , m o r e o r less d e l a y e d . T h e wholeq u e s t i o n is k n o w i n g w h e t h e r , in this way, we also alre-ady havep e r c e p t i o n . By virtue ol t h e cerebral interval, in effect, a being can retain Irom a material o b j e c t and t h e a c t i o n s issuing from i t only t h o s e e l e m e n t s that interest h i m . ' ' S o that p e r c e p t i o n
1

INTUITION

AS

METHOD

is not the o b j e c t plus s o m e t h i n g , hut

the o b j e c t minus s o m e -

thing, m i n u s e v e r y t h i n g that d o e s not interest us. It c o u l d be said that t h e o b j e c t itsell m e r g e s w i t h a pure virtual p e r c e p tion, at t h e same t i m e as o u r real p e r c e p t i o n m e r g e s with t h e o b j e c t from w h i c h it has a b s t r a c t e d o n l y that w h i c h did not i n t e r e s t us. H e n c e B e r g s o n ' s famous t h e s i s ( t h e lull c o n s e q u e n c e s ol w h i c h we will have to analyze): We p e r c e i v e things where they are, perception puts us at o n c e into matter, is impersonal, and c o i n c i d e s w i t h t h e perceived o b j e c t . C o n t i n u i n g o n this s a m e l i n e , t h e w h o l e o l Bergson's m e t h o d c o n s i s t s , lirst of all, in s e e k i n g t h e t e r m s b e t w e e n w h i c h there could not be a difference in k i n d : T h e r e c a n n o t be a d i f f e r e n c e in k i n d , but only a d i f f e r e n c e in d e g r e e b e t w e e n t h e faculty of t h e brain and t h e function of t h e c o r e , b e t w e e n t h e p e r c e p t i o n of mat t e r and m a t t e r itself. We are now in a position to trace o u t t h e s e c o n d line, w h i c h differs in kind from t h e first. In o r d e r to establish t h e first we n e e d e d fictions: We a s s u m e d that t h e b o d y was l i k e a pure m a t h e m a t i c a l p o i n t in s p a c e , a pure instant, or a s u c c e s s i o n ol instants in t i m e . But t h e s e fictions w e r e n o t simply hypothe s e s : T h e y c o n s i s t e d in pushing beyond e x p e r i e n c e a d i r e c t i o n drawn from e x p e r i e n c e itself, ft is only in this way that we can extract a w h o l e aspect of t h e c o n d i t i o n s of e x p e r i e n c e . All that is left now is to ask o u r s e l v e s what fills up t h e c e r e b r a l interval, what takes advantage of it to b e c o m e e m b o d i e d . Bergson's response is three-told, f i r s t , there is allectivitv, w h i c h assumes that t h e body is s o m e t h i n g o t h e r than a m a t h e m a t i c a l point and w h i c h gives it v o l u m e in s p a c e . N e x t , it is t h e r e c o l l e c tions ol m e m o r y that link t h e instants to e a c h o t h e r and interpolate t h e past in t h e p r e s e n t , finally, it is m e m o r y again in a n o t h e r f o r m , in t h e form Of a c o n t r a c t i o n ol m a t t e r that

BERGSONISM

makes t h e quality appear. (It is t h e r e f o r e m e m o r y that makes t h e body s o m e t h i n g o t h e r than i n s t a n t a n e o u s and g i v e s it a duration in t i m e ) . We are c o n s e q u e n t l y in t h e p r e s e n c e ol a n e w l i n e , that o l s u b j e c t i v i t y , o n w h i c h affcctivity, r e c o l l e c t i o n - m e m o r y , and c o n t r a c t i o n - m e m o r y a r e r a n g e d : T h e s e t e r m s mav be said to differ in kind from t h o s e of t h e p r e c e d ing line ( p e r c e p t i o n - o b j e c t - m a t t e r ) .
2 0

In short, representation

in general is divided i n t o t w o d i r e c t i o n s that differ in k i n d , i n t o t w o pure p r e s e n c e s that d o not a l l o w t h e m s e l v e s t o b e represented: that o f p e r c e p t i o n w h i c h puts us at once i n t o matt e r and that o f m e m o r y w h i c h puts us at once i n t o t h e m i n d . O n c e again, t h e q u e s t i o n i s n o t w h e t h e r t h e t w o lines m e e t and m i x t o g e t h e r . T h i s m i x t u r e i s o u r e x p e r i e n c e i t s e l l , o u r r e p r e s e n t a t i o n . But all our false p r o b l e m s derive from t h e fact that w e d o n o t k n o w how t o g o beyond e x p e r i e n c e toward t h e c o n d i t i o n s o f e x p e r i e n c e , toward t h e a r t i c u l a t i o n s o f t h e real, and r e d i s c o v e r what differs in kind in t h e c o m p o s i t e s that arcgiven t o u s and o n w h i c h w e live. T h e s e t w o a c t s , p e r c e p t i o n and r e c o l l e c t i o n , "always i n t e r p e n e t r a t e e a c h o t h e r , are always e x c h a n g i n g s o m e t h i n g of t h e i r substance as by a process of endo s m o s i s . T h e proper o f f i c e o f p s y c h o l o g i s t s would b e t o diss o c i a t e t h e m , to give b a c k to e a c h its natural purity; in this way many d i f f i c u l t i e s raised by p s y c h o l o g y and p e r h a p s also by m e t a p h y s i c s might be l e s s e n e d . But they will have it that t h e s e m i x e d s t a t e s , c o m p o u n d e d , in unequal p r o p o r t i o n s , of pure p e r c e p t i o n and pure r e c o l l e c t i o n , are s i m p l e . And so we are c o n d e m n e d to an i g n o r a n c e alike of pure r e c o l l e c t i o n and of pure p e r c e p t i o n , to k n o w i n g only a single kind of phen o m e n o n that will be c a l l e d n o w r e c o l l e c t i o n and now perc e p t i o n , a c c o r d i n g to t h e p r e d o m i n a n c e in it ol o n e or o t h e r o l t h e t w o a s p e c t s ; a n d , c o n s e q u e n t l y , t o finding b e t w e e n

26

INTUITION

AS

METHOD

p e r c e p t i o n and r e c o l l e c t i o n o n l y a d i f f e r e n c e in d e g r e e and not in k i n d . "


21

I n t u i t i o n leads u s t o g o b e y o n d t h e s t a t e o f e x p e r i e n c e toward t h e c o n d i t i o n s o f e x p e r i e n c e . But these c o n d i t i o n s are n e i t h e r general n o r a b s t r a c t . T h e y are n o broader than t h e c o n d i t i o n e d : they are t h e c o n d i t i o n s o f real e x p e r i e n c e . Bergson speaks ol going " t o seek e x p e r i e n c e at its source, or rather above that d e c i s i v e turn, w h e r e , taking a bias in t h e d i r e c t i o n of o u r utility, it b e c o m e s properly human e x p e r i e n c e . "
2 2

Above t h e

turn is p r e c i s e l y t h e p o i n t at w h i c h we finally d i s c o v e r differe n c e s in k i n d . But t h e r e are so many difficulties in trying to reach this focal point that the acts of intuition, which are apparently contradictory, have to be multiplied. Bergson, thus, s o m e t i m e s speaks of a m o v e m e n t that is e x a c t l y appropriate to t h e e x p e r i e n c e , s o m e t i m e s a b r o a d e n i n g o u t , s o m e t i m e s a tighte n i n g and narrowing. For, in the first p l a c e , t h e d e t e r m i n a t i o n of e a c h " l i n e " involves a sort of c o n t r a d i c t i o n in w h i c h apparently diverse facts are grouped a c c o r d i n g to their natural affinit i e s , drawn t o g e t h e r a c c o r d i n g t o t h e i r a r t i c u l a t i o n . B u t , o n the o t h e r hand, we push each line beyond the turn, to the point where it g o e s beyond our own e x p e r i e n c e : an extraordinary b r o a d e n i n g out that forces us to think a pure p e r c e p t i o n identical to t h e w h o l e of m a t t e r , a pure m e m o r y identical to t h e t o t a l i t y of t h e past. It is in this sense that Bergson on several o c c a s i o n s c o m p a r e s t h e approach o f philosophy t o t h e p r o c e dure o f i n f i n i t e s i m a l c a l c u l u s : W h e n w e have b e n e f i t t e d i n e x p e r i e n c e from a l i t t l e light w h i c h shows us a l i n e of articulation, all that remains is to e x t e n d it beyond e x p e r i e n c e just as m a t h e m a t i c i a n s r e c o n s t i t u t e , with t h e infinitely small e l e m e n t s that they p e r c e i v e o f t h e real c u r v e , " t h e c u r v e itsell s t r e t c h i n g o u t i n t o t h e darkness b e h i n d t h e m . "
2 3

I n anv c a s e ,

27

BERGSONISM

Bergson is n o t o n e of t h o s e p h i l o s o p h e r s w h o a s c r i b e s a properly human w i s d o m and e q u i l i b r i u m to philosophy. To o p e n us up to the inhuman and the superhuman (durations w h i c h are inferior o r s u p e r i o r t o o u r o w n ) , t o g o beyond t h e human c o n d i t i o n : T h i s is t h e meaning of philosophy, in so far as our c o n d i t i o n c o n d e m n s us to live a m o n g badly analyzed c o m p o s i t e s , and t o b e badly analyzed c o m p o s i t e s o u r s e l v e s .
24

But this broadening o u t , or even this going-beyond does not c o n s i s t in g o i n g beyond e x p e r i e n c e toward c o n c e p t s . For c o n c e p t s only define, i n t h e Kantian manner, t h e c o n d i t i o n s o f all p o s s i b l e e x p e r i e n c e in g e n e r a l . H e r e , on t h e o t h e r h a n d , it is a case of real e x p e r i e n c e in all its p e c u l i a r i t i e s . And if we m u s t b r o a d e n it, or e v e n go b e y o n d it, this is o n l y in o r d e r to find t h e a r t i c u l a t i o n s o n w h i c h t h e s e p e c u l i a r i t i e s d e p e n d . S o that t h e c o n d i t i o n s o f e x p e r i e n c e are less d e t e r m i n e d i n c o n c e p t s than in pure p e r c e p t s .
2 5

And, w h i l e t h e s e p e r c e p t s t h e m s e l v e s

are u n i t e d in a c o n c e p t , it is a c o n c e p t m o d e l e d on t h e t h i n g itself, w h i c h o n l y suits that thing, and w h i c h , in this s e n s e , is no b r o a d e r than what it m u s t a c c o u n t for. F o r w h e n we have followed e a c h o f t h e " l i n e s " b e y o n d t h e turn i n e x p e r i e n c e , we must also rediscover t h e point at which they intersect again, w h e r e t h e d i r e c t i o n s c r o s s and w h e r e t h e t e n d e n c i e s t h a t differ in kind link t o g e t h e r again to give rise to t h e t h i n g as we k n o w it. ft m i g h t be t h o u g h t that n o t h i n g is easier, and that e x p e r i e n c e i t s e l f has already given us this p o i n t . But it is n o t as s i m p l e as that. After we have followed t h e lines of d i v e r g e n c e beyond the turn, t h e s e lines m u s t intersect again, not at t h e point from w h i c h we started, but rather at a virtual point, at a virtual i m a g e of t h e point of d e p a r t u r e , w h i c h is itself l o c a t e d beyond t h e turn in e x p e r i e n c e ; and w h i c h finally gives us the sufficient reason of t h e thing, t h e sufficient reason of t h e c o m p o s i t e , the

28

INTUITION

AS

METHOD

sufficient reason of t h e p o i n t of d e p a r t u r e . So that t h e e x p r e s sion " b e y o n d t h e d e c i s i v e t u r n " has t w o m e a n i n g s : First, i t d e n o t e s t h e m o m e n t when t h e lines, setting out from an uncertain c o m m o n point given in e x p e r i e n c e , diverge increasingly a c c o r d i n g to t h e differences in kind. T h e n , it d e n o t e s a n o t h e r m o m e n t w h e n t h e s e lines c o n v e r g e again t o give u s this t i m e t h e virtual image o r t h e d i s t i n c t reason o f t h e c o m m o n p o i n t . Turn and r e t u r n . D u a l i s m is t h e r e f o r e o n l y a m o m e n t , w h i c h must lead to t h e re-formation of a m o n i s m . T h i s is why, after t h e b r o a d e n i n g o u t , a final narrowing follows, just as integrat i o n follows d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n . " W e have alluded e l s e w h e r e t o t h o s e ' l i n e s o f fact," e a c h o n e i n d i c a t i n g but t h e d i r e c t i o n o f truth, b e c a u s e it d o e s not go far e n o u g h : Truth itself, however, will be r e a c h e d if t w o of t h e m can be p r o l o n g e d to t h e point where they intersect I n o u r o p i n i o n this m e t h o d o f inter(

s e c t i o n is t h e only o n e that can bring a b o u t a decisive advance in metaphysics."


26

T h e r e are, t h e r e f o r e , t w o s u c c e s s i v e turns

in e x p e r i e n c e as it w e r e , b o t h in a reverse d i r e c t i o n : T h e y c o n s t i t u t e what Bergson c a l l s precision in philosophy.

Hence, a C O M P L E M E N T A R Y R U L E to the second rule: The real is not only that which is cut out fse decoupe) according to natural articulations or differences in kind; it is also that which intersects again Ise

recoupe) along paths converging toward the same ideal or virtual point.

T h e p a r t i c u l a r f u n c t i o n o f this rule i s t o show how a p r o b l e m , when it is properly stated, tends to be solved of its o w n a c c o r d . For e x a m p l e , still in the lirst c h a p t e r of Matter and Memory, the problem of memory is c o r r e c t l y stated, s i n c e , starting from the p e r c e p t i o n - r e c o l l e c t i o n c o m p o s i t e , w e divide this c o m p o s i t e into t w o divergent and e x p a n d e d d i r e c t i o n s w h i c h c o r r e s p o n d

29

BERGSONISM

to a true d i f f e r e n c e in kind b e t w e e n soul and body, spirit and m a t t e r . But w e c a n only reach t h e s o l u t i o n t o t h e p r o b l e m b y narrowing: W h e n we attain t h e original point at w h i c h t h e t w o divergent d i r e c t i o n s converge again, the p r e c i s e point at w h i c h r e c o l l e c t i o n inserts i t s e l f i n t o p e r c e p t i o n , t h e virtual point that is like the reflection and t h e reason of the departure point. T h u s t h e problem of soul and body, of matter and spirit, is only solved by an e x t r e m e narrowing in w h i c h Bergson shows how t h e lines o f o b j e c t i v i t y and o f s u b j e c t i v i t y , t h e lines o f e x t e r n a l o b s e r vation and of internal e x p e r i e n c e , must c o n v e r g e at t h e end ol t h e i r different processes, all t h e way to t h e case of a p h a s i a .
27

Bergson s h o w s , similarly, that t h e p r o b l e m o f t h e i m m o r tality o f t h e soul tends t o b e solved b y t h e c o n v e r g e n c e o f t w o very different l i n e s : that o f a n e x p e r i e n c e o f m e m o r y and that o f a q u i t e different, m y s t i c a l , e x p e r i e n c e .
2 8

T h e p r o b l e m s that

are unraveled at t h e point at w h i c h three lines of facts c o n v e r g e are even m o r e c o m p l e x : S u c h i s t h e nature o f c o n s c i o u s n e s s in t h e first c h a p t e r of Mind-Energy. It should be n o t e d that this m e t h o d of i n t e r s e c t i o n forms a g e n u i n e p r o b a b i l i s m : bach line defines a p r o b a b i l i t y .
29

But it is a qualitative p r o b a b i l i s m , lines

of fact b e i n g q u a l i t a t i v e l y d i s t i n c t . In t h e i r d i v e r g e n c e , in the d i s a r t i c u l a t i o n o f t h e real t h a t they b r o u g h t a b o u t a c c o r d i n g to t h e differences in k i n d , t h e y already c o n s t i t u t e d a s u p e r i o r e m p i r i c i s m , c a p a b l e of stating p r o b l e m s and of g o i n g b e y o n d e x p e r i e n c e toward c o n c r e t e c o n d i t i o n s . I n t h e i r c o n v e r g e n c e , in the intersection of the real to w h i c h they p r o c e e d , they now define a superior probabilism, o n e capable of solving p r o b l e m s and o f b r i n g i n g t h e c o n d i t i o n b a c k t o t h e c o n d i t i o n e d s o that no distance remains between them.

30

INTUITION

AS

METHOD

I HIRD

R U L E : State problems and solve them in terms of time rather

than

of

space.

50

T h i s rule gives t h e "fundamental m e a n i n g " of i n t u i t i o n : Intuit i o n presupposes d u r a t i o n , it c o n s i s t s in t h i n k i n g in t e r m s of duration.


11

We can only understand it by returning to t h e move-

m e n t of t h e division d e t e r m i n i n g t h e differences in k i n d . At lirst sight it would s e e m that a difference in kind is established between t w o things, or rather between t w o t e n d e n c i e s . This is t r u e , b u t o n l y superficially. L e t us c o n s i d e r t h e p r i n c i p a l Bergsonian division: that b e t w e e n duration and s p a c e . All t h e o t h e r d i v i s i o n s , all t h e o t h e r dualisms involve it, d e r i v e from it, or result in it. Now, we c a n n o t s i m p l y c o n f i n e o u r s e l v e s to affirming a difference in kind b e t w e e n duration and space. The division o c c u r s b e t w e e n ( I ) duration, w h i c h " t e n d s " for its part t o take o n o r b e a r all t h e d i f f e r e n c e s i n k i n d ( b e c a u s e i t i s e n d o w e d w i t h t h e p o w e r of qualitatively varying w i t h itself), and ( 2 ) s p a c e , w h i c h never presents anything but differences o f d e g r e e ( s i n c e i t i s q u a n t i t a t i v e h o m o g e n e i t y ) . T h e r e i s thus not a d i f f e r e n c e in kind b e t w e e n t h e t w o halves of t h e division; t h e q u a l i t a t i v e d i f f e r e n c e i s e n t i r e l y o n o n e side. W h e n we divide s o m e t h i n g up a c c o r d i n g to its natural a r t i c u l a t i o n s (as w i t h p r o p o r t i o n s and figures that vary g r e a t l y from c a s e to c a s e ) , we have: on t h e o n e hand, the aspect of space, by w h i c h the thing can only ever dilfer in d e g r e e from o t h e r things and

from

itself ( a u g m e n t a t i o n , d i m i n u t i o n ) ; and on t h e o t h e r hand,

t h e aspect of duration, by w h i c h t h e thing differs in kind from all o t h e r s and from itself ( a l t e r a t i o n ) . lake a l u m p of sugar: It has a spatial c o n f i g u r a t i o n . But il we approach it from that angle, all we will ever grasp are differences in d e g r e e b e t w e e n that sugar and any o t h e r thing. But

BERGSONISM

it also has a duration, a r h y t h m of duration, a way of b e i n g in t i m e that is at least partially revealed in t h e p r o c e s s of its dissolving, and that shows h o w this sugar differs in kind not only from o t h e r things, but lirst and foremost from itself. T h i s alteration, which is one with t h e essence or t h e substance of a thing, is what we grasp when we c o n c e i v e of it in t e r m s of D u r a t i o n . In this respect, Bergson's famous formulation, "I must wait until t h e sugar d i s s o l v e s " has a still b r o a d e r m e a n i n g than is given to it by its c o n t e x t .
3 2

It signilies that my o w n duration, s u c h

as I live it in t h e i m p a t i e n c e of waiting, for e x a m p l e , serves to reveal o t h e r durations that b e a t to o t h e r r h y t h m s , that differ in kind from m i n e . D u r a t i o n is always t h e l o c a t i o n and t h e e n v i r o n m e n t of differences in kind; it is even t h e i r totality and m u l t i p l i c i t y . T h e r e are no differences in kind e x c e p t in durat i o n w h i l e s p a c e i s n o t h i n g o t h e r than t h e l o c a t i o n , t h e e n v i r o n m e n t , t h e t o t a l i t y of differences in d e g r e e . Perhaps w e n o w have t h e m e a n s t o resolve t h e m o s t general o f m e t h o d o l o g i c a l q u e s t i o n s . W h e n P l a t o formulated his m e t h o d of division, he t o o intended to divide a c o m p o s i t e into t w o halves, or along several lines. B u t t h e w h o l e p r o b l e m lay in k n o w i n g h o w to c h o o s e t h e right half: W h y was what we were l o o k i n g for on o n e side r a t h e r than on t h e o t h e r ? Divis i o n c o u l d t h e r e f o r e b e c r i t i c i z e d for n o t b e i n g a g e n u i n e m e t h o d s i n c e it lacked a " m i d d l e t e r m " and still d e p e n d e d on an inspiration. In Bergsonism, the difficulty seems to disappear. For b v dividing t h e c o m p o s i t e a c c o r d i n g t o t w o t e n d e n c i e s , with only o n e showing t h e way in w h i c h a thing varies qualitatively in t i m e , Bergson effectively gives h i m s e l f t h e m e a n s of c h o o s i n g t h e " r i g h t s i d e " in each c a s e ; that of t h e e s s e n c e . In s h o r t , i n t u i t i o n has b e c o m e m e t h o d , or rather m e t h o d has b e e n r e c o n c i l e d w i t h t h e i m m e d i a t e . Intuition is not duration

32

INTUITION

AS

METHOD

itself. I n t u i t i o n is rather t h e m o v e m e n t by w h i c h we e m e r g e from our own duration, by which we make use of o u r own durat i o n t o affirm and i m m e d i a t e l y t o r e c o g n i z e t h e e x i s t e n c e o f o t h e r durations, above or below us. "Only t h e m e t h o d of which we are s p e a k i n g allows o n e to pass b e y o n d idealism as well as realism, to affirm t h e e x i s t e n c e of o b j e c t s b o t h inferior and s u p e r i o r to us, though n e v e r t h e l e s s , in a c e r t a i n s e n s e , interior to us O n e p e r c e i v e s any n u m b e r of durations, all very

dilfercnt from o n e another" (in fact the words inferior and superior should not mislead us, they denote differences in k i n d ) .
5 3

With-

out i n t u i t i o n as m e t h o d , duration would remain a s i m p l e psyc h o l o g i c a l e x p e r i e n c e . Conversely, if it did not c o i n c i d e w i t h d u r a t i o n , i n t u i t i o n would n o t b e c a p a b l e o f carrying o u t t h e program that c o r r e s p o n d s to the preceding rules: t h e d e t e r m i nation of true p r o b l e m s or of g e n u i n e d i f f e r e n c e s in kind L e t us return, t h e r e f o r e , to t h e illusion of false p r o b l e m s . W h e r e d o e s it c o m e from and in what sense is it i n e v i t a b l e ? Bergson c a l l s into q u e s t i o n t h e o r d e r of n e e d s , of a c t i o n , and of s o c i e t y that predisposes us to retain only what i n t e r e s t s us in things; t h e o r d e r of i n t e l l i g e n c e , in its natural affinity w i t h s p a c e ; and t h e o r d e r of general ideas that tends to o b s c u r e diff e r e n c e s in k i n d . Or rather t h e r e are very varied g e n e r a l ideas that t h e m s e l v e s differ i n k i n d , s o m e r e f e r r i n g t o o b j e c t i v e r e s e m b l a n c e s i n living b o d i e s , o t h e r s t o o b j e c t i v e i d e n t i t i e s in i n a n i m a t e b o d i e s , and o t h e r s again to s u b j e c t i v e d e m a n d s in m a n u f a c t u r e d o b j e c t s . But we are q u i c k to form a general idea of all general ideas and to dissolve d i f f e r e n c e s in kind in this e l e m e n t of g e n e r a l i t y .
34

" W e make differences in kind m e l t


3 5

into the homogeneity of the space which subtends t h e m . "

It is true that this c o l l e c t i o n of reasons is still p s y c h o l o g i c a l and inseparable from o u r o w n c o n d i t i o n . W e m u s t take i n t o

33

BERGSONISM

c o n s i d e r a t i o n m o r e profound reasons. F o r w h i l e t h e idea of a h o m o g e n e o u s s p a c e i m p l i e s a sort of a r t i f i c e or s y m b o l separating us from reality, it is n e v e r t h e l e s s t h e c a s e that m a t t e r and e x t e n s i t y are realities, t h e m s e l v e s prefiguring t h e o r d e r of s p a c e . A l t h o u g h it is i l l u s i o n , space is not m e r e l y g r o u n d e d in o u r nature, but in t h e nature of t h i n g s . M a t t e r is effectively t h e " a s p e c t " b y w h i c h things tend t o present t o e a c h o t h e r , and to us, only differences in degree. E x p e r i e n c e gives us c o m p o s i t e s . N o w t h e state o f t h e c o m p o s i t e d o e s not c o n s i s t onlv in u n i t i n g e l e m e n t s that differ in kind, b u t in u n i t i n g t h e m in c o n d i t i o n s such that these c o n s t i t u e n t differences in kind cannot be grasped in it. In s h o r t , t h e r e is a p o i n t ol view, or rather a state ol t h i n g s , in w h i c h differences in kind can no longer appear. T h e retrograde movement of t h e true is not merely an illusion about t h e true, but belongs to t h e true itsell. Bergson adds (dividing the c o m p o s i t e " r e l i g i o n " into t w o d i r e c t i o n s static and d y n a m i c r e l i g i o n ) that in p l a c i n g o u r s e l v e s at a c e r t a i n standpoint " w e should p e r c e i v e a series of transitions and, as it were, differences of d e g r e e , w h e r e a s really t h e r e is a radical difference in k i n d . "
1 6

T h e illusion, therefore, does not result onlv from our nature, but from t h e world in w h i c h we live, from t h e side of being that manifests i t s e l f to us in t h e lirst p l a c e . Bergson e v o l v e d , in a c e r t a i n s e n s e , from t h e b e g i n n i n g to t h e end ol his w o r k . T h e t w o m a j o r aspects ol his evolution are t h e following: Durat i o n s e e m e d to him to be less and less r e d u c i b l e to a p s y c h o logical e x p e r i e n c e and b e c a m e instead t h e variable e s s e n c e of things, providing the t h e m e of a c o m p l e x ontology. But, simultaneously, s p a c e s e e m e d to him to be less and less r e d u c i b l e to a fiction separating us from this psychological reality, rather, it was itself g r o u n d e d in b e i n g and e x p r e s s e d o n e of its t w o

INTUITION

AS

METHOD

s l o p e s , o n e o f its t w o d i r e c t i o n s . T h e a b s o l u t e , said B e r g s o n , has t w o sides (aspects): spirit imbued with metaphysics and matt e r k n o w n by s c i e n c e .
5 7

But t h e point is that s c i e n c e is not a

relative k n o w l e d g e , a s y m b o l i c discipline that c o m m e n d s itsell o n l y b y its s u c c e s s e s o r its e f f e c t i v e n e s s ; s c i e n c e i s part o f ontology, it is o n e ol o n t o l o g y ' s t w o halves. T h e A b s o l u t e is d i l f e r e n c e , but difference has t w o facets, differences in d e g r e e and differences in kind. It can, t h e r e f o r e , be seen that w h e n we grasp s i m p l e d i f f e r e n c e s in d e g r e e b e t w e e n t h i n g s , when s c i e n c e itself invites us to see t h e world in this way, we are again in an a b s o l u t e ( " W i t h m o d e r n physics m o r e and m o r e clearly revealing to us d i f f e r e n c e s in n u m b e r behind o u r dist i n c t i o n s o f quality ").
5 8

I t is, however, a n illusion. But i t

is only an illusion to t h e e x t e n t that we p r o j e c t t h e real landscape of t h e first s l o p e o n t o t h e o t h e r . If the illusion can be repressed it is b e c a u s e of that o t h e r s l o p e , that ol d u r a t i o n , which gives us differences in kind corresponding in the final instance to differences of proportion as they appear in space, and already in m a t t e r and e x t e n s i o n .

Thus intuition does form a m e t h o d with its three ( o r five) rules. T h i s is an essentially problemati/.ing m e t h o d (a c r i t i q u e of false p r o b l e m s and t h e i n v e n t i o n o f g e n u i n e o n e s ) , differentiating (carvings out and intersections), temporali/ing (thinking in terms of d u r a t i o n ) . But how d o e s intuition presuppose duration, and how, on t h e o t h e r hand, d o e s it give duration a new e x t e n s i o n Irom t h e p o i n t of view of b e i n g and k n o w l e d g e ? T h i s is what remains t o b e d e t e r m i n e d .

IS

CHAPTER

II

Duration

as

Immediate

Datum

Wo shall a s s u m e that t h e reader is familiar w i t h t h e d e s c r i p t i o n of duration as p s y c h o l o g i c a l e x p e r i e n c e as it appears in lime and Iree Will and in t h e first pages of Creative Evolution: It is a case of" a " t r a n s i t i o n , " of a " c h a n g e , " a becoming, but it is a b e c o m i n g that e n d u r e s , a c h a n g e that is s u b s t a n c e itself. T h e reader will n o t e that Bergson has no difficulty in r e c o n c i l i n g the t w o fundamental characteristics of duration; c o n t i n u i t y and heterogeneity.
1

However, defined in this way, duration is not

m e r e l y lived e x p e r i e n c e ; it is also e x p e r i e n c e enlarged or even gone beyond; it is already a c o n d i t i o n of e x p e r i e n c e . For e x p e r i e n c e always gives us a c o m p o s i t e of space and duration. Pure duration offers us a s u c c e s s i o n that is purely internal, w i t h o u t e x t e r i o r i t y ; s p a c e , an e x t e r i o r i t y w i t h o u t s u c c e s s i o n (in effect, this is t h e m e m o r y of t h e past; t h e r e c o l l e c t i o n of what has happened in s p a c e would already imply a m i n d that e n d u r e s ) . I he t w o c o m b i n e , and into this c o m b i n a t i o n space i n t r o d u c e s the lorms ol its e x t r i n s i c d i s t i n c t i o n s or ol its h o m o g e n e o u s "iid d i s c o n t i n u o u s " s e c t i o n s , " while duration c o n t r i b u t e s an internal succession that is both h e t e r o g e n e o u s and c o n t i n u o u s . We are thus able to " p r e s e r v e " t h e instantaneous states of space

37

BERGSONISM

and to j u x t a p o s e t h e m in a sort of " a u x i l i a r y s p a c e " : But we also introduce extrinsic distinctions into our duration; we d e c o m p o s e it into external parts and align it in a sort of h o m o g e n e o u s t i m e . A c o m p o s i t e o f this kind ( w h e r e h o m o g e n e o u s t i m e merges w i t h auxiliary s p a c e ) must be divided up. Even before Bergson had b e c o m e c o n s c i o u s of intuition as m e t h o d , h e had t o face t h e task o f dividing u p t h e c o m p o s i t e . S h o u l d it be divided along t w o pure d i r e c t i o n s ? So long as Bergson d o e s not e x p l i c i t l y pose t h e p r o b l e m of an o n t o l o g i c a l origin ol s p a c e , it is rather a c a s e of dividing t h e c o m p o s i t e in t w o d i r e c t i o n s , o n l y o n e o f w h i c h ( d u r a t i o n ) i s pure, t h e o t h e r ( s p a c e ) i s t h e i m p u r i t y that d e n a t u r e s i t .
2

D u r a t i o n will b e

attained as " i m m e d i a t e d a t u m " b e c a u s e it is a s s o c i a t e d with t h e right s i d e , t h e g o o d side o f t h e c o m p o s i t e . T h e i m p o r t a n t thing h e r e i s that t h e d e c o m p o s i t i o n o f t h e c o m p o s i t e reveals to us t w o types of m u l t i p l i c i t y . O n e is repr e s e n t e d by space ( o r rather, if all t h e n u a n c e s are taken i n t o account, by the impure combination of homogeneous t i m e ) : It is a multiplicity of exteriority, of simultaneity, of juxtapos i t i o n , of order, of q u a n t i t a t i v e d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n , oi difference in degree; it is a n u m e r i c a l m u l t i p l i c i t y , discontinuous and actual.

T h e o t h e r t y p e of m u l t i p l i c i t y appears in pure d u r a t i o n : It is a n internal m u l t i p l i c i t y o f s u c c e s s i o n , o f fusion, o f organizat i o n , o f h e t e r o g e n e i t y , o f q u a l i t a t i v e d i s c r i m i n a t i o n , o r o f difference in kind; it is a virtual and continuous m u l t i p l i c i t y
5

that

cannot be reduced to numbers.


* *

Too little i m p o r t a n c e has b e e n attached to t h e use of this word "multiplicity." It is not part of the traditional vocabulary at all this is particularly not t h e c a s e when d e n o t i n g a continuum. We

DURATION

AS

IMMEDIATE

DATUM

shall s e e not only that it is fundamental in t e r m s of t h e c o n s t r u c t i o n ol t h e m e t h o d , but also that, even at this early stage, it t e l l s us a b o u t the p r o b l e m s that appear in Time and Tree Will. ( T h e s e will b e d e v e l o p e d l a t e r ) . T h e word " m u l t i p l i c i t y " i s not t h e r e as a vague noun c o r r e s p o n d i n g to t h e w e l l - k n o w n p h i l o s o p h i c a l n o t i o n ol t h e M u l t i p l e in g e n e r a l . In fact for Bergson it is not a question of opposing the Multiple to the One hut, on the contrary, oj distinguishing two types of multiplicity. Now, this ^

problem goes back to a scholar of genius, G . B . R . R i e m a n n , a physicist and m a t h e m a t i c i a n . R i e m a n n defined as " m u l t i p l i c i t i e s " those things that c o u l d be d e t e r m i n e d in t e r m s ol t h e i r d i m e n s i o n s o r t h e i r i n d e p e n d e n t variables. H e d i s t i n g u i s h e d discrete multiplicities and continuous multiplicities. The former c o n -

tain t h e p r i n c i p l e o f t h e i r o w n m e t r i c s ( t h e measure o f o n e o f t h e i r parts b e i n g given b y t h e n u m b e r o f e l e m e n t s t h e y c o n t a i n ) . T h e l a t t e r found a m e t r i c a l p r i n c i p l e in s o m e t h i n g e l s e , even if only in p h e n o m e n a unfolding in t h e m or in t h e forces a c t i n g in t h e m . It is c l e a r that B e r g s o n , as a p h i l o s o p h e r , was well aware of R i e m a n n ' s g e n e r a l p r o b l e m s . Not o n l y his interest in m a t h e m a t i c s p o i n t s toward this, but, m o r e specifically, Duration and Simultaneity is a b o o k in w h i c h Bergson o p p o s e s his o w n d o c t r i n e t o t h e t h e o r y o f R e l a t i v i t y , w h i c h i s d i r e c t l y d e p e n d e n t on R i e m a n n . If o u r hypothesis is c o r r e c t , this b o o k loses its d o u b l y strange character. In t h e lirst p l a c e , it d o e s not appear abruptly and without explanation. Rather, it brings into t h e o p e n a c o n f r o n t a t i o n that until t h e n , had b e e n i m p l i c i t b e t w e e n R i e m a n n i a n and B e r g s o n i a n i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s o f c o n tinuous m u l t i p l i c i t i e s . S e c o n d , Bergson's renunciation and c o n d e m n a t i o n of this b o o k is perhaps due to t h e fact that he did not feel a b l e to pursue t h e m a t h e m a t i c a l i m p l i c a t i o n s of a theory of m u l t i p l i c i t i e s . He had, in fact, profoundly c h a n g e d t h e
4

39

BERGSONISM

direction ol the Riemannian distinction. Continuous multiplicities s e e m e d t o him t o b e l o n g essentially t o t h e sphere o f durat i o n . In t h i s way, lor B e r g s o n , d u r a t i o n was n o t s i m p l y t h e i n d i v i s i b l e , n o r was it t h e n o n m e a s u r a b l e . R a t h e r , it was that w h i c h divided only by c h a n g i n g in k i n d , that w h i c h was susc e p t i b l e to m e a s u r e m e n t o n l v by varying its m e t r i c a l principle at each stage ol the division. Bergson did not confine himsell to o p p o s i n g a p h i l o s o p h i c a l vision of duration to a s c i e n t i f i c c o n c e p t i o n o l space but t o o k t h e p r o b l e m i n t o t h e s p h e r e o f t h e t w o kinds of multiplicity. I le thought that t h e m u l t i p l i c i t y p r o p e r to duration had, lor its part, a " p r e c i s i o n " as g r e a t as that of s c i e n c e ; m o r e o v e r , that it should react upon s c i e n c e and o p e n up a path lor it that was not necessarily t h e s a m e as that of R i e m a n n and E i n s t e i n . T h i s is why we must a t t a c h so m u c h i m p o r t a n c e to the way in w h i c h B e r g s o n , b o r r o w i n g the n o t i o n of m u l t i p l i c i t y , gives it renewed range and d i s t r i b u t i o n . I low is t h e qualitative and c o n t i n u o u s m u l t i p l i c i t y ol durat i o n d e l i n e d , i n o p p o s i t i o n t o q u a n t i t a t i v e o r n u m e r i c a l multiplicity? A difficult passage from Time and Tree Will is particularly significant in this r e s p e c t as it foreshadows t h e d e v e l o p m e n t s in Matter and Memory. It distinguishes the s u b j e c t i v e and the

o b j e c t i v e : " W e apply t h e t e r m s u b j e c t i v e to what s e e m s to Inc o m p l e t e l y and adequately k n o w n ; and t h e term o b j e c t i v e , to what is known in such a way that a c o n s t a n t l y increasing numb e r ol new impressions c o u l d be substituted lor t h e idea w h i c h we actually have ol i t . " ' II we c o n f i n e ourselves to t h e s e formulations, we run t h e risk ol misunderstandings, w h i c h are fortunately dispelled by the c o n t e x t . Bergson in fact specifies that an object can be divided up in an infinity of ways. Now, even before t h e s e divisions are m a d e , they are grasped by t h o u g h t as possible, without anything changing in the total aspect ol the

40

DURATION

AS

IMMEDIATE

DATUM

o b j e c t . I hey are t h e r e f o r e a l r e a d y v i s i b l e i n t h e i m a g e o f the o b j e c t : I von when not realized ( b u t simply p o s s i b l e ) , they are actually perceived, or at least perceptible in principle. " T h i s actual, not m e r e l y virtual, a p p e r c e p t i o n of subdivisions in t h e undivided is precisely what we call o b j e c t i v i t y . " Bergson means that t h e o b j e c t i v e is that which has no virtualitv w h e t h e r realized or n o t , w h e t h e r p o s s i b l e or real, e v e r y t h i n g is actual in the o b j e c t i v e . The first c h a p t e r ol Matter and Memory develops

this t h e m e m o r e clearly: M a t t e r has n e i t h e r virtualitv n o r hidden power, and that is why we can assimilate it to " t h e image." No d o u b t t h e r e can be more in m a t t e r than in t h e image we have of it, but t h e r e c a n n o t be a n y t h i n g e l s e in it, of a different k i n d . And i n a n o t h e r passage B e r g s o n praises B e r k e l e y lor having assimilated body and idea, precisely because m a t t e r "has no interior, no u n d e r n e a t h , . . . hides nothing, c o n t a i n s n o t h i n g . . . possesses n e i t h e r power nor virtualitv ol any k i n d . . . is spread out as m e r e surface a n d . . . i s no m o r e than what it presents to us at any given m o m e n t . "
7 6

In s h o r t , " o b j e c t " and " o b j e c t i v e " d e n o t e not only what is divided, but w h a t , in dividing, d o e s n o t c h a n g e in k i n d . It is thus what divides by differences in d e g r e e . T h e o b j e c t is characterized by the perfect equivalence of the divided and t h e divisions, o f n u m b e r and u n i t . I n this s e n s e , t h e o b j e c t w i l l b e called a " n u m e r i c a l m u l t i p l i c i t y . " f o r n u m b e r , and primarily (In- a r i t h m e t i c a l unit itsell, is the m o d e l ol that w h i c h divides without changing in kind. T h i s is t h e s a m e as saying that numb e r has o n l y d i f f e r e n c e s i n d e g r e e , o r t h a t its d i f f e r e n c e s , w h e t h e r realized or not, are always actual in it. " T h e units by m e a n s of w h i c h a r i t h m e t i c forms n u m b e r s are provisional units w h i c h can b e subdivided w i t h o u t l i m i t , a n d . . . e a c h o l t h e m is t h e s u m ol fractional q u a n t i t i e s , as small and as n u m e r o u s
8

BERGSONISM

as we like to i m a g i n e

While- all m u l t i p l i c a t i o n implies t h e

possibility ol treating any n u m b e r whatever as a provisional unit that can be added to i t s e l l , c o n v e r s e l y t h e units in t h e i r turn are true n u m b e r s w h i c h are as big as we l i k e , but are regarded a s provisionally i n d i v i s i b l e lor t h e p u r p o s e o f c o m p o u n d i n g t h e m with o n e another. Now, the very admission that it is poss i b l e to divide the unit i n t o as many parts as we l i k e , shows that we regard it as e x t e n d e d . ' " ' On the o t h e r hand, what is a qualitative m u l t i p l i c i t y ? W h a t is t h e s u b j e c t or t h e s u b j e c t i v e ? Bergson gives t h e following e x a m p l e : "A c o m p l e x feeling will c o n t a i n a fairly large numb e r of s i m p l e e l e m e n t s ; b u t as long as t h e s e e l e m e n t s do n o t stand o u t w i t h perfect c l e a r n e s s , we c a n n o t say that they were c o m p l e t e l y r e a l i z e d , and as s o o n as c o n s c i o u s n e s s has a dist i n c t p e r c e p t i o n o f t h e m , t h e psychic state w h i c h results from t h e i r synthesis will have c h a n g e d lor this very r e a s o n . "
10

(For

e x a m p l e , a c o m p l e x of love and hatred is actualized in c o n s c i o u s n e s s , but hatred and love b e c o m e c o n s c i o u s u n d e r such c o n d i t i o n s that they differ in kind from o n e a n o t h e r and also differ in kind from t h e u n c o n s c i o u s c o m p l e x ) . It would t h e r e fore be a serious mistake to t h i n k that duration was simply the indivisible, although for c o n v e n i e n c e , Bergson often e x p r e s s e s h i m s e l f in this way. In reality, duration divides up and d o e s so constantly: That is why it is a multiplicity. But it does not divideup w i t h o u t c h a n g i n g in k i n d , it c h a n g e s in kind in t h e proc e s s of d i v i d i n g up: T h i s is why it is a n o n n u m c r i c a l m u l t i plicity, w h e r e we can speak ol " i n d i v i s i b l e s " at e a c h stage of t h e division. T h e r e is other w i t h o u t t h e r e b e i n g several; numb e r e x i s t s only p o t e n t i a l l y . " I n o t h e r words, t h e s u b j e c t i v e , or duration, is t h e virtual. To be m o r e p r e c i s e , it is t h e virtual insofar as it is a c t u a l i z e d , in t h e c o u r s e of b e i n g a c t u a l i z e d , it

42

DURATION

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IMMEDIATE

DATUM

is inseparable from the m o v e m e n t of its actualization. For actualization c o m e s a b o u t t h r o u g h d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n , t h r o u g h diverg e n t lines, and c r e a t e s so many differences in kind by virtue of its own m o v e m e n t . Everything is actual in a n u m e r i c a l mult i p l i c i t y ; everything is n o t " r e a l i z e d , " b u t everything t h e r e is a c t u a l . T h e r e are n o r e l a t i o n s h i p s o t h e r than t h o s e b e t w e e n a c t u a l s , and n o differences o t h e r than t h o s e i n d e g r e e . O n t h e o t h e r hand, a n o n n u m e r i c a l m u l t i p l i c i t y by w h i c h duration or subjectivity is defined, plunges into a n o t h e r d i m e n s i o n , which is no l o n g e r spatial and is purely t e m p o r a l : It moves from t h e virtual to its a c t u a l i z a t i o n , it a c t u a l i z e s itself by c r e a t i n g lines of differentiation that c o r r e s p o n d to its differences in k i n d . A m u l t i p l i c i t y o f this kind has, essentially, t h e t h r e e p r o p e r t i e s ol c o n t i n u i t y , h e t e r o g e n e i t y , and s i m p l i c i t y . In this i n s t a n c e Bergson d o e s n o t have any real difficulty in r e c o n c i l i n g hete r o g e n e i t y and c o n t i n u i t y . T h e aforementioned passage from Time and Free Will, wherein Bergson distinguishes the s u b j e c t i v e and the o b j e c t i v e , appears to be all t h e m o r e i m p o r t a n t insofar as it is t h e first to introd u c e i n d i r e c t l y t h e n o t i o n o f t h e virtual. T h i s n o t i o n o f t h e virtual w i l l c o m e t o play a n i n c r e a s i n g l y i m p o r t a n t r o l e i n Bergsonian p h i l o s o p h y .
12

For, as we shall s e e , t h e s a m e author

w h o r e j e c t s t h e c o n c e p t oi possibility reserving a use for it only in relation to m a t t e r and to c l o s e d s y s t e m s , but always seeing it as t h e s o u r c e of all kinds of false p r o b l e m s is also h e w h o d e v e l o p s t h e n o t i o n o f t h e virtual t o its h i g h e s t d e g r e e and bases a w h o l e p h i l o s o p h y of m e m o r y and life on it. A very i m p o r t a n t aspect of t h e n o t i o n of m u l t i p l i c i t y is t h e way in w h i c h it is d i s t i n g u i s h e d from a t h e o r y of t h e O n e and t h e M u l t i p l e . T h e n o t i o n of m u l t i p l i c i t y saves us from thinking i n t e r m s o f " O n e and M u l t i p l e . " T h e r e are many t h e o r i e s

43

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i n philosophy that c o m b i n e t h e o n e and t h e m u l t i p l e . T h e y share the characteristic of c l a i m i n g to r e c o n s t r u c t the real with general ideas. We are t o l d that t h e S e l f is o n e ( t h e s i s ) and it is m u l t i p l e ( a n t i t h e s i s ) , t h e n i t i s t h e unity o f t h e m u l t i p l e (synt h e s i s ) . O r e l s e w e are t o l d that t h e O n e i s already m u l t i p l e , that B e i n g passes into n o n b e i n g and p r o d u c e s b e c o m i n g . T h e passages w h e r e Bergson c o n d e m n s this m o v e m e n t o l abstract thought are among the finest in his oeuvre. To Bergson, it seems that in this type of dialectical m e t h o d , o n e begins with c o n c e p t s that, like baggy c l o t h e s , are m u c h t o o b i g . " T h e O n e i n general, t h e m u l t i p l e in g e n e r a l , n o n b e i n g in general In such

c a s e s t h e real is r e c o m p o s e d w i t h a b s t r a c t s ; but ol what use is a d i a l e c t i c that b e l i e v e s i t s e l f to be r e u n i t e d with t h e real when it c o m p e n s a t e s lor t h e i n a d e q u a c y of a c o n c e p t that is t o o broad o r t o o general b y i n v o k i n g t h e o p p o s i t e c o n c e p t , w h i c h i s n o less broad and general? T h e c o n c r e t e will n e v e r b e attained b y c o m b i n i n g t h e inadequacy o f o n e c o n c e p t w i t h t h e i n a d e q u a c y o l its o p p o s i t e . T h e s i n g u l a r w i l l n e v e r b e attained by c o r r e c t i n g a g e n e r a l i t y w i t h a n o t h e r generality. In all this, B e r g s o n clearly has in m i n d l l a m e l i n w h o s e Essai sur les elements principaux de la representation dates from 1 9 0 7 . Bergs o n i s m ' s i n c o m p a t i b i l i t y w i t h I l e g e l i a n i s m , indeed w i t h any d i a l e c t i c a l m e t h o d , is also e v i d e n t in t h e s e passages. Bergson criticizes the dialectic lor being a false movement, that is, a movem e n t o l t h e abstract c o n c e p t , w h i c h g o e s from o n e o p p o s i t e to the other only by means of i m p r e c i s i o n .
1 4

O n c e again t h e r e is a P l a t o n i c t o n e in B e r g s o n . P l a t o was t h e lirst to d e r i d e t h o s e w h o said " t h e O n e is m u l t i p l e and the m u l t i p l e o n e B e i n g is n o n b e i n g , " e t c . In e a c h c a s e he asked how, how main, when and where. " W h a t " unity of the m u l t i p l e

and " w h a t " m u l t i p l e o l t h e o n e ? " T h e c o m b i n a t i o n o l o p p o -

4-1

DURATION

AS

IMMEDIATE

DATUM

s i l c s tells us n o t h i n g ; it forms a net so slack that everything slips t h r o u g h . T h o s e m e t a p h o r s o l P l a t o a b o u t c a r v i n g and

t h e g o o d c o o k ( w h i c h Bergson likes s o m u c h ) c o r r e s p o n d t o Bergson's invocation ol t h e g o o d tailor and t h e well-fitted outlit. T h i s is what the precise c o n c e p t must be like. " W h a t really m a t t e r s to philosophy is to k n o w what unity, what m u l t i p l i c i t y , what reality s u p e r i o r to t h e abstract o n e and t h e abstract multiple is t h e m u l t i p l e unity ol t h e person Concepts...ordi-

narily go by pairs and represent t h e t w o o p p o s i t e s . T h e r e is scarcely any c o n c r e t e reality upon w h i c h o n e c a n n o t take t w o o p p o s i n g views at t h e same t i m e and that is c o n s e q u e n t l y not subsumed u n d e r t h e t w o antagonistic c o n c e p t s . I l e n c e a thesis and an a n t i t h e s i s w h i c h it would be vain for us to try l o g i c a l l y to r e c o n c i l e , lor the s i m p l e reason that never, w i t h c o n c e p t s or p o i n t s ol view, will you m a k e a t h i n g If I try to analyze

duration, that is, to resolve it i n t o ready-made c o n c e p t s , I am o b l i g e d by t h e very nature of t h e c o n c e p t and t h e analysis to take t w o opposing views of Juration in general, with w h i c h I shall then claim to r e c o m p o s e it. T h i s c o m b i n a t i o n can present neither a diversity ol d e g r e e s n o r a variety of forms: It is, or it is n o t . I shall say, for e x a m p l e , that t h e r e is, on t h e o n e hand, a multiplicity of s u c c e s s i v e s t a t e s ol c o n s c i o u s n e s s and, on t h e o t h e r hand, a unity w h i c h binds t h e m t o g e t h e r . D u r a t i o n will be the synthesis of this unity and multiplicity, but how this myst e r i o u s o p e r a t i o n can a d m i t of shades or d e g r e e s , 1 r e p e a t , is not q u i t e c l e a r . "
1 6

W h a t Bergson calls lor against the d i a l e c t i c , against a general c o n c e p t i o n ol o p p o s i t e s ( t h e O n e and t h e M u l t i p l e ) is an acute perception of t h e " w h a t " and t h e "how many," ol what he calls the " n u a n c e " or the potential number. Duration is o p p o s e d to b e c o m i n g p r e c i s e l y b e c a u s e it is a m u l t i p l i c i t y , a

45

BERGSONISM

type ol m u l t i p l i c i t y that is not r e d u c i b l e to an overly broad c o m b i n a t i o n i n w h i c h t h e o p p o s i t e s , t h e O n e and t h e M u l t i ple in general, only c o i n c i d e on c o n d i t i o n that they are grasped a t t h e e x t r e m e p o i n t o l t h e i r g e n e r a l i z a t i o n , e m p t y o l all " m e a s u r e " and of all real s u b s t a n c e . T h i s m u l t i p l i c i t y that is duration is not at all t h e s a m e thing as t h e m u l t i p l e , any m o r e than its s i m p l i c i t y is t h e s a m e as t h e O n e . Two forms of the negative are often distinguished: T h e negat i v e o f s i m p l e l i m i t a t i o n and t h e n e g a t i v e o f o p p o s i t i o n . W e are assured that the substitution of the s e c o n d lorm tor t h e first by Kant and t h e p o s t - K a n t i a n s was a r e v o l u t i o n in philosophy. It is all t h e m o r e r e m a r k a b l e that B e r g s o n , in his c r i t i q u e of the negative, c o n d e m n s both forms. Both seem to him to involve and to d e m o n s t r a t e t h e same inadequacy. For if we c o n sider negative n o t i o n s like disorder or nonbeing, t h e i r very c o n c e p t i o n (from t h e starting-point of being and order as t h e limit of a "deterioration" in whose interval all things are [analytically] i n c l u d e d ) a m o u n t s to t h e same thing as o u r c o n c e i v i n g of t h e m in o p p o s i t i o n to being and order, as forces that e x e r c i s e power and c o m b i n e w i t h t h e i r o p p o s i t e s t o p r o d u c e ( s y n t h e t i c a l l y ) all things. Bergson's c r i t i q u e is thus a d o u b l e o n e insofar as it c o n d e m n s , i n b o t h forms o f t h e negative, t h e s a m e i g n o r a n c e of differences in kind, w h i c h are s o m e t i m e s t r e a t e d as " d e t e r i o r a t i o n s , " s o m e t i m e s a s o p p o s i t i o n s . T h e heart o f B e r g s o n ' s p r o j e c t i s t o t h i n k d i f f e r e n c e s i n kind i n d e p e n d e n t l y o f all lorms ol negation: T h e r e are differences in being and vet nothing n e g a t i v e . N e g a t i o n always involves abstract c o n c e p t s that are m u c h t o o g e n e r a l . W h a t is, i n fact, t h e c o m m o n r o o t o f all n e g a t i o n ? We have already seen it. Instead of starting out from a difference in kind b e t w e e n t w o o r d e r s , from a differe n c e in kind b e t w e e n t w o b e i n g s , a general idea of o r d e r or

46

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IMMEDIATE

DATUM

being is c r e a t e d , w h i c h can no longer be t h o u g h t e x c e p t in o p p o s i t i o n to a n o n b e i n g in g e n e r a l , a d i s o r d e r in g e n e r a l , or else w h i c h c a n only be p o s i t e d as t h e starting p o i n t ol a d e t e r i o r a t i o n that leads us to d i s o r d e r in general or to n o n b e i n g in general. In any case, the question of difference in kind - " w h a t " order? " w h a t " being? has b e e n n e g l e c t e d , l i k e w i s e t h e difference in kind b e t w e e n t h e t w o types ol multiplicity has been n e g l e c t e d : T h u s a g e n e r a l idea ol t h e O n e is c r e a t e d and is c o m b i n e d w i t h its o p p o s i t e , t h e M u l t i p l e in general, to reconstruct all things from t h e standpoint ol t h e l o r c e o p p o s e d to t h e m u l t i p l e o r t o t h e d e t e r i o r a t i o n o f t h e O n e . I n fact, i t i s t h e c a t e g o r y o f m u l t i p l i c i t y , w i t h t h e d i f f e r e n c e i n kind b e t w e e n t w o types t h a t i t involves, w h i c h e n a b l e s u s t o c o n d e m n t h e m y s t i f i c a t i o n of a t h o u g h t that o p e r a t e s in t e r m s of t h e O n e and t h e M u l t i p l e . W e s e e , t h e r e f o r e , how all t h e c r i t i cal aspects of Bergsonian philosophy are part of a single t h e m e : a c r i t i q u e of t h e negative of limitation, of the negative of o p p o sition, of general ideas.

" I f w e analyze i n t h e s a m e way t h e c o n c e p t o f m o t i o n

"

l 7

In fact, m o v e m e n t as physical e x p e r i e n c e is itself a c o m p o s i t e : o n t h e o n e hand, t h e s p a c e traversed b y t h e m o v i n g o b j e c t , w h i c h forms an indefinitely divisible n u m e r i c a l m u l t i p l i c i t y , all of w h o s e parts - real or possible - are actual and differ only in d e g r e e ; on t h e o t h e r hand, pure m o v e m e n t , w h i c h is alteration, a virtual q u a l i t a t i v e m u l t i p l i c i t y , like t h e run of Achilles that is divisible into steps, but w h i c h changes qualitatively each t i m e that it d i v i d e s .
18

Bergson discovers that b e n e a t h t h e

local transfer t h e r e is always a c o n v e y a n c e of a n o t h e r n a t u r e . And what s e e m e d from outside to be a numerical part, a c o m -

47

BERGSONISM

portent of t h e run, turns out to h e , e x p e r i e n c e d from inside, an o b s t a c l e a v o i d e d . But in d o u b l i n g t h e p s y c h o l o g i c a l e x p e r i e n c e of duration w i t h t h e physical e x p e r i e n c e o f m o v e m e n t , o n e p r o b l e m b e c o m e s pressing. The q u e s t i o n " D o e x t e r n a l things e n d u r e ? "

r e m a i n e d i n d e t e r m i n a t e from t h e standpoint of p s y c h o l o g i c a l e x p e r i e n c e . M o r e o v e r , in Time and Free Will, Bergson invoked on two occasions an " i n e x p r e s s i b l e , " an " i n c o m p r e h e n s i b l e " reason " W h a t duration is t h e r e e x i s t i n g o u t s i d e us? The present only, or, if we prefer t h e expression, simultaneity. No doubt e x t e r n a l things c h a n g e , b u t t h e i r m o m e n t s d o n o t succeed (in t h e ordinary s e n s e of t h e w o r d ) o n e a n o t h e r , e x c e p t for a c o n s c i o u s n e s s that keeps t h e m in m i n d H e n c e we must not

say that e x t e r n a l things endure, but rather that t h e r e is s o m e i n e x p r e s s i b l e reason in t h e m w h i c h a c c o u n t s for o u r inability t o e x a m i n e t h e m a t s u c c e s s i v e m o m e n t s o f o u r own duration without observing that they have changed." - "Although things do not e n d u r e as we do o u r s e l v e s , n e v e r t h e l e s s , t h e r e must be s o m e i n c o m p r e h e n s i b l e reason why p h e n o m e n a are seen t o succeed o n e a n o t h e r instead of b e i n g set o u t all at o n c e . " ' ' However, Time and Free Will already had an analysis of movem e n t . But m o v e m e n t had b e e n primarily p o s i t e d as a " f a c t of c o n s c i o u s n e s s " implying a c o n s c i o u s and enduring subject c o n fused with duration as p s y c h o l o g i c a l e x p e r i e n c e . It is o n l y to t h e e x t e n t that m o v e m e n t is grasped as b e l o n g i n g to things as m u c h as to c o n s c i o u s n e s s that it c e a s e s to be confused with psychological duration, w h o s e point of application it will disp l a c e , t h e r e b y n e c e s s i t a t i n g that things p a r t i c i p a t e d i r e c t l y in duration itself. II q u a l i t i e s e x i s t in things no less than they do in c o n s c i o u s n e s s , if t h e r e is a m o v e m e n t ol qualities o u t s i d e myself, things must, of necessity, endure in t h e i r own way. I'sy1

48

DURATION

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IMMEDIATE

DATUM

e t i o l o g i c a l duration s h o u l d be only a clearly d e t e r m i n e d c a s e , a n o p e n i n g o n t o a n o n t o l o g i c a l duration. O n t o l o g y s h o u l d , o f necessity, be p o s s i b l e , f o r duration was delined from t h e start as a m u l t i p l i c i t y . W i l l this m u l t i p l i c i t y not thanks to m o v e m e n t b e c o m e c o n t u s e d w i t h b e i n g i t s e l l ? A n d , s i n c e it is e n d o w e d w i t h very special p r o p e r t i e s , in what sense can it be said that t h e r e are several durations; in what sense can t h e r e be said to be a single one; in what sense can o n e g e t beyond the o n t o l o g i c a l alternative of o n e several? A related p r o b l e m now b e c o m e s m o r e urgent. I f things e n d u r e , o r i f t h e r e i s duration in things, t h e q u e s t i o n ol s p a c e will n e e d to be reassessed on new l o u n d a t i o n s . For s p a c e will no l o n g e r simply be a form ol exteriority, a sort of screen that denatures duration, an impurity that c o m e s to disturb t h e pure, a relative that is o p p o s e d to t h e a b s o l u t e : S p a c e itsell will need to be based in t h i n g s , in r e l a t i o n s b e t w e e n things and b e t w e e n durations, to b e l o n g i t s e l f t o t h e a b s o l u t e , t o have its o w n "purity." T h i s was t o b e the d o u b l e progression o f t h e Bergsonian philosophy.

49

C H A P T E R

111

Memory

as

Virtual

Coexistence

D u r a t i o n is e s s e n t i a l l y m e m o r y , c o n s c i o u s n e s s and f r e e d o m . It is consciousness and freedom because it is primarily m e m o r y . Now, B e r g s o n always p r e s e n t s t h i s i d e n t i t y o l m e m o r y and duration in t w o ways: " t h e c o n s e r v a t i o n and preservation of t h e past in t h e present." Or e l s e "whether t h e present d i s t i n c t l y c o n t a i n s t h e e v e r - g r o w i n g i m a g e o f t h e past, o r w h e t h e r byits c o n t i n u a l c h a n g i n g o l q u a l i t y a t t e s t s rather t o t h e increasingly heavy burden dragged a l o n g b e h i n d o n e t h e o l d e r o n e g r o w s . " Or again: " m e m o r y in t h e s e two forms, c o v e r i n g as it d o e s w i t h a c l o a k o f r e c o l l e c t i o n s a c o r e o f i m m e d i a t e perc e p t i o n , and also c o n t r a c t i n g a n u m b e r ol external m o m e n t s . "
1

In fact we s h o u l d express in t w o ways t h e m a n n e r in w h i c h duration is distinguished Irom a d i s c o n t i n u o u s series of instants repeated identically: O n t h e o n e hand, " t h e following m o m e n t always c o n t a i n s , over and a b o v e t h e p r e c e d i n g o n e , t h e m e m ory t h e latter has left i t " ; on the o t h e r hand, t h e t w o m o m e n t s c o n t r a c t o r c o n d e n s e i n t o e a c h o t h e r s i n c e o n e has n o t yet disappeared when a n o t h e r appears. T h e r e a r e , t h e r e f o r e , t w o m e m o r i e s o r t w o indissolubly linked aspects o l m e m o r y 2

si

BERGSONISM

r e c o l l e c t i o n - m e - m o r v and c o n t r a c t i o n - m e m o r y ( I I w e ask w h a t , in t h e linal analysis, is t h e basis ol this duality in durat i o n , d o u b t l e s s we find ourselves in a m o v e m e n t w h i c h we shall e x a m i n e l a t e r by w h i c h t h e " p r e s e n t " that e n d u r e s divides at e a c h " i n s t a n t " into t w o d i r e c t i o n s , o n e o r i e n t e d and d i l a t e d t o w a r d t h e past, t h e o t h e r c o n t r a c t e d , c o n t r a c t i n g toward t h e f u t u r e ) . But pure duration is i t s e l f t h e result ol a division that is only o p e r a t i v e " i n p r i n c i p l e " (en droit). It is c l e a r that m e m o r y is identical to duration, that it is c o e x t e n s i v e with d u r a t i o n , but this pro|X)sition is valid in principle m o r e than in lact. I he special p r o b l e m ol m e m o r y is: I low, by what m e c h a n i s m , d o e s duration b e c o m e m e m o r y in lact? I low d o e s that w h i c h exists in p r i n c i p l e a c t u a l i z e itsell? In t h e s a m e way, Bergson shows that c o n s c i o u s n e s s is, in p r i n c i p l e , c o e x t e n s i v e w i t h lile; but h o w , and u n d e r w h a t c o n d i t i o n s , d o e s life i n fact b e c o m e sell-consciousness?
3

L e t u s r e s u m e t h e analysis o f t h e lirst c h a p t e r o f Matter and Memory. We are led to distinguish live senses or aspects ol subj e c t i v i t y : ( I ) need-subjectivity, t h e m o m e n t ol n e g a t i o n ( n e e d makes a h o l e in t h e c o n t i n u i t y of things and holds b a c k everything that interests it about t h e o b j e c t , l e t t i n g t h e rest go b y ) ; ( 2 ) brain-subjectivity, t h e m o m e n t o l interval o r o l i n d e t e r m i n a t i o n ( t h e brain gives us t h e means ol " c h o o s i n g " that w h i c h c o r r e s p o n d s to o u r n e e d s in t h e o b j e c t ; i n t r o d u c i n g an interval b e t w e e n r e c e i v e d and e x e c u t e d m o v e m e n t , it is i t s e l f t h e c h o i c e b e t w e e n t w o ways b e c a u s e , in itsell, by virtue of its netw o r k of n e r v e s , it d i v i d e s up e x c i t a t i o n i n f i n i t e l y and also b e c a u s e , in r e l a t i o n to t h e m o t o r c e l l s ol t h e c o r e it leaves us

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to c h o o s e b e t w e e n several p o s s i b l e r e a c t i o n s ) ; (I) affectionsubjectivity, t h e m o m e n t ol pain ( b e c a u s e affection is t h e p r i c e paid by the brain or by c o n s c i o u s p e r c e p t i o n ; p e r c e p t i o n d o e s not reflect p o s s i b l e a c t i o n , nor d o e s t h e brain bring a b o u t t h e interval w i t h o u t t h e assurance that c e r t a i n o r g a n i c parts are c o m m i t t e d t o the i m m o b i l i t y o f a purely r e c e p t i v e r o l e that s u r r e n d e r s t h e m t o p a i n ) ; ( 4 ) recollection-subjectivity, t h e primary aspect ol m e m o r y ( r e c o l l e c t i o n being what c o m e s to till the interval, being e m b o d i e d or actualized in the properly cerebral interval [intcrvallc]); ( 5 ) contraction-subjectivity, the s e c -

ond a s p e c t o f m e m o r y ( t h e body b e i n g n o m o r e a p u n c t i l b r m instant in t i m e than a m a t h e m a t i c a l point in s p a c e , and bringing a b o u t a c o n t r a c t i o n ol t h e e x p e r i e n c e d e x c i t a t i o n s from w h i c h quality is b o r n ) . Now, t h e s e live a s p e c t s are not m e r e l y organized in o r d e r ol increasing d e p t h , but are distributed on two very different lines of facts. T h e lirst chapter ol Matter and Memory sets out to d e c o m pose a c o m p o s i t e ( R e p r e s e n t a t i o n ) in t w o divergent d i r e c t i o n s : m a t t e r and memory, p e r c e p t i o n and r e c o l l e c t i o n , o b j e c t i v e and subjective ( c f . the t w o m u l t i p l i c i t i e s of Time and Tree Will). Of

t h e live a s p e c t s o l s u b j e c t i v i t y , t h e lirst t w o o b v i o u s l y b e l o n g to t h e o b j e c t i v e l i n e , s i n c e t h e lirst c o n f i n e s itsell to abstracting Irom t h e o b j e c t , and t h e s e c o n d c o n f i n e s i t s e l f t o e s t a b lishing a z o n e o f i n d e t e r m i n a t i o n . T h e c a s e o f a f f e c t i o n , t h e third s e n s e , is m o r e c o m p l e x ; it u n d o u b t e d l y d e p e n d s on t h e i n t e r s e c t i o n o f t h e t w o l i n e s . But t h e positivity o f a f f e c t i o n , in its turn, is not yet t h e p r e s e n c e of a pure s u b j e c t i v i t y that would be opposed to pure objectivity, it is rather the "impurity" that disturbs t h e l a t t e r . T h e p r o v i n c e o f t h e pure line o f subj e c t i v i t y is thus t h e fourth, and then t h e fifth s e n s e . O n l y the t w o a s p e c t s of m e m o r y s t r i c t l y signify s u b j e c t i v i t y , t h e o t h e r
4

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m e a n i n g s c o n f i n e t h e m s e l v e s to m a k i n g way for or bringing about t h e insertion ol o n e line i n t o t h e o t h e r , the i n t e r s e c t i o n o l o n e line w i t h t h e o t h e r .

T h e q u e s t i o n " W h e r e are r e c o l l e c t i o n s p r e s e r v e d ? " involves a false p r o b l e m , that is to sav, a badly analyzed c o m p o s i t e . It is as t h o u g h r e c o l l e c t i o n s had to be preserved s o m e w h e r e , as though, lor e x a m p l e , the brain were capable of preserving t h e m . But the brain is w h o l l y on t h e line of o b j e c t i v i t y : T h e r e c a n not be any d i f f e r e n c e in kind b e t w e e n t h e o t h e r states of m a t t e r and t h e brain. F o r in t h e l a t t e r e v e r y t h i n g is m o v e m e n t , as in t h e pure p e r c e p t i o n that it d e t e r m i n e s . (And yet t h e t e r m movement o b v i o u s l y m u s t n o t be u n d e r s t o o d in t h e s e n s e of enduring m o v e m e n t , but on t h e c o n t r a r y as an " i n s t a n t a n e o u s s e c t i o n . " ) R e c o l l e c t i o n , o n t h e contrary, i s part o f t h e line o f s u b j e c t i v i t y . It is absurd to m i x t h e t w o lines by c o n c e i v i n g ol t h e brain as t h e reservoir or t h e substratum of r e c o l l e c t i o n s . M o r e o v e r , an e x a m i n a t i o n of t h e s e c o n d l i n e would be suffic i e n t t o show that r e c o l l e c t i o n s d o not have t o b e preserved a n y w h e r e o t h e r than " i n " d u r a t i o n . Recollection therefore is preserved in itself. O n l y t h e n "did I b e c o m e aware of t h e fact that inward e x p e r i e n c e in t h e pure s t a t e , in giving us a ' s u b s t a n c e ' w h o s e very e s s e n c e is to e n d u r e and c o n s e q u e n t l y to p r o l o n g continually into the present an indestructible past, would have relieved me from s e e k i n g and would even have forbidden me to seek, where r e c o l l e c t i o n is preserved. It preserves itself "
<> 5

M o r e o v e r , we have no interest in presupposing a preservation ol t h e past e l s e w h e r e than in itself, for e x a m p l e , in t h e brain. T h e brain, in its turn, would n e e d to have t h e power to preserve itself; we would n e e d to i onfer this power ol preserva-

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tion that we have d e n i e d to duration on a state of m a t t e r , or even on t h e w h o l e of m a t t e r .


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We are t o u c h i n g on o n e of the m o s t profound, hut perhaps also o n e o f t h e least u n d e r s t o o d , a s p e c t s o f B e r g s o n i s m : t h e theory of memory. T h e r e must be a difference in kind b e t w e e n m a t t e r and m e m o r y , b e t w e e n pure p e r c e p t i o n and pure r e c o l l e c t i o n , b e t w e e n the present and t h e past, as there is b e t w e e n the t w o lines previously distinguished. We have great difficulty in u n d e r s t a n d i n g a survival of t h e past in i t s e l f b e c a u s e we b e l i e v e that t h e past is no longer, that it has ceased to b e . We have thus confused Being with being-present. Nevertheless, the present Is not; rather, it is pure b e c o m i n g , always outside itself. It is n o t , but it a c t s . Its p r o p e r e l e m e n t is n o t b e i n g but t h e .11 five or t h e useful. The past, on t h e o t h e r hand, has ceased

to a c t or to be useful. But it has n o t c e a s e d to b e . U s e l e s s and i n a c t i v e , impassive, it I S , in t h e full s e n s e of t h e word: It is i d e n t i c a l w i t h b e i n g in i t s e l f . It s h o u l d n o t be said t h a t it " w a s , " s i n c e it is t h e in-itself of b e i n g , and t h e form u n d e r w h i c h b e i n g is preserved in itself ( i n o p p o s i t i o n to t h e present, t h e form u n d e r w h i c h being is c o n s u m m a t e d and places itsell O u t s i d e o f i t s e l f ) . A t t h e l i m i t , t h e ordinary d e t e r m i n a t i o n s are reversed: of t h e p r e s e n t , we m u s t say at every instant that it " w a s , " and of t h e past, that it " i s , " that it is eternally, lor all t i m e . T h i s is t h e d i f f e r e n c e in kind b e t w e e n t h e past and t h e p r e s e n t . " But this first aspect of t h e Bergsonian t h e ory woidd l o s e all sense if its e x t r a - p s y c h o l o g i c a l range were n o t e m p h a s i z e d . W h a t B e r g s o n calls " p u r e r e c o l l e c t i o n " has no p s y c h o l o g i c a l e x i s t e n c e . T h i s is why it is c a l l e d virtual, i n a c t i v e , and u n c o n s c i o u s . All t h e s e words are dangerous, in particular, t h e word " u n c o n s c i o u s " w h i c h , s i n c e F r e u d , has b e c o m e inseparable from an especially effective and active psy-

BEHGSONISM

c h o l o g i c . i l e x i s t e n c e . W e will have o c c a s i o n t o c o m p a r e t h e Freudian u n c o n s c i o u s with t h e Bergson ian, s i n c e Bergson himsell m a d e t h e c o m p a r i s o n . W e must n e v e r t h e l e s s b e c l e a r a t this point that Bergson d o e s not use t h e word " u n c o n s c i o u s " to d e n o t e a p s y c h o l o g i c a l reality o u t s i d e c o n s c i o u s n e s s , but to d e n o t e a n o n p s y c h o l o g i c a l reality b e i n g as it is in itself. S t r i c t l y speaking, t h e p s y c h o l o g i c a l i s t h e p r e s e n t . O n l y t h e present is " p s y c h o l o g i c a l " ; but t h e past is pure o n t o l o g y ; pure r e c o l l e c t i o n has only o n t o l o g i c a l s i g n i f i c a n c e .
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Let us now q u o t e the admirable passage where Bergson summ a r i z e s t h e w h o l e of his theory. W h e n we l o o k for a r e c o l l e c t i o n that escapes us, " W e b e c o m e c o n s c i o u s of an act sui aeneris by w h i c h we d e t a c h o u r s e l v e s from t h e p r e s e n t in o r d e r to r e p l a c e o u r s e l v e s , first in t h e past in g e n e r a l , then in a c e r t a i n r e g i o n of t h e past a w o r k of a d j u s t m e n t , s o m e t h i n g l i k e t h e focusing of a c a m e r a . But our r e c o l l e c t i o n still remains virtual; we simply prepare ourselves to r e c e i v e it by adopting t h e appropriate a t t i t u d e . L i t t l e by l i t t l e it c o m e s i n t o view like a c o n d e n s i n g c l o u d ; from t h e virtual s t a t e i t passes i n t o t h e actual " " H e r e again, o n e must avoid a n overly psychologi-

cal i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of t h e t e x t . B e r g s o n d o e s indeed speak of a p s y c h o l o g i c a l a c t ; but if this a c t is "sui generis," this is b e c a u s e it has made a g e n u i n e leap. We place ourselves at once in t h e past; we leap i n t o t h e past as i n t o a p r o p e r e l e m e n t .
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In t h e

s a m e way that we do not p e r c e i v e things in ourselves, but at t h e place w h e r e they are, we only grasp t h e past at t h e place w h e r e it is in itself, and not in ourselves, in o u r present. I h e r e is t h e r e f o r e a "past in g e n e r a l " that is not t h e particular past of a particular present but that is like an o n t o l o g i c a l e l e m e n t , a past that is e t e r n a l and for all t i m e , t h e c o n d i t i o n ol t h e " p a s s a g e " ol every particular present. It is t h e past in g e n e r a l

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that makes p o s s i b l e all pasts. A c c o r d i n g to B e r g s o n , we first put ourselves back into the past in general: He d e s c r i b e s in this way the leap into ontology. We really leap into being, into beingin-itself, into t h e being in itsell ol the past. It is a case ol leaving psychology a l t o g e t h e r . It is a c a s e ol an i m m e m o r i a l or o n t o l ogical M e m o r y . It is only t h e n , o n c e t h e leap has b e e n m a d e , that r e c o l l e c t i o n will gradually take on a p s y c h o l o g i c a l e x i s t e n c e : "from t h e virtual it passes into t h e actual state " We

have had to search at the place where it is, in impassive Being, and gradually we give it an e m b o d i m e n t , a " p s y c h o l o g i / a t i o n . " T h e parallels b e t w e e n this t e x t and s o m e o t h e r s must b e emphasized. F o r Bergson analyzes language in t h e s a m e way as m e m o r y . T h e way in w h i c h we understand what is said to us is identical to t h e way in w h i c h we find a r e c o l l e c t i o n . Far from r e c o m p o s i n g s e n s e on t h e basis ol sounds that are heard and associated images, we place ourselves at once in the e l e m e n t of

s e n s e , then in a region ol this e l e m e n t . A true leap i n t o B e i n g . It is o n l y t h e n that sense is a c t u a l i z e d in t h e p s y c h o l o g i c a l l y p e r c e i v e d sounds, and in t h e images that are p s y c h o l o g i c a l l y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h t h e s o u n d s . H e r e t h e r e is a kind ol t r a n s c e n d a n c e of sense and an o n t o l o g i c a l foundation ol language that, as we shall s e e , are particularly i m p o r t a n t in t h e w o r k of an a u t h o r w h o s e c r i t i q u e ol language is c o n s i d e r e d to have b e e n overly h a s t y . '
3

We must place ourselves at o n c e in t h e past in a leap, in a j u m p . I l e r e again, this a l m o s t Kirkegaardian idea ol a " l e a p " is strange in t h e work ol a p h i l o s o p h e r w h o is c o n s i d e r e d to be so a t t a c h e d to c o n t i n u i t y . W h a t d o e s it m e a n ? Bergson c o n stantly says: You will n e v e r r e c o m p o s e t h e past w i t h presents, no m a t t e r what they may b e : " T h e image pure and s i m p l e will not take me b a c k to t h e past unless, i n d e e d , it was in t h e past

B E R G S O N ISM

that I s o u g h t i t . "

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T h e past, i t i s t r u e , s e e m s t o b e c a u g h t

b e t w e e n t w o p r e s e n t s : t h e o l d p r e s e n t t h a t i t o n c e was and t h e actual present in relation to w h i c h it is now past. T w o lalse beliefs are derived from this: On t h e o n e hand, we believe that t h e past as s u c h is only c o n s t i t u t e d after having b e e n p r e s e n t ; on t h e o t h e r hand, that it is in s o m e way r e c o n s t i t u t e d In t h e n e w present w h o s e past it now is. T h i s d o u b l e illusion is at t h e heart o l all p h y s i o l o g i c a l and p s y c h o l o g i c a l t h e o r i e s o f memory. W h e n o n e is influenced by such an illusion, o n e assumes that t h e r e is only a d i f f e r e n c e in d e g r e e b e t w e e n r e c o l l e c t i o n and p e r c e p t i o n . We are thus entangled in a badly analyzed c o m p o s i t e . T h i s c o m p o s i t e is t h e image as psychological reality. T h e i m a g e in effect retains s o m e t h i n g of t h e r e g i o n s w h e r e we have had to l o o k for t h e r e c o l l e c t i o n that it a c t u a l izes o r e m b o d i e s . But i t d o e s n o t a c t u a l i z e this r e c o l l e c t i o n without adapting it to the requirements of the present; it makes it into something of the present. Thus, we substitute the simple d i f f e r e n c e s i n d e g r e e b e t w e e n r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e s and p e r c e p t i o n - i m a g e s for t h e d i f f e r e n c e in kind b e t w e e n t h e present and t h e past, b e t w e e n pure p e r c e p t i o n and pure m e m o r y . W e are t o o a c c u s t o m e d t o t h i n k i n g i n t e r m s o f t h e " p r e s e n t . " We b e l i e v e that a present is only past when it is replaced by a n o t h e r p r e s e n t . N e v e r t h e l e s s , let us s t o p and reflect for a m o m e n t : I low would a new present c o m e about if t h e old present did not pass at t h e s a m e t i m e that it is present? How would any present w h a t s o e v e r pass, if it w e r e not past at the same time as p r e s e n t ? T h e past would n e v e r be c o n s t i t u t e d if it had not been c o n s t i t u t e d first of all, at t h e same t i m e that it was prese n t . T h e r e is h e r e , as it w e r e , a fundamental p o s i t i o n ol t i m e and also t h e m o s t profound paradox ol m e m o r y : T h e past is " c o n t e m p o r a n e o u s " with the present that it has been. I I t h e past

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had to wait in o r d e r to be no longer, if it was not i m m e d i a t e l y and now that it had passed, "past in g e n e r a l , " it c o u l d n e v e r b e c o m e what it is, it would n e v e r be that past. II it w e r e not c o n s t i t u t e d immediately, n e i t h e r c o u l d it be r e c o n s t i t u t e d on t h e basis o f a n u l t e r i o r p r e s e n t . T h e past would n e v e r b e c o n s t i t u t e d if it did n o t c o e x i s t w i t h t h e p r e s e n t w h o s e past it is.
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T h e past and t h e present d o n o t d e n o t e t w o s u c c e s s i v e

m o m e n t s , but t w o e l e m e n t s w h i c h c o e x i s t : O n e i s t h e present, w h i c h d o e s n o t c e a s e to pass, and t h e o t h e r is t h e past, w h i c h d o e s not c e a s e to be but t h r o u g h w h i c h all p r e s e n t s pass. It is in this s e n s e that t h e r e is a pure past, a kind of "past in gene r a l " : T h e past d o e s not follow t h e p r e s e n t , but o n t h e c o n trary, is presupposed by it as t h e pure c o n d i t i o n w i t h o u t w h i c h it would n o t pass. In o t h e r words, e a c h present g o e s b a c k to itsell a s past. T h e only e q u i v a l e n t t h e s i s i s P l a t o ' s n o t i o n o f R e m i n i s c e n c e . T h e r e m i n i s c e n c e also aflirms a pure b e i n g o f t h e past, a b e i n g in itsell ol t h e past, an o n t o l o g i c a l M e m o r y that is c a p a b l e of serving as t h e foundation for t h e unfolding of t i m e . Yet again, a Platonic inspiration makes itsell profoundly felt in B e r g s o n .
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I he idea of a c o n t e m p o r a n e i t y of t h e present and t h e past has o n e final c o n s e q u e n c e : Not only does t h e past c o e x i s t with t h e p r e s e n t that has b e e n , b u t , as it preserves i t s e l f in i t s e l f ( w h i l e t h e present passes), it is t h e w h o l e , integral past; it is all o u r past, w h i c h c o e x i s t s w i t h e a c h p r e s e n t . T h e famous m e t a p h o r o f t h e c o n e r e p r e s e n t s this c o m p l e t e state o f c o e x i s t e n c e . But such a state i m p l i e s , finally, that in t h e past itsell t h e r e appear all kinds ol levels ol profundity, marking all the p o s s i b l e intervals i n this c o e x i s t e n c e .
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T h e past A B c o e x i s t s

with t h e present S, but by i n c l u d i n g in itself all t h e s e c t i o n s A ' B ' , A " B " , e t c . , that m e a s u r e t h e d e g r e e s o l a purely ideal

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A '

A"\

p r o x i m i t y or d i s t a n c e in r e l a t i o n to S. E a c h ol t h e s e s e c t i o n s is itself virtual, b e l o n g i n g to t h e b e i n g in itsell ol t h e p a s t .


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E a c h o f t h e s e s e c t i o n s o r e a c h o l these levels includes not part i c u l a r e l e m e n t s o f t h e past, but always t h e t o t a l i t y o f t h e past. It includes this totality at a m o r e or less expanded or c o n t r a c t e d level. T h i s is t h e p r e c i s e p o i n t at w h i c h c o n t r a c t i o n - M e m o r y tits in with r e c o l l e c t i o n - M e m o r y and, in a way, takes over from it. I l e n c e this c o n s e q u e n c e : Bergsonian duration is, in t h e final analysis, defined less by s u c c e s s i o n than by c o e x i s t e n c e . In Time and tree Will duration is really defined by succession, c o e x i s t e n c e s referring back to s p a c e , and by t h e power of novelty, repetition referring back to Matter. But, m o r e profoundly, duration is o n l y s u c c e s s i o n relatively s p e a k i n g ( w e have s e e n in t h e same way that it is only indivisible relatively). D u r a t i o n is i n d e e d real s u c c e s s i o n , but it is so only b e c a u s e , m o r e profoundly, it is virtual coexistence: t h e c o e x i s t e n c e w i t h itsell ol all t h e levels, all t h e t e n s i o n s , all t h e d e g r e e s of c o n t r a c t i o n and relaxation (detente). T h u s , with c o e x i s t e n c e , repetition must be reintroduced into duration a " p s y c h i c " repetition of a c o m p l e t e l y dilferent type than t h e " p h y s i c a l " r e p e t i t i o n of m a t -

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tor; a r e p e t i t i o n ol " p l a n e s " rather than ol e l e m e n t s on a single plane; virtual instead o l actual r e p e t i t i o n . T h e w h o l e o f o u r past is played, restarts, repeats itself, at the same time, on all t h e levels that it s k e t c h e s o u t .
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L e t us return to t h e " l e a p " that

we m a k e w h e n , l o o k i n g for a r e c o l l e c t i o n , we place ourselves at o n c e in t h e past. Bergson gives t h e following c l a r i f i c a t i o n : We place o u r s e l v e s "firstly i n t o t h e past in g e n e r a l , t h e n i n t o a c e r t a i n region of t h e past." It is not a c a s e ol o n e region c o n taining particular e l e m e n t s ol t h e past, particular r e c o l l e c t i o n s , in opposition to another region which contains o t h e r recoll e c t i o n s . It is a c a s e ol t h e r e being d i s t i n c t levels, e a c h o n e of w h i c h c o n t a i n s t h e w h o l e o f o u r past, but i n a m o r e o r less c o n t r a c t e d s t a t e . It is in this sense that o n e can speak of t h e r e g i o n s of B e i n g itself, t h e o n t o l o g i c a l r e g i o n s of t h e past "in g e n e r a l , " all c o e x i s t i n g , all " r e p e a t i n g " o n e a n o t h e r . L a t e r we shall see h o w this d o c t r i n e revives all t h e p r o b l e m s of Bergsonism. I fowever, at this point it is enough to summarize t h e four main propositions that form as many paradoxes: ( I ) we place ourselves at o n c e , in a leap, in t h e o n t o l o g i c a l e l e m e n t o f t h e past (paradox o f t h e l e a p ) ; ( 2 ) t h e r e i s a difference in kind b e t w e e n t h e present and t h e past (paradox of B e i n g ) ; ( 3 ) t h e past d o e s not follow t h e present that it has b e e n , but c o e x i s t s with it (paradox of c o e x i s t e n c e ) ; ( 4 ) what c o e x i s t s with e a c h present is t h e w h o l e of the past, integrally, on various levels of c o n t r a c t i o n and r e l a x a t i o n (detente) (paradox of p s y c h i c r e p e t i t i o n ) . T h e s e paradoxes are i n t e r c o n n e c t e d ; e a c h o n e i s dependent on the others. Conversely, the propositions that they attack also form a group, insolar as these p r o p o s i t i o n s are chara c t e r i z e d by t h e i r b e i n g ordinary t h e o r i e s ol m e m o r y , l o r it is a single illusion a b o u t t h e e s s e n c e of T i m e , a single badly analyzed c o m p o s i t e that makes us b e l i e v e that: ( I ) we can r e c o n -

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s t i t u t e t h e past w i t h t h e p r e s e n t ; ( 2 ) we pass gradually from o n e to t h e o t h e r ; ( 3 ) that they are distinguished by a before and an alter; and ( 4 ) that t h e work ol t h e m i n d is carried out by the addition ol e l e m e n t s ( r a t h e r than by c h a n g e s of level, genuine jumps, the reworking ol s y s t e m s ) .
* *
2 0

O u r p r o b l e m is: I low can pure r e c o l l e c t i o n take on a psychological e x i s t e n c e ? I low will this pure virtual be actualized? Thus t h e present m a k e s an appeal, a c c o r d i n g to t h e r e q u i r e m e n t s or needs ol the present situation. We make the "leap": We place ourselves not simply in t h e e l e m e n t of t h e past in g e n e r a l , but in a particular region, that is, on a particular level w h i c h , in a k i n d o l R e m i n i s c e n c e , w e assume c o r r e s p o n d s t o o u r actual n e e d s . Each level in effect c o n t a i n s t h e totality of our past, but in a m o r e or less c o n t r a c t e d s t a t e . And Bergson adds: T h e r e are also d o m i n a n t r e c o l l e c t i o n s , like remarkable points, w h i c h vary from o n e level to t h e o t h e r .
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A foreign word is s p o k e n

in my p r e s e n c e : Given t h e situation this is n o t t h e s a m e t h i n g as w o n d e r i n g what t h e language in general, of which this word is a part, c o u l d be or what person o n c e said this w o r d , or a s i m i l a r o n e , t o m e . D e p e n d i n g o n t h e c a s e , I d o not leap i n t o t h e same r e g i o n o f t h e past; I d o not p l a c e myself o n t h e s a m e level; 1 do not appeal to t h e same essential c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . Perhaps I fail: L o o k i n g for a r e c o l l e c t i o n , I may place myself on a level that is t o o c o n t r a c t e d , t o o narrow, or on t h e contrary, t o o broad and e x p a n d e d for it. I would then have to start from t h e b e g i n n i n g again i n o r d e r t o find t h e c o r r e c t l e a p . W e must emphasize that this analysis, which s e e m s to have so m u c h psyc h o l o g i c a l finesse, really has a q u i t e d i l l e r e n t m e a n i n g . It is related to o u r affinity w i t h b e i n g , our relationship with Being,

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.IIKI

t o t h e variety ol this relationship. Psychological c o n s c i o u s -

ness has n o t yet b e e n b o r n . I t w i l l b e b o r n , b u t p r e c i s e l y b e c a u s e it has found its p r o p e r o n t o l o g i c a l c o n d i t i o n s h e r e . F a c e d w i t h t h e s e e x t r e m e l y difficult t e x t s , t h e task o f t h e c o m m e n t a t o r is to m u l t i p l y t h e d i s t i n c t i o n s , even and above all w h e n t h e s e t e x t s c o n f i n e t h e m s e l v e s to suggesting t h e dist i n c t i o n s , r a t h e r than t o e s t a b l i s h i n g t h e m strictly. First, w e must not confuse t h e appeal to r e c o l l e c t i o n and t h e " r e c a l l of t h e i m a g e " ( o r its e v o c a t i o n ) . T h e appeal to r e c o l l e c t i o n is this j u m p by w h i c h I p l a c e myself in t h e virtual, in t h e past, in a particular region of t h e past, at a particular level of c o n t r a c t i o n . It appears that this appeal e x p r e s s e s t h e properly o n t o l o g i c a l d i m e n s i o n o f man or, r a t h e r , o f m e m o r y : " B u t o u r r e c o l l e c t i o n still remains v i r t u a l . "
22

W h e n , o n t h e o t h e r hand,

w e speak o f e v o c a t i o n , o r o l this recall o f t h e i m a g e , s o m e thing c o m p l e t e l y different is involved: O n c e we have put ourselves on a particular level w h e r e r e c o l l e c t i o n s lie, t h e n , and only t h e n , d o they t e n d t o b e a c t u a l i z e d . T h e appeal o f t h e present is such that they no longer have t h e ineffectiveness, t h e impassivity that c h a r a c t e r i z e d t h e m as pure r e c o l l e c t i o n s ; they b e c o m e r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e s , c a p a b l e o f being " r e c a l l e d . " T h e y are actualized or e m b o d i e d . T h i s actualization has all kinds o f d i s t i n c t a s p e c t s , stages, and d e g r e e s .
2 3

But t h r o u g h t h e s e

stages and t h e s e d e g r e e s it is t h e a c t u a l i z a t i o n (and it a l o n e ) that c o n s t i t u t e s p s y c h o l o g i c a l c o n s c i o u s n e s s . In any c a s e , t h e Bergsonian revolution is c l e a r : We do n o t m o v e from t h e present to t h e past, from p e r c e p t i o n to r e c o l l e c t i o n , but from the past to t h e p r e s e n t , from r e c o l l e c t i o n to p e r c e p t i o n . " M e m o r y , laden with the w h o l e ol t h e past, responds to the appeal ol t h e present state by t w o s i m u l t a n e o u s m o v e m e n t s , o n e ol translation, by which it moves in its entirety to meet e x p e -

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r i c n c e , thus contracting m o r e o r less, though w i t h o u t dividing, with a view t o action; the o t h e r ol rotation upon itself, by which it turns toward t h e situation of t h e m o m e n t , presenting t o it that side ol itsell w h i c h may prove to be the most u s e f u l . " ' T h u s we already have t w o aspects of actualization h e r e : t r a n s l a t i o n c o n t r a c t i o n and r o t a t i o n - o r i e n t a t i o n . O u r question is: Can this t r a n s l a t i o n - c o n t r a c t i o n be identical with t h e variable c o n t r a c t i o n of regions and levels of t h e past that we w e r e discussing earlier? Bergson's c o n t e x t s e e m s to suggest that it is, s i n c e he constantly invokes t r a n s l a t i o n - c o n t r a c t i o n with regard to s e c t i o n s of t h e c o n e , that is, levels ol t h e p a s t .
25 2

Many c o n s i d e r a -

t i o n s , however, lead us to t h e c o n c l u s i o n that w h i l e t h e r e is obviously a relationship between the two contractions, they are by no m e a n s i d e n t i c a l . W h e n Bergson speaks of levels or regions of t h e past, these levels are no less virtual than t h e past in general; moreover, each o n e of them contains the whole of t h e past, but in a m o r e or less c o n t r a c t e d s t a t e , around c e r tain variable d o m i n a n t r e c o l l e c t i o n s . T h e e x t e n t o f t h e c o n traction, therefore, expresses t h e difference b e t w e e n o n e level and another. On t h e o t h e r hand, when Bergson speaks of transl a t i o n , it involves a m o v e m e n t that is necessary in t h e actualization of a r e c o l l e c t i o n taken from a p a r t i c u l a r level. H e r e c o n t r a c t i o n n o l o n g e r e x p r e s s e s trie o n t o l o g i c a l d i f f e r e n c e b e t w e e n two virtual levels, but t h e m o v e m e n t by which a reco l l e c t i o n is (psychologically) actualized, at the same time as the level that b e l o n g s t o i t .
2 6

It w o u l d , in f a c t , be a m i s t a k e to t h i n k t h a t , in o r d e r to b e a c t u a l i z e d , a r e c o l l e c t i o n m u s t pass t h r o u g h m o r e and m o r e c o n t r a c t e d levels in o r d e r to approach t h e present as t h e s u p r e m e point o f c o n t r a c t i o n o r t h e s u m m i t o f t h e c o n e . T h i s would be an u n t e n a b l e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n lor several reasons. In

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t h e m e t a p h o r of t h e t o n e , even a level that is very c o n t r a c t e d , very c l o s e to t h e s u m m i t so long as it is n o t actualized displays a g e n u i n e difference in kind from this s u m m i t , that is, from t h e present, f u r t h e r m o r e , in o r d e r to a c t u a l i z e a r e c o l l e c t i o n , we do not have to change levels; if we had to do this, t h e o p e r a t i o n of m e m o r y would he i m p o s s i b l e . I or each r e c o l l e c t i o n has its o w n p r o p e r level; it is t o o d i s m e m b e r e d or dispersed in broader regions, t o o confined and muddled in narrower r e g i o n s . If we had to pass from o n e level to a n o t h e r in o r d e r t o a c t u a l i z e e a c h r e c o l l e c t i o n , each r e c o l l e c t i o n would thus lose its individuality. T h i s is why t h e m o v e m e n t of translation is a m o v e m e n t by w h i c h t h e r e c o l l e c t i o n is actualized a t t h e s a m e t i m e a s its l e v e l : T h e r e i s c o n t r a c t i o n b e c a u s e r e c o l l e c t i o n - b e c o m i n g - i m a g e enters into a " c o a l e s c e n c e " with t h e p r e s e n t . It t h e r e f o r e passes through " p l a n e s of c o n s c i o u s n e s s " that put it i n t o e f l e c t . But it d o e s not pass through t h e i n t e r m e d i a t e levels ( w h i c h would prevent it from being put into e f l e c t ) . H e n c e t h e n e e d t o avoid confusing t h e planes of consciousness, t h r o u g h w h i c h r e c o l l e c t i o n is a c t u a l i z e d , and the regions, the sections or the levels of the past, a c c o r d i n g t o which t h e always virtual s t a t e o f r e c o l l e c t i o n varies. H e n c e t h e need t o distinguish i n t e n s i v e , o n t o l o g i c a l c o n t r a c t i o n w h e r e all t h e levels c o e x i s t virtually, c o n t r a c t e d or relaxed (detendus) and translative, psychological c o n t r a c t i o n through w h i c h each r e c o l l e c t i o n on its o w n level (however relaxed [de'tendu] it is) must pass in o r d e r to be actualized and t h e r e b y b e c o m e image. B u t , on t h e o t h e r hand, Bergson says, t h e r e is r o t a t i o n . In its process of actualization, r e c o l l e c t i o n d o e s not c o n f i n e itself to carrying out this translation that u n i t e s it to t h e present; it also carries out this r o t a t i o n on itsell in o r d e r to present its "useful facet" in this union. Bergson does not clarify t h e nature

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o f this rotation. W e must make hypotheses o n the basis o f o t h e r t e x t s . In t h e m o v e m e n t of t r a n s l a t i o n , it is t h e r e f o r e a w h o l e level of t h e past that is a c t u a l i z e d at t h e s a m e t i m e as a part i c u l a r r e c o l l e c t i o n . Each level thus linds itsell c o n t r a c t e d in an undivided r e p r e s e n t a t i o n that is no longer a pure r e c o l l e c t i o n , but is not yet, s t r i c t l y speaking, an image. T h i s is why Bergson specifies that, from this point of view, there is no division at this p o i n t .
2 7

R e c o l l e c t i o n u n d o u b t e d l y has its individ-

uality. But h o w d o w e b e c o m e c o n s c i o u s o l it, how d o w e distinguish it in t h e region that is actualized with it? We begin From this u n d i v i d e d r e p r e s e n t a t i o n ( t h a t B e r g s o n w i l l c a l l " d y n a m i c s c h e m e " ) , w h e r e all t h e r e c o l l e c t i o n s in t h e process of actualization are in a relationship ol r e c i p r o c a l p e n e t r a t i o n ; and we d e v e l o p it in d i s t i n c t images that are e x t e r n a l to o n e another, that c o r r e s p o n d to a particular r e c o l l e c t i o n .
2 8

Here

again, Bergson speaks of a s u c c e s s i o n of " p l a n e s of c o n s c i o u s ness." But the m o v e m e n t is no longer that of an undivided c o n t r a c t i o n . I t is, o n t h e c o n t r a r y , t h a t o f a d i v i s i o n , a d e v e l o p m e n t , a n e x p a n s i o n . R e c o l l e c t i o n can o n l y b e said t o b e a c t u alized w h e n it has b e c o m e i m a g e . It is t h e n , in l a c t , that it e n t e r s not only i n t o " c o a l e s c e n c e , " but i n t o a kind of circuit with the present, the r e c o l l e c t i o n - 7 m a g e referring b a c k to t h e p e r c e p t i o n - i m a g e and v i c e versa. * H e n c e t h e p r e c e d i n g m e t a p h o r o l " r o t a t i o n " w h i c h prepares t h e g r o u n d l o r this launch i n t o t h e c i r c u i t . T h u s , w e have h e r e t w o m o v e m e n t s o f a c t u a l i z a t i o n : o n e o f c o n t r a c t i o n , o n e o l e x p a n s i o n . W e can s e e clearly that they c o r r e s p o n d c l o s e l y t o t h e m u l t i p l e levels o f t h e c o n e , somee x p a n d e d (dc'tcnilus), s o m e c o n t r a c t e d . For what happens in a c r e a t u r e that c o n f i n e s i t s e l f to d r e a m i n g ? S i n c e s l e e p is like a present s i t u a t i o n requiring n o t h i n g but rest, w i t h no interest
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Other than " d i s i n t e r e s t , " it is as if t h e c o n t r a c t i o n w e r e missing, as if t h e e x t r e m e l y e x p a n d e d (de'tendu) r e l a t i o n s h i p of t h e recollection with the present reproduced the most expanded (de'tendu) level of t h e past itself. Conversely, what would happen in an a u t o m a t o n ? It would he as t h o u g h dispersion w e r e i m p o s s i b l e , a s t h o u g h t h e d i s t i n c t i o n b e t w e e n images was n o longer c a r r i e d i n t o e f l e c t and onlv the m o s t c o n t r a c t e d level ol t h e past r e m a i n e d .
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T h e r e is thus a c l o s e analogy b e t w e e n

the different levels o f t h e c o n e and t h e aspects o f actualization for e a c h level. It is inevitable that the latter will come to include the former (hence the ambiguity that has already been pointed o u t ) . N e v e r t h e l e s s , w e m u s t n o t c o n f u s e t h e m b e c a u s e t h e first t h e m e c o n c e r n s t h e virtual variations o f r e c o l l e c t i o n i n itself; t h e o t h e r , r e c o l l e c t i o n for us, t h e a c t u a l i z a t i o n o f t h e r e c o l l e c t i o n in t h e r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e . W h a t is t h e framework c o m m o n to r e c o l l e c t i o n in t h e process of actualization ( t h e r e c o l l e c t i o n - b e c o m i n g - i m a g e ) and t h e perception-image? T h i s c o m m o n framework is m o v e m e n t . T h u s , it is in t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n t h e image and m o v e m e n t , in t h e image's way of e x t e n d i n g itself in m o v e m e n t , that we m u s t find t h e final m o m e n t s of a c t u a l i z a t i o n : " t h e r e c o l lections need, for their actualization, a m o t o r ally."
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t h e ally is d o u b l e . S o m e t i m e s p e r c e p t i o n is e x t e n d e d naturally in m o v e m e n t ; a m o t o r t e n d e n c y , a motor scheme, c a r r i e s o u t a decomposition of the perceived in terms of utility.


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Ibis

m o v e m e n t - p e r c e p t i o n relationship would, on its own, be sull i c i e n t to d e l i n e a r e c o g n i t i o n that is purely a u t o m a t i c , w i t h out t h e i n t e r v e n t i o n o f r e c o l l e c t i o n s ( o r , i f y o u prefer, a n instantaneous memory consisting entirely in m o t o r m e c h a n i s m s ) . H o w e v e r , r e c o l l e c t i o n s do i n t e r v e n e . For, insofar as r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e s r e s e m b l e actual p e r c e p t i o n , they are n e c -

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cssarily e x t e n d e d into t h e m o v e m e n t s that c o r r e s p o n d t o perc e p t i o n and they b e c o m e " a d o p t e d " b y i t . ' Let us assume for a m o m e n t that a d i s t u r b a n c e arises in this movement-perception-articulation, a mechanical disturbance o f
5

t h e m o t o r s c h e m e : R e c o g n i t i o n has b e c o m e i m p o s s i b l e ( a l though a n o t h e r type of r e c o g n i t i o n subsists, as we see in t h o s e patients w h o clearly d e s c r i b e an o b j e c t that is named to t h e m , but w h o d o not k n o w how t o " m a k e u s e " o f it; o r w h o c o r r e c t l y repeat what is said to t h e m , but no l o n g e r k n o w h o w t o speak s p o n t a n e o u s l y ) . T h e patient n o l o n g e r knows h o w t o o r i e n t h i m s e l f , h o w t o draw, that is, h o w t o d e c o m p o s e a n o b j e c t according t o the m o t o r t e n d e n c i e s : His perception only provokes diHuse m o v e m e n t s . N e v e r t h e l e s s , t h e r e c o l l e c t i o n s are t h e r e . Moreover, they c o n t i n u e to be e v o k e d , to be e m b o d ied in d i s t i n c t images, that is, to undergo t h e translation and r o t a t i o n that c h a r a c t e r i z e t h e first m o m e n t s ol a c t u a l i z a t i o n . W h a t is lacking t h e r e f o r e is t h e final m o m e n t , t h e final phase: that o f a c t i o n . Just a s t h e c o n c o m i t a n t m o v e m e n t s o f p e r c e p t i o n are disorganized, t h e r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e also r e m a i n s as useless, as ineffective as a pure r e c o l l e c t i o n , and can no longer e x t e n d itself into a c t i o n . T h i s is t h e lirst important (act: T h e r e are cases w h e r e r e c o l l e c t i o n s survive d e s p i t e p s y c h i c or verbal blindness or d e a f n e s s .
54

Let us move on to the s e c o n d type ol m o v e m e n t - p e r c e p t i o n r e l a t i o n s h i p that d e l i n e s t h e c o n d i t i o n s o f a n a t t e n t i v e r e c o g n i t i o n . It is no l o n g e r a m a t t e r of m o v e m e n t s that " e x t e n d our perception in o r d e r to draw useful e l l e c t s from it" and that d e c o m p o s e t h e o b j e c t a c c o r d i n g t o o u r n e e d s , but o f m o v e m e n t s that abandon t h e e f f e c t , that bring us back t o t h e o b j e c t in o r d e r to restore its detail and c o m p l e t e n e s s . T h e n the r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e s w h i c h are analogous to present p e r c e p t i o n

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t a k e on a r o l e t h a t is " p r e p o n d e r a n t and no l o n g e r m e r e l y a c c e s s o r y , " regular and no longer a c c i d e n t a l .


55

L e t us assume

that this s e c o n d kind of m o v e m e n t is disturbed ( d i s t u r b a n c e of t h e sensory m o t o r (unctions that is dynamic, and n o longer mechanical).* It is possible for automatic recognition to remain, but what does appear to have disappeared is recollection itself. B e c a u s e such c a s e s are t h e most frequent they have inspired t h e traditional c o n c e p t i o n of aphasia as t h e disappearance of r e c o l l e c t i o n s stored in the brain. Bergson's w h o l e p r o b l e m is: W h a t has really disappeared? First hypothesis: Is it pure recollection? Obviously not, since pure r e c o l l e c t i o n is not psychological in nature and is i m p e r ishable. S e c o n d hypothesis: Is it t h e capacity to e v o k e r e c o l lection, that is, to actualize it in a recollection-image? At times, Bergson does e x p r e s s h i m s e l f in t h i s w a y .
37

N e v e r t h e l e s s , it is

m o r e c o m p l i c a t e d than this. F o r t h e first t w o a s p e c t s o f actualization ( t r a n s l a t i o n and r o t a t i o n ) depend on a p s y c h i c attitude; t h e last t w o ( t h e t w o t y p e s o f m o v e m e n t ) depend o n sensory-motricity and t h e attitudes of b o d i e s . W h a t e v e r t h e solidarity and c o m p l e m e n t a r i t y of these t w o d i m e n s i o n s , t h e o n e c a n n o t c o m p l e t e l y c a n c e l out t h e other. W h e n only t h e automatic m o v e m e n t s of r e c o g n i t i o n are affected ( m e c h a n i c a l d i s t u r b a n c e s of s e n s o r y - m o t r i c i t y ) , r e c o l l e c t i o n nevertheless c o m p l e t e l y r e t a i n s its p s y c h i c a c t u a l i z a t i o n ; it preserves its "normal a s p e c t , " but can no longer e x t e n d itself in movem e n t , t h e corporeal stage of its actualization having b e c o m e impossible. W h e n the m o v e m e n t s of attentive recognition are a l f e c t c d ( d y n a m i c d i s t u r b a n c e s of s e n s o r y - m o t r i c i t y ) , psychical actualization is undoubtedly m o r e e n d a n g e r e d than in t h e p r e c e d i n g c a s e for here t h e c o r p o r e a l attitude really is a c o n dition o f t h e mental attitude. Bergson nevertheless maintains

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that, o n c e again, no recollection is "inattentive." T h e r e is merely a " d i s t u r b a n c e of t h e e q u i l i b r i u m . "


58

We must perhaps

understand that t h e t w o p s y c h i c a s p e c t s of actualization subsist but are, as it w e r e , dissociated lor want ol a corporeal attitude in which they could be inserted and c o m b i n e d . S o m e t i m e s then, translation-contraction would o c c u r , but would lack the c o m p l e m e n t a r y m o v e m e n t of rotation, so that there woidd be no distinct r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e (or, at least, a w h o l e c a t e g o r y o f r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e s would s e e m t o have been a b o l i s h e d ) . S o m e t i m e s , o n t h e c o n t r a r y , rotation would o c c u r , d i s t i n c t images would form, but they would be detached from m e m o r y and abandon t h e i r solidarity w i t h t h e o t h e r s . In any c a s e , it is not sufficient to say that, a c c o r d i n g to Bergson, pure r e c o l l e c t i o n always p r e s e r v e s itself; we m u s t add t h a t i l l n e s s n e v e r abolishes t h e r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e as such, but merely impairs a particular aspect of its actualization. T h e s e , therefore, are the four aspects of actualization: translation and rotation, w h i c h form the properly psychic m o m e n t s ; d y n a m i c m o v e m e n t , t h e attitude of t h e body that is n e c e s s a r y t o t h e stable equilibrium o f t h e t w o preceding determinations; and finally, m e c h a n i c a l m o v e m e n t , t h e m o t o r s c h e m e that represents the final stage of actualization. All this involves the adaptation of t h e past to t h e present, t h e utilization of t h e past in t e r m s of t h e present - what Bergson calls " a t t e n t i o n to l i f e . " T h e first m o m e n t ensures a p o i n t of c o n t a c t b e t w e e n t h e past and the present: T h e past literally moves toward t h e present in o r d e r to find a point of c o n t a c t ( o r of c o n t r a c t i o n ) w i t h it. T h e s e c o n d m o m e n t ensures a transposition, a translation, an e x p a n s i o n o f t h e past i n t h e p r e s e n t : R e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e s restore the distinctions of the past in the present - at least those that are useful. T h e third m o m e n t , the d y n a m i c attitude of the

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body, ensures the harmony o f t h e t w o preceding m o m e n t s , c o r r e c t i n g t h e o n e by t h e o t h e r and pushing t h e m to t h e i r l i m i t . The fourth m o m e n t , t h e m e c h a n i c a l m o v e m e n t o f t h e body, ensures t h e p r o p e r utility o f t h e w h o l e and its p e r f o r m a n c e i n t h e present. But this utility, this p e r f o r m a n c e , would be nothing if t h e lour m o m e n t s w e r e not c o n n e c t e d w i t h a c o n d i t i o n that is valid lor t h e m all. We have seen that pure r e c o l l e c t i o n was c o n t e m p o r a n e o u s with t h e present that it had been. R e c o l l e c t i o n , in t h e c o u r s e of actualizing itself, thus t e n d s to be actualized in an image that is itself c o n t e m p o r a n e o u s to this present. Now it is obvious that such a r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e , such a " r e c o l l e c t i o n of t h e p r e s e n t , " would be c o m p l e t e l y useless since it would simply result in doubling t h e perception-image. R e c o l l e c t i o n m u s t be e m b o d i e d , not in t e r m s of its o w n present ( w i t h which it is c o n t e m p o r a n e o u s ) , but in t e r m s of a new present, in relation to w h i c h it is n o w past. T h i s c o n d i t i o n is normally realized by the very nature of t h e present, which c o n stantly passes by, m o v i n g forward and h o l l o w i n g o u t an interval. T h i s is t h e r e f o r e t h e fifth aspect of a c t u a l i z a t i o n : a kind ol d i s p l a c e m e n t by w h i c h t h e past is e m b o d i e d only in t e r m s of a present that is different from that w h i c h it has b e e n . ( T h e d i s t u r b a n c e c o r r e s p o n d i n g to this last a s p e c t would be paramnesia, in w h i c h t h e " r e c o l l e c t i o n of t h e p r e s e n t " w o u l d b e actualized a s s u c h . )
5 9

In this way a psychological unconscious, distinct from the o n t o logical u n c o n s c i o u s , is defined. T h e latter corresponds to a r e c o l l e c t i o n that is pure, virtual, impassive, inactive, in itself. T h e former represents t h e m o v e m e n t of r e c o l l e c t i o n in t h e c o u r s e ol actualizing itself: Like Leibnizian possibles, r e c o l l e c t i o n s try

B E R G S O N I S M

t o b e c o m e e m b o d i e d , they e x e r t pressure t o b e a d m i t t e d s o that a lull-scale repression o r i g i n a t i n g in t h e present and an " a t t e n t i o n t o l i f e " are necessary t o ward o i l useless o r dangerous r e c o l l e c t i o n s .
4 0

There is no contradiction between these

t w o descriptions of t w o distinct unconsciousnesses. Moreover, t h e w h o l e of Matter and Memory plays b e t w e e n the t w o , with c o n s e q u e n c e s t h a t we shall analyze later.

CHAPTER

IV

One

or

Many

Durations?

T h u s far, t h e Bergsonian m e t h o d has shown t w o main a s p e c t s , t h e o n e dualist, t h e o t h e r m o n i s t . First, t h e diverging l i n e s o r t h e d i f f e r e n c e s in kind had to be followed b e y o n d t h e " t u r n i n e x p e r i e n c e " ; t h e n , still further b e y o n d , t h e p o i n t o f c o n v e r g e n c e of t h e s e l i n e s had to be r e d i s c o v e r e d , and t h e rights of a n e w m o n i s m r e s t o r e d . T h i s program is in fact realized in Matter and Memory. First, we bring o u t t h e difference in kind b e t w e e n t h e t w o lines o f o b j e c t and s u b j e c t : b e t w e e n p e r c e p t i o n and r e c o l l e c t i o n , m a t t e r and m e m o r y , p r e s e n t and past. W h a t happens t h e n ? I t c e r t a i n l y s e e m s that w h e n t h e r e c o l l e c t i o n is a c t u a l i z e d , its d i f f e r e n c e in k i n d from p e r c e p t i o n t e n d s t o b e o b l i t e r a t e d : T h e r e are n o l o n g e r , t h e r e c a n n o l o n g e r b e , anything but d i f f e r e n c e s in d e g r e e b e t w e e n r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e s and p e r c e p t i o n - i m a g e s .
2 1

It is for t h i s r e a s o n

that, w i t h o u t t h e m e t h o d o f i n t u i t i o n , w e inevitably remain prisoners of a badly analyzed p s y c h o l o g i c a l c o m p o s i t e w h o s e original d i f f e r e n c e s in kind we are u n a b l e to d i s c e r n . But it is c l e a r that, at this level, a g e n u i n e point of unity is n o t yet available. T h e point o f unity must a c c o u n t for a c o m p o s i t e from the other side of t h e turn in e x p e r i e n c e ; it must not

7?

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be c o n t u s e d w i t h the o n e in e x p e r i e n c e . And in l a d , Bergson is n o t c o n t e n t to say that t h e r e are n o w o n l y d i f f e r e n c e s in d e g r e e b e t w e e n t h e r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e and t h e p e r c e p t i o n i m a g e . He also presents a m u c h m o r e i m p o r t a n t o n t o l o g i c a l p r o p o s i t i o n : While the past coexists with its own present, and while it coexists with itself on various levels of contraction, we must recog-

nise that the present itself is only the most contracted level of the past. T h i s t i m e it is pure present and pure past, pure p e r c e p t i o n and pure r e c o l l e c t i o n as s u c h , pure m a t t e r and pure m e m o r y that n o w have only differences of e x p a n s i o n (detente) and c o n t r a c t i o n and thus r e d i s c o v e r an o n t o l o g i c a l unity. But discovering a d e e p e r c o n t r a c t i o n - m e m o r y at t h e heart of r e c o l l e c t i o n m e m o r y we have thus laid t h e foundations for t h e possibility ol a new monism. At each instant, o u r p e r c e p t i o n c o n t r a c t s "an incalculable multitude of r e m e m o r i / e d elements"; at each instant, o u r p r e s e n t i n f i n i t e l y c o n t r a c t s o u r past: " T h e t w o t e r m s w h i c h had b e e n separated t o begin w i t h c o h e r e c l o s e l y t o g e t h e r . . . . " W h a t , in fact, is a s e n s a t i o n ? It is t h e o p e r a t i o n o f c o n t r a c t i n g t r i l l i o n s o l vibrations o n t o a r e c e p t i v e surface. Q u a l i t y e m e r g e s from this, quality that is n o t h i n g o t h e r than c o n t r a c t e d quantity. T h i s is how t h e n o t i o n of c o n t r a c t i o n ( o r of t e n s i o n ) allows us to go beyond t h e duality ol h o m o g e n e o u s q u a n t i t y and h e t e r o g e n e o u s quality, and to pass from o n e to t h e o t h e r in a c o n t i n u o u s m o v e m e n t . B u t , conversely, if o u r present, through which we place ourselves inside matter, is t h e most c o n t r a c t e d d e g r e e of o u r past, m a t t e r itsell will be like an infinitely dilated or r e l a x e d (detendu) past ( s o relaxed that t h e p r e c e d i n g m o m e n t has d i s a p p e a r e d w h e n t h e following appears). T h i s is how t h e idea of r e l a x a t i o n (detente) or of e x t e n s i o n will o v e r c o m e t h e duality of t h e u n e x t e n d e d and t h e e x t e n d e d and iive us t h e m e a n s of passim; from o n e to t h e
5

7-1

O N E

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D U R A T I O N S ?

o t h e r , l o r p e r c e p t i o n itsell is e x t e n s i t v , sensation is e x t e n s i v e insofar as w h a t it c o n t r a c t s is p r e c i s e l y t h e e x t e n d e d , tinexpanded (detendu). (It makes space available to us "in the e x a c t p r o p o r t i o n " in w h i c h we have t i m e a v a i l a b l e ) .
4

H e n c e , the i m p o r t a n c e of Matter and Memory: M o v e m e n t is attributed to things t h e m s e l v e s so that material things partake d i r e c t l y of duration, and thereby form a l i m i t case of duration. The immediate data (les donees imme'diates) are surpassed: Movem e n t is no less o u t s i d e me than in m e ; and t h e Sell itsell in turn is only o n e c a s e a m o n g o t h e r s in d u r a t i o n . But t h e n all kinds ol p r o b l e m s arise. L e t us single o u t t w o i m p o r t a n t o n e s . ( I ) Is there not a contradiction between the two m o m e n t s o f t h e m e t h o d , b e t w e e n t h e dualism o f d i l l e r e n c e s i n kind and t h e m o n i s m o f c o n t r a c t i o n - r e l a x a t i o n (detente)? Lor, in the
5

n a m e o f t h e first, p h i l o s o p h i e s that c o n f i n e t h e m s e l v e s t o differences oi'degree, oi'intensity w e r e c o n d e m n e d . Moreover, what w e r e c o n d e m n e d were t h e false n o t i o n s o f d e g r e e , o f intensity, as n o t i o n s of c o n t r a r i e t y or n e g a t i o n , s o u r c e s of all false p r o b l e m s . Isn't Bergson now in t h e process of restoring all that he o n c e dismissed? W h a t differences can there be b e t w e e n r e l a x a t i o n (detente) and c o n t r a c t i o n e x c e p t for t h e differences of d e g r e e , of intensity? T h e present is only t h e most c o n t r a c t e d d e g r e e of t h e past, m a t t e r t h e most relaxed (de'tendu) d e g r e e ol t h e present (mens momentanca). ' And if w e s e e k t o c o r r e c t what is t o o " g r a d u a l " h e r e , we can only do so by r e i n t r o d u c ing i n t o d u r a t i o n all t h e c o n t r a r i e t y , all t h e o p p o s i t i o n that B e r g s o n had previously c o n d e m n e d as so many a b s t r a c t and inadequate c o n c e p t i o n s . W e will only e s c a p e from m a t t e r a s d e t e r i o r a t i o n ol duration by e m b r a c i n g a c o n c e p t i o n ol matter that is a "reversal" of d u r a t i o n . W h a t then b e c o m e s of t h e Bergsonian p r o j e c t of s h o w i n g that D i f f e r e n c e , as difference
7 1

7S

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in k i n d , c o u l d and should be understood independently ol t h e negative ( t h e negative ol d e t e r i o r a t i o n as well as the negative o l o p p o s i t i o n ) ? T h e worst c o n t r a d i c t i o n o f all s e e m s t o b e set up at t h e h e a r t of" t h e s y s t e m . E v e r y t h i n g is r e i n t r o d u c e d : d e g r e e s , intensity, o p p o s i t i o n . ( 2 ) Even supposing that this p r o b l e m is solved, can we speak of a rediscovered m o n i s m ? In o n e s e n s e , yes, insofar as everything is d u r a t i o n . B u t , s i n c e duration is dissipated in all t h e s e differences in d e g r e e , intensity, r e l a x a t i o n (detente), and c o n t r a c t i o n t h a t affect it, we t e n d instead to fall i n t o a kind o f q u a n t i t a t i v e pluralism. H e n c e , t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f t h e foll o w i n g q u e s t i o n : Is duration o n e or many, and in what s e n s e ? Have we really o v e r c o m e d u a l i s m , or have we b e e n engulfed in pluralism? We must begin w i t h this q u e s t i o n . * * *

Bergson's t e x t s s e e m to vary c o n s i d e r a b l y on this p o i n t . Matter and Memory goes furthest in t h e affirmation of a radical plurality o f d u r a t i o n s : T h e universe i s m a d e u p o f m o d i f i c a t i o n s , dist u r b a n c e s , c h a n g e s of t e n s i o n and ol energy, and n o t h i n g e l s e . Bergson d o e s indeed speak of a plurality of rhvthms of duration; but in this c o n t e x t he makes it clear in relation to durations that are m o r e or less slow or fast that each duration is an a b s o l u t e , and that each r h y t h m is i t s e l f a d u r a t i o n . In a key t e x t from 1 9 0 3 , he insists on t h e progress m a d e s i n c e Time and Tree Will: Psychological duration, our duration, is now only o n e c a s e a m o n g o t h e r s , a m o n g an
8

infinity

of O t h e r s , " a c e r t a i n

w e l l - d e l i n e d tension, w h o s e very d e f i n i t i v e n e s s s e e m s l i k e a c h o i c e b e t w e e n an infinity of possible durations."*' We can see that, as in Matter and Memory, psychology is n o w only an opening o n t o ontology, a springboard lor an " i n s t a l l a t i o n " in B e i n g .

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But no s o o n e r are we installed, than we p e r c e i v e that B e i n g i s m u l t i p l e , t h e very n u m e r o u s d u r a t i o n , o u r o w n , c a u g h t b e t w e e n m o r e d i s p e r s e d d u r a t i o n s and m o r e t a u t (tendue), m o r e intense durations: " T h i s being so o n e perceives any numb e r of durations, all very different from o n e a n o t h e r " The

idea of a virtual c o e x i s t e n c e of all t h e levels of t h e past, of all t h e levels of t e n s i o n , is thus e x t e n d e d to t h e w h o l e of t h e universe: T h i s idea no longer simply signifies my relationship with b e i n g , but the relationship of all things with being. Everything happens as if t h e universe w e r e a t r e m e n d o u s M e m o r y . And Bergson is pleased with t h e power of t h e m e t h o d of intuition: xf It a l o n e e n a b l e s us " t o go beyond idealism as well as r e a l i s m , to affirm t h e e x i s t e n c e o f o b j e c t s which are inferior and superior to ourselves, although still, in a c e r t a i n s e n s e , internal to us, to make t h e m coexist together without difficulty." T h i s extension of virtual c o e x i s t e n c e to an infinity of specific durations stands o u t clearly in Creative Evolution, w h e r e life itself is c o m p a r e d t o a m e m o r y , t h e g e n e r a or s p e c i e s c o r r e s p o n d i n g to c o e x i s t i n g d e g r e e s o f this vital m e m o r y .
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T h u s w e have a n o n t o l o g i c a l

vision that s e e m s to i m p l y a g e n e r a l i z e d pluralism. But it is p r e c i s e l y in Creative Evolution that a major l i m i t a t i o n is underl i n e d : If things are said to e n d u r e , it is less in t h e m s e l v e s or a b s o l u t e l y than in r e l a t i o n to t h e W h o l e of t h e universe in w h i c h they p a r t i c i p a t e insofar as t h e i r d i s t i n c t i o n s are artific i a l . T h u s , t h e p i e c e of sugar only makes us wait b e c a u s e , in spite of its arbitrary c a n i n g out, it opens out o n t o t h e universe as a w h o l e . In this sense, each thing no longer has its own durat i o n . T h e only o n e s that d o are t h e b e i n g s similar t o u s ( p s y - ^ etiological duration), then t h e living beings that naturally form relative c l o s e d s y s t e m s , and finally, t h e W h o l e of t h e univ e r s e . " It is thus a l i m i t e d , not a g e n e r a l i z e d , pluralism.

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Finally, Duration and Simultaneity recapitulates all the possible hypotheses: generalized pluralism, limited pluralism, monism.
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A c c o r d i n g t o t h e lirst, t h e r e i s a c o e x i s t e n c e o f

c o m p l e t e l y different rhythms, ol durations that are really dist i n c t , h e n c e a radical m u l t i p l i c i t y ol T i m e . B e r g s o n adds that he o n c e advanced this h y p o t h e s i s , but c o n s i d e r e d that apart from ourselves it was valid only lor living s p e c i e s : " W e did not see t h e n , w e still s e e today, n o reason t o e x t e n d this h y p o t h e sis o l a m u l t i p l i c i t y o l d u r a t i o n s t o t h e m a t e r i a l u n i v e r s e . " H e n c e , a s e c o n d hypothesis: Material things o u t s i d e us would n o t be distinguished by a b s o l u t e l y different durations but by a c e r t a i n relative way of participating in o u r duration and of giving it emphasis, f fere it s e e m s that Bergson is condensing the provisional d o c t r i n e of Time and Tree Will ( t h e r e is, as it w e r e , a m y s t e r i o u s p a r t i c i p a t i o n of things in o u r duration, an " i n e x pressible g r o u n d " ) and t h e m o r e developed d o c t r i n e oi Creative Evolution (this participation in o u r duration would be explained by things b e l o n g i n g to t h e W h o l e of t h e u n i v e r s e ) . But even in this s e c o n d c a s e , t h e mystery about the nature ol the W h o l e and o u r relationship with it r e m a i n s . H e n c e , t h e third hypothe s i s : T h e r e is o n l y a single t i m e , a single duration, in w h i c h e v e r y t h i n g would p a r t i c i p a t e , including o u r c o n s c i o u s n e s s e s , i n c l u d i n g living b e i n g s , i n c l u d i n g t h e w h o l e material w o r l d . Now, to t h e reader's surprise, it is this hypothesis that Bergson puts forward as t h e m o s t satisfactory: a single Time, one, universal, impersonal.^ In short, a m o n i s m o f T i m e Nothing c o u l d

b e m o r e surprising; o n e o f t h e o t h e r t w o h y p o t h e s e s would s e e m to be a b e t t e r expression of the state of Bergsonism, w h e t h e r alter Matter and Mcmon o r alter Creative Evolution. W h a t is m o r e : lias B e r g s o n f o r g o t t e n that in Time and Tree Will h e defined duration, that is real t i m e , as a " m u l t i p l i c i t y " ?

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W h a t has happened? U n d o u b t e d l y t h e c o n f r o n t a t i o n w i t h t h e t h e o r y o f R e l a t i v i t y . T h i s c o n f r o n t a t i o n was f o r c e d o n Bergson because Relativity, for its part, invoked c o n c e p t s such as e x p a n s i o n , c o n t r a c t i o n , t e n s i o n and dilation in relation to space and t i m e . But this confrontation did not c o m e about sudd e n l y : It was prepared by t h e fundamental n o t i o n of M u l t i plicity, which Hinstein drew from R i e m a n n , and which Bergson lor his part had used in Time and Free Will. Let us recall, briefly, the principal characteristics of Einstein's theory, as Bergson summarizes t h e m : Everything b e g i n s from a c e r t a i n idea of m o v e m e n t that entails a c o n t r a c t i o n of bodies and a dilation of their t i m e . F r o m this we c o n c l u d e that t h e r e has b e e n a d i s l o c a t i o n of s i m u l t a n e i t y : W h a t is s i m u l t a n e o u s in a fixed system ceases to be s i m u l t a n e o u s in a m o b i l e s y s t e m . M o r e o v e r , by virtue of t h e relativity of rest and m o v e m e n t , by virtue of t h e relativity e v e n o f a c c e l e r a t e d m o v e m e n t , t h e s e c o n t r a c t i o n s o f e x t e n s i t y , t h e s e d i l a t i o n s o f t i m e , t h e s e ruptures o f s i m u l t a neity b e c o m e a b s o l u t e l y r e c i p r o c a l . I n this s e n s e t h e r e would b e a m u l t i p l i c i t y o f t i m e s , a plurality o f t i m e s , with different speeds of flow, all real, each o n e p e c u l i a r to a s y s t e m of refere n c e . And as it b e c o m e s necessary, in o r d e r to situate a p o i n t , to i n d i c a t e its p o s i t i o n in t i m e as well as in space, t h e only unity of t i m e is in a fourth d i m e n s i o n of s p a c e . It is p r e c i s e l y this S p a c e - T i m e b l o c that a c t u a l l y divides up i n t o space and i n t o t i m e in an infinity of ways, each o n e peculiar to a s y s t e m . T o what d o e s t h e discussion relate? C o n t r a c t i o n , d i l a t i o n , r e l a t i v i t y o f m o v e m e n t , m u l t i p l i c i t y all t h e s e n o t i o n s are familiar to Bergson. He uses t h e m lor his own purposes. Bergson n e v e r gives up t h e idea that d u r a t i o n , that is to say t i m e , is e s s e n t i a l l y m u l t i p l i c i t y . But t h e p r o b l e m is: W h a t t y p e o f m u l t i p l i c i t y ? R e m e m b e r that Bergson o p p o s e d t w o t y p e s o f

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m u l t i p l i c i t y actual m u l t i p l i c i t i e s that are n u m e r i c a l and disc o n t i n u o u s and virtual m u l t i p l i c i t i e s that are c o n t i n u o u s and q u a l i t a t i v e . It is c l e a r that in Bergson's t e r m i n o l o g y , Einstein's l i m e b e l o n g s t o t h e first category. Bergson c r i t i c i z e s E i n s t e i n lor having c o n f u s e d t h e t w o t y p e s ol m u l t i p l i c i t y and lor having, a s a result, revived t h e confusion o f t i m e w i t h s p a c e . T h e discussion only apparently deals with the q u e s t i o n : Is t i m e o n e or multiple? T h e true problem is " W h a t is the multiplicity p e c u l i a r t o t i m e ? " T h i s clearly surfaces i n Bergson's u p h o l d ing of t h e e x i s t e n c e of a single, universal and impersonal T i m e . " W h e n we are s i t t i n g on t h e bank of a river, t h e flowing of t h e water, t h e gliding of a boat or t h e flight of a bird, t h e unint e r r u p t e d m u r m u r o f o u r d e e p life, are for u s t h r e e different things or a single o n e , at will "
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Here Bergson endows atten-

tion with the power of "apportioning without dividing," " o f being o n e and.several"; but m o r e profoundly, he e n d o w s duration w i t h t h e p o w e r t o e n c o m p a s s itself. T h e flowing o f t h e water, t h e flight of t h e bird, t h e m u r m u r of my life form t h r e e lluxes; but o n l y b e c a u s e my duration is o n e of t h e m , and also t h e e l e m e n t that c o n t a i n s t h e t w o o t h e r s . W h y not m a k e d o w i t h t w o fluxes, my d u r a t i o n and t h e flight of t h e bird, for example? Because t h e two fluxes could never be said to be c o e x istent or simultaneous if they were not contained in a third o n e . T h e flight of t h e bird and my o w n duration are only simultaneous insofar as my own duration divides in two and is reflected in a n o t h e r that c o n t a i n s it at t h e s a m e t i m e as it c o n t a i n s t h e flight of t h e bird: T h e r e is t h e r e f o r e a fundamental t r i p l i c i t y of l l u x e s .
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It is in this sense that my duration essentially has

t h e power t o disclose o t h e r durations, t o e n c o m p a s s the o t h e r s , and to encompass itsell ad infinitum. But we see that this infinity of r e f l e c t i o n or a t t e n t i o n gives duration b a c k its true char-

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a c t c r i s t i c s , w h i c h must be constantly recalled: It is not simply the indivisible, but that w h i c h has a very special style ol division; it is not simply succession but a very special c o e x i s t e n c e , a s i m u l t a n e i t y ol lluxes. " S u c h is o u r first idea of s i m u l t a n e ity. We call simultaneous, then, two external lluxes that occupy t h e s a m e duration b e c a u s e they hold each o t h e r in t h e durat i o n ol a third, o u r o w n [ I t is t h i s ] s i m u l t a n e i t y of fluxes
16

that brings us b a c k to internal duration, to real d u r a t i o n . "

l e t us return to the characteristics by which Bergson defines d u r a t i o n a s virtual o r c o n t i n u o u s m u l t i p l i c i t y . O n t h e o n e hand, it divides i n t o e l e m e n t s that diller in kind; on the o t h e r , these e l e m e n t s or t h e s e parts only actually exist insofar as t h e division itself is effectively carried out ( I I o u r c o n s c i o u s n e s s " t e r m i n a t e s t h e division at a given point, t h e r e also t e r m i n a t e s divisibility.").
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If we take up a position w h e r e t h e division has

not yet b e e n carried o u t , that is, in t h e virtual, it is o b v i o u s that t h e r e is only a single t i m e . T h e n , let us take up a n o t h e r position at a m o m e n t w h e r e t h e division has b e e n carried o u t : t w o lluxes, lor e x a m p l e , that o f A c h i l l e s ' r a c e and that o f t h e t o r t o i s e ' s r a c e . We say that they difler in kind (as do each s t e p o f A c h i l l e s and each s t e p o f t h e t o r t o i s e , i f w e take t h e division still further). T h e fact that t h e division is s u b j e c t to t h e c o n d i t i o n ol actually b e i n g carried o u t m e a n s that t h e parts ( l l u x e s ) must be lived or at least posited and thought of as capab l e o l b e i n g lived. N o w Bergson's w h o l e t h e s i s consists in demonstrating that they can only be livable or lived in the perspective of a

single time. T h e p r i n c i p l e o f t h e d e m o n s t r a t i o n is as follows: W h e n we admit t h e e x i s t e n c e of several t i m e s , we are not c o n tent to c o n s i d e r flux A and flux B or even t h e image that t h e s u b j e c t of A has of B ( A c h i l l e s as he c o n c e i v e s or imagines t h e t o r t o i s e ' s r a c e a s c a p a b l e o f b e i n g lived b y t h e t o r t o i s e ) . I n

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o r d e r t o posit t h e e x i s t e n c e o l t w o t i m e s , w e are l o r c e d t o i n t r o d u c e a strange factor: t h e image that A has of B, w h i l e n e v e r t h e l e s s k n o w i n g that B c a n n o t live in this way. T h i s lact o r is c o m p l e t e l y " s y m b o l i c " ; in o t h e r words, it o p p o s e s and .
r

e x c l u d e s t h e lived e x p e r i e n c e and through it (and only i t ) is the so-called second time realized, f r o m this Bergson c o n c l u d e s that t h e r e e x i s t s o n e T i m e and o n e T i m e onlv, a s m u c h o n t h e level of t h e actual parts as on t h e level ol t h e virtual W h o l e . ( B u t what is t h e s i g n i f i c a n c e ol this o b s c u r e d e m o n s t r a t i o n ? W e shall soon s e e . ) It we lollow t h e division in t h e o t h e r d i r e c t i o n , if we go b a c k , we see t h e lluxes each t i m e with their differences in kind,
with their differences of contraction and expansion (detente), commu-

n i c a t i n g in a single and i d e n t i c a l l i m e , w h i c h is, as it w e r e , t h e i r c o n d i t i o n : "A single duration will pick up along its r o u t e t h e events ol t h e totality ol t h e material w o r l d ; and we will t h e n be able to e l i m i n a t e the human consciousness that we had initially had available, every n o w and t h e n , as so many relays lor the m o v e m e n t of our thought: there will now only be impersonal t i m e in w h i c h all things will How."
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H e n c e the triplic-

ity ol lluxes, o u r duration ( t h e duration ol a s p e c t a t o r ) b e i n g necessary b o t h as Mux and as representative ol l i m e in w h i c h all lluxes are engulfed. It is in this sense that Bergson's various t e x t s are perfectly r e c o n c i l a b l e and c o n t a i n n o c o n t r a d i c t i o n : There is only o n e t i m e ( m o n i s m ) , although t h e r e is an infinity ol actual lluxes (generalized pluralism) that necessarily participate in the same virtual w h o l e ( l i m i t e d pluralism). Bergson in no way gives up t h e idea of a difference in kind b e t w e e n actual fluxes; any m o r e than he gives up the idea ol differences ot r e l a x a t i o n (detente) or c o n t r a c t i o n in t h e v i r t u a l i t v t h a t e n c o m p a s s e s t h e m and is actualized in t h e m . But he c o n s i d e r s

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that these t w o c e r t a i n t i e s do not e x c l u d e , but on t h e contrary imply, a single t i m e . In short: Not only do virtual m u l t i p l i c i ties i m p l y a single t i m e , but duration as virtual m u l t i p l i c i t y is this single and s a m e Time. It is n o n e t h e l e s s true that t h e Bergsonian d e m o n s t r a t i o n of t h e c o n t r a d i c t o r y c h a r a c t e r o f t h e pluralilv o f t i m e s s e e m s o b s c u r e . L e t us clarify it at t h e level of t h e theory of R e l a t i v ity. For, paradoxically, only this theory makes it appear c l e a r and c o n v i n c i n g . Insofar as we are dealing with qualitatively dist i n c t fluxes, it may in fact be difficult to know w h e t h e r or not t h e t w o s u b j e c t s live and p e r c e i v e t h e same t i m e : W e support unity, but only as the most " p l a u s i b l e " idea. On t h e o t h e r hand, the t h e o r y ol R e l a t i v i t y is based on t h e following hypothesis: T h e r e are no l o n g e r qualitative fluxes, b u t s y s t e m s , "in a s t a t e of r e c i p r o c a l and uniform r e p l a c e m e n t " w h e r e t h e o b s e r v e r s are i n t e r c h a n g e a b l e , s i n c e t h e r e is no l o n g e r a privileged system.
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L e t us a c c e p t this hypothesis. Einstein says that t h e t i m e

of t h e t w o s y s t e m s , S and S ' , is n o t t h e s a m e . B u t what is this other t i m e ? It is n o t that of P e t e r in S, n o r that of Paul in S ' , s i n c e , by hypothesis, these t w o t i m e s only differ quantitatively, and this difference is c a n c e l l e d out when o n e takes S and S' as s y s t e m s of r e f e r e n c e in turn. C o u l d it at least be said that this o t h e r t i m e is t h e o n e that P e t e r c o n c e i v e s as lived or c a p a b l e ol b e i n g lived by Paul? Not at all and this is the essential point of the Bergsonian argument. " U n d o u b t e d l y P e t e r s t i c k s a label on this T i m e in t h e n a m e of Paul; but if he imagined Paul c o n s c i o u s , living his o w n duration and measuring it, lor this very reason he would see Paul take his o w n system as a system of r e f e r e n c e , and t h e n p l a c e h i m s e l f in this single T i m e , internal to e a c h s y s t e m , w h i c h we have just b e e n speaking of: m o r e over, also for this very reason, P e t e r would provisionally sur-

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render his system ol reference and in c o n s e q u e n c e his e x i s t e n c e as physicist, and in c o n s e q u e n c e also his c o n s c i o u s n e s s ; P e t e r would now only see himself as a vision of P a u l . " - In short, t h e other t i m e is s o m e t h i n g that can n e i t h e r he lived by P e t e r nor by Paul, nor by Paul as P e t e r imagines h i m . It is a pure symbol e x c l u d i n g t h e lived and i n d i c a t i n g s i m p l y that such a syst e m , and n o t t h e o t h e r , is taken as a r e f e r e n c e p o i n t . " P e t e r no longer envisages Paul as a physicist, n o r even a c o n s c i o u s b e i n g , nor even a b e i n g : he e m p t i e s from his c o n s c i o u s and living interior the visual image of Paul, onlv retaining the external e n v e l o p e ol t h e c h a r a c t e r . " T h u s , in t h e Relativity hypothesis, it b e c o m e s obvious that t h e r e can only be a single livable and lived t i m e . ( T h i s d e m o n s t r a t i o n g o e s beyond t h e relativist hypothesis, s i n c e qualitative differences, in t h e i r turn, c a n n o t c o n s t i t u t e n u m e r i c a l d i s t i n c t i o n s . ) T h i s is why^Bergson claims that Relativity in fact demonstrates t h e o p p o s i t e of what it asserts a b o u t t h e plurality of t i m e .
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All Bergson's o t h e r c r i t i c i s m s derive from this, f o r

what s i m u l t a n e i t y d o e s E i n s t e i n have in m i n d w h e n he states that it varies from o n e s y s t e m to t h e o t h e r ? A s i m u l t a n e i t y defined l>\ the readings ol t w o distant I l o c k s . And it is true that this s i m u l t a n e i t y is variable or relative. But precisely because its relativity expresses, not s o m e t h i n g lived or livable, but t h e s y m b o l i c factor of w h i c h we have just been s p e a k i n g .
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In this sense, this s i m u l t a n e i t y presupposes t w o o t h e r s linked in t h e instant, simultaneities that are not variable but absolute: t h e s i m u l t a n e i t y b e t w e e n t w o instants, taken from e x t e r n a l movements (a nearby p h e n o m e n o n and a m o m e n t of the c l o c k ) , and t h e s i m u l t a n e i t y of t h e s e instants with t h e instants taken by t h e m from o u r duration. And these t w o s i m u l t a n e i t i e s pres u p p o s e y e t a n o t h e r , t h a t o l t h e l l u x e s , w h i c h i s e v e n less

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v a r i a b l e . ' T h e Bergsonian t h e o r y o f simultaneity thus t e n d s to


2

c o n f i r m t h e c o n c e p t i o n o f d u r a t i o n as t h e virtual coexistence o f all t h e d e g r e e s of a single and identical t i m e . In short, from t h e first page o f Duration and Simultaneity t o the last, Bergson criticizes Einstein tor having confused the virtual and t h e actual ( t h e i n t r o d u c t i o n o f t h e s y m b o l i c factor, that is, ol a f i c t i o n , expresses this c o n f u s i o n ) . I Ie is c r i t i c i z e d , t h e r e f o r e , for having c o n f u s e d t h e t w o types o f m u l t i p l i c i t y , virtual and actual. At t h e heart of the question "Is duration o n e or m u l t i p l e ? " we find a c o m p l e t e l y different p r o b l e m : Durat i o n is a m u l t i p l i c i t y , but of what type? O n l y t h e hypothesis o f a single T i m e can, according to Bergson, a c c o u n t for t h e nature of virtual m u l t i p l i c i t i e s . By confusing t h e t w o types actual spatial m u l t i p l i c i t y and virtual temporal multiplicity - Einstein has m e r e l y invented a new way of spatializing t i m e . And we c a n n o t deny t h e originality o f his s p a c e - t i m e and t h e stupendous a c h i e v e m e n t it represents for s c i e n c e . (Spatialization has never b e e n pushed so far or in such a w a y . )
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But this a c h i e v e -

m e n t is that of a symbol for e x p r e s s i n g c o m p o s i t e s , n o t that of s o m e t h i n g e x p e r i e n c e d that is c a p a b l e , as Proust would say, o f e x p r e s s i n g " a l i t t l e t i m e i n t h e pure s t a t e . " Being, o r T i m e , is a multiplicity. But it is precisely not " m u l t i p l e " ; it is O n e , in c o n f o r m i t y w i t h t o type o f m u l t i p l i c i t y .

W h e n Bergson defends the u n i q u e n e s s o f t i m e , h e d o e s n o t r e t r a c t anything he has said previously a b o u t t h e virtual c o e x istence of various degrees ol relaxation (detente) and c o n t r a c t i o n and t h e difference in kind b e t w e e n lluxes or actual rhvthms. W h e n h e says that s p a c e and t i m e n e v e r o v e r l a p n o r " i n t e r t w i n e , " when he maintains that only their d i s t i n c t i o n is r e a l ,
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he d o e s not retract any of t h e a m b i g u i t y ofMatter and Memory, w h i c h c o n s i s t e d in integrating s o m e t h i n g of s p a c e i n t o durat i o n , in o r d e r t o find in d u r a t i o n a s u f f i c i e n t reason (raison wffhante) of e x t e n s i o n . W h a t he c o n d e m n s from t h e start is t h e whole combination of s p a c e and t i m e i n t o a badly analyzed composite, w h e r e space is considered as ready made, and t i m e , in c o n s e q u e n c e , as a fourth d i m e n s i o n of s p a c e .
2 h

And t h i s

spatialization of t i m e is undoubtedly inseparable from s c i e n c e . But Relativity is characterized by its having pushed this spatialization forward, welding the c o m p o s i t e together in a c o m p l e t e l y n e w way: For, in p r e r e l a t i v i s t s c i e n c e , t i m e a s s i m i l a t e d to a fourth d i m e n s i o n ol s p a c e is n e v e r t h e l e s s an i n d e p e n d e n t and really d i s t i n c t variable. In Relativity, on t h e o t h e r hand, t h e assimilation ol s p a c e to t i m e is necessary in o r d e r to e x p r e s s t h e invariance ol d i s t a n c e , so that it is e x p l i c i t l y i n t r o d u c e d i n t o t h e c a l c u l a t i o n s and d o e s n o t allow any real d i s t i n c t i o n to subsist. In s h o r t . R e l a t i v i t y has formed an e s p e c i a l l y c l o s e knit m i x t u r e , but a m i x t u r e that is part of t h e Bergsonian crit i q u e of t h e " c o m p o s i t e " in g e n e r a l . On t h e o t h e r hand, from Bergson's point of view we can (in fact we m u s t ) c o n c e i v e of c o m b i n a t i o n s that d e p e n d on a c o m p l e t e l y different p r i n c i p l e , l e t u s c o n s i d e r t h e degrees o f expansion (detente) and of c o n t r a c t i o n , all ol which coexist with o n e a n o t h e r : At t h e limit of e x p a n s i o n (detente), we have matter.
27

W h i l e undoubtedly, m a t t e r is not yet s p a c e , it is already

e x t e n s i t y . A duration that is infinitely s l a c k e n e d and relaxed places its m o m e n t s o u t s i d e o n e a n o t h e r ; o n e must have disappeared when t h e o t h e r appears. W h a t these m o m e n t s lose in r e c i p r o c a l p e n e t r a t i o n they gain in r e s p e c t i v e spreading. W h a t they lose in t e n s i o n they gain in e x t e n s i o n . So that, at each m o m e n t , everything tends to be spread out into an instan-

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t.meous, indefinitely divisible continuum, w h i c h will not prolong itsell i n t o t h e n e x t instant, but will pass away, only to be r e b o r n in t h e following instant, in a flicker or shiver that c o n stantly begins a g a i n .
28

It would be sufficient to push this move-

m e n t of expansion (detente) to its limit in o r d e r to obtain space (but s p a c e would t h e n be found at t h e end of t h e line of differentiation as t h e e x t r e m e ending that is no longer c o m b i n e d w i t h d u r a t i o n ) . S p a c e , in e f f e c t , is not m a t t e r or e x t e n s i o n , but t h e " s c h e m a " of matter, that is, t h e r e p r e s e n t a t i o n of t h e limit w h e r e t h e m o v e m e n t of expansion (detente) would c o m e to an end as t h e e x t e r n a l e n v e l o p e of all p o s s i b l e e x t e n s i o n s . In this sense, it is not matter, it is not extensity, that is in space, but t h e very o p p o s i t e .
29

And if we think that m a t t e r has a thou-

sand ways of b e c o m i n g e x p a n d e d (detendu) or e x t e n d e d , we must also say that t h e r e are all kinds of d i s t i n c t e x t e n s i t i e s , all r e l a t e d , but still qualified, and w h i c h will finish by interm i n g l i n g only in o u r o w n s c h e m a of s p a c e . T h e essential point is to see how expansion (detente) and cont r a c t i o n are r e l a t i v e , and r e l a t i v e t o o n e a n o t h e r . W h a t i s e x p a n d e d (detendu) if n o t t h e c o n t r a c t e d and what is c o n t r a c t e d i f n o t t h e e x t e n d e d , t h e e x p a n d e d (detente)'! This is why there is always extensity in our duration, and always duration in matter. W h e n w e p e r c e i v e , w e c o n t r a c t m i l l i o n s o f vibrations o r e l e mentary shocks i n t o a felt quality; but what we c o n t r a c t , what we " t e n s e " in this way, is matter, e x t e n s i o n . In this sense t h e r e is no p o i n t in w o n d e r i n g if t h e r e are spatial sensations, w h i c h o n e s are or are n o t : All o u r s e n s a t i o n s are e x t e n s i v e , all are " v o l u m i n o u s " and e x t e n d e d , although to varying d e g r e e s and in different styles, d e p e n d i n g on t h e type of c o n t r a c t i o n that they carry o u t . And q u a l i t i e s b e l o n g to m a t t e r as m u c h as to ourselves: T h e y b e l o n g to matter, they are in matter, by virtue

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o f t h e vibrations and n u m b e r s that p u n c t u a t e t h e m internally. I x t e n s i t i e s arc- thus --till qualified, since i h e \ arc inseparable from the c o n t r a c t i o n s that b e c o m e expanded (detendu) in t h e m ; and matter is never expanded (detendu) enough to IK- pure space, t o s t o p having this m i n i m u m o l c o n t r a c t i o n through w h i c h i t participates in duration, through which it is part of d u r a t i o n . Conversely, duration is never c o n t r a c t e d enough to be independent ol t h e internal m a t t e r w h e r e it o p e r a t e s , and ol t h e e x t e n s i o n that it c o m e s to c o n t r a c t . Let us return to t h e image ol the inverted c o n e : Its point ( o u r present) represents the most c o n t r a c t e d p o i n t ol o u r d u r a t i o n ; but it also r e p r e s e n t s o u r insertion in t h e least c o n t r a c t e d , that is, in an infinitely relaxed (detendu) matter. T h i s is why, according to bergson, intelligence has two correlative aspects, forming an ambiguity that is essential to it: It is a c q u a i n t a n c e w i t h matter, it marks our*adaptat i o n to m a t t e r , it m o l d s itsell on m a t t e r ; but it only d o e s so by m e a n s of m i n d or duration, by placing itsell in m a t t e r in a point of tension that allows it to master matter. In i n t e l l i g e n c e , o n e must therefore distinguish b e t w e e n form and sense: It has its form in m a t t e r , it finds its form with m a t t e r , that is, in t h e m o s t e x p a n d e d (detendu), but it has and finds its sense in t h e most c o n t r a c t e d , through which it d o m i n a t e s and utilizes matter. Tt might t h e r e f o r e be said that its form separates i n t e l l i g e n c e from its m e a n i n g , but that this m e a n i n g always r e m a i n s present in it, and must be r e d i s c o v e r e d by i n t u i t i o n T j T h i s is why, in t h e final analysis, Bergson refuses all s i m p l e g e n e s i s , which would a c c o u n t for i n t e l l i g e n c e on the basis ol an already presupposed o r d e r ol matter, or w h i c h would a c c o u n t lor t h e p h e n o m e n a ol m a t t e r on t h e basis ol t h e supposed c a t e g o r i e s ol i n t e l l i g e n c e . T h e r e can o n l y be a s i m u l t a n e o u s genesis of m a t t e r and i n t e l l i g e n c e . O n e s t e p f o r o n e , o n e s t e p lor t h e

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o t h e r : I n t e l l i g e n c e is c o n t r a c t e d in m a t t e r at t h e s a m e t i m e as m a t t e r is e x p a n d e d (detendu) in d u r a t i o n ; b o t h l i n d t h e form that is c o m m o n to t h e m , t h e i r e q u i l i b r i u m , in extensity, even if i n t e l l i g e n c e in its turn pushes this form to a d e g r e e of expansion (detente) that m a t t e r and e x t e n s i t v would never have attained by t h e m s e l v e s that ol a pure s p a c e .
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O u r p r o b l e m is now this: By m o v i n g from dualism to m o n i s m , Irom t h e idea o f d i f f e r e n c e s i n kind t o that o f levels o f e x p a n sion (detente) and c o n t r a c t i o n , is Bergson not reintroducing into his p h i l o s o p h y e v e r y t h i n g that he had c o n d e m n e d t h e diff e r e n c e s in d e g r e e and i n t e n s i t y that he so strongly c r i t i c i z e d in Time and Free Will?
1

B e r g s o n says in turn t h a t t h e past and

the present differ in kind and that t h e present is only t h e m o s t c o n t r a c t e d l e v e l o r d e g r e e o f t h e past: H o w c a n t h e s e t w o p r o p o s i t i o n s b e r e c o n c i l e d ? T h e p r o b l e m i s n o l o n g e r that o f m o n i s m ; w e have seen how t h e c o e x i s t i n g d e g r e e s o f expansion (detente) and c o n t r a c t i o n effectively implied a single t i m e i n w h i c h even t h e " f l u x e s " w e r e s i m u l t a n e o u s . T h e p r o b l e m i s that o f t h e h a r m o n y b e t w e e n t h e dualism o f differences i n kind and the monism of degrees of expansion (detente), b e t w e e n the t w o m o m e n t s o f the m e t h o d o r the t w o " b e y o n d s " t h e turn in e x p e r i e n c e r e c o g n i z i n g that t h e m o m e n t of dualism has not b e e n suppressed at a l l , b u t c o m p l e t e l y retains its s e n s e . T h e c r i t i q u e o f i n t e n s i t y in Time and Tree Will is h i g h l y a m b i g u o u s , Is it d i r e c t e d against t h e very n o t i o n of intensive quantity, o r m e r e l y against t h e idea o f a n i n t e n s i t y o f p s y c h i c
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states? It it is t r u e that intensity is n e v e r given in a pure e x p e r i e n c e , is it not t h e n intensity that gives all t h e q u a l i t i e s with w h i c h we make e x p e r i e n c e ? I l e n c e , Matter and Memory recognizes intensities, degrees or vibrations in t h e q u a l i t i e s that we live a s s u c h o u t s i d e o u r s e l v e s a n d t h a t , a s s u c h , b e l o n g t o m a t t e r . T h e r e are n u m b e r s e n c l o s e d i n q u a l i t i e s , i n t e n s i t i e s i n c l u d e d in d u r a t i o n . Here again, must we speak of a c o n t r a d i c t i o n in Bergson? Or are t h e r e , rather, different m o m e n t s ol the m e t h o d , w i t h t h e emphasis s o m e t i m e s o n o n e , s o m e t i m e s on a n o t h e r , but all c o e x i s t i n g in a d i m e n s i o n of d e p t h ? ( 1 ) Bergson b e g i n s b y c r i t i c i z i n g any vision o f t h e w o r l d based on differences in d e g r e e or intensity. T h e s e in tact lose sight ol t h e essential point; that is, t h e articulations of t h e real or t h e qualitative differences, t h e differences in k i n d . T h e r e is a difference in kind b e t w e e n space and duration, m a t t e r and m e m o r y , present and past, e t c . We only d i s c o v e r this differe n c e by dint ol d e c o m p o s i n g t h e c o m p o s i t e s g i v e n in e x p e r i e n c e and going beyond t h e "turn." We discover t h e differences i n kind b e t w e e n t w o actual t e n d e n c i e s , b e t w e e n t w o actual d i r e c t i o n s toward t h e pure state i n t o w h i c h e a c h c o m p o s i t e divides. This is t h e m o m e n t ol pure dualism, or of t h e division o l c o m p o s i t e s . ( 2 ) But we can already see that it is not e n o u g h to say that the difference in kind is between t w o t e n d e n c i e s , b e t w e e n t w o d i r e c t i o n s , b e t w e e n s p a c e and duration For o n e o l t h e s e

t w o d i r e c t i o n s takes all t h e differences in kind on itsell and all the differences in degree tail away into t h e o t h e r d i r e c t i o n , the o t h e r t e n d e n c y . It is duration that includes all t h e qualitative differences, to t h e point where it is defined as alteration in relation to itsell. It is s p a c e that only presents differences in degree, to the point w h e r e it appears as the s c h e m a ol an indel-

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inite divisibility. Similarly, M e m o r y is essentially difference and m a t t e r essentially r e p e t i t i o n . T h e r e is t h e r e f o r e no longer any difference in kind b e t w e e n t w o t e n d e n c i e s , but a difference between the differences in kind that correspond to o n e t e n d e n c y and t h e differences in d e g r e e that refer b a c k to t h e o t h e r t e n d e n c y . T h i s i s t h e m o m e n t o f neutralized, b a l a n c e d dualism. ( 3) Duration, m e m o r y or spirit is difference in kind in itself and for itself; and s p a c e or m a t t e r is difference in d e g r e e o u t side itsell and for us. T h e r e f o r e , b e t w e e n t h e t w o t h e r e are all t h e degrees of difference or, in o t h e r words, t h e w h o l e nature of difference. Duration is only t h e most c o n t r a c t e d d e g r e e o f matter, m a t t e r t h e most expanded (detendu) degree o f duration. But duration is like a naturing nature (nature naturante), and matt e r a n a t u r e d n a t u r e (nature nature'e). D i f f e r e n c e s in d e g r e e are the lowest degree ol Difference; differences in kind (nature) are t h e h i g h e s t nature of D i f f e r e n c e . T h e r e is no l o n g e r any dualism b e t w e e n nature and d e g r e e s . All t h e d e g r e e s c o e x i s t in a single Nature that is expressed, on t h e o n e hand, in differences in k i n d , and on t h e o t h e r , in differences in d e g r e e . T h i s is t h e m o m e n t o f m o n i s m : All t h e d e g r e e s c o e x i s t i n a single T i m e , w h i c h is nature in i t s e l f . T h e r e is no c o n t r a d i c t i o n b e t w e e n this m o n i s m and d u a l i s m , as m o m e n t s of t h e m e t h o d . F o r t h e duality was valid b e t w e e n actual t e n d e n c i e s , b e t w e e n actual d i r e c t i o n s l e a d i n g b e y o n d t h e first turn in e x p e r i e n c e . But t h e unity o c c u r s at a s e c o n d turn: T h e c o e x i s t e n c e of all the d e g r e e s , o f all t h e levels i s virtual, only virtual. T h e p o i n t o f unification is i t s e l f virtual. This point is n o t w i t h o u t similarity to t h e O n e - W h o l e of the Platonists. All the levels of expansion (detente) and c o n t r a c t i o n c o e x i s t in a single T i m e and form a t o t a l i t y ; but this W h o l e , this O n e , are pure virtuality. T h i s W h o l e has parts, this O n e has a n u m b e r - but only potentially.
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T h i s is why Bergson is not contradicting h i m s e l f when he s|x-aks ol different i n t e n s i t i e s or d e g r e e s in a virtual c o e x i s t e n c e , in a single T i m e , in a s i m p l e Totality.
* *

A philosophy like this assumes that t h e n o t i o n of t h e virtual stops b e i n g vague and i n d e t e r m i n a t e . In itself, it needs to have t h e highest d e g r e e ol p r e c i s i o n . T h i s c o n d i t i o n is only fulfilled if, starting from m o n i s m , we are a b l e to rediscover dualism and a c c o u n t for it on a new plane. A fourth m o m e n t must be added to t h e t h r e e p r e c e d i n g o n e s that of dualism r e c o v e r e d , mastered and in a s e n s e , g e n e r a t e d . W h a t d o e s Bergson m e a n w h e n he talks a b o u t elan vital? It is always a c a s e of a virtualitv in t h e p r o c e s s of b e i n g actualized, a s i m p l i c i t y in t h e p r o c e s s of differentiating, a totality in t h e process of dividing up: P r o c e e d i n g "by dissociation and division," by "dichotomy," is the essence of l i f e . In the most familiar e x a m p l e s , life is divided i n t o plant and animal; t h e animal is divided into instinct and i n t e l l i g e n c e ; an instinct in turn divides i n t o several d i r e c t i o n s that are actualized in different s p e c i e s ; i n t e l l i g e n c e itself has its particular m o d e s or actualizations. It is as if Life w e r e m e r g e d into t h e very m o v e m e n t of differentiation, in ramified series. M o v e m e n t is undoubtedlye x p l a i n e d by t h e insertion ol duration i n t o m a t t e r : D u r a t i o n is differentiated a c c o r d i n g to t h e o b s t a c l e s it m e e t s in matter, according to t h e materiality through which it passes, according to t h e kind ol e x t e n s i o n that it c o n t r a c t s . But differentiation d o e s n o t m e r e l y have an e x t e r n a l c a u s e . D u r a t i o n is differentiated w i t h i n itsell through an internal e x p l o s i v e force; it is only affirmed and p r o l o n g e d , it o n l y advances, in b r a n c h i n g or ramified s e r i e s . D u r a t i o n , to be p r e c i s e , is called life when
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it appears in this m o v e m e n t . W h y is differentiation an "actualization"? B e c a u s e it presupposes a unity, a virtual primordial t o t a l i t y that is d i s s o c i a t e d a c c o r d i n g to t h e lines ot different i a t i o n , b u t t h a t s t i l l s h o w s its s u b s i s t i n g unity and t o t a l i t y in e a c h l i n e . T h u s , w h e n life is divided i n t o plant and a n i m a l , when t h e animal is divided into instinct and i n t e l l i g e n c e , e a c h side of t h e division, each r a m i f i c a t i o n , carries t h e w h o l e w i t h it. F r o m a certain perspective it is like an a c c o m p a n y i n g n e b u losity, testifying to its undivided origin. And t h e r e is a halo of i n s t i n c t in i n t e l l i g e n c e , a n e b u l a of i n t e l l i g e n c e in i n s t i n c t , a hint of the a n i m a t e in plants, and of t h e vegetable in a n i m a l s . persists across its actual divergent l i n e s . We then e n c o u n t e r a problem that is peculiar to Bergsonism: T h e r e are t w o t y p e s o f division t h a t must n o t b e c o n f u s e d . A c c o r d i n g to t h e first t y p e , we begin w i t h a c o m p o s i t e , for example the s p a c e - t i m e m i x t u r e or the perception-image and r e c o l l e c t i o n - i m a g e m i x t u r e . We divide this c o m p o s i t e into t w o actual divergent lines that are different in kind and that w e e x t e n d b e y o n d t h e turn i n e x p e r i e n c e ( p u r e m a t t e r and pure duration, or e l s e pure present and pure past). But now w e are s p e a k i n g o f a c o m p l e t e l y d i f f e r e n t t y p e o f d i v i s i o n : O u r starting point is a unity, a simplicity, a virtual totality. T h i s unity i s a c t u a l i z e d a c c o r d i n g t o d i v e r g e n t l i n e s differing i n kind; it " e x p l a i n s , " it d e v e l o p s what it had kept e n c l o s e d in a virtual m a n n e r . F o r e x a m p l e , a t e a c h i n s t a n t pure d u r a t i o n divides in t w o d i r e c t i o n s , o n e ol w h i c h is t h e past, t h e o t h e r t h e p r e s e n t ; or e l s e t h e elan vital at every i n s t a n t s e p a r a t e s into t w o m o v e m e n t s , o n e of relaxation (detente) that d e s c e n d s i n t o m a t t e r , t h e o t h e r o f t e n s i o n that ascends i n t o d u r a t i o n . I t c a n b e s e e n that t h e d i v e r g e n t l i n e s p r o d u c e d i n t h e t w o
6

D i f f e r e n t i a t i o n is always t h e a c t u a l i z a t i o n of a virtuality that

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types of division c o i n c i d e and are superimposed, or at least c o r respond c l o s e l y to each o t h e r . In t h e s e c o n d type of division we rediscover differences in kind identical or analogous to those that had been d e t e r m i n e d in t h e lirst type. In both cases a vision of t h e w o r l d is c r i t i c i z e d for only taking a c c o u n t of differences in d e g r e e w h e r e , m o r e profoundly, t h e r e are differences in k i n d . In both cases a dualism is established between t e n d e n c i e s that d i l l e r in k i n d . But this is not t h e s a m e s t a t e of dualism, and not t h e s a m e d i v i s i o n . In t h e lirst t y p e , it is * a r e f l e x i v e d u a l i s m , w h i c h results from the decomposition of an impure composite: It c o n s t i t u t e s the first m o m e n t of the m e t h o d . In t h e s e c o n d t y p e it is a g e n e t i c dualism, the result of the differentiation of a Simple or a Pure: It forms t h e linal m o m e n t of t h e m e t h o d that u l t i m a t e l y rediscovers t h e starting point on this new plane. O n e q u e s t i o n b e c o m e s pressing: W h a t i s t h e nature o f this o n e and simple Virtual? I low is it that, as early as Time and Tree Will, then in Matter and Memon, Bergson's philosophy should have attributed such i m p o r t a n c e to the idea of virtualitv at t h e very m o m e n t w h e n it was c h a l l e n g i n g t h e c a t e g o r y of possibility? It is b e c a u s e t h e " v i r t u a l " can be distinguished from t h e " p o s s i b l e " from at least t w o p o i n t s ol view. I r o m a c e r t a i n p o i n t ol view, in l a c t , t h e possible is t h e o p p o s i t e of t h e real, it is o p p o s e d to t h e real; but, in q u i t e a different o p p o s i t i o n , t h e virtual is o p p o s e d to t h e a c t u a l . We must take this t e r m i nology seriously: T h e possible has no reality ( a l t h o u g h it may have an a c t u a l i t y ) ; conversely, t h e virtual is not a c t u a l , but as such possesses a reality. Mere again Proust's formula best defines t h e states ol virtualitv: "real w i t h o u t being a c t u a l , ideal without being abstract." O n the o t h e r hand, o r Irom a n o t h e r point of view, t h e possible is that w h i c h is " r e a l i z e d " ( o r is not real7

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i z e d ) . N o w t h e p r o c e s s of realization is s u b j e c t to t w o essential rules, o n e o l r e s e m b l a n c e and a n o t h e r o f l i m i t a t i o n . l o r t h e real is supposed to be in t h e image of t h e possible that it realizes. ( I t simply has e x i s t e n c e or reality added to it, w h i c h is translated by saying that, from t h e p o i n t of view of t h e c o n c e p t , t h e r e is no d i l l e r e n c e b e t w e e n the possible and the real.) And, every possible is not realized, realization involves a l i m i tation by w h i c h s o m e possibles are supposed to be repulsed o r t h w a r t e d , w h i l e o t h e r s " p a s s " i n t o t h e real. T h e virtual, o n t h e o t h e r hand, d o e s not have to be realized, b u t rather a c t u alized; and t h e rules o f actualization are n o t t h o s e o f resemb l a n c e and l i m i t a t i o n , but t h o s e o f difference o r d i v e r g e n c e and of c r e a t i o n . W h e n c e r t a i n b i o l o g i s t s invoke a n o t i o n of organic virtualitv or potentialitv and n o n e t h e l e s s maintain that this potentiality is actualized by s i m p l e limitation of its global capacity, they c l e a r l y tall i n t o a c o n f u s i o n of t h e virtual and t h e p o s s i b l e . For, in o r d e r to be a c t u a l i z e d , t h e virtual cannot p r o c e e d by e l i m i n a t i o n o r l i m i t a t i o n , but m u s t create its o w n lines of a c t u a l i z a t i o n in positive a c t s . T h e reason for this is s i m p l e : W h i l e t h e real is in t h e image and likeness of t h e possible that it realizes, t h e a c t u a l , on t h e o t h e r hand d o e s not r e s e m b l e t h e virtualitv that it e m b o d i e s . It is difference that is p r i m a r y in t h e p r o c e s s of a c t u a l i z a t i o n t h e d i f f e r e n c e b e t w e e n t h e virtual from w h i c h we begin and t h e actuals at w h i c h w e arrive, and also t h e d i l l e r e n c e b e t w e e n t h e c o m p l e mentary lines a c c o r d i n g to w h i c h actualization takes place. In short, t h e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of virtualitv is to e x i s t in such a way that it is actualized by being differentiated and is forced to diff e r e n t i a t e itsell, t o c r e a t e its lines o f differentiation i n o r d e r to be actualized. W h y d o e s Bergson c h a l l e n g e t h e n o t i o n of t h e possible in
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favor of that of t h e virtual? It is p r e c i s e l y b e c a u s e - by virtue ol t h e s e p r e c e d i n g c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s t h e p o s s i b l e is a false n o t i o n , t h e s o u r c e o f false p r o b l e m s . T h e real i s supposed t o r e s e m b l e it. That is to say, we give ourselves a real that is readym a d e , preformed, pre-existent to itsell, and that will pass into existence according to an order of successive limitations. E v e r y t h i n g is a l r e a d y complete!} given: all o f t h e real in t h e image, in the pseudo-actuality of t h e possible. T h e n the sleight of hand b e c o m e s o b v i o u s : If t h e real is said to r e s e m b l e t h e p o s s i b l e , is this n o t in fact b e c a u s e t h e real was e x p e c t e d to c o m e about by its o w n m e a n s , to " p r o j e c t b a c k w a r d " a fictitious image of it, and to c l a i m that it was possible at any t i m e , before it happened? In (act, it is n o t t h e real that r e s e m b l e s t h e possible, it is t h e possible that r e s e m b l e s t h e real, b e c a u s e i t has b e e n a b s t r a c t e d from t h e real o n c e m a d e , a r b i t r a r i l y e x t r a c t e d Irom t h e real like a s t e r i l e d o u b l e . H e n c e , we no longer understand anything e i t h e r o f t h e m e c h a n i s m o f differe n c e or of the mechanism of creation. Evolution takes place from t h e virtual to actuals. Evolution is a c t u a l i z a t i o n , a c t u a l i z a t i o n is c r e a t i o n . W h e n we speak of biological or living evolution we must therefore avoid t w o misc o n c e p t i o n s : that of i n t e r p r e t i n g it in t e r m s of t h e " p o s s i b l e " that is realized, or e l s e i n t e r p r e t i n g it in t e r m s ol pure a c t u als. T h e first m i s c o n c e p t i o n o b v i o u s l y appears in prcformism. And, c o n t r a r y to p r e f o r m i s m , e v o l u t i o n i s m will always have t h e m e r i t ol r e m i n d i n g us that life is p r o d u c t i o n , c r e a t i o n of d i f f e r e n c e s . T h e w h o l e p r o b l e m is that of t h e nature and t h e causes o f these d i f f e r e n c e s . T h e vital differences o r variations can certainly be c o n c e i v e d ol as purely a c c i d e n t a l . But t h r e e o b j e c t i o n s to an i n t e r p r e t a t i o n ol this kind arise: ( 1 ) s i n c e t h e y are due t o c h a n c e , t h e s e v a r i a t i o n s , h o w 9

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ever small they are, would remain e x t e r n a l , " i n d i f f e r e n t " to each o t h e r ; ( 2 ) s i n c e they are e x t e r n a l , they c o u l d not logically e n t e r i n t o a n y t h i n g but r e l a t i o n s o l a s s o c i a t i o n and a d d i t i o n w i t h one another; ( 3 ) s i n c e they are indifferent, they c o u l d n o t even have t h e m e a n s t o really e n t e r i n t o such r e l a t i o n s (tor t h e r e would b e no reason why t h e small s u c c e s s i v e variations should link up and add t o g e t h e r i n t h e s a m e d i r e c t i o n ; n o r any r e a s o n for sudden and s i m u l t a n e o u s variations to be c o o r d i n a t e d i n t o a livable w h o l e ) . ' " I f w e invoke t h e a c t i o n o f t h e e n v i r o n m e n t and t h e influe n c e o f e x t e r n a l c o n d i t i o n s , t h e t h r e e o b j e c t i o n s persist i n a n o t h e r form: For t h e differences are still interpreted from t h e p e r s p e c t i v e of a purely e x t e r n a l causality. In t h e i r nature t h e y would only be passive effects, e l e m e n t s that c o u l d be abstractly c o m b i n e d or added together. In their relationships they would, however, be incapable of functioning "as a b l o c , " so as to c o n trol o r utilize t h e i r c a u s e s . " T h e mistake o f e v o l u t i o n i s m is, thus, t o c o n c e i v e o f vital variations as so many actual d e t e r m i n a t i o n s that should t h e n c o m b i n e on a single line. T h e t h r e e r e q u i r e m e n t s of a philosophy of life are as follows: ( 1 ) the vital difference can only be e x p e r i e n c e d and thought of as internal d i f f e r e n c e ; it is o n l y in this s e n s e that t h e " t e n d e n c y t o c h a n g e " i s n o t a c c i d e n t a l , and that t h e v a r i a t i o n s t h e m s e l v e s find an internal c a u s e in that t e n d e n c y ; ( 2 ) t h e s e variations d o n o t e n t e r i n t o relationships o f assoc i a t i o n and addition, but on t h e contrary, they e n t e r into relat i o n s h i p s o f d i s s o c i a t i o n o r division; ( 3 ) they therefore involve a virtualitv that is actualized

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according to t h e lines oi d i v e r g e n c e ; so that evolution does not m o v e irom o n e actual t e r m to a n o t h e r actual t e r m in a h o m o g e n e o u s unilinear series, hut Irom a virtual t e r m to the h e t e r o g e n e o u s t e r m s that actualize it a l o n g a ramified s e r i e s .
1 2

But this leads t o t h e q u e s t i o n o f how t h e S i m p l e o r t h e O n e , " t h e original identity," has the power to be differentiated. T h e answer is already c o n t a i n e d in Matter and Memon. And the linkage b e t w e e n Creative Evolution and Matter and Memory is perfectly rigorous. We know that t h e virtual as virtual has a reality; this reality, e x t e n d e d to the w h o l e universe, consists in all t h e c o e x i s t i n g d e g r e e s of e x p a n s i o n (detente) and c o n t r a c t i o n . A g i g a n t i c m e m o r y , a universal c o n e in w h i c h everything c o e x ists w i t h itself, e x c e p t for t h e differences of level. On each of t h e s e levels t h e r e are s o m e " o u t s t a n d i n g p o i n t s , " w h i c h are like remarkable points peculiar to it. All these levels or degrees and all t h e s e points are t h e m s e l v e s virtual. T h e y b e l o n g to a single T i m e ; they c o e x i s t in a U n i t y ; they are e n c l o s e d in a S i m p l i c i t y ; t h e y form t h e p o t e n t i a l parts of a W h o l e that is itself virtual. T h e y are the reality of this virtual. T h i s was t h e sense o f the theory of virtual m u l t i p l i c i t i e s that inspired B e r g s o n i s m from t h e start. W h e n t h e virtualitv is a c t u a l i z e d , is differentiated, is " d e v e l o p e d , " when it actualizes and develops its parts, it d o e s so a c c o r d i n g to lines that are d i v e r g e n t , b u t each of w h i c h c o r r e s p o n d s to a particular d e g r e e in t h e virtual totality. T h e r e is h e r e no l o n g e r any c o e x i s t i n g w h o l e ; t h e r e are m e r e l y lines of a c t u a l i z a t i o n , some successive, others simultaneous, but e a c h r e p r e s e n t i n g a n a c t u a l i z a t i o n o f t h e w h o l e i n o n e d i r e c t i o n and not c o m b i n i n g w i t h o t h e r lines o r o t h e r d i r e c t i o n s . N e v e r t h e l e s s , e a c h o f t h e s e lines c o r r e s p o n d s t o o n e o f t h e s e d e g r e e s that all c o e x i s t in t h e v i r t u a l ; it a c t u a l i z e s its l e v e l , w h i l e s e p a r a t i n g i t from t h e o t h e r s ; i t e m b o d i e s its

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prominent points, while being unaware of everything that happens on o t h e r l e v e l s .


1 5

We must t h i n k of it as follows: W h e n

duration is divided i n t o m a t t e r and life, t h e n life i n t o plant and a n i m a l , different levels of c o n t r a c t i o n , w h i c h only c o e x ist insofar as they remain virtual, are actualized. And when t h e animal instinct is i t s e l f divided into various instincts, or when a particular i n s t i n c t is i t s e l f divided a c c o r d i n g to s p e c i e s , levels are again separated, or arc actually c u t o u t in t h e region of t h e animal o r o f t h e genus. And however s t r i c t l y t h e lines o f actualization c o r r e s p o n d t o t h e levels o r t h e virtual degrees o f e x p a n s i o n (detente) o r c o n t r a c t i o n , i t s h o u l d n o t b e t h o u g h t that t h e lines o f a c t u a l i z a t i o n c o n f i n e t h e m s e l v e s t o t r a c i n g these levels or d e g r e e s , to reproducing t h e m by s i m p l e resemb l a n c e . F o r what c o e x i s t e d in t h e virtual c e a s e s to c o e x i s t in t h e actual and is d i s t r i b u t e d in lines or parts that c a n n o t be s u m m e d up, each o n e retaining t h e w h o l e , e x c e p t from a c e r tain p e r s p e c t i v e , from a c e r t a i n p o i n t o f view. T h e s e l i n e s ol differentiation are t h e r e f o r e truly c r e a t i v e : T h e y only a c t u alize by inventing, t h e y c r e a t e in t h e s e c o n d i t i o n s t h e phvsical, vital o r psychical r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f t h e o n t o l o g i c a l level that they e m b o d y . I f w e c o n c e n t r a t e only o n t h e actuals that c o n c l u d e e a c h l i n e , we establish relationships b e t w e e n t h e m w h e t h e r of gradation or o p p o s i t i o n . B e t w e e n plant and a n i m a l , for e x a m ple, b e t w e e n animal and man, we now only see differences in d e g r e e . Or we will situate a fundamental o p p o s i t i o n in each o n e o f t h e m : W e will s e e i n o n e t h e negative o f t h e o t h e r , t h e inversion of t h e o t h e r , or t h e o b s t a c l e that is o p p o s e d to t h e other. Bergson often expresses h i m s e l f in this way, in t e r m s of c o n t r a r i e t v : M a t t e r is p r e s e n t e d as t h e o b s t a c l e that t h e elan vital must g e t around, and materiality, as t h e inversion of t h e

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M TE ATR R L X TO / X A SO E A A I NE P N I N

[detente]

THE DF E E T W R D, A D I E C W R D T E T P S O M TE I F R N O L S N N A H O L , H Y E F ATR T A A P A A T E M N E TR A A D I TR A O S A L S HT P E R S H A Y X E N L N N E N L BT C E T A LF M S A OD HT I E U T V I .

LIFE ( O T A TO ) C NR CI N

P A T C L R P Y L U F N TO L N : H O OH L O S U C I N ( C U UAI NO EEG A C M L TO F N R Y IN A C N I U U F S I N O TN O S A HO , S O I G U EXPLOSIVES). T RN P

FX TO O C R O . IAI N F AB N

FX TO O NT O E . I A I N F IR GN

A I A :NR O SS S E NM L E V U Y T M ( X E DT R O E E G I E P N I U E F NR Y N A DS O TN O S W Y IC N I U U A , D T N TO O T E EO AI N F H EXPLOSIVE).

D C N R LZ D N R O S E E T AIE E V U SYSTEM; ISIC. N TN T E T RO I A I N A D D MN X E I RZ TO N O I A TO O M T E I N F ATR C N R LZ D N R O S SYSTEM: E T AIE E V U I TLI E C. N E LG N E

C N E SO A D U D R T N O V RI N N N E S A D I G O LF (INTUITION). N F IE

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movement of l i f e . '

I t should n o t , however, h e thought that

Bergson is g o i n g b a c k to a c o n c e p t i o n of t h e negative that he had previously c o n d e m n e d , any m o r e than he returns to a t h e ory of d e t e r i o r a t i o n s . F o r o n e o n l y has to r e p l a c e t h e actual terms in the m o v e m e n t that produces t h e m to bring them back to t h e virtualitv actualized in t h e m , in o r d e r to see that differentiation is n e v e r a negation but a c r e a t i o n , and that differe n c e is n e v e r negative but essentially positive and c r e a t i v e .
* *

We always r e d i s c o v e r t h e laws c o m m o n to these lines ol a c t u alization or ol d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n . T h e r e is a c o r r e l a t i o n b e t w e e n life and m a t t e r , b e t w e e n e x p a n s i o n (detente) and c o n t r a c t i o n , w h i c h s h o w s t h e c o e x i s t e n c e of t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e d e g r e e s in t h e virtual W h o l e , and t h e i r essential relativity i n t h e process o f a c t u a l i z a t i o n . Fach line of life is r e l a t e d to a type of m a t t e r that is n o t m e r e l y an e x t e r n a l e n v i r o n m e n t , but in t e r m s of w h i c h t h e living b e i n g m a n u f a c t u r e s a body, a form, for itself. T h i s is why t h e living being, in relation to matter, appears primarily as t h e stating of a p r o b l e m , and t h e c a p a c i t y to solve p r o b l e m s : T h e c o n s t r u c t i o n of an eye, for e x a m p l e , is primarily the s o l u t i o n to a p r o b l e m posed in t e r m s of l i g h t .
15

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t i m e , we will say that t h e s o l u t i o n was as g o o d as it could have b e e n , given t h e way in w h i c h t h e p r o b l e m was s t a t e d , and t h e means that t h e living b e i n g had at its disposal to solve it. ( I t is in this wav that, if we c o m p a r e a s i m i l a r i n s t i n c t in various s p e c i e s , we ought not to say that it is m o r e or less c o m p l e t e , m o r e or less p e r f e c t e d , but that it is as perfect as it can be in varying d e g r e e s . )
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It is n e v e r t h e l e s s c l e a r that each vital solu-

t i o n is n o t in itself a s u c c e s s : By dividing t h e animal in t w o , Arthropods and V e r t e b r a t e s , we have not taken into a c c o u n t

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the- t w o o t h e r d i r e c t i o n s , I c h i n o d c r m s and M o l l n s k s , w h i c h are a setback lor the clan vital. " Everything takes place as though living beings t h e m s e l v e s also stated false p r o b l e m s lor t h e m selves in w h i c h they risk losing t h e i r way. M o r e o v e r , if every s o l u t i o n is a relative s u c c e s s in relation to t h e c o n d i t i o n s of t h e p r o b l e m or t h e e n v i r o n m e n t , it is still a relative s e t b a c k , in r e l a t i o n t o t h e m o v e m e n t that invents it: l.ile as movement alienates itsell in t h e material form that it c r e a t e s ; by actualizing i t s e l l , by d i l l e r e n t i a t i n g i t s e l l , it loses " c o n t a c t w i t h t h e rest ol i t s e l l . " Every s p e c i e s is thus an arrest ol m o v e m e n t ; it c o u l d b e said that t h e living b e i n g turns on i t s e l f and closes itse//.
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It c a n n o t be o t h e r w i s e , s i n c e t h e W h o l e is only virtual,

dividing itsell by b e i n g acted o u t . It c a n n o t a s s e m b l e its actual parts that remain e x t e r n a l to e a c h o t h e r : I he W h o l e is never " g i v e n . " And, in t h e actual, an i r r e d u c i b l e pluralism reigns as many worlds as living b e i n g s , all " c l o s e d " on t h e m s e l v e s . But we m u s t , in a n o t h e r o s c i l l a t i o n , be d e l i g h t e d that t h e Whole is n o t g i v e n . T h i s is t h e c o n s t a n t t h e m e of Bergsonism Irom t h e o u t s e t : T h e c o n f u s i o n o f s p a c e and t i m e , t h e assimilation of t i m e into space, make us think that the w h o l e is given, even if only in p r i n c i p l e , even if o n l y in t h e eyes of G o d . And this is t h e m i s t a k e that is c o m m o n to m e c h a n i s m and to finalism. I he l o r m e r assumes that everything is c a l c u l a b l e in t e r m s of a s t a t e ; t h e latter, that everything is d e t e r m i n a b l e in t e r m s of a program: In any e v e n t , t i m e is only t h e r e n o w as a s c r e e n that hides t h e eternal Irom us, or that shows us successively what a ( i o d or a superhuman i n t e l l i g e n c e would s e e in a single g l a n c e . ' ' Now this illusion is inevitable as soon as we spatialize t i m e . Indeed, in space it is sufficient to have a dimension supplementary to those where a p h e n o m e n o n happens lor t h e m o v e m e n t in t h e c o u r s e ol happening to appear to us as a
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ready-made form. II we c o n s i d e r t i m e as a fourth d i m e n s i o n o f s p a c e , this fourth d i m e n s i o n will thus b e assumed t o c o n tain all t h e possible forms of the universe as a w h o l e ; and movem e n t in s p a c e , as well as (lowing in t i m e , will n o w only be appearances linked to t h e t h r e e d i m e n s i o n s . ' But t h e lact that real space has only t h r e e d i m e n s i o n s , that T i m e is not a dimension ol s p a c e , really m e a n s this: T h e r e is an e l l i c a c i t y , a positivity ol t i m e , that is i d e n t i c a l to a " h e s i t a t i o n " of things and, in this way, to c r e a t i o n in t h e w o r l d .
21 0

It is c l e a r that t h e r e is a W h o l e of duration. But this w h o l e is virtual. It is actualized a c c o r d i n g to divergent lines; but these lines do not form a w h o l e on t h e i r o w n a c c o u n t , and do n o t r e s e m b l e what they a c t u a l i z e . I f t h e c h o i c e i s b e t w e e n m e c h a nism and finalism, tinalism is preferable; providing that it is corrected in two ways. O n t h e o n e hand, it is right t o c o m p a r e t h e living b e i n g to t h e w h o l e of t h e universe, b u t it is w r o n g to interpret this c o m p a r i s o n as if it e x p r e s s e d a kind of analogy b e t w e e n t w o c l o s e d t o t a l i t i e s ( m a c r o c o s m and m i c r o c o s m ) . T h e finality of t h e living being exists only insofar as it is essentially o p e n o n t o a t o t a l i t y that is i t s e l f o p e n : "finality is e x t e r n a l , or it is n o t h i n g at a l l . "
2 2

It is t h u s t h e w h o l e c l a s s i c a l

c o m p a r i s o n that takes on a n o t h e r meaning; it is n o t t h e w h o l e that c l o s e s like an organism, it is t h e organism that o p e n s o n t o a w h o l e , like this virtual w h o l e . On t h e o t h e r hand, t h e r e is a proof of finality to t h e e x t e n t that w e d i s c o v e r s i m i l a r a c t u a l i z a t i o n s , i d e n t i c a l s t r u c t u r e s o r apparatuses on divergent lines (for e x a m p l e , the eye in t h e M o l lusk and in t h e V e r t e b r a t e ) . T h e e x a m p l e w i l l be all t h e m o r e significant the further apart the lines are, and the m o r e the organ that is s i m i l a r is o b t a i n e d by dissimilar m e a n s . ' We see h e r e how, in the process of actualization, t h e very category of resem2

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N a n c e finds itsell subordinated to that ol divergence, difference or differentiation. W h i l e actual forms or p r o d u c t s can r e s e m b l e each other, t h e m o v e m e n t s o f p r o d u c t i o n d o not r e s e m b l e each o t h e r , nor d o t h e p r o d u c t s r e s e m b l e t h e virtualitv that they e m b o d y . T h i s is why a c t u a l i z a t i o n , d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n , are a g e n u i n e c r e a t i o n . T h e W h o l e m u s t create t h e divergent lines a c c o r d i n g to w h i c h it is a c t u a l i z e d and t h e d i s s i m i l a r m e a n s that it utilizes on each l i n e . T h e r e is finality b e c a u s e life d o e s not operate w i t h o u t directions; but there is no " g o a l , " because t h e s e d i r e c t i o n s d o not pre-exist ready-made, and are t h e m selves c r e a t e d " a l o n g w i t h " t h e a c t that runs through t h e m .
2 4

Each l i n e o f a c t u a l i z a t i o n c o r r e s p o n d s t o a virtual level; b u t each t i m e , it must invent the figure of this c o r r e s p o n d e n c e and c r e a t e t h e m e a n s for t h e d e v e l o p m e n t of that w h i c h was o n l y e n v e l o p e d in o r d e r to distinguish that w h i c h was c o n f u s e d .
* * *

Duration, Life, is in principle (en droit) memory, in principle c o n s c i o u s n e s s , in p r i n c i p l e f r e e d o m . " I n p r i n c i p l e " m e a n s virtually. T h e w h o l e q u e s t i o n (quid facti?) is k n o w i n g u n d e r what c o n d i t i o n s d u r a t i o n b e c o m e s in fact c o n s c i o u s n e s s o f s e l l , how life actually a c c e d e s to a m e m o r y and freedom of f a c t .
25

Bergson's answer is that it is only on t h e line of M a n that t h e elan vital successfully " g e t s t h r o u g h " ; man in this s e n s e fa " t h e purpose o f t h e e n t i r e p r o c e s s o f e v o l u t i o n . "
26

I t c o u l d b e said

that in m a n , and only in man, t h e actual b e c o m e s a d e q u a t e to t h e virtual. It c o u l d be said that m a n is c a p a b l e of rediscovering ail t h e l e v e l s , all t h e d e g r e e s o f e x p a n s i o n (detente) and c o n t r a c t i o n that c o e x i s t in t h e virtual W h o l e . As if he w e r e c a p a b l e o f all t h e frenzies and b r o u g h t a b o u t i n h i m s e l f s u c c e s s i v e l y e v e r y t h i n g t h a t , e l s e w h e r e , can o n l y b e e m b o d i e d

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i n d i f f e r e n t s p e c i e s . E v e n i n his d r e a m s h e r e d i s c o v e r s o r prepares m a t t e r . And durations that arc inferior or s u p e r i o r to him are still internal to h i m . Man t h e r e f o r e c r e a t e s a different i a t i o n that is valid for t h e W h o l e , and he a l o n e traces o u t an open d i r e c t i o n that is able to express a w h o l e that is i t s e l f o p e n . W h e r e a s t h e o t h e r d i r e c t i o n s are c l o s e d and g o round i n c i r c l e s , whereas a d i s t i n c t " p l a n e " o f nature c o r r e s p o n d s t o each o n e , man is c a p a b l e of s c r a m b l i n g t h e planes, of g o i n g beyond his o w n plane as his o w n c o n d i t i o n , in o r d e r finally to e x p r e s s naturing N a t u r e .
2 7

f l o w d o e s this privilege o f m a n c o m e a b o u t ? A t first sight, its origin is a h u m b l e o n e . Every c o n t r a c t i o n of duration still b e i n g relative to an e x p a n s i o n (detente), and e v e r y life to a matter, the point of departure is in a certain state of c e r e bral m a t t e r . W e recall that this l a t t e r " a n a l y z e d " t h e r e c e i v e d e x c i t a t i o n , s e l e c t e d t h e r e a c t i o n , m a d e p o s s i b l e a n interval b e t w e e n e x c i t a t i o n and r e a c t i o n ; n o t h i n g h e r e g o e s b e y o n d t h e p h y s i c o - c h e m i c a l p r o p e r t i e s o f a particularly c o m p l i c a t e d type of matter. But, as we have s e e n , it is t h e w h o l e of m e m o r y that d e s c e n d s i n t o this interval, and that b e c o m e s actual. It is t h e w h o l e of freedom that is a c t u a l i z e d . On man's l i n e of differentiation, the elan vital was able to use m a t t e r to c r e a t e an instrument of freedom, " t o make a machine which should t r i u m p h over m e c h a n i s m , " " t o use t h e d e t e r m i n i s m o f nature t o pass through t h e m e s h e s o f t h e n e t w h i c h this very d e t e r m i n i s m had s p r e a d . "
2 8

F r e e d o m has p r e c i s e l y t h i s p h y s i c a l

sense: " t o d e t o n a t e " an e x p l o s i v e , to use it for m o r e and m o r e powerful m o v e m e n t s .


2 9

But w h e r e d o e s this starting p o i n t s e e m to lead? To p e r c e p t i o n ; and also to a utilitarian m e m o r y , s i n c e useful r e c o l l e c tions are actualized in t h e cerebral interval; and to intelligence

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a s t h e organ o f d o m i n a t i o n and utilization o f m a t t e r . W e even understand that m e n form societies. It is not that society is solely or essentially intelligent. From the outset, human societies undoubtedly imply a certain intelligent comprehension ol needs and a c e r t a i n rational organization of a c t i v i t i e s . But they are also formed, and only subsist through irrational or even absurd factors, 'fake, lor e x a m p l e , obligation: It has no rational ground. F.ach particular o b l i g a t i o n is c o n v e n t i o n a l and can b o r d e r on t h e absurd; t h e o n l y thing that is g r o u n d e d is t h e o b l i g a t i o n to have o b l i g a t i o n s , " t h e w h o l e of o b l i g a t i o n " ; and it is n o t g r o u n d e d in reason, b u t in a r e q u i r e m e n t of n a t u r e , in a kind of "virtual i n s t i n c t , " that is, on a c o u n t e r p a r t that nature prod u c e s in t h e r e a s o n a b l e b e i n g in o r d e r to c o m p e n s a t e lor t h e partiality ol his i n t e l l i g e n c e . F.ach line ol differentiation, being exclusive, seeks to recapture, by its own means, t h e advantages of t h e o t h e r line. T h u s , in t h e i r separation, i n s t i n c t and i n t e l ligence are such that the o n e produces an ersatz of i n t e l l i g e n c e , t h e o t h e r , an e q u i v a l e n t ol i n s t i n c t . T h i s is t h e " s t o r y - t e l l i n g f u n c t i o n " : virtual i n s t i n c t , c r e a t o r o l g o d s , i n v e n t o r o f relig i o n s , that is, ol f i c t i t i o u s r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s " w h i c h will stand up to t h e r e p r e s e n t a t i o n ol t h e real and w h i c h will s u c c e e d , by t h e i n t e r m e d i a r y ol i n t e l l i g e n c e i t s e l l , in t h w a r t i n g intellectual work." And as in t h e case ol o b l i g a t i o n , each god is c o n t i n g e n t , or e v e n absurd, but what is natural, n e c e s s a r y and g r o u n d e d is having g o d s ; it is t h e p a n t h e o n ol gods.*" In short, s o c i a b i l i t y (in t h e human s e n s e ) can only e x i s t in i n t e l l i g e n t b e i n g s , but it is not g r o u n d e d on t h e i r i n t e l l i g e n c e : S o c i a l life is i m m a n e n t to i n t e l l i g e n c e , it b e g i n s w i t h it but d o e s n o t d e r i v e from it. H e n c e o u r p r o b l e m appears t o have b e c o m e m o r e c o m p l i c a t e d instead ol b e i n g s o l v e d , f o r if we c o n s i d e r intelligence and sociability, both in their c o m p l e m e n t a r i t y and

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in t h e i r d i f f e r e n c e , n o t h i n g yet justifies man's privilege. T h e s o c i e t i e s that he forms are no less c l o s e d than animal s p e c i e s ; they form part of a plan (plan) of n a t u r e , as m u c h as animal species and s o c i e t i e s ; and man goes round in c i r c l e s in his socie t y j u s t as m u c h as t h e s p e c i e s do in t h e i r s or a n t s in t h e i r d o m a i n . " N o t h i n g here s e e m s to be capable of giving man the previously m e n t i o n e d e x c e p t i o n a l o p e n i n g , a s t h e p o w e r o f g o i n g beyond his " p l a n e " (plan) and his c o n d i t i o n . Unless this kind of play of i n t e l l i g e n c e and of s o c i e t y , this small interval b e t w e e n t h e t w o , is i t s e l f a d e c i s i v e factor. T h e small i n t r a c e r e b r a l interval has already m a d e i n t e l l i g e n c e poss i b l e , a n d t h e a c t u a l i z a t i o n o f a m e m o r y useful. M o r e o v e r , thanks t o it, t h e body i m i t a t e s t h e w h o l e life o f t h e m i n d , and we w e r e a b l e w i t h a leap to p l a c e ourselves in t h e pure past. We now find ourselves before another intercerebral inten'al between i n t e l l i g e n c e itself and s o c i e t y : Is it n o t this " h e s i t a t i o n " of t h e intelligence that will be able to imitate the superior "hesitation" of things in duration, and that will allow man, w i t h a leap, to break t h e c i r c l e of c l o s e d s o c i e t i e s ? At first sight, t h e a n s w e r is n o . For, if i n t e l l i g e n c e h e s i t a t e s and s o m e t i m e s r e b e l s , it is primarily in t h e n a m e ol an e g o i s m that it seeks to preserve against social r e q u i r e m e n t s . ' And w h i l e s o c i e t y m a k e s itself obeyed it is thanks to t h e story-telling f u n c t i o n , w h i c h persuades t h e i n t e l l i g e n c e that it is in its i n t e r e s t to c o n f i r m t h e social obligation. We therefore s e e m to be constantly sent back from o n e term to another. But everything changes w h e n s o m e thing appears in t h e interval. W h a t is it that appears in the interval b e t w e e n i n t e l l i g e n c e and society (in t h e same way as t h e recollection-image appeared in t h e c e r e b r a l interval appropriate to i n t e l l i g e n c e ) ? We c a n not reply: It is intuition. In fact, we must on t h e contrary carry
2

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out a g e n e s i s ot i n t u i t i o n , that is, d e t e r m i n e t h e way in w h i c h i n t e l l i g e n c e itsell was converted or is converted into intuition. And i f w e r e c a l l , a c c o r d i n g t o t h e laws o f d i l l e r e n t i a t i o n , that i n t e l l i g e n c e , i n s e p a r a t i n g i t s e l f from i n s t i n c t , n e v e r t h e l e s s k e e p s a n e q u i v a l e n t o f i n s t i n c t that would b e like t h e n u c l e u s of intuition. We are not saying anything of i m p o r t a n c e , tor this e q u i v a l e n t ol i n s t i n c t tinds i t s e l f c o m p l e t e l y m o b i l i z e d in t h e c l o s e d s o c i e t y a s s u c h , through t h e s t o r y - t e l l i n g f u n c t i o n .
5 5

Bergson's real answer is c o m p l e t e l y different: W h a t appears in t h e interval is emotion. In this answer, " W e have no c h o i c e . "
5 4

O n l y e m o t i o n differs i n n a t u r e from b o t h i n t e l l i g e n c e and i n s t i n c t , from b o t h i n t e l l i g e n t individual e g o i s m and quasii n s t i n c t i v e social pressure. O b v i o u s l y n o o n e d e n i e s that e g o ism produces e m o t i o n s ; and even m o r e so social pressure, with all the fantasies of t h e story-telling function. But in both these cases, e m o t i o n is always c o n n e c t e d to a representation on which it is s u p p o s e d to d e p e n d . We are t h e n placed in a c o m p o s i t e ol e m o t i o n and ol r e p r e s e n t a t i o n , w i t h o u t n o t i c i n g that it is potential (en puissance), t h e nature o l e m o t i o n as pure e l e m e n t . T h e latter in tact p r e c e d e s all r e p r e s e n t a t i o n , itself generating n e w ideas. It d o e s n o t have, s t r i c t l y speaking, an o b j e c t , b u t m e r e l y an essence t h a t spreads itself over various o b j e c t s , animals, plants and t h e w h o l e of nature. " I m a g i n e a p i e c e ol m u s i c w h i c h e x p r e s s e s love. It is not love lor a particular person T h e quality of love will depend upon its e s s e n c e and not upon its o b j e c t . "
5 1

Although personal, it is not individual; transcen-

d e n t , it is like t h e G o d in us. " W h e n m u s i c c r i e s , it is humanity, it is t h e whole of nature which cries with it. Truly speaking, it does not introduce these feelings in us; it introduces us rather into t h e m , like the passers-by that might l>e nudged in a dance." In s h o r t , e m o t i o n is c r e a t i v e (first, b e c a u s e it e x p r e s s e s t h e

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w h o l e of c r e a t i o n , t h e n b e c a u s e it c r e a t e s t h e w o r k in w h i c h it is e x p r e s s e d ; and finally, b e c a u s e it c o m m u n i c a t e s a little o l this c r e a t i v i t y t o s p e c t a t o r s o r h e a r e r s ) . T h e little interval " b e t w e e n t h e pressure ol s o c i e t y and the r e s i s t a n c e ol i n t e l l i g e n c e " defines a variability appropriate to human s o c i e t i e s . Now, b y m e a n s o f this i n t e r v a l , s o m e t h i n g extraordinary is produced or e m b o d i e d : creative e m o t i o n . T h i s n o longer has anything t o d o with t h e pressures o f society, nor with t h e disputes o f t h e individual. I t n o l o n g e r has anything to do with an individual w h o contests or even invents, nor with a s o c i e t y that constrains, that persuades or even tells s t o r i e s .
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It has o n l y m a d e use of t h e i r c i r c u l a r play in o r d e r to break t h e c i r c l e , just a s M e m o r y uses t h e c i r c u l a r play o f e x c i t a t i o n and r e a c t i o n to e m b o d y r e c o l l e c t i o n s in images. And what is this c r e a t i v e e m o t i o n , il not p r e c i s e l y a c o s m i c M e m o r y , that actualizes all t h e levels at t h e s a m e t i m e , that liberates man Irom t h e plane (plan) or t h e level that is proper to h i m , in order t o m a k e him a c r e a t o r , a d e q u a t e t o t h e w h o l e m o v e m e n t o l creation?
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T h i s liberation, this e m b o d i m e n t ol c o s m i c m e m o r y

in c r e a t i v e e m o t i o n s , u n d o u b t e d l y o n l y takes p l a c e in privileged s o u l s . It leaps Irom o n e soul to a n o t h e r , "every now and t h e n , " crossing c l o s e d deserts. But t o each m e m b e r o f a c l o s e d society", if he o p e n s h i m s e l f to it, it c o m m u n i c a t e s a kind ol r e m i n i s c e n c e , an e x c i t e m e n t that allows him to lollow. And from soul t o soul, it traces t h e design o f an open society, a society o f c r e a t o r s , w h e r e w e pass from o n e g e n i u s t o a n o t h e r , through t h e intermediary o f disciples o r spectators o r hearers. It is t h e genesis of intuition in i n t e l l i g e n c e . II man a c c e d e s to t h e o p e n creative totality, it is t h e r e f o r e by a c t i n g , by c r e ating rather than by c o n t e m p l a t i n g . In philosophy itself, t h e r e is still t o o m u c h alleged c o n t e m p l a t i o n : E v e r y t h i n g happens

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as if i n t e l l i g e n c e were already i m b u e d with e m o t i o n , thus with i n t u i t i o n , but not sufficiently so lor c r e a t i n g in c o n f o r m i t y to this e m o t i o n . ' T h u s t h e great souls to a g r e a t e r e x t e n t than p h i l o s o p h e r s are those ol artists and m y s t i c s (at least t h o s e of a Christian m y s t i c i s m that Bergson d e s c r i b e s as b e i n g c o m pletely superabundant activity, a c t i o n , c r e a t i o n ) . ' ' At t h e limit, i t i s t h e m y s t i c w h o plays w i t h t h e w h o l e o f c r e a t i o n , w h o invents a n e x p r e s s i o n o f i t w h o s e adequacy increases w i t h its dynamism. Servant ol an open and finite G o d (such are the characteristics o f t h e Elan Vital), t h e mystical soul actively plays t h e w h o l e ol t h e universe, and r e p r o d u c e s t h e o p e n i n g ol a W h o l e i n w h i c h t h e r e i s n o t h i n g t o s e e o r t o c o n t e m p l a t e . Already motivated by e m o t i o n , the philosopher e x t r a c t e d the lines that divided up t h e c o m p o s i t e s given in e x p e r i e n c e . He prolonged t h e o u t l i n e to b e y o n d t h e " t u r n " ; he showed in t h e d i s t a n c e t h e virtual p o i n t at w h i c h they all m e t . E v e r y t h i n g happens as if that which remained indeterminate in philosophical intuition gained a n e w kind ol d e t e r m i n a t i o n in m y s t i c a l i n t u i t i o n as though t h e properly philosophical " p r o b a b i l i t y " e x t e n d e d i t s e l f into mystical certainty. U n d o u b t e d l y philosophy can only c o n sider t h e m y s t i c a l soul from t h e o u t s i d e and Irom t h e p o i n t of view of its lines ol p r o b a b i l i t y .
40 1 8

But it is p r e c i s e l y t h e e x i s -

t e n c e ol m y s t i c i s m that gives a higher p r o b a b i l i t y to this final transmutation into certainty, and also gives, as it were, an envel o p e o r a l i m i t t o all t h e a s p e c t s o f m e t h o d . * * *

A t t h e o u t s e t w e asked: W h a t i s t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n t h e t h r e e fundamental c o n c e p t s of Duration, M e m o r y and the Elan Vital} W h a t progress do they i n d i c a t e in Bergson's philosophy." It s e e m s to us that D u r a t i o n essentially d e f i n e s a virtual m u l -

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t i p l i c i t y (what differs in nature). M e m o r y t h e n appears as t h e c o e x i s t e n c e of all t h e degrees of difference in this m u l t i p l i c i t y , in this virtualitv. T h e clan vital, finally, d e s i g n a t e s t h e actualization o l this virtual a c c o r d i n g to t h e lines of differentiation that c o r r e s p o n d to t h e d e g r e e s up to this p r e c i s e line ol man w h e r e t h e F.Ian Vital gains s e l f - c o n s c i o u s n e s s .

AFTERWORD

Return

to

Bergson

A " r e t u r n to B e r g s o n " d o e s not only m e a n a renewed admiration lor a great philosopher but a renewal or an e x t e n s i o n of his project today, in relation to the transformations of life and s o c i ety, in parallel with the transformations of s c i e n c e . Bergson himself c o n s i d e r e d that he had made metaphysics a rigorous d i s c i pline, o n e capable o f b e i n g c o n t i n u e d along new paths w h i c h c o n s t a n t l y appear in t h e world. It s e e m s to us that the return to Bergson, understood in this way, rests on t h r e e main features.

Intuition
Bergson saw intuition not as an appeal to t h e ineffable, a participation in a feeling or a lived identification, but as a true m e t h o d . T h i s m e t h o d sets out, firstly, t o d e t e r m i n e t h e c o n d i tions of p r o b l e m s , that is to say, to e x p o s e false p r o b l e m s or wrongly posed q u e s t i o n s , and to d i s c o v e r the variables under w h i c h a given problem m u s t be stated as s u c h . T h e m e a n s used by intuition a r e , on t h e o n e hand, a c u t t i n g up or division of reality in a given d o m a i n , a c c o r d i n g to lines of different natures and, on t h e o t h e r hand, an intersection ol lines w h i c h are taken Irom various d o m a i n s and w h i c h c o n v e r g e . It is this c o m p l e x

"5

B E R G S O N I S M

linear operation, c o n s i s t i n g in a c u t t i n g up a c c o r d i n g to articulations and an i n t e r s e c t i n g a c c o r d i n g to c o n v e r g e n c e s , w h i c h leads to t h e proper posing of a p r o b l e m , in such a way that t h e solution itself depends on it.

Science

and

Metaphysics

Bergson did not merely c r i t i c i z e s c i e n c e as if it w e n t no further than s p a c e , t h e solid, t h e i m m o b i l e . Rather, he thought that the Absolute has t w o " h a l v e s , " to w h i c h s c i e n c e and metaphysics correspond. T h o u g h t divides into t w o paths in a single impetus, o n e toward matter, its bodies and m o v e m e n t s , and the other toward spirit, its qualities and c h a n g e s . T h u s , from antiquity, j u s t as physics related m o v e m e n t to privileged positions and m o m e n t s , metaphysics c o n s t i t u t e d transcendent eternal forms from w h i c h t h e s e positions d e r i v e . But " m o d e r n " s c i e n c e b e gins, on t h e contrary, when m o v e m e n t is related to "any instant whatever": it demands a new metaphysics which now only takes i n t o a c c o u n t i m m a n e n t and c o n s t a n t l y varying durations. F o r Bergson, duration b e c o m e s the metaphysical c o r r e l a t e of m o d ern s c i e n c e . H e , o f c o u r s e , w r o t e a b o o k , Duration and Simultaneity, in w h i c h he considered Einstein's Relativity. T h i s b o o k led to so m u c h misunderstanding b e c a u s e it was thought that Bergson was s e e k i n g to refute or c o r r e c t E i n s t e i n , w h i l e in fact he w a n t e d , by m e a n s ol t h e new feature ol duration, to give the theory of Relativity the metaphysics it lacked. And in this masterpiece, Matter and Memory, Bergson draws, from a scientific conc e p t i o n o f t h e brain t o w h i c h h e h i m s e l f m a d e i m p o r t a n t c o n t r i b u t i o n s , t h e r e q u i r e m e n t s of a new metaphysic of m e m ory. For B e r g s o n , s c i e n c e is never " r e d u c t i o n i s t " but, on the contrary, d e m a n d s a m e t a p h y s i c s w i t h o u t w h i c h it would remain a b s t r a c t , deprived of m e a n i n g or intuition. To c o n t i n u e

in,

A F T E R W O R D

Bergson's project today, means for e x a m p l e to constitute a metaphysical image of thought corresponding to the new lines, openings, traces, leaps, dynamisms, discovered by a molecular biology of t h e brain: new l i n k i n g s and re-Iinkings in t h o u g h t .

Multiplicities
F r o m Time and Tree Will onward, Bergson defines duration as a multiplicity, a type of"multiplicity. T h i s is a strange word, since it makes t h e multiple no longer an adjective but a genuine noun. T h u s , he e x p o s e s t h e traditional t h e m e of t h e o n e and the m u l tiple as a false p r o b l e m . T h e origin of t h e word, Multiplicity or Variety, is physico-mathematical (deriving from R i e m a n n ) . It is difficult to b e l i e v e t h a t Bergson was not aware of t h e scientific origin of t h e t e r m and t h e novelty of its metaphysical use. Bergson moves toward a distinction b e t w e e n t w o m a j o r types of multiplicities, t h e o n e d i s c r e t e or d i s c o n t i n u o u s , t h e o t h e r c o n t i n u o u s , t h e o n e spatial and t h e o t h e r t e m p o r a l , t h e o n e actual, t h e o t h e r virtual. T h i s is a fundamental t h e m e of t h e e n c o u n t e r with E i n s t e i n . O n c e again, Bergson intends t o give multiplicities t h e metaphysics which their scientific t r e a t m e n t demands. T h i s is perhaps one of t h e least appreciated a s p e c t s of his t h o u g h t - t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n of a logic of multiplicities.

To rediscover Bergson is to follow or carry forward his approach in these t h r e e d i r e c t i o n s . It should be n o t e d that these t h r e e t h e m e s are also to be found in p h e n o m e n o l o g y intuition as m e t h o d , philosophy as rigorous s c i e n c e and t h e new logic as theory of multiplicities. It is true that these notions are understood very differently in t h e t w o c a s e s . T h e r e is nevertheless a possible c o n v e r g e n c e as can be seen in psychiatry where bergsonism inspired the works of M i n k o w s k i (l.e temps
ic'cu)

and in

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B E R G S O N I S M

phenomenology those o f Binswanger (Le casSusan Urban), in his explorations of s p a c e - t i m e s in psychoses. B e r g s o n i s m makes possible a w h o l e pathology of duration. In an outstanding artic l e on " p a r a m n e s i a " (false r e c o g n i t i o n ) , Bergson invokes metaphysics to show how a m e m o r y is not c o n s t i t u t e d after present p e r c e p t i o n , but is s t r i c t l y c o n t e m p o r a n e o u s with it, s i n c e at e a c h instant duration divides i n t o t w o s i m u l t a n e o u s tendenc i e s , one of w h i c h g o e s toward the future and t h e o t h e r falls back i n t o t h e past. I le also invokes psychology, in o r d e r to then show how a failure of adaptation can m a k e m e m o r y invest t h e present as s u c h . S c i e n t i f i c hypothesis and metaphysical thesis are c o n s t a n t l y c o m b i n e d in Bergson in the r e c o n s t i t u t i o n of complete experience.

GILLES DELEUZE

Paris, J u l y 1988 Translated by Hugh T o m l i n s o n

118

Notes

IKANSI A I O R S ' I N T R O D U C T I O N 1. Bergson, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1 9 8 5 , p. 2. 2. See Gilles Deleuze and Claire Parnet, Dialogues (translated by 1 lugh Tom-

linson and Barbara llabberjam). London: The Athlone Press, 1987, pp. 14-15. 5. "I.ettre a Michel Crcssole," in Michel Crcssole, Deleu/e. Paris: Editions

Universitaires, 1973, p. 111. 4. 5. (>. 7. Dialogues, op. cit., p. 15. Ibid., pp. vii-viii. Gillian Rose, Dialectic ofSihilism, Oxford: Basil Black well, 1984, Chapter 6. Gilles Deleuze, Cinema I: The Movement-Image (translated by Hugh

Tomlinson and Barbara llabberjam). London: The Athlone Press, 1986, Chapters | and 4; and Gilles Deleuze, Cinema 2: The Time-Image (translated by I lugh Tomlinson and Robert Galeta). London: The Athlone Press, 1988, Chapters 3 and 5. N. / ime ami hrec Will, Matter and Memory, Crcatiw Involution, and Mind-Energy.

For lull references, see p. II.


l

Critique o) Pure Reason, A 8 4 / B 1 I 6 ; see Gilles Deleuze, Kant's Critical

Philosophy (translated by Hugh Tomlinson and Barbara llabberjam). 1 ondon: The Athlone Press. 1984. p. HIT.

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CHAPTI U I 1. C M , 53 ( 1 2 7 1 . 2 5 ) . 2. Itttrt a Hoffding, 1916 (cf. tcrits el Paroles,\'o\. 3, p. 4 5 6 ) .

3. On the use ol the word intuition, and on the genesis ol the notion in Tl" and MM the reader is referred to M. I lusson's book, l.'intcllectualisme tie Rergson, Presses Universitaires de Trance. 1947. pp. 6-10. 4. 5. CM, 37-38 (1274-1275, 2 9 - 3 0 ) . C M , 5 8 - 5 9 ( 1 2 9 3 , 5 1 - 5 2 ) . O n the "semi-divine s t a t e , " cf. C M , 7 5

(1306, 6 8 ) . 6. According to Bergson. the category ol" problem has a greater biological

importance than the negative category ol need. 7. CM, 115 (15 36, 105). The arrangement ol examples varies in Bergson's texts. This is not surprising, because each lalse problem, as \vc shall see, presents the two aspects in variable proportions. On freedom and intensity as false problems, c f . C M , 2 8 - 2 9 ( 1 2 6 8 , 2 0 ) . 8. CM, 118 ( 1 5 5 9 , 110). On the critique ol disorder and ol nonbeing, cl.

a l s o C E , 2 4 2 - 2 4 3 ( 6 8 3 , 223IT.)and 3 0 2 - 3 0 3 ( 7 3 0 . 278IT.). 9. CM, 5 9 - 6 0 ( 1 2 9 3 - 1 2 9 4 , 5 2 - 5 3 ) .

10. C f . T F . C h . I. 11. C M , 7 3 - 7 4 ( 1 3 0 4 - 1 3 0 5 , 6 6 ) . 12. Cl. a very important note in CM, 3 0 5 - 3 0 4 (1 3 0 6 , 6 8 ) [same reference as note 5 ] . 13. C E , 167 ( 6 2 5. 152). 14. Qualitative differences or the articulations ol the real are constant terms and themes in Bergson's philosophy: c f , in particular, the Introduction to CM, passim. It is in this sense that one can speak ol a I'latonism in Bergson (cl. the method ol division). He loves to quote the text ol Plato on cutting up and the good cook. Cf. C E , 172 ( 6 2 7 . 1 5 7 ) . I 5. C F . 5 4 6 ( 7 6 4 . 518). 16. For example, intelligence and instinct form a composite which in its pure state can only be dissociated into tendencies, cf. C E , 150-151 (610, I 57).

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N O T E S

17. On the opposition "in fact - in principle," cf. MM. Ch. 1 - notably 73 ( 2 1 3 . 6 8 ) . And on the "presence-representation" distinction, M M , 35 (185, 32). 18. M M , 4 8 (197, 4 7 ) . 19. MM, 36 ( 1 8 6 , 33): "Now, if living beings are within the universe just 'centers of indetermination,' and if the degree of this indetermination is measured by the number and rank of their function, we can conceive that their mere presence is equivalent to the suppression of all those parts of objects in which their functions find no interest." 2 0 . The line does not need to be entirely homogeneous, it can be a broken line. Thus affectivity is qualitatively distinct from perception, but not in the same way as memory: Whereas a pure memory is opposed to pure perception, affectivity is more like an "impurity" which troubles perception: cf. MM, 58 (207, 6 0 ) . W e will see later how affectivity, memory, etc., denote very diverse aspects of subjectivity. 2 1 . M M , 6 7 ( 2 1 4 , 6 9 ) . Translation modified. 22. MM. 184(321, 2 0 5 ) . 2 3. M M , 185 ( 3 2 1 , 2 0 6 ) . Bergson oltcn seems to criticize the inlinitesim.il analysis: Although it reduces ad infinitum the intervals that it considers, it is still content to recompose movement with covered space: lor example, TF 119-120 ( 7 9 - 8 0 , 8 9 ) . But more profoundly, Bergson requires that metaphysics, lor its part, carry out a revolution which is analogous to that ol calculus in science: cf. C E , 3 5 7 - 3 7 2 ( 7 7 3 - 7 8 6 , 3 2 9 - 3 4 4 ) . And metaphysics should even draw inspiration Irom the "generative idea ol our mathematics," in order to "carrv out qualitative ditlerentiations and integrations": CM, 216-217 (142 3 , 2 1 5 ) . [see also n. 2 4 ] 2 4 . Cf. C M , 216-217 ( 1 4 1 6 . 2 0 6 ) . And 2 2 8 ( 1 4 2 5 . 2 1 8 ) : "Philosophy should be an effort l o g o beyond the human state." (The previously quoted t e x t , on tn turning point of experience, is a commentary on this formula.) 2 5. C M , 1 5 7 - 1 5 9 ( 1 3 7 0 , 148-149). 26. MR. 2 3 7 ( 1 1 8 6 . 2 6 3 ) .

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27. C M , 8 7 - 8 8 (1515, 8 0 ) . 2 8 . M R , 2 5 2 - 2 5 3 (1199-1200, 2 8 0 - 2 8 1 ) . 2 9 . ME, 6-7 ( 8 1 7 - 8 1 8 , 4 ) , 3 5 ( 8 3 5 , 2 7 ) . 30. Cl". MM, 71 ( 2 1 8 , 74): "Questions relating to subject and object, to their distinction and their union, should be put in terms of time rather than space." 31. C M , 3 8 - 3 9 ( 1 2 7 5 , 3 0 ) . 32. C E , 13 ( 5 0 2 , 10). In this context, Bergson grants sugar duration only insofar as it participates in the whole of the universe. The meaning of this restriction will become clearer in Chapter 4. 33. C M . 217 (1416-1417, 2 0 6 - 2 0 8 ) . 3 4 . C M , 65-71 (129-130. 5 8 - 6 4 ) . 3 5 . C E , 2 3 6 - 2 3 7 ( 6 7 9 . 217).Translation modified. 3 6 . M R . 2 0 2 (1156, 225).Translation modified. 37. Cf. C M , 4 2 - 4 3 (I278IT., 34IT.). And C M , 112 ( 1 3 3 5 . 104): Intelligence "touches one of the sides ol the absolute, as our consciousness touches another."

38. CM, 6 8 ( 1 3 0 0 , 61).

C H A P T E R II 1. See A. Robinet's excellent analysis on this point, in Rergson, Seghers, 1965, pp. 2811. 2. Admittedly, as early as lime and l-rce Will Bergson points out the prob-

lem of a genesis of the concept of space, starting from a perception ol extensity, cf. 95-97 ( 6 4 - 6 5 , 7 1 - 7 2 ) . 3. TF, Ch. 2 and Ch. 3, 8 3 - 8 4 (107, 122).The badly analyzed composite or the confusion ol the two multiplicities precisely defines lalse notions ol intensity. 4. On Riemann's theory ol multiplicities cl. G.B.R. Riemann, Oeuvres

Mathimatiquti (French Translation edited by Ciauthier-Viliars, "Sur les hypotheses qui servent de Iondcmcnt a la geometric"): and II. Weyl, lemps, Espace, Matierc. I lusserl too gained inspiration from Riemann's theory ol multiplicities, although in quite a different way from Bergson.

122

N O T E S

5. 6. 7. 8.

"IT. 8 5 - 8 4 ( 5 7 . 6 2 ) . MM, 71-72 ( 2 1 8 - 2 1 9 , 7 5 - 7 6 ) . CM, 1 5 7 ( 1 3 5 3 . 1 2 7 ) . Cf. MM, 2 0 6 ( 3 4 1 , 2 3 1 ) . "As long as we arc dealing with space, we may

carry the division as long as we please; we change in no way the nature ol what is divided." 9. If. 81-82 ( 5 5 - 5 6 , 6 0 - 6 1 ) .

10. TF, 8 4 (57, 6 2 ) . 1 1. IT. 121 ( 8 1 , 9 0 ) . 12. The objective is, effectively, defined by the parts that are actually and not virtually perceived: TF, 8 4 - 8 5 ( 5 7 , 6 3 ) . This implies that the subjective, on the other hand, is dcFined by the virtualitv of its parts. Let us return then to the text: "We apply the term subjective to what seems to be c o m pletelv and adequately known, and the term objective to that which is known in such a way that a constantly increasing number of new impressions could be substituted for the idea which we actually have of it": TF 83 (57, 6 2 ) . Taken literally, these definitions arc strange. By virtue of the c o n t e x t , one might even wish to reverse them. For is it not the objective ( m a t t e r ) that, being without virtualitv, has a being similar to its "appearing" and finds itself therefore adequately known? And is it not the subjective that can always be divided into two parts ol another nature, which it only contained virtually? We might almost be inclined to think it a printing error. But the terms Bergson uses arc justified from another point of view. In the case ol subjective duration, the divisions are onlv valid insofar as they are effectuated, that is, actualized: "The parts of our duration are one with the successive moments ol the act which divides i t . . .and if our consciousness can only distinguish in a given interval a definite number of elementary acts, if it terminates the division at a given point, there also terminates the divisibility": MM, 2 0 6 ( 3 4 1 , 2 52 ). It can there-lore be said that, on each of its levels, the division adequately gives us the indivisible nature of the thing while, in the case ol objective matter, the division does not even need to be effectuated: We know in

'23

B E R G S O N I S M

advance that it is possible without any change in the nature ol the thing. In this sense, if it is true that the object contains nothing other than what we know, it nonetheless always contains more: MM, 147 ( 2 8 9 , 164); it is therelore not adequately known. 1 3. CM, 2 0 6 - 2 0 7 ( 1 4 0 8 , 1 9 6 - 1 9 7 ) . 14. The denunciation ol the Hegelian dialectic as lalse movement, abstract movement, failure to comprehend real movement, is a frequent theme in Kierkegaard, Marx, and Nietzsche, albeit in verv different contexts. 15. Cf. Plato, Philebus. 16. CM. 2 0 7 - 2 1 7 (1409-1416, 1 9 7 - 2 0 7 ) . This text is close to the passage in I'lato where he condemns the pliancy ol the dialectic. W'e have seen that the Bergsonian method ol division had a Platonic inspiration. The point ol contact between Bergson and Plato is in fact the search lor a procedure capable ol determining in each case the "measure," the "what" or the "how many." It is true that Plato thought a relined dialectic could meet these requirements. Bergson, on the other hand, considers the dialectic in general, including that ol Plato, to be valid only lor the beginnings ol philosophy (and ol the history ol philosophy). T h e dialectic passes by a true method ol division, it can do nothing other than carve out the real according to articulations that are wholly formal or verbal. Cf. C M , 95 ( 1 3 2 1 . 8 7 ) : "There is nothing more natural than that philosophy should at first have been content with this, and that it began by being pure dialectic. It had nothing else at its disposal. A Plato, an Aristotle, adopt the cutting out of reality that they Iind already made in language 17. TF, 1 1 0 ( 7 4 . 8 2 ) . 18. Cf. a very important text in C E , 32lff. (75711., 31011.): "But all movement is articulated inwardly," e t c . 19. TF, 2 2 7 ( 1 4 8 , 170) and 2 0 9 - 2 1 9 ( 1 3 7 , 157).Translation modified. "

ClI.MM I K i l l I. MF.. 8 ( 8 1 8 . 5 ) : C M , 211 (1411, 2 0 1 ) ; MM, 34 ( 1 8 4 , 31) The emphasis is

124

N O T E S

ours in each ol these texts. These two forms ol memory should not be confused with those discussed by Bergson at the beginning of Chapter 2 of MM, 78 ( 2 2 5 , 8 3 ) ; this is a completely different principle ol distinction, cf. note 34. 2. C M , 1 9 3 ( 1 3 9 8 , 183).

3. Cf. M E . 1 3 - 1 4 ( 8 2 0 , 8 ) . 4. 5. 6. Cf. M M , 5 8 ( 2 0 6 , 5 9 ) . MM, 7 7 ( 2 2 3 , 81). C M , 87 (1315, 80).Translation modified.

7. M M , 148-149 ( 2 9 0 , 1 6 5 - 1 6 6 ) . 8. Nevertheless, on another occasion, Bergson maintained that there was

only a difference in degree between being and being useful: In fact, perception is only distinguished from its object because it retains solely that which is useful to us ( c l . MM, Ch. I).There is more in the object than in perception, but there is nothing that is ol a different kind. But in this case, the being is merely that of matter or of the perceived object, thus a present being whose only distinction from the useful is one of degree. 9. C M . 8 8 - 8 9 ( 1 3 1 6 , 81).

10. Jean Hyppolitc gives us a profound analysis of this aspect. He attacks "psychoiogistic" interpretations of Matter &. Memory: Cf. "Du bergsonisme a I'existentialisme," Mercure dc France, July, 1949; and "Aspects divers de la memoire c h e / Bergson," Revue internationale de philosophic, October, 1949. 11. M M , 1 3 3 - 1 3 4 ( 2 7 6 - 2 7 7 , 1 4 8 ) . 12. The expression "at o n c e " (d'emblec) is frequently used in Chapters 2 and i of MM. 13. Cl. MM. 116 ( 2 6 1 , 129): "the hearer places himself at once in the midst "I the corresponding ideas "

14. M M , 135 ( 2 7 8 , 150).Translation modified. 15. Cf. M E , 157-160 ( 9 1 3 - 9 1 4 . 130-131): "I hold that the formation of recollection is never posterior to the formation of perception; it is contemporaneous with it For suppose recollection is not created at the same moment as per-

ception: At what moment will it begin to exist? . . . T h e more we rellect, the

'25

B E R G S O N I S M

more impossible it is to imagine any way in which the recollection can arise if it is not created step by step with the perception itself...." 16. A comparison could also be made here between Bergson and Proust. Their conception of time is extremely different, but both acknowledge a kind ol pure past, a being in itself of the past. According to Proust this being in itself can be lived, experienced by virtue of a coincidence between two instants ol time. But according to Bergson, pure recollection or pure past are not a domain of the lived, even in paramnesia: we only experience a recollection-image. 17. The metaphor of the cone is first introduced in M M , 152 ( 2 9 3 , 169). 18. M M , 2 4 1 - 2 4 2 ( 3 7 1 , 2 7 2 ) . 19. On this metaphysical repetition cf. M M , 1 0 3 - 1 0 4 ( 2 5 0 , 115); 161-162 ( 3 0 2 . 181). 2 0 . Cf. M M . 103-104 ( 2 4 9 - 2 5 0 , 114). Bergson shows clearly how we necessarily believe that the past follows the present as soon as we establish only a difference in degree between the two; cf. M E , 160-161 ( 9 1 4 , 132): "The perception being defined as a strong state and the recollection as a weak state, the recollection ol a perception being necessarily then nothing else than the same perception weakened, it seems to us that memory ought to have to wait in order to register a perception in the unconscious. Indeed, it must wait until the whole of it goes to sleep. And so we suppose the recollection ol a perception cannot be created while the perception is being created nor can it be developed at the same time." Translation modified. 2 1 . MM. 1 7 0 ( 3 0 9 - 3 1 0 , 1 9 0 ) . 2 2 . MM, 1 3 4 ( 2 7 7 , 1 4 8 ) . 2 3 . MM, I 3 0 ( 2 7 4 - 2 7 S , 1 4 5 ) . 2 4 . MM, 1 6 8 - 1 6 9 ( 3 0 7 - 3 0 8 , 188) (our emphasis). 2 5 . For example, in the passage that we have just quoted. 2 6 . In fact, the level must be actualized no less than the recollection that it bears. CI. MM. 242 I 571, 21?): "'these planes, moreover, are not given as readv-made things superposed the one on the other. Kathcr they exist virtu-

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N O T E S

ally, with that existence which is proper to things of the spirit. The intellect, forever moving in the interval which separates them, unceasingly finds them again or creates them anew "

27. MM, 1 6 8 ( 3 0 8 , 188): "without dividing...." 2 8 . M E , 195-198 ( 9 3 6 - 9 3 8 , 161-163). Hence the metaphor of the pyramid to represent the dynamic schema: "We will descend again from the summit ol the pyramid toward the base " It is clear that the pyramid is very dif-

ferent Irom the cone and denotes a completely different movement, with a different orientation. However, in another text ( M E , 116 [ 8 8 6 , 9 5 ] ) , Bergson evokes the pyramid as the synonym of the cone: the explanation lor this is in the ambiguity pointed out above, note 2 5 . 2 9 . M M , 104 ( 2 4 9 - 2 5 0 , 1 1 4 - 1 1 5 ) . 30. On these two extremes, cf. MM, 153 ( 2 9 4 , 1 7 0 ) . 3 1 . M M , 120 ( 2 6 5 , 1 3 3 ) . Translation modified. And MM, 9 9 ( 2 4 5 , 1 0 8 ) : "the last phase of the realization of a recollection - the phase of action Translation modified. 3 2 . Cf. M M , 9 2 - 9 3 ( 2 3 8 - 2 4 0 , 100-102); 9 8 ( 2 4 3 - 2 4 4 , 107); 112 ( 2 5 5 - 2 5 6 , 121-122). Above all the motor scheme should not be confused with the dynamic schema. Both intervene in actualization but at completely different phases: I he former is purely sensory-motor, the latter psychological and mnemonic. 3 3. MM, 9 7 ( 2 4 1 , 104). 34. Cf. M M , 108-109 ( 2 5 2 - 2 5 3 , 118-119). 35. MM, 98 ( 2 4 4 , 1 0 7 ) . There are therefore two forms of recognition, the one automatic, the other attentive, to which correspond two forms of memory, the one motor and "quasi instantaneous," the other representative and enduring. We should, at all costs, avoid muddling this distinction, which is made Irom the standpoint ol the actualization of recollection, with a completely different distinction, made from the point of view of Memory in itself (recollection-memory and memory-contraction). 36. On these two types of disturbance, cf. three essential texts, MM, 99 (24S, 108). 1 1 0 ( 2 5 3 , 118), 1 7 4 ( 3 1 4 , 196). In this last text Bergson distinguishes "

"27

B E R G S O N I S M

between mechanical and dynamic disturbances. 37. C f . MM, 108 ( 2 5 3 , 119): "The evocation of recollections themselves is hindered" (translation modified); and also MM, 9 7 - 9 8 ( 2 1 5 . 108). 38. MM, 175 ( 3 1 4 . 1 9 6 ) . 5". ME, 1 7 7 - 1 8 3 ( 9 2 5 - 9 2 8 , 1 4 6 - 1 5 0 ) . 4 0 . ME, 1 3 0 ( 8 9 6 , 107).

C l I A P T I K IV 1. CI. above pp. 2 7 - 2 9 . 2. MM, 79 ( 2 2 5 . 8 5): "We pass, by imperceptible stages, from recollec-

tions strung out along the course of time to the movements which indicate their nascent or possible action in space here a continuous movement " MM, 122 ( 2 6 6 , 155): "We have-

At no moment is it possible to say with

precision that the idea or the recollection-image ends, that the recollectionimage or the sensation begins." Translation modified. MM, 125-126 ( 2 7 0 , 140): "To the degree that these recollections take the form of a more complete, more concrete and more conscious representation, they tend to confound themselves with the perception which attracts them or of which they adopt the outline." 3. 4. MM, 151 ( 2 9 2 , 1 6 8 ) . On going beyond the two dualisms: ( I ) quantity-quality. ( 2 ) extended-

nonextended, cl. MM, Chs. I and 4. 5. On the movement belonging to things as much as to the Self, cf. MM.

198(331.219); 2 0 4 ( 3 4 0 . 2 3 0 ) . 6. Rcintroduction of the theme of degrees and intensities: CI. MM, Ch. 4, pas-

sim, and 2 2 2 ( 5 5 5 , 2 5 0 ) : "Between brute matter and the mind most capable ol reflection there are all possible intensities ol memory or, what comes to the same thing, all the degrees ol freedom." CT:. 219 ( 6 6 5 , 2 0 1 ) : "Our li-cling of duration, I should say the actual coinciding ol our self with itsell. admits of degrees." Ami already in IT, 2 3 9 - 2 4 0 (156, 180): "It is because the transition is made by imperceptible steps Irom concrete duration, whose ele-

128

N O T E S

merits permeate one another, to symbolical duration whose moments are set side by side, and consequently from free activity to conscious automatism." 7. Reintroduction of the theme of the negative, both as limitation and opposi-

tion: Cf. C E , 9 9 - 1 0 0 ( 5 7 1 f f , 9 0 ( 1 ) , matter is both limitation of movement and obstacle to movement, "it is a negation rather than a positive reality." C E , 2 2 0 ( 6 6 6 , 2 0 2 ) : matter as "inversion," "interversion," "interruption "

These texts arc nevertheless related to those where Bergson challenges all notion of the negative. 8. Cf. M M : on modifications and perturbations, 201 ( 3 3 7 , 2 2 6 ) ; on irre-

ducible rhythms, 2 0 5 - 2 0 6 ( 3 4 2 , 2 3 2 - 2 3 3 ) ; on the absolute character of differences, 193-194 ( 3 3 1 - 3 3 2 , 2 1 9 ) . 9. CM, 217-219 (1461, 2 0 7 - 2 0 9 ) . The next two quotations come from the

same t e x t , which is very important to Bergson's whole philosophy. 10. C f . C E , 1 8 4 ( 6 3 7 , 1 6 8 ) . 1 1 . C E , 13 ( 5 0 2 , 10): " W h a t else can this mean than that the glass of water, the sugar and the process of the sugar's melting in the water are abstractions, and that the Whole within which they have been cut out by mv senses and understanding progresses in the same manner as a consciousness?" On the particular characteristic of the living being, and its resemblance to the Whole, cf. C E , 18-19 (507, 15). But Matter and Memory had already invoked the Whole as the condition under which we attribute a movement and a duration to things: M M , 193 ( 3 2 9 , 2 1 6 ) ; 196 ( 3 3 2 , 2 2 0 ) . 12. DS, 4 5 - 4 6 ( 5 7 - 5 8 ) . 1 3. DS, 46 ( 5 8 - 5 9 ) . Bergson goes so far as to say that impersonal Time has only one and the same "rhythm." Matter and Memory, on the contrary, affirms the plurality of rhythms, the personal character of durations (cf. MM, 2 0 7 [3-42, 2 3 2 ] : "but neither is it that homogeneous and impersonal duration, the same lor every thing and everyone..."). But there is no contradiction: In DS the diversity of fluxes will replace that of rhythms, for reasons of terminological precision; and impersonal Time, as we will see, is definitely not a homogeneous impersonal duration.

129

B E R G S O N I S M

14. I)S. 52 ( 6 7 ) . 1 5. DS, 47 ( 5 9 ) : "We catch ourselves dividing and multiplying our consciousness " Translation modilied. This reflexive aspect of duration brings it

particularly close to a cogito. On triplicity. cf. DS, 54 ( 7 0 ) : There are in lact three essential lorms ol continuity: that ol our interior life; that ol voluntary movement; and that of a movement in space. 16. DS, 52 ( 6 8 ) and 61 (81 (.Translations modified. 17. MM, 2 0 6 ( $41, 2 3 2 ) . 18. DS, 47 (59).Translation modified. 19. On this hypothesis of Relativity which defines the conditions ol a crucial kind of experience: Cf. DS, 71 ( 9 7 ) , 7 7 - 7 8 (114), 101 ( 1 6 4 ) . 2 0 . DS, 72 ( 9 9 ) . Translation modified. It has often been said that Bergson's reasoning involves a misunderstanding of Einstein. But Bergson's reasoning itself has also often been misunderstood. Bergson does not confine himself to saying: A time that is different from mine is not lived, either by me or byothers, but involves an image that I give myselt ol others (and reciprocally). For Bergson fully admits the legitimacy ol such an image in expressing the various tensions and the relations between durations that he will constantly recogni/e for his own part. What he criticizes Relativity lor is something completely dillerent: I he image that I make to myself ol others, or that Peter makes to himsell ol Paul, is then an image that cannot be lived or thought as livable without contradiction (by Peter, by Paul, or by Peter as he imagines Paul). In Bergsonian terms, this is not an image, it is a "symbol." If we lorget this point, all ol Bergson's reasoning loses its meaning. Hence, Bergson's concern to recall, at the end of DS, 156 (2 34): "But these physicists are not imagined as real or able to be so 2 1 . DS, 7 6 - 8 2 ( 1 1 2 - 1 1 6 ) . 2 2 . DS, 8 5 - 8 6 ( 1 2 0 - 1 2 1 ) . 2 5. Bergson therefore distinguishes lour types oi simultaneity in an order ol growing depth: (1) relativist simultaneity, between distant clocks, DS, 54 ( 7 1 ) and 8211. (1161)'.); ( 2 ) the two simultaneities in the instant, between "

'30

N O T E S

event and nearby clock; ( 3) and also between this moment and a moment of our duration, DS, 5 4 - 5 8 ( 7 0 - 7 5 ) ; ( 4 ) the simultaneity of lluxes, DS, 5 2 - 5 3 ( 6 7 - 6 8 ) , 60-61 (81). Mcrleau-I'onty clearly shows how the theme of simultaneity, according to Bergson, confirms a genuine philosophy of "coexistence" ( c l . In Praise of Philosophy, translated by John Wild and James M. Edie, Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 196 3, pp. 1411.). 2 4 . DS, 1 34 ( 1 9 9 ) and 155IT. (23311.). 2 5 . Cf. DS, 134 ( 1 9 9 ) and 150 ( 2 2 5 ) , an attack on a "space which swallows time." ol a "time which in turn absorbs space." 2 6 . Against the idea o f a space that is given to us ready made, cf. C E , 2 2 4 - 2 2 5 (69, 206). 27. In this sense, matter and dreams have a natural affinity, both representing a state of expansion (detente), in us and outside us: CE, 220-221 ( 6 6 5 - 6 6 7 , 202-203). 2 8 . C E , 2 2 1 - 2 2 2 ( 6 6 6 - 6 6 7 , 2 0 3 - 2 0 4 ) and M M , Ch. 4, passim. 29. On space as scheme or schema, cf. MM, 2 0 6 ( 3 4 1 . 2 3 2 ) ; 209-211 ( 3 4 4 - 3 4 5 , 235-236); CE, 221(667, 203). 3 0 . C f . C E , C h . 3.

CHAPTER V 1. Cl. above pp. 7 5 - 7 6 . 2. This ontological "naturalism" appears clearly in MR: On naturing Nature

and natured Nature cf. 49 ( 1 0 2 4 , 5 6 ) . The apparently strange notion of "nature's plan" appears in MR. 48 ( 1 0 2 2 , 5 4 ) . Despite some of Bergson's expressions ("Nature intended," M R , 55 [ 1 0 2 9 , 6 3 ] ) , this notion should not be interpreted in too finalistic a sense: There are several plans and each, as we shall see, corresponds to one of the degrees or levels of contraction that all coexist in duration. Therefore, they are "planes" rather than "plans," they refer to sections, to sections ol the cone rather than to a project or to an aim. 3. According to Bergson, the word "Whole" has a sense, but only on condition that it does not designate anything actual. He constantly recalls that:

B E R G S O N I S M

Whole is not given. This means, not that the idea ol the whole is devoid of sense, but that it designates a virtualitv, actual parts do not allow themselves to be totalized. 4. Cf. C E , 99 ( 5 7 1 . 9 0 ) . And M R , 2 8 2 ( 1 2 2 5 . 313): "the essence o f a vital

tendency is to develop Ian-wise, creating, b) the mere Tact ol its growth, divergent directions, each ol which will receive a certain proportion of the impetus." On the primacy, here, of an undivided Totality, of Unity or of a Simplicity, cf. C E , 9 9 - 1 0 1 ( 5 7 1 - 5 7 2 , 9 0 - 9 1 ) ; 130-131 ( 5 9 5 . 119) "the original identity." 5. 6. CE. 1 0 9 ( 5 7 8 , 9 9 ) . In fact, the products of differentiation are never completely pure in

experience. Moreover, each line "balances" that which is exclusive in it: for example, the line that ends in intelligence arouses in intelligent beings an equivalent ol instinct, a "virtual instinct" represented by sforr telling: cf. M R , 1 0 0 ( 1 0 6 8 . 114). 7. Bergson's great reproach to the philosophies of nature is that they only-

saw differences of degree on a single line in evolution and differentiation: CE, 1 4 9 ( 6 0 9 , 1 3 6 ) . 8. Philosophically, one might find in a system like Leibniz's a si.nilar hesi-

tation between the two concepts ol the virtual and ol the possible. 9. Cf. C M , "The Possible and the Real."

10. C E , 7 2 - 7 8 ( 5 4 9 - 5 5 4 , 6 4 - 7 0 ) . 1 I. C E , 80 ( 5 5 5 , 7 2 ) : How could an external physical energy, light lor example, have "converted an impression left by it into a machine capable of using it"? 12. The idea ol diverging lines or ol ramified series was undoubtedly not unknown to classifiers Irom the eighteenth century. But what matters to Bergson is the lact that the divergences of directions can only be interpreted from the perspective of the actualization of the virtual. In R. Ruyer, today, we find requirements analogous to those of Bergson: the appeal to an "inventive, mnemonic and trans-spatial potential," the refusal to interpret

'32

N O T E S

evolution in purely actual terms (cf. his Elements <le psycho-biologic. Presses Universitaires de Prance). I 3. W h e n Bergson ( C E , 184 [ 6 3 7 . 1 6 8 ] ) says, "It seems as if life, as soon as it has become bound up in a species, is cut off from the rest of its own work, save at one or two points that are of vital concern to the species just arisen. Is it not plain that life goes to work here exactlv like consciousness, exactly like memory?" The reader must understand that these points correspond to the outstanding points that became detached at each level of the cone. Each line ol dillerentiation or actualization thus constitutes a "plane (plan) ol nature" that takes up again in its own way a virtual section or level (cf. note 2, above). 14. On this negative vocabulary, cf. C E , Ch. 3. 1 5. This character of life, posing and solution of a problem, appears to Bergson to be more important than the negative determination of need. 16. C E , 188 ( 6 4 0 , 172); M R , 116 ( 1 0 8 2 , 1 3 2 ) " . . . a t each stopping-place a combination, perfect of its kind." 17. C E , 145 ( 6 0 6 , 132). 18. On the opposition of life and form, C E , 141 (60311., I29IT.): "Like eddies ol dust raised by the w ind as it passes, the living turn upon themselves, borne up by the great blast of lite. They are therefore relatively stable and counterled immobility so w e l l . . . " On the species as "stopping place" see M R , 198 (1153, 2 2 1 ) . This is the origin of the notion of enclosure, which will take on such great importance in the study of human society. The point is that, from a certain point of view, Man is no less turned in on himself, closed in on himself, circular, than the other animal species: It might be said that he is "closed." Cf. M R . 2 9 - 3 0 ( 1 0 0 6 , 3 4 ) ; 2 4 5 - 2 4 6 (1193. 2 7 3 ) . 19. C E , 4 3 - 4 6 ( 5 2 6 - 5 2 8 , 3 7 - 4 0 ) . 2 0 . Cf. DS, 137 (203IT.) on the example of the "curved plane" and of the "three dimensional curve." 2 1 . DS. 63 ( 8 4 ) : There is "a certain hesitation or indetermination inherent in a certain part of things" that becomes merged with "creative evolution." 22. CE, 4 7 ( 5 2 9 , 4 1 ) .

'33

B E R G S O N I S M

2 3 . C E , 62 (54111., 5511.) "How do wo assume that accidental causes, presenting themselves in an accidental order, have several times ended in the same result, the causes being infinitely numerous and the effect infinitely complicated?" I.. Cuenot has set out all kinds of examples going in the direction of the Bergsonian theory, c f . Invention et finaliteen biologic. 2 4 . C E , 5 8 ( 5 3 8 , 51). 2 5 . Cf. C E , 198-199 ( 6 4 9 , 182); M E . 8 (8I8IT., 5ff.). 26. MR, 2 0 0 ( 1 1 5 4 , 2 2 3 ) . 27. On the man who tricks nature, extending beyond the "plane" (plan) and returning to a naturing Nature, cf. MR, 4 8 - 5 7 ( 1 0 2 2 - 1 0 2 9 , 5 5 - 6 4 ) . On man's going beyond his own condition, M R , passim, and CM, 2 2 9 ( 1 4 2 5 - 2 1 8 ) . 28. CE, 2 8 8 ( 7 1 9 , 264). 2 9 . ME, 1 8 - 2 0 ( 8 2 5 - 8 2 6 , 14-15). 3 0 . MR, 189-190 ( 1 1 4 5 . 211). On the story-telling function and the virtual instinct, 99 (1067ff., II31T.) and 109-110 ( 1 0 7 6 , 124). On obligation and the virtual instinct, 2 0 ( 9 9 8 , 2 3 ) . 31. MR. 29-30(1006, 34). 32. M R , 8 3 - 8 4 ( 1 0 5 3 , 9 4 ) ; 198-199 (1153, 2 2 2 ) . 5 3. Bergson nevertheless suggests this explanation in certain texts, lor example, M R , 2 0 0 - 2 0 1 (1155, 2 2 4 ) . But it only has a provisional value. 34. MR, 31 ( 1 0 0 8 . 3 5 ) . T h e theory of the creative emotion is all the more important as it gives aflcctivity a status that it lacked in the preceding works. In Time anil tree Will, affectivity tended to become intermingled with duration in general. In Matter anil Mcmorv, on the contrary, it had a much more precise role, but was impure and rather painlul. On the creative emotion and its relations with intuition, the reader is relerred to the study ol M. Ciouhier, in / 'histoirc ct sa philosophic (Vrin, pp. 7611.). 3 5 . M R , 2 4 3 (1191-1192, 2 7 0 ) and 3 0 - 3 2 ( 1 0 0 7 - 1 0 0 8 , 3 5 - 3 6 ) . 36. It will be noted that art, according to Bergson, also has two sources. There is a story-telling art, sometimes collective, sometimes individual: MR, IS4-I86 (1141-1142, 2 0 6 - 2 0 7 ) . And there is an emotive or creative art: MR.

'34

N O T E S

241 (1190, 2 6 8 ) . Perhaps all an presents these two aspects, but in variable proportions. Bergson does not disguise the lact that the story-telling aspect appears to him to be interior in art; the novel would above all be story-telling, music on the contrary, emotion and creation. 37. Cf. M R , 24 3 (1192, 2 7 0 ) : " . . . c r e a t e creators." 38. M R , 5 5 - 5 6 ( 1 0 2 9 , 6 3 ) . 39. On the three mysticisms, Greek, Oriental and Christian, cf. MR. 2 0 5 - 2 0 6 (115811.. 229IT.). 4 0 . CI. M R . 2 34 (1184, 2 6 0 ) . l e t us remember that the notion ol probability has the greatest importance in the Bergsonian method, and that intuition is no less a method of exteriority than of inferiority.

I ndex

ABSENCE, 1 7 - 1 8 . Absolute, the, 35, 49, 7 6 , 84. Abstraction, 25, 4 4 , 4 6 , 53, 75, 9 6 , 98, 99. Achilles'race, 4 7 - 4 8 , 8 1 . Action, 14, 19, 24, 55, 56, 6 8 ; order of, 33; possible, 53; psychological, 56. Actual, the, 15, 85, 9 3 , 9 6 , 97, 9 8 , 1 0 1 - 0 3 , 1 0 4 , 106. Seeobo Real. Actualization, 14, 4 2 - 4 3 , 5 2 , 53, 5 6 - 5 7 , 5 8 , 6 2 - 7 1 , 73, 8 2 , 9 4 - 9 5 , 97, 9 8 , 1 0 3 - 0 7 , 1 0 9 , 111, 113;of past, 5 6 - 5 7 ; psychic, 4 2 . Affection, 23, 53; -subjectivity, 53. Affectivity, 2 5 , 56. Affinity, natural, 27, 33. Alteration, 31, 3 2 , 4 7 , 92. Analysis, transcendental, 23. Animal, 9 4 , 9 5 , 101, 109, 111. Aphasia, 30, 69. Articulations. 27, 28, 6 8 ; natural, 18, 22, 27, 29, 31. See also Real, the, articulation of. Augmentation, 31. Automaton, 67. BECOMING, 37, 44, 45; -conscious, 16. Being, 1 7 - 1 8 , 19, 20, 35, 4 4 . 4 6 - 4 7 .

5 5 - 5 6 , 61, 6 2 - 6 3 , 7 6 - 7 7 , 84, 85; diminution of, 23; paradox of, 61; -present, 55; pure, 59. Berkeley. George, 41. Biology, 94, 95, 97; taxonomy, 103 - 0 4 , 10S. Body, 26, 30, 41, 6 9 , 7 0 - 7 1 , 1 0 3 , 109. Brain, 24, 5 2 - 5 5 , 6 9 , 1 0 7 ; faculty of, and core function, 2425; -subjectivity, 52. CALCULUS, 27. Coalescence, 6 5 , 6 6 . Coexistence, 59 - 60, 74, 77. 8 0 - 81, 86, 91, 9 3 , 1 0 0 - 0 1 , 1 0 3 , 111; paradox of, 61; virtual, 60.77, 85, 9 3 - 9 4 . Composite, 1 8 - 1 9 , 2 2 - 2 3 , 26, 28, 2 9 - 3 0 , 32, 34, 37, 38,47, 5 3 , 7 3 , 8 5 , 8 6 , 9 2 , 9 S - 9 6 , 1 1 2 ; badly analyzed, 17, 18, 20, 22, 28, 54, 58, 6 1 - 6 2 , 7 3 , 86. Concept, 2 8 , 4 4 - 4 5 , 7 5 , 9 7 . Cone, metaphor of, 5 9 - 6 0 (fig.), 6 4 - 6 5 , 6 6 , 6 7 , 8 8 , 100. Consciousness, 30, 4 2 , 4 5 , 4 8 , 51, 52, 56, 78, 81, 82, 8 4 , 1 0 6 ; planes of, 6 5 , 6 6 ; psychological, 6 3 ; self-, 52, 106, 113. Contemporaneity, 58, 59, 71. Continuity, 21, 37, 38, 4 3 , 52, 57, 87.

'37

B E R G S O N I S M

Contraction. 21, 5 1 - 5 2 , 5 5, 6 0 , 61, 6 4 - 6 7 , 70, 74, 75, 76, 7 9 , 8 2 , 8 6 - 8 9 , 9 3 . 102, 105. 107; degrees/ levels of, 6 0 , 7 4 , 7 5 , 8 5 , 9 3 , 1 0 0 , 1 0 1 ; -memory, 26, 52, 60, 74; ontological and psychological, 6 5 ; -relaxation, 75; -subjectivity, 53. Convergence, 29, 30, 73. See also Intersection. Creation, 9 7 , 9 8 , 1 0 1 . 1 0 3 , 105, 106. 108,110-12. Creative Evolution, 37, 77, 7 8 , 100. DATUM, IMMEDIATE, 3 8 , 7 5 . Decomposition, 38, 53, 67, 6 8 , 9 2 , 9 6 . Deterioration, 22, 23, 4 6 , 47, 7 5 - 7 6 , 103. Determinism, 107. Difference, 35, 7 5 - 7 6 , 9 2 , 9 3 , 9 7 , 9 8 , 100; in degree, 20, 21, 2 2 - 2 3 , 25, 3 1 - 3 2 , 34, 3 5 , 3 8 , 4 1 , 4 3 , 4 5 . 4 7 , 58, 73, 74, 7 5 , 7 6 , 9 1 , 9 2 - 9 3 , 9 4 , 9 6 , 101; of intensity. 2 0 - 2 1 , 7 5 , 91, 9 2 , 9 4 ; internal, 99; in kind, 14, 1 8 - 2 5 , 2 7 - 3 5 , 3 8 , 4 1 , 4 2 - 4 3 , 46, 47, 54, 55, 5 8 , 6 1 , 7 3 , 7 5 - 7 6 , 81. 82. 91, 9 2 . 9 3 , 9 5 , 96; in number, 35, 41; qualitative, 31. Differentiation, 2 9 , 3 5 , 4 3 , 9 4 , 9 5 , 9 7 , 1 0 1 - 0 3 (fig. p. 102), 104. 106, 107. 108,110,113. Dilation, set Expansion, Relaxation. Dimension, 23. Diminution, 2 3, 31. Discontinuity, 21, 37, 51. Disorder, 1 7 - 1 8 , 1 9 - 2 0 , 4 6 - 4 7 . Distinction, 77; extrinsic, 3 7 - 3 8 ; of quality, 35; ol quantity, 84; real, 85, 86. Disturbance, 6 8 - 7 0 , 71, 76; dynamic, 6 9 ; mechanical, 6 8 . Divergence, 2 8 - 3 0 , 4 3 , 5 3 , 7 3 , 9 5 , 9 7 , 100,105-06. Division, 22. 24, 31, 32, 4 0 , 4 1 - 4 2 . 47, 66,79, 8 0 - 8 1 , 9 2 - 9 6 , 99,103, 104, 112; two types of, 9 5 - 9 6 .

Doubt, 19. Dreams, 6 6 , 107. Dualism, 2 1 - 2 2 . 29. 31, 7 3 , 75, 76, 91, 93, 9 4 , 96; genetic. 96; reflexive, 96. Dualities, 74, 9 3 . Duration, 1 3 - 1 4 , 19, 21, 22, 26, 2 8 . 31-35, 3 7 - 3 8 . 4 0 . 4 2 , 4 5 - 4 6 , 4 8 - 4 9 , 5 1 - 5 2 . 54, 6 0 . 7 5 - 1 1 3 ; -contraction, 2 3, 107; dispersed, 77; external, 4 8 ; in general, 4 5 ; intense, 77; internal. 81, 8 5 - 8 4 , 107; multiple, 4 8 - 4 9 , 7 5 , 7 6 - 7 7 , 78, 8 3 - 8 5 ; ontological, 49; psychological. 34. 37. 4 8 - 4 9 , 76. 77;'pure, 9 5 ; simultaneous, 48; single, 7 8 . Duration and Simultaneity, 39, 78, 85. EGOISM. 109,110. Einstein, Albert. 4 0 , 7 9 - 8 0 , 83, 84,85. llan vital, 13, 14, 16, 9 4 , 9 5 , 101. 104, 106, 107, 112-13. Emotion. 1 8 , 4 2 , 1 1 0 - 1 2 . Energy, 7 6 , 102. Essai sur les elements phncipaux de la representation, 4 4 . Essence, 32, 3 4 , 9 4 , 110. Eternity, 23, 5 5 , 56, 104. Evolution, 9 8 , 100, 106. Evolutionism, 23, 9 8 - 9 9 . Excitation, 24, 52. 107, 111. Existence, 20, 77. Expansion, 30. 6 0 , 6 6 - 6 7 , 7 0 , 74, 75,79, 86-89.91.93.95.100, 102, 103, 107. See also Relaxation. Expend it t i r e , 102. Experience. 13, 22. 2 5 - 2 7 , 50, 34, 37, 5 3 , 7 4 , 8 1 - 8 2 . 9 2 , 9 9 ; conditions of, 20. 23, 2 5 , 26, 27, 28, 30, 37,99; physical, 4 7 - 4 8 ; possible, 23; psychological, 5 3, 34, 37. 38; pure. 92; real, 23. 27. 28; turn in. 2 7 . 2 8 . 7 3 , 9 1 , 9 2 , 93,95.

l8
3

I N D E X

Extension, 22, 3 4 , 3 5 , 42 , 74 - 7 5 ,
79. 86, 8 7 - 8 8 , 8 9 , 9 4 . Exteriority, 4 9 , 7 4 - 7 5 , 7 7 - 7 8 , 9 3 , 9 9 . 102, 103. FALSITY, 16,98. Pictions. 2 5 . 3 4 . 8 5 . 9 8 . 1 0 8 . Final ism, 1 0 4 . 1 0 5 .

2 2 - 2 4 . 32, J3, 3 8 . 7 3 . 7 7 . Invention. 1 5 - 1 6 . 35, 108. 111. KANT, IMMANLH I . 2 0 - 2 1 , 4 6 . Knowledge. 13, 17. 35. LANGUACI. 15. 57, 6 2 . 68; foreign. 62; ontologv ol, 57. Leap, ontological. 56. 57. 61. 62, 109; paradox ol. 61. Life. 16. 19, 5 2 . 9 4 - 9 5 . 1 0 1 . 1 0 2 , 1 0 3 - 0 4 , 106. 107; attention to, 6 8 , 7 0 , 72, 8 0 . MACHINE, 107. Man, 106, 109. 113. Marx. Karl. 16. Mathematics. 1 5 - 1 6 , 27, 4 1 - 4 2 . Stt also Riemann. Matter, 21, 22, 2 4 - 2 7 , 30, 34, 35, 41, 4 3 , 53, 5 4 - 5 5 , 6 0 - 6 1 , 7 3 , 74, 7 5 , 77. 7 8 , 8 2 . 86, 8 7 - 8 9 , 92, 9 3 . 9 4 , 1 0 1 - 0 3 . 1 0 7 - 0 8 ; contraction of, 2 5 - 2 6 ; -expansion, 23; order ol, 88. Matter and Memory, 2 3 - 2 4 , 29, 4 0 , 41, 5 2 - 5 3 , 7 2 , 7 3 , 7 5 . 7 6 . 7 8 . 86, 9 2 , 96,100. Meaning, 88. Mechanism, 19. 23. 6 7 - 6 8 . 6 9 . 70, 98.104,105.107. Memory, 13. 21. 2 2 , 2 5 - 2 6 . 30, 37, 43,51-52, 53,55, 57,63-64, 65.67,70.73.77,92,93,100, 102, 1 0 6 - 0 7 . 109, HI. 112-13; Bergson's theory ol, 4 3 , 5 5 - 5 6 ; ontological, 57, 59; paradox of, 5 8 - 5 9 ; psychophysiological theories of.' 58. 61; pure. 27. 58, 74, 95; two aspects of, 5 1 - 5 2 , 5 3 - 5 4 . mens momtntanta, 75. Metaphysics. 15. 20. 2 3. 29. 35. Method. I 311.. 32. 38. 7 5 . 9 1 - 9 2 . 9 3 . 9 6 , 112; dialectical. 44-45. Stt also Intuition. Mind. 26. $7. 62, 88. 109.

Flux, 8 0 - 8 5 , 9 1 ; triple, 8 0 - 8 1 . 8 2 . Form. 8 8 , 1 0 3 - 0 4 ; variety of, 4 5 . Fourth dimension. 7 9 , 8 6 . 1 0 4 - 0 5 . Freedom, 1 5 . 1 6 , 17, 1 9 , 5 1 , 1 0 6 . 107. Freud, Sigmund, 55 5 6 . Future, the, 5 2 .
GENERALIZATION, 4 4 - 4 6 .

God,

104, 108. 110. 112.

HAMELIN, 4 4 . Ilegelianism, 4 4 . Heterogeneity. 2 1 . 37. 4 3 , 7 4 . 1 0 0 . History, 1 6 . Hoffdi'ng, 13. Homogeneity, 2 0 , 21, 3 3 , 3 7 , 7 4 . 1 0 0 . IDEALISM, 3 3 , 7 7 .
Illusions, 2 0 , 2 1 , 2 3 , 3 3 - 3 S . 5 8 . 6 1 , 104. Image, 1 7 - 1 8 , 2 4 , 4 1 , 5 7 - 5 8 . 6 5 - 6 8 . 7 0 . 7 1 , 81. 9 7 - 9 8 ; recall of. 6 3 ;

virtual, 2 8 , 2 9 . Inadequacy, 4 4 , 4 6 , 7 5 . Indivisibles, 4 2 . Set aim Division. Inextensity, 2 3 .


Instant, 2 5 , 5 1 - 5 2 , 5 3 , 7 4 , 8 4 , 8 7 , 9 5 .

Instinct, 2 1 , 9 4 , 9 5 , 1 0 1 . 1 0 2 . 1 0 3 , 1 0 8 ,
110. Intelligence, 21, 8 8 - 8 9 , 9 4 , 9 5 , 1 0 2 . 1 0 4 . 1 0 7 - 1 0 , 1 1 2 ; order of, 3 3 . Intensity, 1 7 . 1 8 - 1 9 , 7 5 - 7 6 . 9 1 - 9 2 . Intersection, 2 8 , 2 9 , 3 0 . 3 5 . 5 3 - S 4 .

Set also Convergence. Interval. 2 4 , 4 6 ; cerebral, 2 4 , 2 5 .


5 2 - 5 3 . 107. 1 0 9 . 1 1 1 . Intuition. 2 1 , 2 7 , 3 1 - 3 2 , 3 5 . 8 8 . 1 0 2 . 1 0 9 - 1 0 , 1 1 1 - 1 2 ; as method, 1 3 - 1 4 ,

'39

B E R G S O N I S M

Minil-I nenjK 30. Modification, 7 6 . Monism, 2 9 . 7 3 , 7 4 . 7 5 . 7 6 , 7 8 , 8 2 ,


91,93,94.

Obligation. 1 0 8 . (observation. 3 0 .
One. the. 39,43 -44.45 -46.47, 80, 8 5 , 9 3 , 100. Ontology, 3 4 - 5 5 . 4 9 , 5 6 , 7 6 . Opposition. 4 4 - 4 5 , 4 6 . 7 5 - 7 6 , 8 2 , 96,101. Order, 1 7 - 1 8 , 4 6 - 4 7 .

Motive, psychological, 1 7 - 1 8 .
Movement'. 2 4 , 2 7 , 3 1 , 4 5, 4 7 . 4 8 - 4 9 , 5 2 , 5 4 . 6 5 , 6 7 - 6 9 , 7 0 , 7 1 , 74, 7 5 , 79, 82, 8 4 , 9 4 - 9 5 . 1 0 3 - 0 5 , 1 0 6 ,

1 0 7 ; executed, 2 4 , 5 2 ; false, 4 4 ; mechanical, 7 0 7 1 ; perception.


6 7 - 6 9 ; received, 2 4 , 5 2 , 7 4 , 8 7 , 9 2 . Multiple, the, 3 9 , 4 3 - 4 4 . 4 5 - 4 6 , 4 7 , 7 6 , 8 0 . 8 5 . 9 3 : unity of, 4 4 , 4 5 , 95-94. Multiplicity, 1 4 , 3 2 . 3 8 1 1 . , 4 7 , 4 9 , 7 8 ,

Organism, 1 6 , 1 0 5 .
I'ARAMNI SIA, 7 1 . Participation, 7 7 - 7 8 , 8 8 . Past, the, 2 5 , 3 7 , 54IT., 7 0 , 7 1 , 7 3 , 7 4 . 7 5 . 9 1 , 9 2 ; in general, 5 6 - 5 7 , 5 9 ,

7 9 - 8 0 , 8 5 ; abstract. 4 5 : actual/ spatial. 8 5 ; continuous qualitative,


38, 3 9 - 4 0 , 4 2 - 4 3 , 4 7 , 8 0 , 8 1 ;

6 1 , 6 2 - 6 4 ; image ol, 5 1 ; degrees/ levels of, 5 9 - 6 7 , 7 4 . 7 7 ; preservation of, 2 5 , 5 1 , 5 4 - 5 5 , 5 9 ; pure,


5 9 , 7 4 , 7 5 , 9 5 , 1 0 9 ; regions of, 5 6 - 5 7 , 5 8 . 6 1 - 6 6 ; totality of, 2 7 , 61,62.

discontinuous/quantitative, 38, 4 0 , 4 1 , 4 3 . 4 7 . 8 0 ; discrete. 3 9 ; two


kinds of, 1 9 , 2 1 , 3 8 1 1 . , 4 7 , 5 3 , 7 9 - 8 0 , 8 5 ; virtual/temporal. 82-83,85,112-13.

Pedagogy,

15.

Perception. 2 1 . 2 3 - 2 5 , 2 6 - 2 7 , 3 0 , 5 1 , 5 3 , 58, 6 3 . 6 7 - 68, 7 3 , 74, 7 5 .

Mysticism.

112.

1 0 7 ; actual, 4 1 , 6 7 ; -image, 5 8 , 6 6 ,
6 7 - 6 8 , 7 1 , 7 3 , 74, 9 5 ; - o b j e c t -

NATURE. 1 9 , 34. 8 0 . 9 3 , 1 0 7 , 1 0 8 - 0 9 . 110.113.

matter, 2 6 ; Pure. 2 6 . 2 7 , 2 8 , 5 4 . 5 5 , 5 8 ; Real, 2 5 ; -recollection, 2 2 ,


2 9 ; virtual, 2 5 . 4 1 .

nature naturanut, 9 3 . nature naturec, 9 3 . Need. 6 2 . 6 8 . 1 0 8 ; order of, 3 3 ; -subjectivity, 5 2 .


Negation, 1 8 , 1 9 , 4 6 . 5 2 , 7 5 - 7 6 :

Perfection, 2 3 , 1 0 3 .
Philosophy. 1 3 . 1 4 . 2 7 - 2 8 , 4 4 - 4 5 . 46, 7 5 , 9 4 , 9 9 , 1 1 1 - 1 3 .

generalized.

17. 46.

Physics, 3 5 . Scealw Einstein. Plant. 9 4 , 9 5 . 1 0 1 . 1 0 2 , 1 1 0 .


Plato, 3 2 , 4 4 - 4 5 . 5 9 . Pluralism, 7 6 , 7 7 - 7 8 , 8 3 - 8 4 , 1 0 4 ;

Negative, the, 1 8 , 4 6 , 7 5 - 7 6 , 1 0 1 - 0 3 ;

ol limitation and of opposition,


46-47. Nonbcing. 1 7 - 1 8 . 1 9 - 2 0 . 4 4 . 4 6 - 4 7 .

generali/ed, 7 7 - 7 8 , 8 2 ; limited,
7 7 - 7 8 , 8 2 : quantitative, 7 6 .

Nothingness, 2 0 , 2 3. Novelty. 2 0 , 6 1 . Number, potential, 4 0 - 4 1 , 4 2 - 4 3, 4 5 .


OBJECT, 2 4 - 2 5 , 3 3 , 4 0 - 4 1 , 4 7 , 5 2 , 5 3 . 6 8 , 7 5 , 7 5 , 7 7 , 7 8 , 1 1 0 ; image

Plurality, 1 4 , 2 4 . Point. 7 9 ; mathematical, 2 5 , 5 3; of unity, 7 3 - 7 4 , 9 5 ; virtual, 2 8 , 2 9 ,


30.112.

Position, 2 3 . Possibility, 1 8 . 1 9 , 4 5 . 9 6 .
Possible, the, 1 7 - 1 8 . 2 0 , 2 4 . 4 1 , 4 7 , 9 6 - 9 8 ; l.cibni/ian. 7 1 .

of, 4 1 .
()bjectivitv. 50, 5 5 . 4 0 - 4 1 . 4 5 , 5 3 , 5 4 .

I 0
4

I N D E X

Precision, I 3, 14, 29, 4 0 , 9 4 . Prelormism, 9 8 . Presence, 2 2 - 2 3 , 26. Present, the, 25, 4 8 , 5 1 - 5 2 , 54IT., 68, 7 0 - 7 5 , 8 8 , 9 1 , 9 2 ; pure, 74, 9 5 . Probabilism, 30. Problems. ISff., 21. 29; badly stated, 17, 1 8 - 1 9 , 21; creation/statement of, 14, 15-17, 2 1 , 3 1 , 35; false, 15-17, 18, 2 0 . 2 3 - 2 4 , 2 6 , 3 3 - 3 5 , 4 3 , 54, 75, 9 8 , 104; nonexistent, 17, 1 9 - 2 0 ; true, 1 5 - 1 7 , 33. Proportion, 23, 31. Proust, Marcel, 8 5 , 9 6 . Psychology, 26, 57, 7 6 . Pure, the, 22, 4 9 , 52. Q U A L I T Y , 21, 31, 3 2 , 4 8 , 51, 53, 74, 8788, 9 2 ; heterogeneous, 74. Quantity, 21, 74, 91; homogeneous, 74. Questions, badly stated, 17, 2 4 . R E A L , T H E , 17; 21, 2 9 , 3 0 , 4 1 , 4 4 , 47, 9 6 - 9 8 , 108; articulation of, 2 6 , 92; disarticulation of, 30. Realism. 3 3 , 7 7 . Reality, 2 2 , 34, 4 2 , 4 5 , 97, 100; nonpsychological, 56; psychological, 34, 5 8 . Realization, 20, 41, 4 3 , 71, 9 6 - 9 7 . Reason, 20, 108; sufficient, 2 8 - 2 9 , 86. Recognition, 67, 6 8 , 6 9 . Recollection, 2 1 - 2 7 , 30, 37, 51, 53,54,56-57,58,61-73,107; -image, 5 8 , 63, 6 5 - 6 8 , 70, 71. 7 3 . 74, 9 5 , 109; -memory, 2 6 , 52. 60, 74; -perception, 22; pure, 26, 5 5 , 56, 6 2 , 6 3 , 6 6 , 6 8 , 6 9 , 70, 71, 74; -subjectivity, 5 3; virtual, 56, 63, 71. Recomposition, 4 5 , 57. Relativity, theory of, 39, 79, 8 3 - 8 4 , 86. Relaxation, 21, 23, 6 0 . 61, 65 , 74, 7 5 ,

7 6 , 7 9 , 8 2 , 8 7 - 8 9 , 9 5 : levels,

degrees of, 6 0 , 7 4 , 7 5 , 8 5 , 8 6 , 8 8 - 8 9 , 9 1 , 1 0 0 . Sec also Expansion. Religion, 34, 1 0 8 . Reminiscence, 6 2 ; 1 1 1 ; Platos theory of, 5 9 .
Repetition. 5 1 . 6 0 - 6 1 , 6 8 , 9 3 ;

physical and psychic, 6 0 6 1 , paradox of. 6 1 ; virtual, 6 1 . Representation, 2 2 , 2 4 , 5 3 , 6 6 , 87, 1 0 8 , IK). Repression, 2 1 , 7 2 .
Resemblance, 1 0 1 , 1 0 5 - 0 6 .

Response, 2 4 , 1 0 7 , III. Rest, 7 9 . Riemann, G.B.R., 3 9 - 4 0 , 7 9 .


Rotation, 6 4 , 6 5 - 6 6 , 6 8 , 6 9 , 7 0 ;

-orientation, 6 4 . Rules, 1 5 . 1 7 , 2 1 , 2 9 , 3 1 . S C H E M E , D Y N A M I C , 6 6 , 6 9 ; motor,


6 7 - 6 8 , 69, 70.

Science, 1 4 , 2 0 , 2 3 , 3 5 , 4 0 . 8 6 . Section, discontinuous, 3 7 ; instantaneous, 5 4 .


Self, 4 4 , 7 5 , 1 0 6 . Sensations, 1 8 - 1 9 , 5 3 , 7 4 , 7 5 , 8 7 .

Sense, 8 8 .
Simultaneity. 4 8 , 7 9 , 8 0 - 8 1 , 8 4 - 8 5 ;

ol fluxes, 8 1 , 8 9 . Simplicity, 4 3 , 4 6 , 9 4 , 9 5 , 9 6 , 1 0 0 .
Sleep, 6 6 - 6 7 . Society, 1 5 , 1 0 8 - 1 1 . Solution. 1 5 - 1 7 , 2 1 , 2 9 - 3 0 , 1 0 3 ;

false, 2 0 . Soul, 1 1 2 ; immortality ol, 3 0 . Sources, two kinds of, 2 1 .


Space, 1 9 , 2 1 , 2 2 , 2 5 , 3 1 - 3 8 , 4 3 , 4 7 , 49, 60, 7 5 , 79, 8 6 - 8 8 , 9 2 , 1 0 4 - 0 5 ;

auxiliary-, 3 8 ; homogeneous, 3 4 ; order of. 3 4 ; pure, 8 8 , 8 9 ; real, 1 0 5 : scientific conception ol, 4 0 ;


-time, 7 9 , 8 5 . 9 5 , 1 0 4 - 0 5 .

Spirit, 3 0 , 3 5 , 9 3 . Story-telling function. 1 0 8 - 1 1 1 .

I l
4

B E R G S O N I S M

Subject. 4 2 . 4 8 . 7 J . 8 1 - 8 2 , 8 ) . Subjectivity. 2 6 . JO. 33. 4 0 . 4 2 - 4 3 . 5 3; live aspects oi, 52 53. Succession. 2 5 . 4 5 . 4 8 . 59, 6 0 . 81; internal, 37. Sugar, lump ol. 3 1 - 3 2 , 77. Systems, closed, 18, 43, 77; lixed and mobile, 7 9 . TENDENCY, 21, 2 2 - 2 3 , 2 8 . 31. 32, 9 2 , 9 3 , 9 9 ; motor, 67, 6 8 . Tension, 6 0 , 74, 7 6 . 7 9 . 86, 87. 88, 9 5 : levels of, 77. Time. 22. 31, 32. 4 3 . 5 8 - 5 9 . 6 1 - 6 2 , 7 4 , 7 5 . 7 8 , 7911., 85 - 86, 9 3 , 1 0 4 - 0 5 ; multiplicity of, 7 6 . 78, 79, 8 3 - 8 4 , 85; relativistic. 7 9 - 8 0 , 8 3 - 8 4 ; real, 14, 78, 7 9 ; single, 8 0 . 81,82-83.85,91,93,100; spatiali/ed. 22, 23, 80, 8 5 . 8 6 . 104. Sec also Instant. hint and Iree Will, 37. 39. 4 0 , 4 3 , 4 8 , 53.60, 76, 7 8 , 7 9 , 9 1 , 9 6 .

Totality, 32. 105; virtual. 9 3 . 9 5 . KM). Translation. 6 3 - 6 4 . 6 5 - 6 6 , 6 8 , 6 9 , 70, 9 7 ; -contraction, 6 4 , 7 0 . Truth, 16. 18. 29, 34. UNCONSCIOUS, 42, 5 5 - 5 6 , 7 1 - 7 2 ; Freudian, 5 5 - 5 6 : ontological, 71; psychological, 5 5 - 5 6 , 71; virtual. 55. Unity, ontological. 74. 9 3. 9 5 . 100. Universe-. 7 8 ; Whole of. 77. 78. 82, 100. 103, 104. 105, 112. Utility, 27, 55. 6 4 , 67. 6 8 . 7 0 - 7 1 . 8 8 . 99'. 106. 107. 109. VIBRATION, sec Movement, received. Virtual, the. 15, 4 2 - 4 3 , 56, 57, 6 0 , 6 3 , 81, 82, 8 5 , 9 4 . 9 5 . 9 6 . 9 7 - 9 8 . 100, 103. 104, 105. 106; pure, 62. Virtuality, 41, 8 2 - 8 3 , 9 3 , 9 5 , 97, 9 9 - 1 0 0 , 101, 103, 106,113. W i n . 19.

142

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