Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 151

What Concepts Do: Preface to the Chinese Translation of A Thousand Plateaus

Brian Massumi

Universit de Montral, Montral

This essay suggests an approach to the reading of Deleuze and Guattaris A Thousand Plateaus, grasped as a philosophical event that is as directly pragmatic as it is abstract and speculative. A series of key DeleuzoGuattarian concepts (in particular, multiplicity, minority and double becoming) are staged from the angle of philosophys relation to its disciplinary outside. These concepts are then transferred to the relation between the authors philosophical lineage and the new cultural outside into which the Chinese translation will propel their thought. Emphasis is placed on the writing and reading of philosophy as a creative act of collective import and ethical force. Keywords: Gilles Deleuze, Flix Guattari, speculative pragmatism, minority, becoming
Philosophy, nothing but philosophy.1 (Deleuze 2007a: 176/163, trans. mod.)

That was Gilles Deleuzes simple answer. The question what kind of book is A Thousand Plateaus? has likely occurred to many a reader upon opening the book. It is clear at a glance that something is going on. Each chapter heading bears a date as well as a title, and is accompanied by an image. The images, the reader quickly senses, are not directly illustrative. What connection, for example, does a diagram of a partridge hunting device have to do with the theory of the State and its relation to capitalism (plateau 13)? Or a line-drawing of an egg to the nature of the human body (plateau 6)? The suspicion that Deleuzes answer is not as simple as it seems is reinforced by a brief introductory authors note informing the reader that the book is not divided into chapters at all

2 Brian Massumi
but is instead composed of plateaus. The difference is that plateaus can be read in any order. Each plateau threads a sinuous weave of topics related to many disciplines other than philosophy: art, mathematics, geology, biology, linguistics, anthropology, history, ethology, literature, music, religion, political theory, economics. The breadth and diversity seem unbounded. The reader is led to a cliff-edge of bewilderment. Suddenly connections leap out, often between disparate passages in different plateaus, like conceptual ashes of lightning joining earth and sky, briey illuminating a vista with a clarity at once too intense and too eeting to hold. The ash connections-at-a-distance multiply at each reading, launching the weave of topics into a performative rhythm. Written not unlike a work of experimental ction, the book reads with the feel of music: in movements. Resonances build at each playing, enriching the experience with a self-enhancing sense of variation. Didnt Deleuze once comment that a book should be read as one listens to a record (Deleuze and Parnet 1987: 13/10)? Another complication: the very rst line of the rst plateau announces a duet. Every passage was integrally co-authored, and since each of us was several, there was already quite a crowd. Deleuzes co-multiple, Flix Guattari, was not a philosopher by profession. He was a lifelong political activist and a trained psychoanalyst who never belonged to a political party, and never practised as an analyst. He agitated tirelessly in the extra-parliamentary left that would explode into view with the workerstudent revolt of May 1968, energising the social movements that would characterise the following decades. Guattari worked for his entire career at an experimental psychiatric clinic, La Borde, which was allied to the anti-psychiatry movement. Guattaris life, Deleuze writes, was itself a rhythm of perpetual movement, uncontainable by any set ideology, disciplinary enclosure or established institution. He can leap from one activity to another, he sleeps little, travels much, and does not stop. His life is like a sea, always mobile in appearance, with constant ashes of light (Deleuze 2007b: 237/218 trans. mod.). Earth, sky, sea. Flash, rhythm, resonance. Nothing but philosophy, it seems, is made of many things. Forces, events, motions and sources of movement, winds, typhoons, diseases, places and moments (Deleuze 1995a: 34/52). Everything but an interiority of thought. Philosophy is not made to reect on anything . . . Nobody needs philosophy to reect (Deleuze 2007c: 318/292 trans. mod.). A book of philosophy is in a relation with the outside. Philosophical thought exists only through the outside and

What Concepts Do

on the outside (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 4/10). Its not in the head (Deleuze 1995b: 134/183 trans. mod.). Philosophy, for Deleuze and Guattari, is a way of engaging with the world. Speaking for both co-authors, Deleuze remarks that in A Thousand Plateaus we have the impression we are doing politics. . . . The question is whether other people can make use of the work it does, even just a little, in their life and projects (Deleuze 2007a: 180/166 trans. mod.). Philosophy engages with the world in a way that is as political as it is musical. Its politics is pragmatic, not programmatic. Rather than directing, it donates. It gives a gift of potential for use in other peoples lives and projects. Philosophy is a doing, and it acts for change. This is why philosophy cannot be content to reect, pronouncing upon the world from a disengaged posture of explanatory description or judgmental prescription. To contribute to change is to herald the new. The new, by denition, cannot be described, having yet to arrive. If its arrival can have been pre-described, it will not have been new. It will have been programmed in the present as a prescription for the future. Philosophy as Deleuze and Guattari practise it is neither descriptive nor prescriptive. It is constructive. Everybody knows that philosophy deals with concepts. . . . But concepts dont turn up ready-made, and they dont preexist: you have to invent, create concepts, and this involves just as much creation and invention as you nd in art (Deleuze 1995a: 32/48). Philosophy has but one object: the crafting of concepts. Nothing but philosophy is a conceptual art. Deleuze and Guattaris approach to philosophy has important consequences for how the reader may best approach the experience of A Thousand Plateaus. It bears directly on the status of the nonphilosophical disciplines from which the authors draw much of their material for the book. The authors do not appeal to other disciplines for outside authority. That is not at all what they mean by philosophy being in relation with an outside. Neither is it a question of setting up philosophy as a judge or outside arbiter of other modes of thought and action. There is an evaluation involved in the activity of philosophy, but it is of a different kind. Each discipline is credited as having its own mode of construction, for which it invents its own self-policing criteria of judgement. Philosophy does not presume to instruct other disciplines in their own affairs. It does not conrm or deny the validity of their results relative to their own sphere of activity. Nor does it simply import their results into its own activity, taking them on board with

4 Brian Massumi
borrowed authority. Rather than lay judgement upon other disciplines, or kneel down before their judgement, philosophy takes something for itself from them. It extracts something from their outside activity, which it then artfully goes about making its own. What it extracts, from nonphilosophy, is philosophical potential. It applies its art to recrafting the potential, recasting it to lead in directions it could never have gone in had it stayed where it started. Philosophy frees potential from the captivity of disciplinary self-policing. It does this in the interests of passing the potential forward, to other lives, for other projects. Deleuze and Guattaris philosophy helps itself to the potential of other disciplines. More than one discipline at a time. The potentials it extracts from each enter into proximity with those of others. Together, they enter a weave and a rhythm. Philosophy performs this feat following its own criteria of mutual inclusion. It is not just anything goes. This artful inclusion of the otherwise disparate in a mutuality of conceptual movement requires great craft and much sobriety. Loosed upon the world again, the proximities philosophy has produced translate into a complex network of potential passages between spheres of activity at work in the world, including but not limited to the disciplines from which potential was originally mined. From these transversal connections something as yet unseen may arise: a new synthesis. What philosophy takes, it gives back, with a difference. Deleuze and Guattari call this freeing of travelling potential for making a difference in the world deterritorialisation. This is what philosophy is all about for Deleuze and Guattari. Not reection, description, prescription or judgement. Philosophy is about new potential coming together, between activities which in the normal course of their affairs tend judgmentally to sequester themselves and jealously hold to their own. The object of philosophy is not things as they are, but things as they potentially come-between, to becometogether, outside of their normal conditions of captivity. The meaning of a philosophical concept cannot be reduced to its semantic content, dened in abstraction from this process. There is a transformational aspect to the concepts letting loose, by which it effectively overspills its own denition. This is the aspect of what philosophy comes to do in the world: its pragmatic aspect. It is the processual aspect of the concepts moving on, to new effect. The concepts meaning cannot be abstracted from its ow-over effects. Its meaning is one with the movement of its taking excess effect. In addition to the semantic meaning that it can be dened to contain, a philosophical concept carries a surplus of meaning that is one with the transformative movement of its performative force.

What Concepts Do

Philosophy is doubly engaged with non-philosophy. It needs existing realms of non-philosophical activity from which to extract the potential it makes its own; and it needs becoming realms of non-philosophical activity to which to pass on its own potential, to inclusive new effect. It needs the wideness of a participatory world to gear into. Philosophy gears its activity to the potential of existing domains of activity, approached from the angle of how they can move together and change together. It is all about relation. Relation is all about co-variation. To get the most out of the book, readers of A Thousand Plateaus must be willing to open themselves to the books performance of conceptual forces. Nothing, but nothing, comes of philosophy, unless its pragmatic sweep is allowed to wash through the reading experience. What this means for the reader will co-vary. Only one thing is sure. It means taking the risk that the movement of philosophy will pass into your life and projects next, to new and unpredictable effect. True thought, said like-minded philosopher A. N. Whitehead, is truly an adventure. If the thought of adventure is not already a pleasure, the reader is welladvised to go elsewhere. There are any number of less becoming thought practices on offer. It was probably clear from the rst lines of this preface that a chief concern for Deleuze and Guattari is multiplicity: many disciplines, many plateaus, many rhythms, multiple subjects, co-varying travellings. Philosophy, as it came to be institutionalised as a discipline in the West, is not in fact very adept at processing multiplicity. Quite the opposite, it has developed an arsenal of techniques for turning away from it. Institutional philosophy enjoys subsuming multiplicity to the One of totality. Or compartmentalising it in the Two of duality and opposition. Then, nostalgic for the lost unity it now regrets splitting up, it often labours to overcome the duality that it itself produced, in order to rend the One through a one-two-three of dialectical synthesis. This is not to say that there are not great thinkers of multiplicity in the history of Western philosophy who resist the romance of the One of totality: Spinoza, Nietzsche, Bergson. It is with thinkers such as these that Deleuze and Guattari ally themselves. Given the accumulated weight of Western philosophys totalisations, dualisations and triangulations, added assistance is appreciated. So they turn, for example, to mathematics, a discipline that has no choice but to grapple with multiplicity. For what is number, if not the very problem of multiplicity as such? Mathematics will accordingly invent a variety of specialist formal languages for handling multiplicities. Philosophy, not being mathematics, does not need the formalisations. But built into each

6 Brian Massumi
formalisation is a concept of multiplicity, constructed to yield specically mathematical results. Deleuze and Guattaris attitude is that there is no reason in the world why that concept of multiplicity cannot or should not be extracted from its specically mathematical expression and redeployed in a manner specic to philosophy, so as to generate philosophical results. For example, Riemanns geometry invents a formalisation of space as a patchwork of regions all of which connect at the edges of each. Space for Riemann is the continuity of the multiple, unreduced to a unity, unsplit, and needing no salvation through triangulation. The continuity of this innite connectivity of the multiple makes the preoccupation with the One simply unnecessary. A displacement has occurred. The problem has changed. Deleuze and Guattari will make use of that displacement for philosophy, taking care to deterritorialise it in relation to its previous institutional incarnations. They will extract from Riemanns mathematical project the properly philosophical concept of smooth space (plateaus 13 and 14). They do this in order to bring to philosophy a new potential for its thinking which alters the problems it encounters. Philosophys engagement with mathematics does not simply import a mathematical solution from mathematics. It uses a mathematical solution to reproblematise philosophy. In doing so, philosophy challenges itself to invent new solutions proper to its own sphere of activity.2 The concept of smooth space is that of a space in which there is the potential to go from any point directly to any other, without passing through intervening points. This raises a series of properly philosophical problems that are beyond the ken of mathematics. Can a body come to move in ordinary space in such a way as to transform it into a smooth space? Can movement invent its own operative space of innite connection, freeing itself from the boundaries and limits of already instituted spatial formations? Can movement deterritorialise space itself, to produce a space of a different order? To think these problems Deleuze and Guattari invent the conceptual persona of the nomad as the gure of the embodiment of this transformation, exemplied in history in the ancient societies of the Inner Asian steppes (plateau 12).3 If it happened once in history that the nomad invented itself as a people by inventing a smooth space of movement, there is no reason why it cannot happen again. The fact that it happened once demonstrates that the potential was there. Once a potential, always a potential. What, Deleuze and Guattari speculate, would be the embodiment of the nomad in our time? What are the present worlds peoples to come, already perhaps in the process of self-invention?

What Concepts Do

Their answer: what we term minorities (plateau 13). They use the word minority in a special philosophical sense. A minority is a human multiplicity that is non-denumerable. It is a human multiplicity in continual ux, such that the individuals composing the multiplicity cannot be counted one by one and placed in recognisable categories. They cannot be attributed a denite identity, nor assigned a normal function. Because they cannot be pinned down, they can move smoothly from any point directly to any other in the territorial landscape of recognised categories and instituted functions. They are in a ux of collective becoming. Their movement makes a Riemannian space of the territoried patchwork of recognised national and local identities and the functioning institutions that contain and regulate their activities. The modern nomad reinvents the steppe for the age of global capitalism. Their movements secrete a smooth space of becoming that is uncontainable within the boundaries of existing identities and unregulated by the economy of their normal channels of circulation. This philosophical concept of a smooth space of collective becoming did in fact pass into other lives and projects. Taken up by elements of the anti-globalisation movement, it contributed in the rst years of the twenty-rst century to the invention of a new transnational space of anti-capitalist resistance. A philosophical concept always moves through double becomings, and double becomings cascade. Something passes between mathematics and philosophy, such that a construction that was nothing but mathematical becomes philosophical, in a way that changes how philosophy is done. Philosophy itself becomes through that engagement: more capable of thinking multiplicity; more free of the burden of its acquired historical habits. Double becoming between the disciplines of mathematics and philosophy. Cascade: the concept strikes fertile ground in a different domain, that of activist political practice, where it generates ow-on effects that overspill the discipline of philosophy and of disciplinarity as a model. Extraction, transformation, overspill. This relational development of undisciplined potential is the pragmatic movement of philosophical thought. It is through this processual engagement with mathematics, and others like it, that Deleuze and Guattari develop what may be considered the key concept of the book: multiplicity as a continuity of becoming, uncontained. Other key concepts play out from analogous encounters with different disciplines belonging to the natural sciences, the social sciences, the humanities, anything at all. A reencounter with philosophys own discipline is of course a crucial part of the

8 Brian Massumi
mix. It gives already philosophical concepts the chance to rebecome philosophical and take on new life. It is these conceptual becomings- and rebecomings-philosophical which interweave to form each plateau, and which return in a rhythm all their own across plateaus, making a smooth conceptual space of the book itself. A plateau, the authors say, is a region of intensity of a concepts deterritorialised becoming: a particular coming-together of a multiplicity of strategically displaced conceptual movements-between. These movements compose the text. Their composition couches in the text a charge of relational potential that may well move outside again, into non-philosophical spill-over effects. Each reading of the book is a performative mapping of these movements: a recreative travelling of abstract lines of conceptual potential; a reinventive tracing producing anew the thought-regions it traverses. The book as a dynamic whole is a geology of these regions whose tectonic plates are constantly shifting and folding, and rising under the force of their folding-together to form the apparently stable compositional landmarks called plateaus. The result is a complex cartography of potential becomings of thought, coursing in from the outside of non-philosophy, through philosophy, then back out again in potentialised overspill. Philosophy, practised in this way, is metabolic. It energises. Any non-philosophical domain can provide the nourishment. Deleuze and Guattari are notoriously omnivorous in their sourcings. What would be the point of limiting the energies philosophy may metabolise by preselecting what it can feed on? Philosophy as a discipline philosophy as it exists institutionally, embodied in specialised university departments is an ascetic shadow of what it can be. It is philosophy on a starvation diet. It is philosophy that has long ago renounced its symbiotic relation to the outside, restricting its input to the canon of recognised authors over which it claims exclusive ownership rights. This is philosophy feeding on its own. As a direct result of this cannibalism, institutional philosophy suffers from a conceptual nutrient deciency. It can only regain its energies and rebecome the metabolically creative enterprise it always was philosophy and nothing but by adventuring beyond the interiority of its institutional repair and reengaging with the varied life of the world at large. It is little wonder, then, that the publication of A Thousand Plateaus, the great book of the philosophical outside, was at rst deafeningly ignored by its own discipline. It is only in the last ve years or so that it has been added to the institutional larder. There is still discomfort. There is something institutionally indigestible in its way of

What Concepts Do

practising philosophy. This is not at all to say that A Thousand Plateaus was without effect for its rst twenty-ve years. It had enormous impact from the start, just not in the institution of philosophy. It was immediately taken up in a panoply of other domains of activity, towards their own creative becomings-between: architecture, literature, dance, cinema, new media and interactive art, experimental music, performance, education, anthropology, international relations, political science, political activism. The list is long, and still growing. The books conceptual rhythms have struck many a chord. A warning is in order: there is nothing inherently good or bad in a philosophical concept, or in the creative process it fosters. To return to the concept of smooth space, Deleuze and Guattari underline that the movements producing it are by nature war machines (plateaus 12 and 13). It is not, they explain, that these movements seek conict, or have war as their object. It is that their uncontained becoming places them in a permanent state of potential conict with territorial orders and the way of life they support. That potential may always be captured by a military institution and rechanneled so that it does take war as its object. The rst modern reinvention of nomadism, according to Deleuze and Guattari, was in the arena of maritime warfare, and evolved as an offshoot of the Western powers colonial hegemony, as it transitioned into the Cold War. More recently, Eyal Weizman has shown how the concept of smooth space was consciously appropriated by the Israeli Defense Forces to reinvent urban warfare for use in their occupation of Palestine, with A Thousand Plateaus itself used as an ofcer training manual (Weizman 2007). The movement of thought metabolised by the creative movement of philosophy is not a priori morally good or bad. Nor is it necessarily right or left in political terms. It has the potential to go either way. This means that it can only be judged on its own terms. Which is to say pragmatically: in its consequences. Since what effectively follows from a philosophical concept comes with how it is remobilised outside philosophy, the value of a philosophy is always the product of a collaboration. According to William James, a founder of pragmatism, a concept is what it does. Its value is the difference it effectively makes in the world. If it looks like a concept, sounds like a concept and even tastes like a concept, but doesnt make a difference in the world, its not a concept. Jamess favourite example of a concept which isnt one is, once again, the One itself (James 1996). Nothing can be done with absolute totality. It dissolves into nothingness at the slightest attempt to make something of it. Because then there are two: its lost grandeur, and the slightness of your attempt. Which has

10 Brian Massumi
made no difference. One might as well skip the dialectical third step that usually comes next, and just make do with the multiplicity with which the world presented itself in the rst place, instead of wasting thoughtenergy fruitlessly trying to overcome it. That is the more creative option by far. Deleuze and Guattari emphasise that creatively making-do with multiplicity involves a collective project of becoming. This is the meaning of their frequently repeated formula that the creative force of a concept is a people to come (plateau 11). A peoples coming-to-be in outside relation is the evaluation of the concept. A conceptual evaluation comes in the form of an event. It is a lived judgement. Deleuze and Guattari name this self-inventive, event-based evaluation ethics. Following Spinoza and Nietzsche, they oppose ethics to morality. Morality is prescriptive. It pre-judges. Ethics unfolds. It makes-do. The ethical value of a philosophical concept is its pragmatic truth. That truth occurs to the concept, in the course of its own unfolding process. It is not in the head. Pre-judging the concept makes no difference to its true potential for event. Critiquing a concept in the abstract, standing grandly in judgement outside and above it, does nothing. It leaves the concept unlived, separated from its own event. Deleuze and Guattari advocate instead what they call immanent critique. An immanent critique acts from within the movement of the problem at hand. It consists in entering the ow, and acting within it to infect its course. The ability to do this requires an experiential assessment of the direction of the movement and the potential it carries forward. It is in this sense that a truly philosophical evaluation is always, ethically, afrmative. It must begin by actively opening itself to the experience of the problem which concerns it. Participatory concern is its necessary condition. A conceptual movement submits itself to judgement only to the extent to which it awakens concern, taking on importance in the world. And it does this precisely to the extent to which it is collectively felt to make a difference. Deleuze lists the markers of a philosophical concept as the Singular (the event), the New (becoming) and the Important (lived force of consequence). Concepts, he says, are inseparable from affects, by which I mean the powerful effects they have on our life, and from percepts, which is to say the new ways of seeing or perceiving they inspire in us (Deleuze 2007b: 238/163 trans. mod.). Concepts are not abstract. They are for the living, and it is life which judges them. Another word for a movement which is oriented, in the sense of carrying a certain kind of potential, but is at the same time open-ended in

What Concepts Do


its consequences, as well as being self-afrming, is a tendency. Concepts are always of tendencies. Which means they are always ultimately about their own movement, because they are tendencies. Concepts are pragmatically self-referential. This point is especially important understanding how the concepts mobilised in A Thousand Plateaus relate to history. Perhaps the most persistent misreading of Deleuze and Guattaris ideas is to think that they refer to something outside their own movement: to mistake them for empirical descriptions. This is also not what Deleuze and Guattari mean by philosophy relating to its outside. The historical events and formations Deleuze and Guattari mobilise in such great abundance are not empirical states of things to which philosophical concepts are descriptively applied. Deleuze and Guattari are not concerned with applying their philosophy to history, or to anything else. They are interested in letting philosophy loose on the world. What their concepts are about are the tendencies which wash through historical events and sweep historical formations into a movement of becoming, including that of philosophy itself. Tendencies are transhistorical. They pass through historical moments, joining them in the continuity of variation that is as much about philosophy as philosophy is about it. The philosophical issue is not, for example, whether the societies of the Inner Asian steppes were or were not nomadic, judging by whatever empirical criteria a historian may wish to apply. Philosophically it is not a question of what they were, but how they were: what they did, as concerns becoming. What they did was to bring a certain transhistorical tendency to expression, to the greatest extent possible, given the conditions. They exemplied a tendency to the highest degree. The function of the dates in the title of each plateau is to mark the arrival in history of a highestdegree expression of a transhistorical tendency. This is not an empirical description, but rather a speculative proposition. The proposition is that the tendency will carry forward through history, to nd further expression, in equally high-degree variations exemplifying the same tendential movement to the limit of what changing conditions will permit. The philosophical conception of history concerns the movement of a tendency through a series of limit-case exemplications. The series, in principle, is unending. There could always, potentially, be a next tendential expression. All it takes is a people to come to invent it. The philosophical thinking of history bears on this leftover of creative potential that is in excess over any given expression of it in a given state of things. What philosophy thinks in relation to history is the charge of futurity energising the historical presents passing. This is

12 Brian Massumi
what philosophy concerns itself with: the untimeliness of the historical moment (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 296/363). Since the concern is for futurity, philosophy is speculative. Speculation is superempirical in the sense that it concerns the empirical overspilling of history by tendency. The best way to describe a tendency is to mobilise it in thought, and take it as far as it can go in thought. Philosophy stages thought-experiments extrapolating movements it nds astir in the world. A tendency is characterised by a certain mode in which a multiplicity of elements come together in becoming and hold together in a dynamic unity of movement that makes a difference in history. This mode of making a difference is what Deleuze and Guattari call an assemblage. An empirical object has properties dening what it is. A tendency has poles governing how it goes. Make a concept for how a given multiplicity of elements come together and hold together to make a difference in history. Then extrapolate that assemblage to the absolute limit of what it can do, in thought. How would it go, were it to exemplify itself to the highest conceivable degree? This absolute limit of a highest-degree expression of a tendency is a pole, almost in the magnetic meaning of the term: an attractive force orienting a tendency. The philosophical extrapolation of a tendency is an active diagnosis of this orientation. What is at issue philosophically is never the empirical question of what something is (the question of being). It is the pragmatic question of how things go (the question of becoming-oriented). What is always at issue philosophically is this pragmatic question, taken to the limit of thought (Deleuze 2004: 956/1324). At that limit lies an attractive force that is never exhausted in any particular historical present. Taken to the limit, a movement is in processual excess over any empirically describable instance of its activity. What philosophy extrapolates is this excess, which as such is empirically pure. As a polarity, it is historically empty and philosophically loaded. Philosophy is the speculative invention of pure experimental thoughtforms. It is in these limit-forms that its creativity nds its own highest expression. It is crucial to bear this in mind in thinking about the role of history in Deleuze and Guattaris writing. Philosophy, it must not be forgotten, is as creative a discipline as any other (Deleuze 2007c: 318/292). As a creative endeavour, Deleuze and Guattari often emphasise, philosophy is closely allied with art. Repeat: you have to create concepts, and this involves just as much creation and invention as you nd in art (Deleuze 1995a: 32/48). Deleuze and Guattari think philosophically in relation to the outside of art and literature as extensively as they do in relation to history,

What Concepts Do


mathematics or science. One of the reasons they place an image at the beginning of each plateau is to mark this kinship with art, and to suggest that there is a conceptual activity in art itself that can nourish philosophy in a way that is much closer to its own activity than any other of its outsides. The kinship they feel between art and philosophy has to do with the fact that the object of art is also the untimely. Art, like philosophy, looks past what things are, to how they become. It looks only at the movements (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 282/346). In order to do this, it breaks things as they are open, in order to liberate the pure form of their potential, making a tendential event of it (Deleuze 1995c: 86/119). This is a speculative act, a conceptual gesture, in much the same way that a philosophical thinking is. It is also an act of resistance: to the way things are, out of concern for how they may become (Deleuze 2007c: 3279/3002). Philosophy makes resistance thinkable. Art makes it perceptible (Deleuze and Guattari 1994: 16399/15488). They are both, in Guattaris terms, ethico-aesthetic practices of inventive resistance oriented to becoming (Guattari 1995). The artfulness of philosophical concepts should not be taken to mean that they are unrigorous, merely metaphorical. For me, warns Deleuze, metaphors do not exist (Deleuze 2007d: 202/186 trans. mod.). For a philosophical concept to do what it can do best, to the limit of its inventive abilities, it must achieve a pragmatic excess of conceptual precision. It is only with pragmatic precision that things can be made to happen through thought. To make an event of thought is a most rigorous endeavour. Deleuze does not recoil at the word system. A philosophy, for him, must have all the rigour of a complex open system, constitutively open to changing relations of the outside (Deleuze 1995a: 2934/4452). The Chinese translation of A Thousand Plateaus is a rigorous thoughtevent in its own right, involving as much creation and invention as the original. It is only tting that the Chinese reader, nding this new creation in their hands, treat the translation of their book as Deleuze and Guattari treat every achievement: break it open. Resist its being European. Dont take it as descriptive of where it has come from. And especially dont take it as prescriptive for where it has now arrived. Liberate the pure form of its potential for Chinese thought, in a continuing of its own singular adventures in becoming-between, comingtogether again in a relation to the great outside of its own futurity. Nothing would please Deleuze and Guattari more than their philosophy

14 Brian Massumi
taking on a new and untimely importance beyond the limits of what they, as the European thinkers that they were historically, could ever have imagined.

1. Where necessary, page numbers for the English version are given rst. Page numbers for the original, French edition are given second. Some translations have been modied by the author. These are noted in-text. 2. On philosophy as the invention of problems, see Deleuze (1991: 1521/ 311). 3. On the notion of the conceptual personae, see Chapter 3 in Deleuze and Guattaris What is Philosophy? (1994: 6083).

Deleuze, Gilles (1991) Bergsonism, trans. Hugh Tomlinson and Barbara Habberjam, New York: Zone Books. [Deleuze, Gilles (1968) Le bergsonisme, Paris: PUF.] Deleuze, Gilles (1995a) On a Thousand Plateaus, in Negotiations, trans. Martin Joughlin, New York: Columbia University Press. [Deleuze, Gilles (1990) Les intercesseurs, en Pourparlers, Paris: Minuit.] Deleuze, Gilles (1995b) Mediators, in Negotiations, trans. Martin Joughlin, New York: Columbia University Press. [Deleuze, Gilles (1990) Les intercesseurs, en Pourparlers, Paris: Minuit.] Deleuze, Gilles (1995c) Breaking Things Open, Breaking Words Open, in Negotiations, trans. Martin Joughlin, New York: Columbia University Press. [Deleuze, Gilles (1990) Fendre les choses, fendre les mots, en Pourparlers, Paris: Minuit.] Deleuze, Gilles (2004) The Method of Dramatization, in Desert Islands and Other Texts, 19531974, ed. David Lapoujade, trans. Michael Taormina, New York: Semiotext[e]. [Deleuze, Gilles (2002) La mthode de la dramatisation, en le dserte et autres textes. Textes et entretiens 19531974, Paris: Minuit.] Deleuze, Gilles (2007a) Eight Years Later: 1980 Interview, in Two Regimes of Madness. Texts and Interviews 19751995, ed. David Lapoujade, trans. Ames Hodges and Mike Taormina, New York: Semiotext[e]. [Deleuze, Gilles (2003) Huit ans aprs: Entretien 1980, en Deux rgimes de fous. Textes et entretiens 19751995, Paris: Minuit.] Deleuze, Gilles (2007b) Letter to Uno: How Felix and I Worked Together, in Two Regimes of Madness. Texts and Interviews 19751995, trans. Ames Hodges and Mike Taormina, New York: Semiotext[e]. [Deleuze, Gilles (2003) Lettre Uno: comment nous avons travaill ensemble, en Deux rgimes de fous. Textes et entretiens 19751995, Paris: Minuit, p. 163.] Deleuze, Gilles (2007c) What is the Creative Act?, in Two Regimes of Madness. Texts and Interviews 19751995, ed. David Lapoujade, trans. Ames Hodges and Mike Taormina, New York: Semiotext[e]. [Deleuze, Gilles (2003) Quest-ce que lacte de cration?, en Deux rgimes de fous. Textes et entretiens 19751995, Paris: Minuit, p. 292.] Deleuze, Gilles (2007d) Letter to Uno on Language, in Two Regimes of Madness, Texts and Interviews 19751995, ed. David Lapoujade, trans. Ames Hodges and Mike Taormina, New York: Semiotext[e]. [Deleuze, Gilles (2003) Lettre Uno

What Concepts Do


sur le langage, en Deux rgimes de fous. Textes et entretiens 19751995, Paris: Minuit.] Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari (1987) A Thousand Plateaus, trans. Brian Massumi, Minneapolis: Minnesota University Press. [Deleuze, Gilles et Flix Guattari (1980) Mille plateaux, Paris: Minuit.] Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari (1994) What is Philosophy?, trans. Graham Buchell and Hugh Tomlinson, London: Verso. [Deleuze, Gilles et Flix Guattari (1991) Quest-ce que la philosophie?, Paris: Minuit.] Deleuze, Gilles and Claire Parnet (1987) Dialogues, trans. Hugh Tomlinson and Barbara Habberjam, New York: Columbia University Press. [Deleuze, Gilles et Claire Parnet (1996) Dialogues, Paris: Flammarion.] Guattari, Flix (1995) Chaosmosis: An Ethico-Aesthetic Paradigm, trans. Paul Bains and Julian Pefanis, Indianapolis: Indiana University Press. [Guattari, Flix (1992) Chaosmose, Paris: Galile.] James, William (1996) A Pluralistic Universe, Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. Weizman, Eyal (2007) Urban Warfare: Walking Through Walls, in Hollow Land: Israels Architecture of Occupation, London: Verso, pp. 185220.

DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000772

Becoming-Bertha: Virtual Difference and Repetition in Postcolonial Writing Back, a Deleuzian Reading of Jean Rhyss Wide Sargasso Sea

Lorna Burns

University of Glasgow

Critical responses to Wide Sargasso Sea have seized upon Rhyss novel as an exemplary model of writing back. Looking beyond the actual repetitions which recall Bronts text, I explore Rhyss novel as an expression of virtual difference and becomings that exemplify Deleuzes three syntheses of time. Elaborating the processes of becoming that Deleuzes third synthesis depicts, Antoinettes fate emerges not as a violence against an original identity. Rather, what the reader witnesses is a series of becomings or masks, some of which are validated, some of which are not, and it is in the rejection of certain masks, forcing Antoinette to become-Bertha, that the greatest violence lies. Keywords: Gilles Deleuze, Jean Rhys, writing back, becoming, Wide Sargasso Sea, virtual, Difference and Repetition Within the postcolonial critics lexicon, terms such as hybridity, writing back and creolisation have come to be associated with a fundamental ambivalence that lies at the heart of the postcolonial project. Indeed, Homi Bhabhas characterisation of the location of the postcolonial moment as a transitory site, neither a new horizon, nor a leaving behind of the past (Bhabha 1994: 1), conrmed radical ambivalence and in-betweenness as the archetypal features of postcolonial resistance: the hybridised subject or creolised text works to undermine colonial authority precisely because it is not easily accommodated into the colonisers self-assured world-view. In the same way, where postcolonial authors such as Jean Rhys, Derek Walcott, J. M. Coetzee or Aim Csaire appropriate and rewrite canonical texts,



writing-back to the imperial canon as Bill Ashcroft, Gareth Grifths and Helen Tifn (2002: 96) have argued, it is the production of a text that both does and does not resemble the original work that marks its ambivalent status as a hybrid or creolised text. Yet, what has remained understated in contemporary postcolonial criticism is the extent to which both hybridity and creolisation do witness the birth of a new horizon. Rather than locating the revisionary potential of postcolonial aesthetics within an ambivalent hybridity, I contend that it is the overlooked ability to effect the new that distinguishes postcolonial discourse and, crucially, marks its compatibility with the philosophical writings of Gilles Deleuze. Elaborating the distinction that Deleuze in Difference and Repetition identies between the rst and third syntheses of time, this essay outlines a Deleuzian approach to postcolonial writing back by drawing on the particular example of Jean Rhyss Wide Sargasso Sea and identifying the repetitions of virtual difference and becomings that make Rhyss canonical re-dress a genuinely original literary expression. At issue in this essay is not simply the question of whether Rhyss novel, or any example of postcolonial writing back, is a new work of literature, but rather, at a more fundamental level, a question of the particular relationship between the postcolonial present and the colonial past enacted in writing back. Indeed, this question is evident in Bhabhas own formulation of the postcolonial moment as neither a new horizon nor the abandonment of historical memory. Despite this suggestion, The Location of Culture does not oppose the idea of the postcolonial as the production of the new: Bhabha later denes cultural translation as an encounter with newness that is not part of the continuum of past and present (Bhabha 1994: 7), and argues that the hybrid object be recognised as new, neither one nor the other (25). However, it is the concern to dene postcolonialism as both the liberation of the subject from the traumatic legacies of colonialism and the care that the past be not forgotten that leads Bhabha to ostensibly reject the horizon of the new. In turn, what is needed to address this concern is an understanding of postcolonialism as a historical relation that gives rise to a newness that is not part of the continuum of past and present, but which is, nevertheless, derived from a particular (colonial) history. It is this paradoxical relation in which the engagement with history both generates a future with the potential to become something wholly new and revises our understanding of all that led up to it (a new continuum that leads from past to present and into the future) that Deleuze establishes in his third synthesis of time: articulating a theory of becoming that accounts for the production of the new from a

18 Lorna Burns
re-dress of the past and, I argue, when applied to writing back, reveals the revisionary force of postcolonial writing. The signicance of Deleuzes philosophy for postcolonial studies has received little attention to date, with Peter Hallwards Absolutely Postcolonial remaining the most comprehensive critique of Deleuzes inuence on the eld. For Hallward, questions of singularity, specicity and, crucially, locatedness take centre stage in his attack on a Deleuzian postcolonial discourse, arguing that while colonial and counter-colonial discourse may indeed be criticised for their over-specication of the subject, in his view, the postcolonial has moved in precisely the opposite direction, towards a singular reality which will operate without criteria external to its operation; replacing the interpretation or representation of reality with an immanent participation in its production or creation: in the end, at the limit of absolute postcoloniality, there will be nothing left, nothing outside itself, to which it could be specic (Hallward 2001: xii). Implicit in Hallwards argument is the view that postcolonialism tends to follow a logic of immanence or singlesubstance (Burns 2009: 1045). As such, everything exists as a particular element within the singular substance that we might term the universe, and is nothing other than a particular conguration of that singlesubstance. Accordingly, for Hallward, the postcolonial will tend towards the elimination of specic histories, locations or cultures as independent, contextualising forces and, as a result, postcolonial discourse can be regarded as more or less enthusiastically committed to an explicitly deterritorialising discourse in something close to the Deleuzian sense a discourse so fragmented, so hybrid, as to deny its constituent elements any sustainable specicity at all (Hallward 2001: 22). While Hallwards work does represent a signicant and distinct intervention in the eld of postcolonial studies, the core logic behind his critique should sound familiar since it echoes precisely the criticism that Hegel levelled against Spinozas notion of singularity. To recall Hegels indictment of Spinoza in his Lectures on the History of Philosophy, the cause of his [Spinozas] death was consumption, from which he had long been a sufferer; this was in harmony with his system of philosophy, according to which all particularity and individuality pass away in the one substance (cited in Hardt 1993: 257). For Hegel, as for Hallward, the Spinozist conception of substance and positive (or immanent) differentiation cannot provide a basis for particularity or the specic since it lacks the core feature of determination: dialectical negation. As Michael Hardt argues, according to Hegel, the unique and absolute being of Spinozism cannot provide a basis for determination



or difference because it involves no other or limitation (Hardt 1993: 67). Within a Hegelian ontology, determinate or specic being emerges through the negation of its opposite, nothingness, and it is this opposition between being and nothingness that denes the foundation of real differences and qualities (Hardt 1993: 3). In other words, difference is always produced through a negative movement and each thing exists in its particularity and difference through the active negation of something else. Importantly, this view of difference is echoed in Absolutely Postcolonial in which Hallward highlights what he considers to be effective acts of postcolonial resistance, such as the ction of V. S. Naipaul, in which difference emerges when Naipaul puts himself and his characters in a position of judgement, as alternatively judge and judged (Hallward 2001: 332). As a result, Naipauls work is simply specic rather than singular, inected through the experience of a positioned narrator or character and maintained as a network of [. . . ] relationships (332). In other words, for Hallward difference and specicity are produced negatively through ones situated opposition to an other. Hallwards claim that the lack of situated opposition or determination in postcolonial literature results in a discourse that, given the absence of negation, cannot sustain real difference and will inevitably dissolve into an undifferentiated nothingness must be recognised for what it is: a contemporary elaboration of Hegels critique of Spinozas positive ontology. As such, Hallwards argument faces strong criticism from the philosopher he holds responsible for the singularising nature of postcolonialism: Deleuze. Hardt has shown in detail how Deleuze draws on both Spinoza and, in particular, Bergson to demonstrate that negative determination not only presents a false notion of difference but also, controversially from Hallwards point of view, fails to grasp the concreteness and specicity of real being (Hardt 1993: 4). Put simply, Deleuze elaborates both Bergson and Spinoza to argue that Hegels concept of negative or dialectical differentiation cannot provide an adequate foundation for being since it depends on external causes, thus introducing contingency and causality into being: to quote Deleuze, in Bergson [. . . ] the thing differs with itself rst, immediately. According to Hegel, the thing differs with itself because it differs rst of all with all it is not (cited in Hardt 1993: 7). Hallwards reluctance to fully acknowledge the Hegelian logic behind Absolutely Postcolonial results in an argument against postcoloniality and Deleuze that fails to address Deleuzes own ready-made answer to the charge of singularity as well as postcolonial criticisms demand to face the emergence of newness and not just specic instances of located resistance. As a result, his reading rests upon a

20 Lorna Burns
critique of differentiation at odds with Deleuzes commitment to an immanentist philosophy. However, by recognising the value of positive differentiation and the shift away from dialectical negation as the foundation of being, a more signicant form of postcolonialism emerges based on instances of virtual difference, repetition and becoming-new.1 It is this aspect of Deleuzes philosophy that Caribbean writers such as douard Glissant and Wilson Harris draw on in their own postcolonial works. Notably, both Glissant and Harris envision the postcolonial project as an engagement with the traumatic history of colonialism that, nevertheless, creates a new, unpredictable future: a prophetic vision of the past (Glissant 1999: 64), for Glissant or in Harriss characteristically opaque prose, continuities running out of the mystery of the past into the unknown future yield proportions of originality, proportions of the genuinely new (Harris 1996: 6). The particular engagement with history that both Harris and Glissant propose in their writings represents a shift from what Walcott designated a literature of recrimination and despair (Walcott 1998: 37) which endlessly repeats the biases of colonialism, towards a revisionary postcolonial literature. Wole Soyinkas denunciation of the negritude movement as that which trapped itself in what was primarily a defensive role (Soyinka 1976: 129) and stayed within a pre-set system of Eurocentric intellectual analysis both of man and society and tried to re-dene the African and his society in those externalised terms (136) highlights the point of contention: counter-colonial discourse is wholly specied by the colonial context in which it exists, it adheres to the pre-set system in which the black man is cast as the racial other. The postcolonial, on the other hand, while drawn from a particular socio-historic milieu (one marked by the traces of the colonial era), is distinguished by its ability to move beyond the defensive role of counter-colonialism. It is a discourse that exceeds the already established, pre-set value systems that Europe imposed on its colonial others. In other words, postcoloniality denotes a synthesis of the past that does not repeat predetermined attitudes, but creates something new: an original future not determined at the outset by pre-existing socio-historic subject positions or cultural hierarchies, but, nevertheless, specic to those legacies.

I. Expectancy, Stereotypes and the First Synthesis of Time

The distinction that I am arguing for between a historical relation that repeats already established biases and xed subject-positions and a postcolonial re-dress of history that engenders the absolutely new is



claried by Deleuzes account of the rst and third syntheses of time. As Deleuze presents it in Difference and Repetition, the rst synthesis of time is a theoretical paradigm that accounts for the continuation of the same and the general. Crucially in terms of the particular relationship to the canon that is enacted in writing back or what Edward Said designates contrapuntal reading (Said 1993: 59), for Deleuze the rst synthesis is the creation of expectancy through repetition, accounting for the way in which, in the present, we come to anticipate future events because of their past occurrence. For example, the repetition in the series AB, AB, AB, A. . . , Deleuze argues, changes nothing in the object or state of affairs AB. On the other hand, a change is produced in the mind which contemplates: a difference, something new in the mind. Whenever A appears, I expect the appearance of B (Deleuze 2004: 90). In this contraction of specic instances of A and B into AB, the rst synthesis of time produces a movement from the specic to the general (91). Furthermore, the effect of this contraction is to create a sense of expectancy: in this case, the recurring experience of A followed by B is contracted in the present into the projected expectancy that AB will recur in the future. It is this sense of expectancy that underlies postcolonial authors problematic relationship with the canon and historical legacies. Following Ashcroft et al., the relationship envisioned here is not between individual authors or works since the canon is not a body of texts per se, but rather a set of reading practices (the enactment of innumerable individual and community assumptions, for example about genre, about literature, and even about writing) (Ashcroft et al. 2002: 186). In writing back, postcolonial authors seek to expose not only specic prejudices, expressed in particular cases, but the continuing inuence of these views. In Emily Bronts Wuthering Heights, for example, the reader encounters particular references to the colonies and racial others, expressed in a particular way. One might then read Charlotte Bronts Jane Eyre and register a repetition in the way in which both authors depict the relationship between the coloniser and the colonised, a repetition that is echoed as one then reads Austen, Dickens and so forth. It is the repetition of these specic ways of characterising the relationship between centre and periphery that is contracted into what might be termed, in general, as a colonial attitude. Importantly, as Deleuzes account of the rst synthesis emphasises, it is not a change in the texts themselves or in that which is repeated, but it is a change in the mind of the reader who registers the repetition. This is why the canon evokes reading practices: the repetition of themes, attitudes or genres in

22 Lorna Burns
specic texts are synthesised in the mind to create a general expectancy, a general set of reading practices that will, accordingly, shape future reading experiences. As the process which engenders this expectancy, the rst synthesis is that which makes of the canon a set of reading practices that determines in advance ones response to the text. It is this expectancy that writers such as Rhys seek to challenge as they produce works which ostensibly repeat canonical texts. Wide Sargasso Sea as a whole, and in particular Part Three of the novel, is a repetition of Bronts Jane Eyre. However, it is a repetition that exposes the processes of contraction and projection that Deleuzes rst synthesis envisions by deconstructing colonial stereotypes and demonstrating, as Albert Memmi argued, that in colonialist discourse what is actually a sociological point becomes labelled as being biological or, preferably, metaphysical (Memmi 1974: 712). Thus, in Part One of Wide Sargasso Sea, Mr Masons complaint that the recently manumitted black Jamaicans wont work [. . . ] dont want to work (Rhys 2000: 30) is re-read by Rhys within the specic historical context of Jamaica in the wake of Emancipation and the end of the Apprenticeship scheme. As a result, Mr Masons statement is revealed as a contraction of a number of converging sociological features of Jamaican society at that time into a general truth about the newly manumitted population. A similar prejudice is articulated by Rochester during the couples honeymoon at Granbois when he criticises Christophines horrible language as she asks him to taste my bulls blood, master (71), her trailing dress and her languorous appearance. Here Rochester expresses the colonisers point of view: the black woman, he infers, is unclean, sexualised and lazy. All colonial stereotypes, yet in each case, Antoinette responds by telling Rochester that each of these traits have a logical explanation: allowing ones dress to get dirty is an expression of afuence, slow movements are about precision. The difference between the two characters perception of Christophines actions is that Rochester reads in them a conrmation of colonial stereotypes as inherent or biological truths about black women, whereas Antoinette understands them as sociological points. Rhyss novel consistently undermines stereotypes by illustrating their constructed, sociological basis. However, more than this, Wide Sargasso Sea draws attention to the additional issue of expectancy that is created: the specic repeating trait drawn from the past is generalised to form some truth about the present and, as Deleuze points out, determines the way in which future repetitions are perceived. In Rochesters changing relationship with his wife, the full force of Rhyss critique of expectancy is felt. Throughout Part Two of the novel, Rochester



is clearly involved in a process of, to paraphrase Sartre, making Antoinette like what she would have to be like to deserve her fate (her eventual incarceration in the attic of Thorneld Hall as the mad, violent Bertha).2 Rochester does this in the most matter of fact way: literally renaming her Bertha. More than this, however, he exploits prevalent stereotypes about white creoles in order to reread Antoinettes actions as a sign of her sexual proclivity and inherited madness. In this way, Antoinettes white dress, once admired by Rochester, comes to reect his expectations of his wifes disposition. The dress that had slipped untidily over one shoulder and seemed too large for her (105), as Carine Mardorossian argues, evokes association with (black) female sexual wantonness and prostitution (Mardorossian 1999: 1076), suggesting an intentional provocation on Antoinettes part and recalling Rochesters earlier claim that one afternoon the sight of a dress which shed left lying on her bedroom oor made me breathless and savage with desire (78). While this latter quotation evidences his sexual desire, Rochesters narrative increasingly seeks to read Antoinettes actions as a sign of her unrestrained sexuality. Thus, the dress that was, perhaps, carelessly left lying on the oor is misconstrued as a purposeful incitement to Rochesters desires. Antoinettes misunderstood intentions are underscored by the parallel image of the Millers Daughter that occurs earlier in the text: one evening at Coulibri Antoinette recalls her favourite picture The Millers Daughter, a lovely English girl with brown curls and blue eyes and a dress slipping off her shoulders (30, emphasis mine).3 Antoinettes later mirroring of this image is, therefore, a misunderstood attempt to conform to Rochesters cultural values, to project an image of what, to her limited understanding, a lovely English girl should look like. It is, however, after his meeting with Daniel Cosway, the illegitimate son of Antoinettes father and a black slave, that Rochesters wilful misinterpretation of his wifes character becomes most apparent. Daniels vindictive assertion that Mrs Cosway is worthless and spoilt, she cant lift a hand for herself and soon the madness that is in her, and in all these white Creoles, comes out (80) re-enforces the prevalent stereotype that madness aficts the white creole plantocracy. However, although Daniels venom is clearly directed against the exslave-owners (he does not single out madness as Antoinettes or even Annettes afiction, but rather as the fate of all these white Creoles (Mardorossian 1999: 1082)), Rochester recalls only that which conrms his misgivings about his wife. Echoing Daniels parting words, give my love to your wife my sister. [. . . ] You are not the rst to kiss her pretty

24 Lorna Burns
face (104), the nal pages of Rochesters narrative regure Daniels accusation as an admission of incest: give my sister your wife a kiss from me. Love her as I did oh yes I did (130). Rochesters rm resolution to secure his wife and her fortune by returning to his English estate is revealed as the product of his distorted recollection of Daniels words and the conrmation of his own pre-determined expectations about creole, female sexuality: she thirsts for anyone not for me [. . . ] (a mad girl. Shell not care who shes loving). Shell moan and cry and give herself as no sane woman would or could. Or could (1356). Faced with the discrepancy between Antoinette and the portrait of the lovely English girl she tries to mimic, here Rochester resolves to make of his wife the very opposite image of female sexuality and, just as he names her Bertha, here he names her mad by giving her a sexual proclivity that no sane woman would have. In his nal resolution to see who hates best (140), Rochester reveals the extent to which fears about miscegenation and the licentiousness of white creoles in nineteenth-century colonialist discourse created a projected expectancy about creole behaviour: a preestablished framework that determines Antoinettes actions from the outset of the novel. Rhys consistently confronts colonial stereotypes not purely as a means to suggest that, in agreement with Memmi, that which is misconstrued as a biological or metaphysical fact is, in truth, socially or culturally determined, but also in order to expose the force of expectancy. It is, in particular, the issue of canonical expectancy, created by the texts of the past in the mind of the reader and projected into the future as a set of regulatory reading practices, that underlies the postcolonial tradition of writing back. In enacting a contrapuntal rewriting, authors expose the ideological biases that lie behind certain generalised expectations: highlighting the syntheses that occurred in order to produce particular stereotypes or reading practices, while at the same time revealing what was excluded by such generalisations. Rhyss text is exemplary in this respect: returning her text to the historical moment of Emancipation in the Anglophone Caribbean to expose the formation of colonial stereotypes and prejudices, and to highlight the social factors that were excluded from accounts of creole madness such as she found in Bronts novel. By deconstructing colonial stereotypes, Rhyss novel challenges preconceived attitudes by returning the general to the specic. Writing back, therefore, works by confronting expectancy and what we might term a contrapuntal rereading/rewriting, in line with Deleuzes rst synthesis of time, directs its attention to the contraction of the specic past into a generalised framework for determining the future.



In turn, this is exemplary of the distinction between counter-colonial discourse and the postcolonial previously delineated: by writing against the expectancy created by the rst synthesis of time, Caribbean writers do not envision the continuation of a xed relationship between centre and periphery, but engender an unpredictable future specic to but not limited by the contracted past. In other words, postcolonial texts must reject the determination of the Deleuzian rst synthesis as a contraction of the past that has created the generalised colonial relationship and propose a new continuum. This latter process Deleuze calls the third synthesis of time: a differentiation of the past as a virtual presence in the production of an unpredictable future. It is only through an analysis of the ways in which Rhys contrapuntally exposes the virtual past she encounters in Bronts novel and depicts the singular conditions by which Antoinette becomes Bertha that we can appreciate the full force of Rhyss re-dress and uncover the processes of virtual repetition and becoming-new that characterise a truly postcolonial aesthetics of writing back.

II. Becoming-Bertha
Far from remaining ambivalent to the role of past trauma in shaping the postcolonial present, writers such as Rhys, Harris and Glissant recognise history as formative, but see in trauma and oppression a potentiality to re-dress historical antagonisms and create something new. Indeed, it is this appreciation of a historical relation that effects the genuinely new that Harris locates in Rhyss novel (Harris 1996: 6). Relating Wide Sargasso Sea to a template of war he nds in the history of the Caribs and Arawaks, Harris uncovers in the mythology of opposing cultures, common, repeating features that speak of a single source of collective creativity:
it is a time of war. The rainbow compression of a tree is set on re by the Caribs when the Arawaks seek refuge in its branches. [. . . ] Creation suffers and needs to be re-dressed if the spirit of the stars is to be discovered again. The re rages and ascends even higher to drive the Arawaks up and up until there is no further escape, they burn and rise into a spark in the sky of ction. That spark becomes the seed of the garden of the Pleiades. (Harris 1983: 50)

For Harris, the memory of past conict retains a virtual aspect, a seed, which remains latent in the collective unconscious, ready to be recalled and explored in order to creatively re-dress historical trauma. What Harris nds in Rhyss novel is the potential for a future that is not a

26 Lorna Burns
repetition of historical antagonisms and conicts, but one which yields proportions of originality (Harris 1996: 6) through a re-dress of the past. As Harris argues in his own novel Jonestown, it is essential to create a jigsaw in which pasts and presents and likely or unlikely futures are the pieces that multitudes in the self employ in order to bridge chasms in historical memory (Harris 1996: 5). What Harris refers to as the incalculable (5) line of continuity between the past and an unpredictable future emerges in the postcolonial project as a form of restructuring by which genuine novelty or newness results. It is in this respect that Deleuze emerges as an important gure in this debate and, in particular, his reformulation of a Spinozist plane of immanence or single-substance philosophy. Where Spinoza recast the Cartesian separation of Thought and Extension as an immanentist philosophy in which the single-substance universe (God or Nature) is conceived under two attributes termed natura naturans and natura naturata, a (virtual) self-creating aspect and the structure of (actual) created things respectively, Deleuze adopts Spinozas dual sense of actual created world and virtual creative force as the two unequal odd halves of reality (Deleuze 2004: 261).4 Like Spinoza, Deleuze argues that reality must be considered both as the actual world and, at the same time, as a virtual plane which exists in opposition to the actual. Crucially, while the Cartesian split ensured that Thought and Extension persisted as nonrelational, distinct spheres, Spinozas single-substance ontology offers a relational structure that is reected in the way in which Deleuze presents the actual and the virtual as caught up in a ceaseless movement from one to the other; where elements of the virtual become realised within the actual, experienced as sensations, events or identities. Where Deleuze exceeds Spinoza is in the profound creativity that he locates within this movement from virtual to actual. Rather, it is to another philosopher, Henri Bergson, that Deleuze turns to nd a theory of the virtual as both a creative force (what Bergson terms lan vital) and a historical relation that, to recall Harris, yields proportions of originality, proportions of the genuinely new (Harris 1996: 6). It is the virtuals status as the absolutely-other, as that which cannot be represented since by denition it is that which exceeds the limits of the actual, that ensures its role in maintaining the renewed potential for newness. As Daniel Smith explains, because the virtual is constituted through and through by difference [. . . ] when it is actualised, it therefore differs from itself, such that every process of actualisation is, by its very nature, the production of the new (Smith 2007: 6). Thus, any actualisation of the virtual is essentially a creative process since what



emerges will be different from that which already exists within the actual. Crucially, it is this movement from virtual to actual (what Deleuze terms differentiation) that Bergson introduces in his notion of lan vital, understood as a virtuality in the process of being actualised (Deleuze 1991: 94). With this concept, a full sense of the relation between actual and virtual comes into focus and, moreover, offers a philosophical paradigm for change and novelty. Since each actualisation of the virtual designates the emergence of the new, both lan vital and differentiation describe the creative evolution of the immanent totality: evolution takes place from the virtual to actuals. Evolution is actualisation, actualisation is creation (Deleuze 1991: 98). Differentiation accounts for the ways in which newness enters the world; however, more than this, Bergsons sense of the virtual as a gigantic memory (Deleuze 1991: 100) ensures that this creative process is also a temporal evolution. The past for both Deleuze and Bergson is a virtual eld that is available for differentiation within the present as recollection. At issue here is not history since the past as virtual has no psychological existence, it is not a particular past of a particular present but [. . . ] is like an ontological element, a past that is eternal and for all time, the condition of the passage of every particular present. It is the past in general that makes possible all pasts (Deleuze 1991: 567). By constituting that which enables each present to pass and preserve itself in itself (58), the pure or general past (what Deleuze in Difference and Repetition terms the second synthesis of time) represents what James Williams describes as a virtual archive in which all events, including those that have sunk without trace, are stored and remembered as their passing away, independent of human activity and the limitations of physical records (Williams 2003: 93, 94).5 Clearly, the premise of a pure past independent of physical records or active recollection is of great signicance to Caribbean writers and theorists faced with a historical inheritance of amnesia (Walcott 1998: 3940). As Jean Bernab, Patrick Chamoiseau and Raphal Conant write in their manifesto of crolit, our history (or our histories) is not totally accessible to historians. Their methodology restricts them to the solecolonial chronicle. Our chronicle is behind the dates, behind the known (Bernab et al. 1993: 99). Precisely by accessing that which lies behind the known, a postcolonial synthesis of the past repeats the processes of actualisation that Deleuze locates in Bergsons theory of memory as virtual presence. Further, as a differentiation of the virtual what emerges from this process is new, a wholly novel postcolonial chronicle.

28 Lorna Burns
Deleuzes account of the relational movement of the actual and virtual as a temporal, creative evolution in Bergsonism echoes his elaboration of the three syntheses of time in Difference and Repetition. While the past as virtual implies that any differentiation of the past will result in the production of the new, the rst synthesis gives consistency to the present by relating it to a distinct series (AB, AB . . . ) of the pure past and then subjecting it to the processes of contraction and generalisation. In this way, the newness that is created via differentiation is assimilated by habit and generalised as anticipated behaviour towards the future. The rst synthesis alone cannot account for the radical sense of the future as an innite potentiality that is evident in the writings of Harris and Glissant. As a result, this demand to account for a future with the ability to become-new leads us beyond the rst and second syntheses of time in the direction of a third (Deleuze 2004: 111). With the third synthesis of time Deleuze offers a full account of how newness enters the world. Where the rst synthesis demonstrates the way in which actual things gain consistency in the present and the second synthesis details a pure past into which each present falls, the third synthesis accounts for the prevailing sense that the future maintains the potential to become something wholly new. In other words, what I have presented here as differentiation, the actualisation of the virtual, Deleuze names the third synthesis of time: a theoretical paradigm that accounts for the innite ways in which the actualised present retains the ability to become in unpredictable ways. Further, as a differentiation of the pure or virtual past, Deleuzes third synthesis may be used to elaborate Saids claim that contrapuntal reading uncovers that which was excluded from the colonial text. In other words, when Said argues that we should re-examine Jane Eyre to discover the latent prejudices within the text, he is asking us to differentiate Bronts work, exposing the unspoken assumptions and unacknowledged exploitations that are taken for granted within the economy of the nineteenth-century novel. In turn, what this contrapuntal reading engenders, according to the Deleuzian model, is new. By actualising the virtual (here the virtual side of the canonical text), the repetition on which the third synthesis is based is not, as in the rst, grounded on recurring instances of the contracted past, but on the repetition of the virtual pasts becomingactual, of differentiation as the production of the new (what Deleuze designates the eternal return of difference-in-itself). In turn, writing back produces an original work of literature not because it repeats the actual text or canon that has generated certain generalised expectations and reading practices, but because in actualising the virtual aspect of the



canon it repeats only the processes of differentiation necessarily as a becoming-new. The same holds true of Rhyss contrapuntal reading of stereotypes in Wide Sargasso Sea, in which her account of the ways in which these stereotypes become established reveals the specic socio-economic factors that were excluded from the generalised form. What Rhyss novel repeats then is not the actual colonial stereotype per se, but the processes of becoming that engendered those contractions. In the same way, by contrapuntally rewriting Jane Eyre, Rhyss novel does not repeat the actual elements of Bronts work, but, more specically, the processes of becoming that constitute it: Antoinettes becoming-mad; Rochesters becoming-cold-hearted. Moreover, as with all becomings, according to the Deleuzian model, the movement from virtual to actual that the third synthesis encapsulates does not exhaust the virtual: the virtual is not actualised outright. Rather, a virtual aspect is differentiated with each becoming and each actual state that one becomes maintains, in excess of its actuality, its virtual aspect: every object is double without it being the case that the two halves resemble one another, one being a virtual image the other an actual image (Deleuze 2004: 261). It is this renewed virtuality that accounts for the prevailing sense that things always have the potential to become-new: as Claire Colebrook argues, each actual thing maintains its own virtual power. What something is (actually) is also its power to become (virtually) and that this virtual difference is the power to become in unforeseen ways, always more than this actual world, and not limited by its already present forms (Colebrook 2002: 96). As a result, with each repetition (of stereotype, of text) in Rhyss novel, not only do we see how things became what they actually are, but remain aware of how very different they might have been and, indeed, might yet become. It is this potentiality to become in unforeseen ways that the third synthesis as differentiation evokes. Accordingly, with each actualisation of Bertha (Antoinettes becoming-mad, becoming-violent), Rhys highlights how things might have been or might yet become very different. Rochesters moment of hesitation, I shall never understand why, suddenly, bewilderingly, I was certain that everything I had imagined to be truth was false. False. Only the magic and the dream are true all the rests a lie. Let it go (138), Christophines offer to care for Antoinette, and Rhyss famously open ending, these alternative paths all suggest lines of becoming that remain virtual, engendering the possibility that in every repetition of becoming-Bertha, becoming-Rochester things could have been different. It is this virtual aspect of becoming that destabilises the expectancy of the rst synthesis of time and ensures that

30 Lorna Burns
the historical re-dress enacted in postcolonial writing back repeats only the revisionary potential of differentiation as the production of the new. This is why, to use Colebrooks phrase, becoming is the hidden force of difference (Colebrook 2002: 120): it designates the actualisation of different virtual intensities as a becoming-new and conceives of difference independently of the forms of representation which reduce it to the Same, and the relation of different to different independently of those forms which make them pass through the negative (Deleuze 2004: xviixviii). Deleuze rejects the Hegelian formula of difference whereby any object (salt, say) is differentiated negatively via its oppositional relation to its other (pepper). Rather, for Deleuze difference is an expression of becoming, so that, to extend the example, salt is different to other sensations as an actualised intensity of becoming-salty, becoming-crystallised. As Williams explains, according to Deleuze you are not different from other humans because you differ in this or that actual characteristic but because your thoughts and sensations, the way you change, express a different relation of intensities (Williams 2003: 9). Thus, if we look to Wide Sargasso Sea and nd that Antoinette is different to Bronts Bertha, it is not in actual characteristics that the signicant difference lies, but in Antoinettes actualisation of different degrees of becoming-mad, becoming-licentious. What we recognise in Rhyss novel is a different process of becoming at work: Antoinette does not become mad because of some inherited disposition to do so, but because of a range of emotional, social and gender-specic forces acting upon her. This is the very denition of what Deleuze calls a minor literature: repeating not the actual elements of the canon, but the virtual becomings as that which makes things differ. Texts like Wide Sargasso Sea, Colebrook argues, repeat the hidden forces of difference that produce texts, rather than repeating the known texts themselves (Colebrook 2002: 120); or again, a work of literature is not to copy that work, but to repeat the forces of difference that produced that work [. . . ]: a repetition of the virtual and hidden power of difference (121).6 Wide Sargasso Sea in a very clear way draws from the virtual side of Jane Eyre. As Rhys herself claimed, responding to Bronts depiction of the poor Creole lunatic, thats only one side the English side (cited in Raiskin 1996: 133). Bringing to light the other side of the story, detailing Berthas West Indian upbringing, tracing the disillusionment of Rochester, taking her reader behind the closed doors of Thorneld Hall, Rhys contrapuntally differentiates Jane Eyre. In doing so, what is produced is not a continuation of the same (this would be a result of the rst synthesis), but an original work



through the repetition of the processes of differentiation: repetition is never a historical fact, but rather the historical condition under which something new is effectively produced (Deleuze 2004: 113). Further, by accounting for an engagement with the past that creates a new vision of the future, Deleuzes third synthesis can be used to expose the full signicance of Harriss reading of Wide Sargasso Sea. The re motif that runs throughout the novel, signifying both destruction (the burning of Coulibri) and resistance (Antoinettes re-red dress which symbolises her revolt against her husband and foreshadows her expected burning of his estate house), speaks to Harris of Rhyss attempt to re-dress absolutes and the paradox of resources of variables of the imagination through which the past speaks to the present and to the future [. . . ], its inner capacity for re-dressed bodies and imageries (Harris 1983: 61). What Harris envisions is a return to the memory or mythology of past conicts in order to uncover unconscious (virtual) dimensions which may be synthesised in such a way as to allow the past to speak to the present and future in a new way. Indeed, Deleuze envisions this too: the third synthesis, he tells us, marks a break or caesura in the contemporary ordering of time and witnesses the birth of a new order of the before and the after (Deleuze 2004: 112). The third synthesis is not a rejection of the past and although it incites a future that is radically different from what has come before, it is a future that is both linked to the past and which, to evoke Bhabha, generates a new continuum that leads from past to present and future. Where Harris and Deleuze ostensibly disagree is in Harriss claim that Rhyss re-dress of historical antagonisms in Wide Sargasso Sea works through the identication of what he calls a core of likeness (Harris 1983: 56). This point emerges in his discussion of the Arawaks and Caribs whose adverse relationship, he argues, might be addressed by the realisation of a common creative thread. In the same vein, Harris nds in Rhyss re-dress of Charlotte Bronts polarisations, a similar trajectory in which a cross-cultural web and likeness are revealed [. . . ] through points that unravel apparently incompatible appearances (56). It is in the exposure of likeness[es] in apparent polarisations that Harris locates the potential for historical re-dress, a move that ostensibly sets him in opposition to Deleuzes celebration of difference and becoming. However, Harriss evocation of likeness is not to be misunderstood as signifying the same: the same is the foundation of the narrow basis of realism [. . . which] tends inevitably to polarise cultures or to reinforce eclipses of otherness within legacies of conquest that rule the world (55). Realism is a reection of the same and, accordingly, creates

32 Lorna Burns
the polarisations Harris seeks to overcome. Likeness, therefore, is not equivalent to the same: as Harris argues,
the politics of culture assume that like to like signies a monolithic cradle or monolithic origin. Whereas in creative subtlety or re-dress [. . . ] monoliths are extremes/extremities that become ssures of emotion in claustrophobic and historical or cultural space, when imbued with asymmetric spirit or intangible, untameable life. Those ssures are parallels, extensions [. . . ] in and into bodies of experience whose mental point or core of likeness turns into the spark or passion of science and art. (Harris 1983: 56)

What Harris refers to as a core of likeness is not the identication of the same, but what he senses in the cross-cultural web: a single, collective unconscious that links all peoples and ties all cultures to a common creative spark. Put another way, what Harris nds revolutionary is the virtual presence of the past as an undifferentiated (virtual) whole, to frame this in Deleuzes terms, as that which gives all the ability to become in unforeseen ways. Harriss presentation of the past or collective unconscious as a virtual archive into which each present passes is fundamentally aligned with the Deleuzian/Bergsonian sense of creative evolution and memory. Paradoxically, although Harris identies a core of likeness at the heart of historical re-dress, it is fundamentally an issue of what Deleuze terms difference: a repetition of the virtual pasts becoming-actual as that which engenders a new ordering of history. In particular, Harris invokes a Deleuzian concept of difference-in-itself rather than the Hegelian dialectic by arguing for the recognition of ceaseless parallel animations or subtle likeness through contrasting densities or opposite and varied appearances (56). In other words, what is taken for granted as a difference achieved through opposition is, in fact, a difference of degrees of becoming, of densities or appearances. That Harris employs the term likeness rather than Deleuzes difference-in-itself is a sign of the emphasis that Harris wants to place on the immanent creativity of the virtual as that from which differences are actualised or becomeactual. To the extent that all identities are particular congurations or expressions of differentiated becomings emerging from the innite virtual aspect of a single, immanent reality, all apparent adversaries are like one another in that they all actualise the virtual albeit in different ways. Thus, Harris notes, despite their polarisation in Jane Eyre, Bertha and Rochester possess in themselves, within the genius of Charlotte Bront, the seeds of such re-dress (61). Bronts characters always had the potential to overcome historical antagonisms, the ability to become



in unforeseen ways. If the seminal force of the ction of the whole (61), Bronts commitment to the structuring inuence of tradition and ideology, meant that this potential remained virtual in Jane Eyre, in Rhyss novel the repetition of becoming rather than the actual aspects of Bronts text realises the potential for re-dress in the production of a new work of (minor) literature. Through the repetition of Jane Eyre in Wide Sargasso Sea the reader encounters not an accumulation of actual differences, but differencein-itself: the expression of becomings that emerge in particular ways relative to a range of other becomings. The actual differences between Jane Eyre and Wide Sargasso Sea the discrepancy of names (Bertha is not my name [121]); of dates (the timeframe of Jane Eyre is 17891808, while Wide Sargasso Sea is set slightly later, roughly 183444); of mothers name (Berthas mothers name is Antoinetta, not, as in Wide Sargasso Sea, Annette); of family lineage (there is no Cosway line in Jane Eyre) these actual discrepancies alone diminish full the signicance of Rhyss novel by setting up an oppositional framework in which Wide Sargasso Sea is measured against the gold standard of the original parent text, Jane Eyre.7 On the other hand, by acknowledging the virtual repetitions in Wide Sargasso Sea a more signicant difference is uncovered, one which does not function through negation but as an experience of becoming expressed in relation to other becomings or intensities such as Emancipation, creole society and colonial attitudes. Features of Rhyss novel such as the changes in Antoinettes name from Antoinette Cosway to Mason and nally Rochester, her husbands renaming of her as Bertha, Christophines affectionate but childlike names for her, and Daniels reference to her as Antoinetta (the middle name of Bronts Bertha and her mothers name in Jane Eyre) should not be misunderstood as a form of violence against the original identity that is Antoinette. Such a move would be based on actual difference. Rather, these developments express Rhyss repeated presentation of becoming, expressed not from the point of view of a pre-determined, original identity against which these becomings are judged as good or bad, but as constitutive of Antoinettes identity itself. Such an approach is necessary for any Deleuzian reading of Wide Sargasso Sea given his claim that repetition is not underneath the masks, but is formed from one mask to another (Deleuze 2004: 19). Here Deleuze characterises identity as an always-changing series of becomings, a process, Williams explains, akin to death: as we become, we die as this particular self and we move towards a nal death. But there is something revivifying in the expression of becomings, they make a

34 Lorna Burns
life that must end in death one that participates in intensities (Williams 2003: 9). In a very clear way, by presenting us with a series of becomings that will end in Antoinettes becoming-Bertha and her suicide, Rhys shows us the inevitable decline towards death as Antoinette Cosway becomes Mason becomes Rochester. The reader witnesses the death of a number of Antoinettes selves, but in line with Williamss reading of Difference and Repetition, remains aware of the revivifying potential inherent in that process. Antoinettes declaration of her new Mason patronymic, embroidered in vivid red I will write my name in re red, Antoinette Mason, ne Cosway, Mount Calvary Convent, Spanish Town, Jamaica, 1839 (44) records the passing of her previous self (Antoinette Cosway) and stands as a positive assertion of a new identity, a point Simpson touches upon when she argues that in writing her name Antoinette creates a bold, re-red marker of her life that very much contrasts with the attempts at erasure on the part of those who surround her (Simpson 2005: 126). Although not consciously pursuing a Deleuzian reading of Rhyss novel, here Simpson identies the central drive of the novel as the tension between a process of becoming that renews the life of the protagonist and one which leads to her pre-determined fate. Antoinettes other masks or becomings similarly expose such a tension. The parallel established between Antoinette and her childhood friend Tia, who appears as a mirror image of the protagonist on the night of the burning of Coulibri we stared at each other, blood on my face, tears on hers. It was as if I saw myself. Like in a looking-glass (38) is recalled (repeated) at the end of the novel to offer a sense of how things might have been very different for Antoinette. Tia, as Antoinettes double, is, in Part Three of the novel when she appears in Antoinettes dream, a virtual side or, more precisely, a potential differentiation of Antoinettes character: a sign of one self she might have become if it were not for the factors of economic tension, racial difference and social discontent (all intensities expressed in relation to the experience of Emancipation in Jamaica), which led Antoinettes becomings in a specic direction, towards becoming-Bertha. The same is true of another double, the picture of The Millers Daughter, which Antoinette attempts to mirror. In doing so she hopes to become more like the image of English virtue she believes her husband desires in a wife. Yet again, this projected new self does not allow Antoinette to become like a lovely English girl (30), because of her relation to another set of intensities and becomings. Antoinette, like her mother, is so without a doubt not English (30), and her creole heritage evokes for Rochester a different set of becomings that express degeneracy, madness and an illicit sexuality. As a result, her



attempt to become-English is overwhelmed by the forces that repeat the processes of Bronts novel as becoming-Bertha. One of the most commented upon aspects of Wide Sargasso Sea, besides that of its association with Jane Eyre, is the novels exploration of the mother/daughter relationship. Critics such as Ronnie Scharfman employ the developmental psychology of Nancy Chodorow and D. W. Winnicot in order to read Rhyss novel as the narrative of a subjects painful inability to constitute itself as an autonomous identity, to belong (Scharfman 1981: 99100).8 Following Winnicotts claim that what a baby sees in his/her mothers face is him or herself, Scharfman argues that Antoinette projects a fragmented identity because as a child she did not experience her mother as a mirror. However, rather than reading Antoinettes narrative, as Scharfman does, as the account of an original identity that then becomes fragmented throughout the course of the novel, a Deleuzian approach suggests that Rhys presents a series of inevitable becomings that co-exist alongside a range of virtual ways in which Antoinette could possibly become. These alternative possibilities are presented to the reader in the mirror images and doubles that exist within the novel not only as virtual lines of becoming that Antoinette might have followed, but in themselves as actual differentiations that cannot be mirrored or repeated: as difference. Deleuze, Williams argues, paints a similar picture:
reections, doubles, soul sisters and brothers, acts of celebration and commemoration are all cases where the repetition or the experience of repetition is accompanied by intense reactions allied to the persistence of difference. [. . . ] In each case, the emotions are double something is sensed in the same way but there is also a sensation of a profound difference. (Williams 2003: 323)

Just as Rhyss novel contrapuntally differentiates Jane Eyre, Antoinettes doubles offer virtual lines of becoming that coexist with the various ways in which Antoinette actually becomes. Moreover, just as Wide Sargasso Sea as the repeated double of Jane Eyre illustrates the persistence of difference, the fact that in every repetition the only likeness is difference or the power to become, so Antoinettes doubles evoke the dual sense of similarity and difference. For Antoinette, Tia is her mirror image it was as if I saw myself. Like in a looking-glass (38) but also a sign of their irreducible difference. The Millers Daughter is the image of Antoinettes future self and the marker of her unsettling creole difference that Rochester will never manage to accommodate. For Rhys, as for

36 Lorna Burns
Deleuze, the repetition evident in reections, mirror images and doubles echo only the forward movement of becoming and the impossibility of any other form of repetition. The self cannot become its double or mirror image, it can only become: I remember watching myself brush my hair and how my eyes looked back at me. The girl I saw was my self yet not quite myself. Long ago when I was a child and very lonely I tired to kiss her. But the glass was between us hard, cold, and misted over with my breath (147). It is this persistent separation, the repetition of difference rather than the same that Wide Sargasso Sea evokes in its presentation of Antoinettes reected image. Antoinettes mirror image evokes the double emotion that Williams recognises in Difference and Repetition: almost herself, but not quite. Instead of unity, separation persists, and a similar process emerges in Antoinettes relationship with her mother. In line with Winnicott, Antoinette does, initially, approach her mothers face as a potential mirror. But rather than never seeing herself reected in her mother, as Scharfman argues, Antoinette encounters in her mother a series of becomings (becoming-disillusioned, becoming-unstable) that she is expected to mirror. The most striking example of this is offered in the repeated image of Annettes frown, deep it might have been cut with a knife (17), in Antoinette. As Rochester later observes of his wife, I looked at the sad droop of her lips, the frown between her thick eyebrows, deep as if it had been cut with a knife (114). This apparent realisation of the mother mirror image is enforced once again by the novels ending, in which Antoinettes appearance as the madwoman surrounded by the ames of the burning estate house is a repetition of her mothers fate: I went into the hall again with the tall candle in my hand. It was then that I saw her the ghost. The woman standing with streaming hair. She was surrounded by a gilt frame but I knew her (154). Here Antoinette becomes both her mothers, Annette and Bertha, signifying for critics such as Scharfman a long-desired, long-delayed mirroring fusion with the mother that gives Antoinette a paradoxical freedom through death (Scharfman 1981: 104).9 What such a reading ignores, however, is the way in which the ending represents a culmination of forces that have coerced Antoinette to mirror those aspects of her mother that she does not identify with, her pain and her madness: I hated this frown and once I touched her forehead trying to smooth it; after I knew that she talked aloud to herself I was a little afraid of her (17). Looking beyond the actual repetition of images which recall the mother gure the barefooted woman, the burning house, the secluded madwoman Rhyss novel depicts a process of becoming that



is stunted by being coerced (by expectation and habit) into a repetition of the same rather than difference. Mirror images and doubles are discrepant throughout Wide Sargasso Sea because, as a repetition itself, Rhyss novel draws attention to the fact that there is no possible mirroring fusion only, to use the Deleuzian formula, the eternal return of difference. Characters such as Rochester who fail to recognise the difference in repetition, who see in repetition only the recurrence of the same or the general and nd in Antoinette only the recurring image of the madwoman in the attic that is her mother/Bertha, fail to realise the potential for re-dress in the virtual aspect of Bronts novel. In this respect, he becomes the Rochester of Jane Eyre who claims Bertha Mason is mad and she came of a mad family. [. . . ] Bertha, like a dutiful child, copied her parents (Bront 1990: 298). It is the fate of Antoinettes other mother, Bertha, that warns the reader against celebrating too readily any union with the mother, for she is precisely the image of creole madness that Rhys sought to deconstruct. Rhys is not the dutiful child copying the mother text; rather Wide Sargasso Sea is a difcult double, a repetition-withdifference (Harrison 1988: 135) as Nancy Harrison observes. It is an account of Antoinettes becoming-Bertha that continually repeats her difference (her becoming). Rather than reading in Antoinettes alienation from her mother a sign of her fragmented psyche, the model of becoming that I have used to discuss Rhyss novel offers an understanding of identity as a series of masks. In turn, as Williams explains with respect to Deleuze, this demands a new approach to psychoanalysis based not on the validation of actual events or the recovery of an original trauma, but rather analysis works because roles and masks are authenticated. [. . . ] It is a site where a way of creating other masks is given a seal of approval (Williams 2003: 49). If we may be empowered by the authentication of our masks, then the converse also holds true: masks which are rejected creates alienation. This, I would argue, is precisely the trauma that Antoinette suffers. Her attempt to validate her identity as Antoinette Mason by embroidering it in re red, her attempt to take on the role of the Millers Daughter, her childhood mirror image in Tia, these all stand as masks (becomings) that are never authenticated. Her marriage to Rochester, his xation on her sexuality and heritage, and the racial tensions of post-Emancipation Jamaica, these factors deny Antoinettes masks the approval she seeks. Instead, those masks which offer Antoinette the least degree of freedom are the ones that are approved: her becoming-Annette, becoming-Bertha. Thus, what the

38 Lorna Burns
reader witnesses is a series of becomings or masks, some of which are validated, some of which are not, and it is in the rejection of certain masks, forcing Antoinette to become like what she would have to be like to deserve her fate, that the greatest violence lies. It is the denial of the signicance of the virtual past, the ability to become in unforeseen ways, that Rhys most directly seeks to challenge in Wide Sargasso Sea. As a repetition itself, Rhyss novel differentiates Jane Eyre by actualising the series of becomings that lead up to the burning of Thorneld Hall. What results is new, drawn from the virtual aspect of the canon, repeating its difference. Rhyss open ending which only suggests that Antoinette nally enacts Berthas role again exposes the expectancy of the reader and the desire to nd in repetition the perfect mirror image: at last I know why I was brought here and what I have to do. There must have been a draught for the ame ickered and I thought it was out. But I shielded it with my hand and it burned up again to light me along the dark passage (1556). Although this moment is a repetition of Bronts novel, it is not an actual repetition: it takes us behind the closed doors and dark passage[s] of Thorneld Hall that cannot be accessed by Jane Eyre. As a result, Rhyss ending remains alive with the potential to become a very different story the ame might go out, Antoinette might not follow the fate of Bertha foretold in her dream and in the life of her mother. Such a virtual possibility critics like Graham Huggan have identied in the novels resolution: should we take Rhyss Antoinette for Bronts Bertha, and interpret the ending of Wide Sargasso Sea accordingly as the prelude to an inevitable act of self-sacrice? Or should we listen again to the resurrected Creole parrot? Ch Coco, Ch Coco. Answering back, cheekily, to Her Mistresss Voice (Huggan 1994: 657). It is in the discrepancy of repetition that Rhyss novel opens up to the virtual potential of Antoinettes narrative, foregrounding a series of becomings that, in illustrating how the protagonist becomes-Bertha, draws attention to the myriad ways in which things could have been very different. The Deleuzian framework that this article has traced provides the opportunity to reread Rhyss postcolonial writing back as an illustration of difference as well as repetition: challenging the readers expectancy and presenting its own becoming-new through a differentiation of the virtual text of Bronts novel. In the nal analysis, Antoinettes claim that there are always two deaths, the real one and the one people know about (106) not only prepares the reader for another death besides her suicide at Thorneld Hall (the death people know about), but displays a sensitivity towards understanding being as a series of becomings



and deaths. Like her mother whose death she witnesses at the burning of Coulibri, Antoinette dies as one particular self as she becomes another: like when he wouldnt call me Antoinette, and I saw Antoinette drifting out of the window with her scents, her pretty clothes and her looking-glass (147). Rhyss presentation of Antoinettes two deaths, two at least (106), then, nds resonance with Deleuzes claim that every death is double, and that suicide is an attempt to make the two incommensurable faces coincide or correspond. However, the two sides do not meet, and every death remains double (Deleuze 2004: 3223). Berthas suicide leaping from the rooftop of a blazing Thorneld Hall is discontinuous with Antoinettes inevitable, actual death. The impossibility of bringing together the two sides of death the death of Antoinette as she becomes-Bertha and her actual suicide is underscored by Rhyss omission of the anticipated death scene. Her suicide remains outside the bounds of Wide Sargasso Sea, for although Antoinettes becomingBertha brings her one step closer to her inevitable end, it is a death that Rhys leaves resolutely double, existing virtually in her own novel, only to be realised later in Jane Eyre as the continuation of Berthas story.

1. Despite Hallwards employment of Deleuze to demonstrate the self-defeating aims of postcolonialism, his distinction between a counter-colonial stance that is locked into a xed dialogue between coloniser and coloniser and an alternative view that holds that any creative expression is irreducibly specic to (though not specied by) the situation of its articulation (Hallward 2001: 62), is one which I adapt to delineate the postcolonial project. For further analysis of Hallwards problematic reading of postcolonialism, see Burns (2009). 2. As Sartre writes, the oppressors produce and maintain by force the evils that render the oppressed, in their eyes, more and more like what they would have to be like to deserve their fate (Sartre 1974: xxvi). 3. Mardorossian also notes the parallel between Antoinettes dress slipping off one shoulder and the depiction of the Millers Daughter (Mardorossian 1999: 1076). 4. Stuart Hampshires Spinoza and Spinozism provides a lucid outline of Spinozas single-substance philosophy. For further discussion of Spinozas philosophy in a postcolonial context, see Burns (2009). 5. Jay Lampert similarly implies this sense of archiving in his description of the second synthesis as a storehouse of temporal moments (Lampert 2006: 41). If the aw in [this] metaphor is that it suggests inert memory packages (41), then Williamss evocation of the Foucauldian/Derridean archive better underscores the creative force of the second synthesis. See, for example, Derridas claim that the archive [. . . ] is not only the place for stocking and for conserving an archivable content of the past which would exist in any case, as such, without the archive. [. . . ] No, the technical structure of the archiving archive also determines the structure of the archivable content even in

40 Lorna Burns
its very coming into existence and in its relationship to the future. The activation produces as much as it records the event (Derrida 1995: 17). Foucaults archive is similarly creative, particularly as that which drives the production of the new as differentiation: its threshold of existence is established by the break that separates us from what we can no longer say, and from what falls outside our discursive practice. [. . . ] It causes the other and the outside to burst forth (Foucault 1972: 1301). Colebrooks brief analysis of Wide Sargasso Sea remains one of the few Deleuzian readings of Rhyss work. In another Deleuzian reading, Carol DellAmico draws on Deleuzes account of masochism in Coldness and Cruelty in order to reread Rhyss early texts as expressions of a subversive female empowerment (DellAmico 2005: 5795). The main body of recent criticism on Wide Sargasso Sea, however, has focused on Antoinettes ambivalent creoleness as the primary site of resistance to colonial/patriarchical orders (see Alcocer 2005: 1606; Huggan 1994; Mardorossian 1999; Murdoch 2003; Simpson 2005: 11115, 136). Kloepfers study presents an analysis of the specic repetitions of Jane Eyre in Rhyss novel, such as parallels between Jane and Antoinettes dreams (Kloepfer 1989: 154). For further discussion of the mother/daughter relationship in Rhyss work, see Gunner (1994: 13651), Simpson (2005: 816, 11521), OConnor (1986: 17196), Kloepfer (1989: 14258). Following Scharfman, Klopfer and Gunner have similarly viewed the mother connection as empowering, allowing Antoinette to narrate her story (Kloepfer 1989: 1478); or to challenge patriarchy (Gunner 1994: 143).


7. 8. 9.

Alcocer, Rudyard (2005) Discourses of Heredity and Caribbean Literature, London and New York: Routledge. Ashcroft, Bill, Gareth Grifths and Helen Tifn (2002) The Empire Writes Back: Theory and Practice in Post-Colonial Literatures, London: Routledge. Bernab, Jean, Patrick Chamoiseau and Raphal Conant (1993) loge de la crolit, trans. M. Taleb-Khyar, Paris: Gallimard. Bhabha, Homi (1994) The Location of Culture, London: Routledge. Bront, Charlotte (1990) Jane Eyre, London: Virago Press. Burns, Lorna (2009) Becoming-Postcolonial, Becoming-Caribbean: douard Glissant and the Poetics of Creolisation, Textual Practice, 23:1, pp. 99117. Colebrook, Claire (2002) Gilles Deleuze, London: Routledge. Deleuze, Gilles (1991) Bergsonism, trans. Hugh Tomlinson, New York: Zone Books. Deleuze, Gilles (2004) Difference and Repetition, trans. Paul Patton, London: Continuum. DellAmico, Carol (2005) Colonialism and the Modernist Moment in the Early Novels of Jean Rhys, Routledge: London. Derrida, Jacques (1995) Archive Fever: A Freudian Impression, trans. Eric Prenowitz, Diacritics, 25:2, pp. 936. Foucault, Michel (1972) Archaeology of Knowledge, trans. A. Sheridan Smith, New York: Tavistock Publications. Glissant, douard (1999) Caribbean Discourse: Selected Essays, trans. J. Michael Dash, Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia. Gunner, Liz (1994) Mothers, Daughters and Madness in Works by Four Women Writers, Alif: Journal of Comparative Poetics, 14, pp. 13651.



Hallward, Peter (2001) Absolutely Postcolonial: Writing Between the Singular and the Specic, Manchester: Manchester University Press. Hampshire, Stuart (2005) Spinoza and Spinozism, Oxford: Claredon Press. Hardt, Michael (1993) Gilles Deleuze: An Apprenticeship in Philosophy, London: UCL Press. Harris, Wilson (1983) The Womb of Space, London: Greenwood Press. Harris, Wilson (1996) Jonestown, London: Faber and Faber. Harrison, Nancy (1988) Jean Rhys and the Novel as Womens Text, London: University of North Carolina Press. Huggan, Graham (1994) A Tale of Two Parrots: Walcott, Rhys, and the Uses of Colonial Mimicry, Contemporary Literature, 35:4, pp. 64360. Kloepfer, Deborah (1989) The Unspeakable Mother: Forbidden Discourse in Jean Rhys and H. D., Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Lampert, Jay (2006) Deleuze and Guattaris Philosophy of History, London: Continuum. Mardorossian, Carine (1999) Shutting up the Subaltern: Silences, Stereotypes, and Double-Entendre in Rhyss Wide Sargasso Sea, Callaloo, 22:4, pp. 107190. Memmi, Albert (1974) The Coloniser and the Colonised, trans. Howard Greeneld, London: Souvenir Press. Murdoch, H. Adlai (2003) Rhyss Pieces: Unhomliness as Arbiter of Caribbean Creolisation, Callaloo, 26:1, pp. 25272. OConnor, Teresa (1986) Jean Rhys and the West Indian Novels, New York: New York University Press. Raiskin, Judith (1996) Snow on the Caneelds: Womens Writing and Creole Subjectivity, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Rhys, Jean (2000) Wide Sargasso Sea, London: Penguin Books. Said, Edward (1993) Culture and Imperialism, London: Chatto and Windus. Sartre, Jean Paul (1974) Introduction, The Coloniser and the Colonised, Albert Memmi, trans. Howard Greeneld, London: Souvenir Press. Scharfman, Ronnie (1981) Mirroring and Mothering in Schwartz-Barts Pluie et vent sur Tlume Miracle and Rhyss Wide Sargasso Sea, Yale French Studies, 62, pp. 88106. Simpson, Anne (2005) Territories of the Psyche: The Fiction of Jean Rhys, Basingstoke: Macmillan. Smith, Daniel (2007) The Conditions of the New, Deleuze Studies, 1:1, pp. 121. Soyinka, Wole (1976) Myth, Literature and the African World, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Walcott, Derek (1998) What the Twilight Says, New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Williams, James (2003) Gilles Deleuzes Difference and Repetition, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000784

McDeleuze: Whats More Rhizomal than the Big Mac?

Kane X. Faucher

The University of Western Ontario, London

The popularity of Deleuze and Guattari is an undeniable precedent in current theoretical exchanges, and it could be stated without much contention that ones theoretical positioning must at some point deal with the salient conceptual offerings of Deleuze and Guattari, especially their double-opus, Anti-Oedipus and A Thousand Plateaus wherein a wealth of critique abounds. However, the signicant trends concerning Deleuze and Guattari scholarship may be jeopardised by the (ab)use of certain conceptual themes and methods in their work that are distorted and employed by big business looking to secure their legacies of power by means of a control mechanism that looks to subjugate an entire world by means of (to borrow a term from Mihai Spariosu) globalitarianism. Our aim here will be to use McDonalds Corporation as an example of how the theoretical offerings of Deleuze and Guattari have been indirectly and hastily deployed for corporate ends, how these attempts are counter-Deleuzian, and to answer at least one of ieks criticisms against Deleuze. Keywords: Deleuze, immaterial labour, corporate structure, rhizome, iek, nomadology One of the most pressing problems facing Deleuze and Guattari scholarship is a criticism that iek evokes in Organs without Bodies: Deleuze and Consequences (2004); namely, that those who have some brief familiarity with the texts will misemploy the conceptual strategies found there for the purposes of advancing corporate interests. What if some post-Machiavellian corporateer reads the Deleuze and Guattari trinity of Anti-Oedipus, A Thousand Plateaus and What is Philosophy? What if the lessons gleaned there are distended or abused for nefarious corporate ends? One can only imagine the applications where such a

McDeleuze: Whats More Rhizomal than the Big Mac? 43

being reads the chapters on how to create concepts as how to create global corporate empires, or how to build a global corporate empire without micromanagement and accountability as a merely metaphoric transposition from the body without organs (BwO). And what of creating the business of pure affect? No longer relying on traditional monopoly capital, but global zones of intensity with rhizomal webworks that operate under a new virtual digicratic order. These constructions are ghastly and do not demonstrate a careful reading of Deleuze and Guattaris oeuvre; however, even misapplications can run the perilous risk of actually succeeding as models and practices, to the detriment of those working to limit the viral capacity of global capitalism. The new slogan of late capital is to appear to concede locally, dominate globally. One of the new developments that distinguishes contemporary capitalism from the Fordist economy is precisely the decentralisation and rhizomal expansion of the corporation that makes the evasion of national bodies of law a much simpler affair. Calling to account the major meta-corporations for environmental degradation, labour abuses abroad and the ow of wealth to alternate regions of the world that function as tax shelters has quickly become the central problem that governments today are now powerless to face, for to pinion the expansionist policies of certain corporations only leads to the more disastrous economic repercussions of glissement; that is, the corporations are fully in their power to dismantle their operations in one region and set upon a more favourable terrain. Wal-Mart, for instance, can effectively de- and reterritorialise a given terrain by selecting areas of employment vacuum, offering the desperate multitude jobs, and effectively reinscribe and reterritorialise that region as yet another town that bears the indelible stamp of Wal-Mart, even to the detriment of local edgling industries or environmental concerns.1 Like fungus after a storm, these meta-corporations can pop up anywhere and add to the resonance factor of its rhizomal power nexus as it is surreptitiously wielded inter-regionally. As Laclau points out, the disparate elements come to resonate and thereby constitute the emergence of a fascist nexus. However, the strength of this nexus is its ability to shift its centre so that the archaic centre is constantly shifting and adapting to new phenomena. This still classies, qua Deleuze and Guattaris denition, as a fascicular root-tree of sorts rather than a true rhizome, but trees look like rhizomes when one is encompassed by the mad proliferation of its varying foliage. What makes the true determination or cut between the two models is precisely the awareness and critique of the ubiquity of strategies

44 Kane X. Faucher
employed by these meta-corporations that merely champion diversity within prescribed limits rather than true afrmative differences to cater to local tastes while maintaining an Aristotelian taxonomic-style structure at its global base. For example, McDonalds has perfected this to an art: by catering to local-specic tastes as a kind of soft cultural concession (in Maine, the McLobster), McDonalds effectively reinscribes the social margin into its totalising menu, and makes it bear the stamp of the corporation so that there could come a point when, in Maine, the lobster industry will be completely non-distinct from the corporation that has absorbed it into its product array.

I. McDeleuze
When careful delity to the text is not heeded, it is no secret that constitutive and wilful misreadings may result. Let us consider Deleuze and Guattaris notion of the concept and how it seems already installed (per bad reading) in the concept that is McDonalds. What can be more crudely and physically rhizomal than the Big Mac? The size of the beef patty itself will shrink or expand in anticipation of, or response to, cultural demand. McDonalds is an intriguing paradigm case for discussing corporate global expansion. The intensive affects that impersonally de- and reterritorialise the traditional meat and potatoes fare as burger and fries are merely a metonymic transition, and the ow of becoming is also rendered crudely in the McDonalds system by designing seating that will be uncomfortable after twenty minutes (as well as the strategic use of panic colours) so that there is a constant ow of new customers supplanting the old. Was Ray Kroc, the founder of the modern McDonalds and an industrious opportunist who bought out the previous roadside burger stand from its originators, an ante-Deleuzian? Does he not qualify as a concept creator in that rigorous Deleuzian sense? If a concept is only created as a function of problems which are thought to be badly understood or badly posed (Deleuze and Guattari [1990] (1994): 16), did not Kroc nd in the old concept of McDonalds a problem of nonexpansionism, non-proliferation and limited access, thereby applying his own conceptual innovations to resolve or repose the problem differently? Kroc began as a salesman for Dixie cups and appended the task of selling milkshake machines that could multiply production, and so incorporated these as concepts to the newly posed problem of a edgling burger stand. As Deleuze and Guattari write, In any concept there are usually bits or components that come from other concepts, which corresponded

McDeleuze: Whats More Rhizomal than the Big Mac? 45

to other problems and presupposed other planes . . . each concept carries out a new cutting-out, takes on new contours, and must be reactivated or recut (Deleuze and Guattari [1990] (1994): 18). Each of the concepts had to share their zones. For Kroc, the problems posed were the efcacy of cups, milkshake machinery and fast food restaurants. By uniting these concepts, or at least their components, he was able to recast the new creation as the concept of McDonalds that has mostly been handed down today in its current form. Inspired as well by the use of cartoon characters, Kroc was able to respond to the problem of how to entice families to frequent these restaurants by targeting his marketing to children. These conceptemes were made to resonate in such a way as to ensure a heterogeneous endoconsistency that made each concept component indiscernible in their neighbourhood or zone. The exoconsistency of the McDonalds concept was its subsequent alliances with various other concepts: movie promotions, toys and the like. The McDonalds concept speaks its Event, the haecceity of its expression. The actual restaurant is not determined by its coordinates on a map; it only sufces that it appears somewhere, anywhere, as an intensive ordinate. The means by which it absorbs other concept components assures its resonant becomings, such that each concept will therefore be considered as the point of coincidence, condensation, or accumulation of its own components (Deleuze and Guattari [1990] (1994): 20). The further danger in misreading may be noted here when the concept is considered in properties both absolute and relative:
It is relative to its own components, to other concepts, to the plane on which it is dened, and to the problems it is supposed to resolve; but it is absolute through the condensation it carries out, the site it occupies on the plane, and the conditions it assigns to the problem. As whole it is absolute, but insofar as it is fragmentary it is relative. (Deleuze and Guattari [1990] (1994): 21)

Even the variations within the concept are inseparable. However, we can see how this can easily be misread: McDonalds, as a concept packed with inseparable components upon a larger plane of expansionist capital, will be absolute in the appropriations (condensations) it can make wherever it is located, but will be fragmentary insofar as there is no one expression of the concept of McDonalds that could truly be said to function as the true and distinct archetype since its success depends on local variations catering to local tastes. Although corporate decentralisation theories have aimed to resolve the dangers of verticalbased power distribution, differential concepts still function as auxiliary

46 Kane X. Faucher
to categorical thinking that functions as an a priori tracing rather than a non-hierarchical cartography. The basis for isolating McDonalds is not to critique this particular corporation for not showing delity to Deleuze and Guattaris concepts, for this would presuppose an intention on behalf of this corporation to do so; rather, it will be of some utility to demonstrate the disagreement between multinational corporate practices and the ideas of Deleuze and Guattari as a means to answer ieks accusation that these ideas actually enable contemporary corporate logics. There are confusing similarities between what Deleuze and Guattari describe as the rhizome and the practices of corporations, but these similarities are merely appearances a league of representations.

II. The Rhetoric of McDonalds

One need not turn to the legion of texts that criticise the practices of McDonalds Corporation since McDonalds own publicly released annual report discloses the rhetorical devices it employs to ensure brand loyalty and the maximisation of prot. In releasing these reports to the public, doubtless in response to critics who have lambasted the corporation for lack of disclosure, McDonalds abides by one of its initial guiding ethics: namely, that trust is hard to earn and easy to lose. Rhetorically, releasing an annual report is partially designed to earn that public trust and to maintain its global credibility as a dynamic, caring corporation sensitive to the needs of all its employees and customers. There are frequent appeals to the founding principles of Ray Kroc, verging on the religious near-deication of their founder. The overarching ethical conduit by which McDonalds wants to be perceived is the association between food production and (moral) value. Nothing can be more personal than what one eats and what one believes, and so it is essential for McDonalds, in order to be prosperous, to tread in such a way as to appeal to a reductionist common value that encircles a perceived majoritarian set of values. In doing so, the corporation produces a regulatory framework exible enough to allow regional differences while still maintaining a totalising system of common relevant moral values. Nowhere is this false or negative difference more evident than in its business model, Freedom within the Framework. This model, pictorially demonstrated in their 2004 report on Corporate Responsibility, is a series of overlapping spheres governed by both a central nexus of locations and corporate revenues, and an encompassing outer sphere that unites the structure into a

McDeleuze: Whats More Rhizomal than the Big Mac? 47

whole. Three rhizomatic elastic spheres issue from the central nexus, namely owners/operators, company employees and suppliers (Skinner and Bell 2004). Presumably, the freedom within this framework is the expansive character of the three spheres by which the centre sphere is fed by titration of prots. As well, oating as if in a soup, are three corresponding aspects that determine the encompassing sphere: policies (good business conduct and environmental policy to become the best employer, to give back to the community which presupposes something taken away, and holding themselves in the highest possible ethical standards). These three determining aspects have a dubiety about them, and this is precisely due to their substitutability in responding to the dynamic demands of any regionalist conditions that may later impact upon the whole. This model is more of an organism than a Deleuzian BwO since its power rests in a power structure that is governed by the crude metrics of prot and amount of locations. Is McDonalds, despite its seeming rhizomatesque features, still a centralised organism? According to Jim Skinner (Vice-Chairman) and Charles Bell (President and CEO),
Decentralisation is fundamental to our business model and to our corporate responsibility efforts. At the corporate level, we provide a global framework of common goals, policies, and guidelines rooted in our core values. Within this framework, individual geographic business units have the freedom to develop programs and performance measures appropriate to local conditions. We view this model as a source of strength.

Decentralisation within limits: That is, there is still a centralising feature of McDonalds model, and this is located precisely in those core values it is rooted in. The moral overcoding is fascicular, a root book of values that regulate the corporate organism, ensuring that its claims of decentralisation is a confused one, especially since it (a) is stated as fundamental, (b) operates according to a global framework and (c) is rooted in core values that regulate the peripheral functions of the corporate structure. In essence, it would appear that decentralisation has been loosely appended as a buzzword or vacuous homily. McDonalds also discloses more than it perhaps realises by claiming its corporate strength in accordance with its Freedom within a Framework model, stating that it can maintain its corporate governance globally while being exible enough in the particulars to cater to local and regional differences, pending that they do not violate the categorical unity. This effectively trumps any truly afrmative difference from engaging and altering the corporate totality, and so rather consigns difference to paltry

48 Kane X. Faucher
variations under a global framework that is itself inexible. Ray Kroc remains the unseen religious gurehead (as McDonalds rather prefers to use cartoon icons by which to channel the divine corporate inuence), acting as a kind of Holy Ghost that spiritualises and concretises the core values the corporation relies upon. Nowhere is this more apparent than in its motto: At McDonalds, we believe that good governance starts with good values. Harking to a worn Platonic dictate on the construction of a State, McDonalds does not deviate far from the common sense notion of governance. Words such as governance and value are frequently repeated as ultimate signieds by which we are expected to believe that indeed McDonalds upholds these terms in all its operations. And even if these values were being upheld, it is unlikely that they were selected democratically or that those who are employed at the lowest employment tier would be invited or encouraged to dispute these values. The looming gure of hegemony is most present when values are handed down to be obeyed, even if they come in the guise of generally accepted consensus or are articulated in the most broad and vague terms. McDonalds does not stop at seemingly appropriating (albeit badly) Deleuzian themes, but also makes blatant use of various postcolonial and postindustrialist terms such as stakeholders. For example, its global sensitivity is trotted out here: And whether its called good corporate citizenship or social responsibility, we take seriously our commitment to conducting our business in a way that respects the world around us and the issues that matter most to you, and
we work toward responsible actions by understanding the perspectives and needs of our customers and other important stakeholders, by collaborating with experts to understand issues and opportunities and by inspiring the people in our system company employees, owner/operators and suppliers to share and act on these core values.

What are these issues exactly, and how can their relevance gain purchase on this reductionist, universalised and structurally empty you? If McDonalds could not assume a common set of values, and if these values could be demonstrated not to hold for all persons for all times, the credibility of their regulative framework would be in jeopardy. In desiring to provide meals and a dining out experience that exceeds its customers expectations, McDonalds once again blunders in assuming a common set of predictable expectations, what their content would be and therefore how to exceed them.2 As to the globalising structure of McDonalds, McDonalds relies on its Plan to Win business strategy: We manage our worldwide

McDeleuze: Whats More Rhizomal than the Big Mac? 49

operations with McDonalds global Plan to Win, which identies ve Ps that drive our business Products, People, Place, Price and Promotion. Apart from what may have been construed in the planning ofces, a clever use of alliteration and a mnemonic device for better corporate encoding, we nd that these ve Ps are as empty and vacuous as they are attempts at totalisation and reduction. Instead of considering the various aspects of their business as a rich dynamism, a planomenon of intercalated becomings, they have instead relied on a rigid stratication, an ecumenon of particular determinations that function in concert according to an overcoding moral set which euphemistically is dubbed their plan to win. We may take especial issue with this notion of winning, most notably as it is draped upon their core values, and pose the question as to what winning means. It is not merely a victory of maximising prots per quarter, but a moral victory as well that the McDonalds worldview of what morally ought to be is realised and ensures the perpetuation of its regulative moral codes. McDonalds succinctly states,
We provide a framework of common values, policies and business strategies and then empower our owner/operators, our suppliers and company staff to contribute in ways that reect their unique expertise and local circumstances. Like other parts of our business, McDonalds commitment to corporate responsibility follows this freedom within a framework approach.

Heavy yet most likely vacuous words like responsibility are not innocuous additions to their corporate mandate as they seek to respond to mounting criticism that McDonalds is yet another cold, faceless, prot-accumulating machine that only provides homogeneity as its major export:
Responsibility at McDonalds means striving to do what is right, being a good neighbor in the community and integrating social and environmental priorities into our restaurants and our relationships with suppliers and business partners . . . We have a responsibility to maintain our values and high standards as we provide food that is affordable to a wide range of customers.

And again,
Our restaurants and drive-thrus will be clean, relevant and inviting to the customers of today and tomorrow. We have a responsibility to manage our business by integrating environmental considerations into daily operations and by constantly seeking ways to add value to the community.3

To what extent these environmental considerations actually enter into McDonalds schema seems to be tacked on, and McDonalds

50 Kane X. Faucher
claim to the addition of value to a community sounds hollow without further qualication. One may question how a McDonalds actually adds value to any community rather than reduces value to a at common set of prefabricated corporate ideals, low-income employment, a menu of false choices, perpetuating animal cruelty, diminishing the protability of smaller non-chain restaurants, infantilising the consumer public, the degradation of ne cuisine to mere convenience, massive garbage production and contributing to rampant obesity. In what way is McDonalds representing responsibility? In recent years, healthy choices have been added to the menu in response to a growing concern over the deleterious effects of fast food. What is this healthy turn? On pages 68 of the report, McDonalds repeats its mantra of food = value by making its rst argument one of ad populam (the average consumers values, highlighting a specic case example of an average consumer, quite politically inected by the selection of a visible ethnic minority) and then moves towards an appeal to authority (a semi-alarmist message by Professor Paul Gately, member of McDonalds Global Advisory Council in Balanced Lifestyles). Dr Gately does not make a rm connection between skyrocketing overweight and obesity rates and the steps McDonalds is taking to help alleviate the problem, but rather states that,
In a world where technological advances and our risk-averse culture have removed opportunities for children to be physically active, we need to nd ways to give kids positive experiences of physical activity, exercise and sports. For children, whats critical is engagement and fun and thats something McDonalds does very well.

After Gately shifts the blame for child obesity to broad social conditions of technology and safety (making sweeping generalisations, we might add), he asserts that McDonalds offers the following solutions: (1) providing fun (which is a vacuous signier), engagement, food choices within an improved nutritional matrix, convenience and good taste. Gately points to McDonalds as a powerful vehicle of change, and sees McDonalds role as provoking community changes via business and governmental partnerships to support and promote physical activity for children. The connection between the products McDonalds serves and physical activity among children is disparate and disingenuous at best. On the whole, it seems, McDonalds is still a fascicular corporate organism abiding by inexible moral schemas. Despite its claims to decentralisation and its appearance of being an immanent entity, these are illusory at best, and are still transcendent apparatuses of capture.

McDeleuze: Whats More Rhizomal than the Big Mac? 51

One may see how a facile engagement with the works of Deleuze and Guattari may actually perpetuate the stratied ends of corporate expansionism and proliferation, although these seem to be light concessions and nominal utilisations of theory terminology.

III. Fear Capital

McDonalds has only conformed to environmental and health standards when external pressure has been applied, and largely for reasons of public relations. For example, McDonalds has switched to the use of organic milk in its milk-based drinks, and uses coffee beans certied by the Rainforest Alliance. In addition, it has also aimed to reduce, if not entirely eliminate, its polystyrene packaging. However, the reason for embracing these environmental practices has a bearing on market practices that seek to broaden consumer appeal during a time when environmental issues are more predominantly of concern to the consumers. Interestingly enough, no mention of past corporate liability is made given that McDonalds, among many other corporations, had contributed to environmental degradation for decades, thereby making McDonalds culpable for its share of deleterious environmental impact. Nor does McDonalds new turn towards environmental sustainability and corporate responsibility address the issue of overstressed farmland and standardised destruction of arable land used as feedlots for cows. The failures and contradictions in McDonalds Corporations attempt to foster a new green and fair image are legion as they continue to patronise agribusinesses over smaller local farms, have quashed all attempts at allowing a unionisation of its workers, abetted the increasing Americanisation of global trade and American cultural imperialism, continued to limit biodiversity through dense central food processing facilities, and the unsustainable use of water and energy to produce every one of its menu items. In sum, although the corporation reports its commitment to sustainable practice, it is unsurprisingly a publicrelations smokescreen. As well, McDonalds continues to direct its marketing enticements towards children in order to ensure lifelong brand loyalty, and this is effectively done through collaborative product tie-ins with toy manufacturers and movie companies. McDonalds, like many corporations that utilise the same or a similar model, seems to operate on a plane of immanence since it need not refer to, or depend on, a transcendent state apparatus. It operates its ows through network relations as a series of capital accumulations. Deterritorialisation and uncoded ows essential conditions for the

52 Kane X. Faucher
spread of free market economics have indeed overcome the shadow of state imperialism as it has been generally dened; however, as Hardt and Negri point out, the segmentarity of the social has become more pronounced rather than less (Hardt and Negri 2000: 366). Economic theorists like Leo Strauss were instrumental in advocating an economic model with a minimum of government interference, a view championed and put into action by neo-conservatives like Ronald Reagan, Donald Rumsfeld, Richard Perle, George W. Bush and so on. Once the emancipation of the market could engage in a regulatory axiomatisation supplanting the presence or perceived need for big government, welfare-state policies were downsized or phased out entirely to such an extent that even the then-President Bill Clinton was forced by market pressures to abandon his campaign promises of restoring social spending. One of the signicant, yet under-examined, shifts was in the management of the US defence programme. Despite a spike in defence spending in the last decade, a disproportionately small amount of this money funds troops or their equipment. Ironically, a lions share of defence funding is earmarked for civilian salaries of those who work for Department of Defense contracted corporations such as Lockheed-Martin, Raytheon and so on. Under the guise of defence budgets directly nancing military personnel, the majority is spent on contracting corporations that will set up factories to increase domestic economic stability. In this way, the defence budget is tantamount to a jobs programme that replaces other forms of more socially based scal stimulus initiatives. When lobbyists favourable to these corporations, or former employees of these corporations enter into prominent positions of political power, political interests can become confused with corporate interests, ensuring that the state becomes economically beholden to these contracted corporations for fear of creating massive unemployment. The second irony concerns the apparent purpose of increased defence spending: the worst possible scenario for the sustainability of what Eisenhower rst coined as the military-industrial complex is for there to be a war since funds would no longer sufciently nance the jobs programme that corporations operate without spending more money on the war as well. The rather Orwellian scenario of increased defence spending when there is no war is part of a concerted fear programme that ensures the rigidifying of social segmentation. Fear of violence, poverty, and unemployment is in the end the primary and immediate force that creates and maintains these new segmentations (Hardt and Negri 2000: 339). The choice between increased defence spending for capital accumulation

McDeleuze: Whats More Rhizomal than the Big Mac? 53

and that of war is captured in the disjunction Deleuze and Guattari identify:
Either the State has at its disposal a violence that is not channeled through war either it uses police ofcers and jailers in place of warriors, has no arms and no need of them, operates by immediate, magical capture, seizes and binds, preventing all combat or, the State acquires an army, but in a way that presupposes a juridical integration of war and the organisation of a military function. (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 352)

In the case of the US defence industry, there would appear to be both, working curiously at cross-purposes. The question would emerge as to what sort of fear McDonalds utilises in order to ensure its place in sustaining a severe socio-global segmentation. Very much like the above US Department of Defense example, the fear is primarily of economic provenance.

IV. McNomadology?
Domination and resistance are always at war in what Deleuze and Guattari call the body without organs. In this perpetual in-folding (Zwiefalt), the body (which need not be a physical body) is perpetually dismantling and remaking itself. The organism resides as a stratum on the BwO: a phenomenon of accumulation, coagulation, and sedimentation that, in order to extract useful labour from the BwO, imposes upon it forms, functions, bonds, dominant and hierarchised organisations, organised transcendence (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 159). If we take the BwO as the scene or the plane upon which a war machine is organised, we must take care not to hastily declare this an ideological aspect. If taken just on the level of the axioms, nomadology appears to share a zone with the methods of McDonalds. The rst axiom plainly states that the war machine is exterior to the state apparatus (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 351). As we have mentioned, the ow of contemporary capital operates with ows that are freed from the state; however, it would be too quick to make an equivocation between corporation and war machine. If we are to consider corporations like McDonalds as employing a strategy similar to Deleuze and Guattaris example of the game Go, we nd that perhaps each individual franchise is like that anonymous piece that operates situationally, bordering, encircling, shattering (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 353). Unlike Chess, for McDonalds there is not the instance of occupying maximum space with a minimum of pieces since the McDonalds model operates by

54 Kane X. Faucher
ubiquity and proliferation of its franchises. As well, its operations model offers a minimum of quality at the highest quantity, recoding quantity as quality.4 Go succeeds by deterritorialising from within whereas Chess must confront from the outside. But whereas Go thrives upon a smooth space, free of the metric and striated space of Chess (the state), McDonalds still employs striation at the micro-level, the stratum of the organism that makes McDonalds its own kind of state a microstate, despotic in the way it organises itself between the governing and the governed inside its corporate body. If there was a war machine inside McDonalds, it would only seem to be a valorisation of liberal revolution: the formation of unions and demanding of universal rights. Rather, the war machine would utilise the aspects of labour prized by the contemporary state: mobility and exibility. The labour force would not ask permission to form a union, but would rather form clandestine packs and gatherings, using the corporate methods of extreme efciency for viral purposes. Far from becoming a Marxist romanticism that aims to reify the worker as an emancipated subject, the labour force as war machine would take on the role of non-subjectiable, anonymous Go pieces, virally consuming from within and deterritorialising the McDonalds structure. When once capital had a strategic set of purposes, usually linked with the states purposes, it has since become almost Spinozist: it wishes to persevere in its own aspect, to continue accumulating without any further purpose but accumulation itself. Blind, vagabond, capital becomes a nomadic accumulator with the sole purpose of growing itself: capital as cancer.5 The method of proliferation that McDonalds uses as it franchises itself across the globe appears to have this cancerous or nomadic element. This, however, comes with at least one crucial difference: the method of proliferation more resembles that of a religious model than it does a nomadic distribution. McDonalds grants the authority for another individual or group to conduct commercial operations on the condition that the franchisee conforms the root principles as set down by the corporations laws. Minor variations are permitted if not encouraged as long as these variations do not violate the core principles. This transcendent ordering mechanism that regulates each component, each franchise, is partially what makes McDonalds more of an organism than a war machine. If we follow Deleuze and Guattaris denition of rhizome with its six principles (connectivity, heterogeneity, multiplicity, asignifying rupture, cartography and decalcomania), we nd moments where corporations like McDonalds seem to abide by a rhizomal programme. Most notably,

McDeleuze: Whats More Rhizomal than the Big Mac? 55

the aspect of asignifying rupture most closely resembles the decoding ows and de/re-territorialising strategy of capital, but more specically, a decentralised corporate structure allows for local breakdowns and ruptures that do not endanger the whole. If a McDonalds restaurant fails to secure a certain prot level to keep it viable in one area, it can be shut down and reopened elsewhere. Since the success of the corporation is not contingent upon a rooted and xed spatiogeography, it can merely take up operations elsewhere. The second strongest rhizomal aspect would be McDonalds capacity for cartographic expansion; it has free ingress and egress as a corporation in being able to enter and exit local and national markets throughout the globe. However, its internal structure does not admit of this aspect, preferring to manage its employees according to a rigid hierarchy. Multiplicity is demonstrated through domination and absorption, forming a unity of multiples that contain the source and target cultures in any given market in addition to its franchise proliferation mechanisms. However, this, too, does not qualify as an actual multiplicity since this form of domination and subversion is somewhat Hegelian in nature, forcing a synthesis by means of the Aufhebung of the cultural market it inhabits. Although recent trends in corporations like McDonalds have forced them to recontextualise their practices given the current increase in environmental concerns, this is not auto-derived as much as it is externally imposed by both a response to critics and an attempt to sustain consumer trust. One could also say that McDonalds employs rhizomal connectivity through the ability to construct an aggregate labour force wherever it happens to be. However, this too succumbs to a process of labour exploitation and subjugation. Even in this age of vector and network capitalism, corporations are still beholden to similar processes for their own sustainability as prot machines. A rhizome does not need to appeal to reactive methods in order to expand itself, whereas a corporation still contains within it the relatively unchanged phases of capital recovery towards expansion such as performing management changes, retrenchment and divestiture, restructuring, market/product reorientation, improved controls, improved marketing, and increase in plant and machinery expenditure (or improvements thereupon). With such methods that would be considered reactive, even todays corporations lack the critical apparatus and structural exibility to implement a truly rhizomal programme. There is also the darker shadow cast by McDonalds when it subordinates local customs and eating habits while claiming to mobilise local talents and encourage cultural diversity by the articial appendage

56 Kane X. Faucher
of adding local menu choices to its usual fare. Reducing culture to clothing and cuisine only serves a market purpose that simplies and sanitises that culture for quaint consumption by a presumed elite homogeneous group that can regard said cultures as secondary to their own. McDonalds effectively makes cultural consumption culture based on mercantile utility safe for both the source and target cultures. For the source culture that is sanitised and emulated, it provides the illusion of cultural sensitivity. For the target culture that may consume these items, it provides a sense of satisfying the exotic, a false communion with the Other that serves to assuage guilt. For the source culture, a division may take place that recodes the cultural form from which the new menu option derives, a schism that may cause the consumer to become a aneur in ones own culture. As a form of cultural and ecological imperialism, McDonalds as well as other global fast food chains aims to construct a new programme of eating habits as part of the larger programme of marketing it as an experience.

V. iek contra Deleuze

One of the enduring criticisms iek makes against Deleuze in Organs without Bodies would be in the manner by which iek attens and reduces Deleuzes insight of the rhizomatic multiplicity as being at odds with itself: between a leftist counter-capitalist ideology and being decidedly apolitical. Amid the raft of charges that Deleuze is merely touting ideology, that there is a secret complicity with Hegelianism, and an uncritical admiration of Spinoza, the most serious charge for the purposes of this article is that Deleuze and Guattari somehow provide the tools necessary for corporations to bolster their legacies of global power. iek goes on to criticise the Deleuze and Guattari project indirectly, especially in dubbing Hardt and Negris Empire as a nave revision of socialism (iek 2004: 196). What is fundamentally lost in ieks accusation is contact with the esprit of A Thousand Plateaus; namely, that Deleuze and Guattari are not advancing a concrete socio-political programme, but rather are providing readers with a conceptual toolkit. For iek to make the leap to the consequences of (mis)using those conceptual tools is an exercise in speculation since it would presuppose that the tools themselves have only one possible use, which in ieks criticism would be to strengthen the hand of late capital. To be fair, this is but one of perhaps several possibilities, but as we demonstrated supra, the current operational methods of contemporary corporations like McDonalds do not and

McDeleuze: Whats More Rhizomal than the Big Mac? 57

cannot adopt Deleuze and Guattaris concepts with strict delity without endangering their earning potentials derived from hierarchical controls. If corporations like McDonalds were to make use of those tools according to the effects they would inevitably produce, the rhizomatic nature of these tools would reorganise what we understand as the multinational corporation into a model incommensurate with economic domination and control. A rhizomatic corporation would be devoid of any hierarchical structure, and would not operate according to a preset of conditions that orients its prot-accumulating activities. As well, a rhizomatic corporation would not have homogenising social effects, but would actively connect with, and produce, differences based on cultural, aesthetic, political and economic affects. We should not confuse dominant capitalist nations with their continued deindustrialisation via the exporting of labour to developing nations as an example of decentralisation since the central prot-accumulating apparatus still resides in the place of the corporations provenance. Moreover, if the corporate structure abided by a rhizomal model, there would be free and unobstructed access to all employment roles and privileges according to the principles of connectivity and heterogeneity; there would be no ladders to climb since every point of a corporate rhizome would have connective accessibility. Despite the increase in interfacing which appears to grant the worker more decision-making capacity to conduct cooperative labour as a socially interactive force, the categorical mandate of the corporation is still centred on the means by which to gain control over the worker-subject. Although more control is vested in the worker-subject through cooperative labour, the subjectivity of the worker must conform to the preconditioned set of expectations to avoid any deviations. And so, akin to Isaiah Berlins notion of negative freedom, the worker-subjects freedom is within a given set of parameters that surreptitiously conform to corporate interests. Freedom within limits acts as a kind of enclosure mechanism that assures some degree of distance control of the worker-subject. One of the added productions beyond commodities for immaterial labour in a post-Fordist economy is that of communication the social relation of information capital. The inscription of the worker-subject into a wider spectrum of the production-consumption network also has as its outcome the production of a particular kind of subjectivity as a goal. This kind of subjectivity differs from the variety that is generally perceived as celebratory of free choice: it is a subjectivity that grants the illusion of self-mastery through choices that still must come to the same result (if A must go to B, the creative worker can devise any method

58 Kane X. Faucher
so long as B is reached). It is also the variety of subjectivity that, rather than becoming enslaved to the machine, one is instead subjected to it. As well, the new subjectivity belonging to immaterial labour proper still abstracts from the individual, still reduces that worker to a knowledge capital dispensary in a relay network that is governed by an overarching set of corporate ends. The value of the knowledge that enters into this relay is judged on how well it advances the goals of corporate efciency, imposing a system of valuation even upon the dissemination and cooperation of information relayed in a labour network. What remains in current corporate trends, as exemplied by McDonalds, and despite the movement towards decentralising corporate networks, is that the appearance of the rhizome is just that: an appearance. Contemporary capitalism by whichever name we give it vector, cognitive, network, grounded theory still plays a predominant role in the shaping of subjectivity on behalf of subjects, even if the methods are clandestine. A rhizomal corporation, if such a thing could ever exist, would be a multiplicity, would allow the component labour within it to develop according to its own cartography rather than have a tracing imposed upon it. iek makes two critical mistakes in his reading of Deleuze. First, he reads Deleuze as pro-capitalist, which assumes Deleuze is valorising capital rather than explaining some of its tendencies without making valuations that have no place in a conceptual project. From there, iek imputes a variety of consequences that would result from a particular application of such concepts. Second, ieks understanding of the rhizome appears awed given that a true application of the rhizome to multinational corporations will prove incommensurate to the existing structure of either. Instead, what we may be left with are corporate trends that borrow representations construed from these concepts to further their own agendas. What our McDonalds example demonstrated and what presumably a similar study on other multinational corporations would as well is that a representation of a rhizome is not a rhizome, but just another apparatus of capture.

1. One deleterious use of deterritorialisation and recoding of ows, albeit not with full delity to the way Deleuze and Guattari employ these terms, has been in the way Wal-Mart has utilised predatory pricing to ensure a zone of commercial control in any given area that it captures. 2. Aside from the ambiguous subject this statement alludes to, there appears to be a quiet equivalence between social responsibility and corporate citizenship.

McDeleuze: Whats More Rhizomal than the Big Mac? 59

3. Nested in this statement is a rather non-environmental consideration: the contentious use and encouragement of drive-thrus. Recently, McDonalds partnered with Sinopec, Chinas second-largest oil producer, to promote and encourage the use of personal motor vehicles at its restaurant locations in East Asia. This corporate partnership adds substance to the seemingly odd use of the word relevant in relation to drive-thrus. 4. This quantity = quality distinction is an insight formulated by George Ritzers book The McDonaldization of Society (1993), wherein he also isolates three other McDonalds characteristics such as uniformity, calculability and a very narrow denition of efciency. 5. This claim is drawn from Deleuzes occasional comparisons between cancer and capitalism as well as McMurtrys seminal article The Cancer Stage of Capitalism. I make an attempt to clarify this distinction a bit further in Transcendent and Immanent Capital in Azimute (2004: online).

Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari [1980] (1987) A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, trans. Brian Massumi, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari [1990] (1994) What is Philosophy?, trans. Hugh Tomlinson and Graham Burchell, New York: Columbia University Press. Hardt, Michael and Antonio Negri (2000) Empire, Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Skinner, Jim and Charles Bell (2004) Corporate Responsibility Report 2004. http://www.mcdonalds.com/corp/values/socialrespons/sr_report.html (accessed 27 December 2009). iek, Slavoj (2004) Organs without Bodies: Deleuze and Consequences, London: Routledge.

DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000796

Forum Introduction: Sense, Sensation and Deleuzes Transcendental Empiricism

Peter Hertz-Ohmes, Leyla Haferkamp, Arno Bhler

The three papers in this forum were independently presented at the Second Deleuze Studies Conference in Cologne, August 2009. That they belonged together was quickly recognised. Each author focuses on the interplay of sense and sensation as the crux of Deleuzes transcendental empiricism. But note that each author takes the interplay as primary. Only given the interplay can it propose to the philosopher Deleuze possible approaches to its workings. Thus in all three papers sense and sensation are outcomes, just as transcendental empiricism is an outcome. All three papers, already familiar with Deleuze, work back in order to work forward. Sense and sensation, as well as their logics, turn out to be provisional as only one way of reaching another goal, something that makes all this effort worthwhile. But as long as these concepts happen to be available at the moment, they suggest the following assertions: Sense without concomitant sensation is void, and sensation without correlative sense is totally indistinct. Yet there has never been a need to start from scratch. The differential material of sensation is always already immanent, although for the most part not actualised, and the fractal, self-organisational equipment of sense is also always already immanent, even if for the most part virtual and unrealised. Humans are condemned or privileged to enter at birth into a fully furnished, fully interpreted world. The majority takes this world for granted. Many opt out, hoping for a better deal elsewhere. But a few afrm their existence by choosing to live again to the fullest the human condition as it has been passed down to them, afrming through selfeffacement a truly sensational world in every possible sense that can be made to shine through them with the splendid impersonality of a fourth person singular. Fourth person singulars constitute a manifold of centres in an eccentric world. All together they are one but each is unique, different

Forum Introduction


from all the others. Each is a monad, a life, what in the present world takes form as the materialised sense of a life: not biography but Event. Baumgarten may not have been an exciting writer or a major philosopher, and he hardly rates a readable biography, but through him shines the inspiration of an aesthetics that gave impetus to a rebellious Romanticism. Nietzsche may have been a loner and a mist who overstated his ideas because no one listened, but through him shines the heat of a revelation whose political consequences continue to play out against an all-consuming, consumption-oriented nihilism. And what about Deleuze himself? What shines through Deleuze is the active acceptance of the role he as actor must assume together with his immanent director not so much to ensure the integrity of his own works but to challenge the self-serving parochialism of so much institutional philosophy. Forums like this are meant to put some spark into the philosophy business. The authors welcome feedback.

DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000802

Analogon Rationis: Baumgarten, Deleuze and the Becoming Girl of Philosophy

Leyla Haferkamp

University of Cologne, Cologne

Baumgartens Enlightenment Aesthetica provides an important philosophical analogon to Deleuzes alignment of the logic of sense and the logic of sensation. By linking serious reason with its other, frivolous feeling, the book greatly inuenced Herder and the Romantic movement. Baumgarten called aesthetics logics younger sister. Like Deleuze he propagates nothing less than the becoming-girl of philosophy. Keywords: aesthetics, feeling, Enlightenment philosophy, becomingother, Baumgarten, Deleuze
Reason is a kind of feeling. (Deleuze 1991: 30)

Seen in retrospect, Alexander Gottlieb Baumgarten (171462) is no doubt one of the minor gures in the syllabus of eighteenth-century German philosophy. This is probably not much of a surprise given that he died at the age of 48 without having completed his most signicant book Aesthetica and wrote almost exclusively in Latin. Aesthetica, for instance, was translated into German in its entirety only two years ago, and, chronologically speaking, it was literally stuck somewhere between Leibniz and Kant. Baumgarten, however, was not only a rigorous logician in the Wolfan tradition of mid-eighteenth-century Germany; not only an eminent analyst as Kant called him in Critique of Pure Reason (Kant 2003: 22n). Kant, in fact, is known to have used Baumgartens Metaphysica (1739) as the basis of many a lecture in Knigsberg, but Baumgarten was also a poet who wrote verses in Latin on a daily basis. In an early piece entitled Meditationes philosophicae de nonnullis ad poema pertinentibus [Philosophical Meditations on Some Requirements of the Poem], he combined these two interests in a rst theory of sensibility, the prototype of what he would later establish as the rst systematic theory of aesthetics.

Analogon Rationis 63
The attempt to align the philosophy of Baumgarten, whose work is often associated with the rigid rationalism of the Wolfan tradition, with that of Gilles Deleuze, whose writings contain no direct reference to Baumgartens work, may at rst glance seem far-fetched. There are, however, parallels between the two philosophers, especially when the focus is set on the aspect of aesthetic intervention. In other words, the way Baumgarten invents aesthetics as a philosophical category makes him one of the precursors of Deleuzian philosophy. What relates Baumgarten and Deleuze in general is their aim to strengthen the link between life and thought from within a philosophical framework that involves seemingly incompatible systems of logic. In particular, this afnity lies in their mutual interest in depicting the interrelations between sense and sensation. As such, Baumgartens work provides an important historical analogon to Deleuzes alignment of the logic of sense with the logic of sensation and to his development of a topology of complementarity. As the bold attempt to lend sensation its own logical parameters, Baumgartens Aesthetica, based on lectures held between 1750 and 1758, has served to establish aesthetics as a philosophical discipline in its own right, thus marking a turning point in the philosophy of the Enlightenment. It is in this book, categorically dismissed by Kant as the disappointed hope . . . of subjecting the criticism of the beautiful to principles of reason, and so of elevating its rules to a science, that Baumgarten is at his most radical (Kant 2003: 22n). The Neo-Kantian philosopher Ernst Cassirer, who dedicates a considerable amount of space to Baumgartens two-fold model in his Philosophy of the Enlightenment, reverses the Kantian verdict and acknowledges Baumgartens decisive historical merit as truly vernunftskritisch. [H]is real intellectual accomplishment, Cassirer writes,
consists in the fact that through his mastery of the subject he became especially conscious of both the intrinsic and the systematic limitations of formal logic. As a result of his consciousness of these limitations, Baumgarten was able to make his original contribution to the history of thought, which lay in the philosophical foundation of aesthetics . . . Thus aesthetics evolves from logic, but this evolution discloses the immanent weakness of traditional scholastic logic. (Cassirer 1955: 3389)

To have invented aesthetics as an independent discipline is, in fact, Baumgartens major contribution to philosophical discourse. One should note, however, that at its moment of inception aesthetics was much more inclusive than the philosophical investigation of art and beauty, to which it tends to be narrowed down today. With

64 Leyla Haferkamp
aesthetics, Baumgarten developed nothing less than a general theory of sensibility with its own gnoseological faculty that produces a specic kind of knowledge. His aesthetics was a theory claiming epistemological relevance for sensual perception. Along these lines, the rst section of Aesthetica delivers a programmatic denition of the new science that dees the traditional categories of thought: Aesthetics (as a theory of the liberal arts, as inferior cognition, as the art of beautiful thinking and as the art of thinking analogous to reason) is the science of sensible cognition [Aesthetica (theoria liberalium artium, gnoseologia inferior, ars pulcre cogitandi, ars analogi rationis) est scientia cognitionis sensitivae] (Baumgarten 2007a: 1, my translation). With the primary aim to integrate aesthetics into the realm of rational thought as the analogon rationis, Baumgarten draws extensively upon Leibnizian epistemology, which he modies to serve as the basis of the new science of sensible cognition. Not only does he emphasise the interconnections between the gnoseologia superior of the sensemaking ratio and the gnoseologia inferior of sensation, but, even more importantly, he also underscores their genetic unity, which he regards as grounded in the dark recesses of the fundus animae. In Aesthetica, the fundus animae gures as the source of all kinds of perception, a domain that is of interest to psychology though it is largely neglected by philosophy itself; it contains that which remains forgotten, unconscious and unpredictable (Baumgarten 2007a: 80). A general denition of the fundus animae is provided in Metaphysica: The soul has dark perceptions. As a whole, these perceptions form the foundation of the soul (Baumgarten 2004: 511). Despite all its obscurity, however, the fundus does not lack truth. What is abstraction, if not a loss? Baumgarten asks, noting that the notion of fallibility and the very dichotomy of true vs. false are produced not by dark perception but by rational abstraction (Baumgarten 2007a: 560). Despite resonances in terminology and approach, Baumgartens and Deleuzes theories of the sensible are, needless to say, anything but identical. A conceptual afnity, however, can be detected in Difference and Repetition when Deleuze refers, without mentioning Baumgartens name, to the founding moment of aesthetics:
It is strange that aesthetics (as the science of the sensible) could be founded on what can be represented in the sensible. True, the inverse procedure is not much better, consisting of the attempt to withdraw the pure sensible from representation and to determine it as that which remains once representation is removed (a contradictory ux, for example, or a rhapsody

Analogon Rationis 65
of sensations). Empiricism truly becomes transcendental and aesthetics an apodictic discipline, only when we apprehend directly in the sensible that which can only be sensed, the very being of the sensible: difference, potential difference and difference in intensity as the reason behind qualitative diversity. (Deleuze 1994: 567)

Despite its anthropocentric tendency that sets it apart from Deleuzian philosophy, Baumgartens aesthetics will have intervened in the philosophical discourse of his time with a force comparable to the intervention that Deleuze has made in twentieth-century philosophy. Baumgarten aimed at maintaining the balance between the rational and the sensual and set the emphasis on the transitions between the two, the superior cognition of rationality and the so-called inferior cognition of sensuality. Already Leibniz, in his Discourse on Metaphysics (1686), had addressed the inferior domain, the domain of confused knowledge as opposed to distinct knowledge, as the mode of knowledge specic to art: When I can recognise one thing among others without being able to say what its differences or properties consist in, Leibniz wrote, my knowledge is confused. In this way we sometimes know clearly, without being in anyway in doubt, whether a poem or a painting is good or bad, because there is a certain je ne sais quoi which pleases or offends us (Leibniz 1998a: 24). In Baumgartens context, this inferior faculty does not simply receive a pejorative label for its less valuable and hence less favourable status; its inferiority is, rather, suggestive of a spatial model that renders sensation the crucial underlying layer of the superior faculty of sense. Baumgartens modication of Leibnizian thought consists in his integration of the seemingly awed inferior faculty into the philosophical discipline of aesthetics as its unique mode of cognition. In fact, the confused cognition of sensuality becomes the one and only true link between the two ends of the spectrum, that is the level of rational knowledge on the one hand and the obscure level of what Deleuze would later call, in direct reference to Leibniz, unconscious micro-perceptions on the other. Aesthetics originates in medias res to establish the connections between the rational and the irrational:
One could say that confusion is the mother of error. My answer to this is: it is a necessary condition for the discovery of truth, because nature does not make leaps from obscurity to distinction. Out of the night dawn leads to noon . . . We do not recommend confusion, but rather the amendment of cognition insofar as a necessary amount of confused cognition is mixed into it. (Baumgarten 2007a: 7, my translation)

66 Leyla Haferkamp
Interestingly, this sounds much like an echo avant la lettre of Deleuze and Guattaris statement: To be present at the dawn of the world. Such is the link between imperceptibility, indiscernibility, and impersonality the three virtues (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 280). Baumgartens notion of virtue is, no doubt, still closely related to the anthropological integrity of the individual (Baumgarten 2007a: 7). This integrity, however, can only be attained if one explores the domains beyond the connes of the res cogitans, and it is for this reason that Baumgarten attempts to establish the link to the inferior depths of consciousness, despite all the challenges posed to rational reasoning. Via the analogon rationis, a faculty that is at once analogous to and decidedly different from the ratio itself, he paves the way for the becoming aesthetic of reason. Deleuze, in his reading of Humes A Treatise on Human Nature, draws attention to Humes interest in
the problems of animal psychology, perhaps because the animal is nature without culture: the principles act upon its mind, but their only effect is a simple effect. Not having general rules, being held by the instinct to the actual, lacking any stable fancy and reective procedures, the animal also lacks history. This is precisely the problem: how to explain that in the case of humanity, culture and history are constituted in the way that the fancy is re-established, through the resonance of affections within the mind. How can we explain the union of the most frivolous and the most serious?. (Deleuze 1991: 60)

From the Deleuzian perspective, if we consider Baumgartens project as an attempt to conjoin the most frivolous and the most serious, we should note that he does so by setting the analogon rationis between the two realms. What is addressed by the term is less an analogical similarity to reason than an ongoing correspondence between Reason and its Other. Already placed by Christian Wolff in the rubric of empirical psychology (Wolff 1968: 506), the term analogon rationis originates from the domain of animal psychology, and is mentioned as such in Leibnizs Monadology (1714) (Leibniz 1998b: 26, 28). Hence, Baumgartens use of the syntagm in the context of human sensual cognition not only emphasises the human beings hitherto neglected instinctive heritage, it also renders rationality complementary to the realm of the irrational. Thus, the aesthetic intervention brings about, in a very Deleuzian way, the becoming animal of the man of reason. Furthermore, in order to underscore the clear yet confused character of sensible cognition, Baumgarten makes use of the term haecceitas

Analogon Rationis 67
(haecceity), which he borrows from Duns Scotus. Unlike quidditas, by way of which the given object is rendered part of a typology, haecceity, following the dictum Haecceitas est singularitas, addresses that singular property which lends something its individual difference. Baumgarten employs this term to emphasise the immediacy of aesthetic cognition, an immediacy that sets it apart from the superior faculty which, in order to attain clear and distinct perceptions, constantly engages in series of intermediate operations based upon reexion and abstraction (Baumgarten 2007b: 755). Baumgartens haecceity is not unlike Emily Dickinsons certain slant of light, the unique yet inexplicable property that constitutes the driving force behind what he calls impetus aestheticus and its ability to incite vehement affects (Baumgarten 2007a: 78). In the case of Deleuze and Guattari, the concept of haecceity is used in a novel sense that does away with forms and subjects, in the sense of an individuation which is not that of an object, nor of a person, but rather of an event (wind, river, day or even hour of the day) (Deleuze and Parnet 2002: 155, translators note), or as a mode of individuation very different from that of a person, subject, thing, or substance (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 261). While forms and subjects belong to the plane of organisation, haecceities, modest and microscopic (Deleuze 1995: 141), are pre-personal intensities that circulate the plane of consistency, where it is the entire assemblage in its individuated aggregate that is a haecceity (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 262). Interestingly, in the Deleuzian context it is the girl that is the very epitome of haecceity:
The girl is certainly not dened by virginity; she is dened by a relation of movement and rest, speed and slowness, by a combination of atoms, an emission of particles: haecceity. She never ceases to roam upon a body without organs. She is an abstract line, or a line of ight. Thus girls do not belong to an age group, sex, order, or kingdom: they slip in everywhere, between orders, acts, ages, sexes; they produce n molecular sexes on the line of ight in relation to the dualism machines they cross right through. The only way to get outside the dualisms is to be-between, to pass between, the intermezzo. (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 2767, emphasis added)

In Aesthetica, the analogon rationis that crosses right through also corresponds to the gure of the girl insofar as Baumgarten refers to aesthetics as logics younger sister (Baumgarten 2007a: 13). The analogy connotes on the one hand both the frivolity and the vivacity of aesthetics as opposed to the seriousness of formal logic, and on the other hand it highlights the genetic relation between the sensual and the rational.

68 Leyla Haferkamp
As Deleuzian philosophy seeks the reversal of the relationship of the rational and the sensual, according to which the superior faculty evolves from the inferior depths, the younger sister becomes, in actual fact, the older one. Thus Deleuzian philosophy retains its share of the obscure and the confused, just as it always retains something of the chaos of the plane of immanence in its concepts (Deleuze and Guattari 2003: 118). Baumgartens work is a rst moment in the reversal of the relation between sense and sensation, a moment that would become a seminal impulse for German romantic thought, whose importance for Deleuze is not yet charted with enough precision. Baumgartens aesthetic experiment stands at the beginning of a movement that feels and acknowledges the birth of philosophy from aesthetics. After all, Johann Gottfried Herders praise of Baumgarten, which posits the rationalist philosopher as the precursor of the (romantic) tendencies aimed at thwarting the rationalistic doctrines of the Enlightenment, could easily apply to Deleuzian philosophy, as the mode of thought concentrating on the in-between of sense and sensation:
The human soul lies before him, in its sensuous that is, its most effectual and vivid parts, like an enormous ocean that even in its calmest moments seems full of waves that are lifted up to heaven: there I place you, O philosopher of feeling, as on a high rock jutting out amid the waves. Now gaze down into the dark abyss of the human soul, where the sensations of the brute shade into the sensations of man, and as it were commingle with the soul from afar; gaze down into the abyss of obscure thoughts, from which there subsequently arise drives and emotions and pleasure and pain. Place the feeling of beauty where it belongs: between the angel and the animal, between the perfection of the innite and the sensuous, vegetal gratication of cattle. [. . .] If you know the workshops of my animal spirits, then show me the spirit of beauty that courses through my veins [. . .]; show me beauty instead of conviction and reason and truth. Show me how the impressions in my sense organs become images in my soul, how my imagination pours rapture into my veins and that very moment weaves a mist around my faculty of reason. (Herder 2006: 44)

Baumgarten, Alexander Gottlieb (2004 [1739]) Metaphysik, trans. Georg Friedrich Meier, Jena: Schleglmann. Baumgarten, Alexander Gottlieb (2007a [17508]) sthetik I (latein/deutsch), trans. Dagmar Mirbach, Hamburg: Felix Meiner Verlag. Baumgarten, Alexander Gottlieb (2007b [17508]) sthetik II (latein/deutsch), trans. Dagmar Mirbach, Hamburg: Felix Meiner Verlag.

Analogon Rationis 69
Cassirer, Ernst (1955) The Philosophy of Enlightenment, trans. Fritz C. A. Koelln and James P. Pettegrove, Boston: Beacon Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1991) Empiricism and Subjectivity, trans. Constantin V. Boundas, New York: Columbia University Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1994) Difference and Repetition, trans. Paul Patton, New York: Columbia University Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1995) Negotiations: 19721990, trans. Martin Joughin, New York: Columbia University Press. Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari (1987) A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, trans. Brian Massumi, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari (2003) What is Philosophy?, trans. Graham Burchell and Hugh Tomlinson, London: Verso. Deleuze, Gilles and Claire Parnet (2002) Dialogues II, trans. Graham Burchell and Hugh Tomlinson, New York: Columbia University Press. Herder, Johann Gottfried (2006 [1767]) A Monument to Baumgarten, in Selected Writings in Aesthetics, ed. and trans. Gregory Moore, Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, pp. 4150. Kant, Immanuel (2003 [1781, 1787]) Critique of Pure Reason, trans. M. D. Meiklejohn, Mineola, NY: Dover Publications. Leibniz, Gottfried Wilhelm (1998a [1686]) Discourse on Metaphysics, in Philosophical Texts, ed. and trans. R. S. Woolhouse and Richard Francks, New York: Oxford University Press, pp. 5393. Leibniz, Gottfried Wilhelm (1998b [1714]) Monadology, in Philosophical Texts, ed. and trans. R. S. Woolhouse and Richard Francks, New York: Oxford University Press, pp. 26781. Wolff, Christian (1968 [1732]) Christiani Wolfi Psychologia Empirica, Hildesheim: Olms.

DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000814

The Time of Drama in Nietzsche and Deleuze: A Life as Performative Interaction

Arno Bhler

Universitt Wien, Wien

Nietzsches model of eternal return triggers a drama of afrmation, the overcoming of a simple miming of our ancestors in favour of an active participation in the counter-actualisation of hidden potentials in recurrent events. Based on a close study of Zarathustras struggle to free himself from a suffocating nihilism, the paper focuses on the revelatory caesura that ushers in what Deleuze calls the third synthesis of time, a time of doing rather than reection. Keywords: Zarathustra, eternal return, caesura, syntheses of time, drama, Deleuze
After all, since we are the products of earlier generations, we are also the products of their aberrations, passions, mistakes, and even crimes. It is impossible to loosen oneself from this chain entirely. Even if we condemn those aberrations and consider ourselves released from them, we have not yet overcome the fact that we are derived from them. (Nietzsche 1999a: 270, my translation)

This passage by Friedrich Nietzsche, from his second untimely investigation On the Use and Abuse of History for Life, gives us a clue regarding what it means to become a living being. A life starts precisely with the performance of an act of repetition. It comes not with some repetition of the future in which the man without qualities reveals the vastness and joyful brilliance of the empty form of time on the plane of immanence, but in reproducing unconsciously the shades of ones ancestors by simply becoming their bodily double. Every singular mode of existence owes his or her life in the rst place to the fact that one entity has started to repeat another and this not by will or reection,

The Time of Drama in Nietzsche and Deleuze


but via the performance of what Deleuze has called, in accordance with Husserl, a passive synthesis, a way of acting that is performed IN DEED in a pre-reective, unconscious manner before one is even aware of what one is actually doing as one is performing it, this act, this IT. Repeating others in such a mode is precisely how acting the drama of a life begins. Since I never existed before this act, but am rather produced by and through its performance, it, this particular IT that has created me at the very onset of my life is perforce the transcendental eld of a pre-individual essence. It is an unconscious activity that has started to create me rather than I having created IT. Even when one condemns this mode of repetition later on, after one has started to exist, the fact that one derives from it is not annihilated or stopped by simply deciding not to repeat it, this IT, anymore in the future. At best, Nietzsche continues,
we bring the matter to a conict between our inherited customary nature and our knowledge. [. . .] We cultivate a new habit, a new instinct, a second nature, so that the rst nature atrophies. It is an attempt to give oneself, as it were, a past a posteriori, out of which we may be descended in opposition to the one from which we are descended. (Nietzsche 1999a: 270)

Perhaps, Nietzsche writes, one begins to repeat ones ancestors differently in ones own life by cultivating new habits and different instincts, in short, by cultivating a second nature arising from the performance of deconstructing ones inherited past. Culture, in these terms, is a word that indicates nothing less than the gap between two forms of nature: a rst and a second one, divided and fractured in two parts by the occurrence of a powerful resistance, resisting the simple reproduction of a past tense, so that the repetition of ones IT gets out of joint and thereby becomes agonistic in itself. This fractured self longs for me to be recovered by transforming it, this wounded IT, by transforming IT into a more promising one, a more promising future. In the very beginning of a life, that life usually does not stay in contact with itself in an exuberant way. One is rather used to live ones life as if one were not alive at all. Being just the medium of ones ancestors, ones life simply mimes ones heritage over and over again. In such a bad form of dramatising ones life, one lives as those who taught one how to live. Zarathustra regards the animalistic existence of his animals as barrel organs and buffoons, taking place even where one should nally let go of the same old fables in order to regenerate them anew. It is not a question of relapse but rather one of regeneration, a call to perform the

72 Arno Bhler
third synthesis of time, that temporality in which one is actually on the way to recover from a poisonous cultural beating, ready to counter-sign life again, once and for all, over and over again. Amor fati.

I. Caesura The Time of a Drama

In Deleuze, as well as in Nietzsche, culture does not at all start with a social contract but, with the event of a traumatic caesura, a global hit, responsible for the shattering of our IT. Deleuze says,
The caesura . . . must be determined in the image of a unique and tremendous event, an act which is adequate to time as a whole. [. . .] Such a symbol adequate to the totality of a time [that causes an entire world to pass away], may be expressed in many ways: to throw time out of joint, to make the sun explode, to throw oneself into the volcano, to kill God or the father. (Deleuze 1994: 89)

Clearly this is a dramatic situation, in which the unfolding of time itself reaches a point where it longs for an epochal change: a nadir or zero point (Nullpunkt) in time in which the image of the totality of time is torn into two unequal parts (Deleuze 1994: 89). The rst part signies the totality of time that passes away and the second one, announced already by the taking place of a caesura, makes the simple reproduction of the world, as it passes away, impossible in the future. In effect, Deleuze writes,
there is always a time at which the imagined act is supposed too big for me. This denes a priori the past or the before [. . .]. The second time, which relates to the caesura itself, is thus the present of metamorphosis, a becoming-equal to the act and a doubling of the self, and the projection of an ideal self in the image of the act [. . .]. (Deleuze 1994: 89)

The temporality of a drama is precisely that becoming in which a singular mode of existence is forced to counter-sign its life by rejecting the simple reproduction of an offered past. That past simply does not appear promising anymore for the subject called to accept it that is to mime and full it as the bodily agent of its survival. In such a case the promise, promised by ones ancestors, indeed fails, because the passive affections, transferences of joyful sentiments, in fact no longer come about. One is no longer kissed by the kiss of the muses, the messengers of joy, so that the demand to stay within a given promise has lost its promise. It is this lack of joy, the impotence of the given promise to stimulate us anymore, that actually enforces our power to refuse it, even

The Time of Drama in Nietzsche and Deleuze


though we are not yet sure what this resistance and caesura will bring to us. In this sense, history is theatre: the action of historical actors or agents becomes a spontaneous repetition of an old role. . . . It is the revolutionary crisis, the compelled striving for something entirely new (Rosenberg in Deleuze 1994: 91). The becoming equal to the entirely new that is announcing itself in the event of a caesura longs for modes of existence able and ready to afrm the global challenge of a worldwide change, even if such fractured modes know that such a task is too big for them. Yet historical agents are often not capable of doing what they have already been called to do: to counter-sign their fate to overcome their rst nature in order to transform it into a second, more stimulating one. O Zarathustra, your fruit is ripe, but you are not ripe for your fruit. Thus you must return to your solitude again (Nietzsche 1995: 147). The drama of Zarathustra precisely bridges two striking events. The rst is the bitter, poisonous moment in which the monster of nihilism has crawled into Zarathustras throat. The second is the moment of his recovery, in which he becomes capable himself of afrming his own, most abysmal thought: the doctrine of the eternal return of the same. Here is a new and paradoxical promise, one able to render him the means to defeat the doctrine of European nihilism that he, Zarathustra himself, has inhaled in his youth. To become equal to his fate to be the teacher of the eternal return of the same, Zarathustra rst has to conquer the inability of his own soul to desire its own return eternally, once and for all. In the beginning of the drama of his life he himself revolted against the doctrine of his most abysmal thought, which initially came to him as a daemon or monster rather than as a stimulating promise. At this time his soul still resembled more the conceptual persona of the truth-seeker whom he had met in his youth and heard once say: All is empty, all is the same, all has been! (Nietzsche 1995: 133). Hearing this doctrine, Zarathustra himself was overwhelmed with an enormous sadness and exhaustion, as was the crowd who had gathered around the augur and heard him speak of life in such a manner. The best grew weary of their works (Nietzsche 1995: 133). This speech of the soothsayer had something infectious in it. No one could effectively deny the illocutionary force of its words. Even Zarathustra himself was so infected by the speech that he walked about sad and weary; and thereby became like those of whom the soothsayer had spoken (Nietzsche 1995: 134). Although Zarathustra had meanwhile learned that the words of the augur were merely fable-songs, the self-fullling prophecy had at the

74 Arno Bhler
time become word and remained stuck in his throat. This prevented him still from taking the all-decisive step, which would have cut the head off his disgust with life and freed him from his melancholy. Even if he was not yet capable of completely digesting the bite of the poisonous words which had subdued him at the time, at least Zarathustra wanted to prevent his own friends and followers from being infected by the poisonous saying. I led you away from these fables, Zarathustra continued: when I taught you the will is a creator. All it was is a fragment, a riddle, a dreadful accident until the creative will says to it But thus I willed it. Until the creative will says to it But thus I will it; thus shall I will it (Nietzsche 1995: 141).

II. Remembering the Empty Form of Time Amor Fati

In reference to Deleuzes text Difference and Repetition (1994), Giorgio Agamben rightly reminds us that a lively interaction with the transferred heritage of a certain history is therefore not just about remembering the past in order to prevent it from being forgotten. Rather, the potentiality of an act of remembrance lies in an act of regenerative remembering, which, during the process of recollection, is posthumously returning a future to a past and thereby gives unfullled possibility back to a past. Such a creative, artistic remembering restores possibility to a past, making what happened incomplete and completing what never was. Remembrance is neither what happened nor what did not happen but, rather, their potentialization, their becoming possible once again (Agamben 1999: 267). A history in the service of life a topos that Nietzsche early on afrmed (Nietzsche 1999a: 243334) will therefore not be satised with having dealt with the transmission of a historical heritage only in historical-critical perspective. Rather it will be about a plastic interaction with history, in which our transmissions are treated primarily as the material of synthetic-performative processes. It will not just be about stating and staging that which was, in performing its historical replay over and over again, but about the performative interaction with that which has been transmitted to us as a fragment, a riddle, a dreadful accident (Nietzsche 1995: 141), as Zarathustra says, in order to deal with it in multiple fragmentary ways. Zarathustra has to become ripe to experience this stimulating yet paradoxical message inherent in his most abysmal thought. In addition, if Zarathustra wants to do justice to his fate IN DEED and present a polyphonic expression of his teachings on the eternal recurrence of the same, then he needs to acquire a new and

The Time of Drama in Nietzsche and Deleuze


sensitive lyre which will allow him to transmit the nuances and the abyss of his teachings to those who have an ear for such unheard-of truths. Sing and overow, O Zarathustra, his animals advised him on his way to recovery, cure your soul with new songs that you may bear your great destiny, which has never yet been any mans destiny. For your animals know well, O Zarathustra, who you are and must become: behold, you are the teacher of the eternal recurrence. That is your destiny! (Nietzsche 1995: 220). Not yet ripe to afrm his doctrine as a third kind of knowledge in Spinozas terms, a knowledge that elates per se, Zarathustra rst has to undergo the temporality of a metamorphosis in which he himself will become adequate to this destiny. The temporality in which he will become who he is, is precisely the drama of his convalescence: the time of his acting in the drama that is his life. A life, as an act of regeneration of those handed-down forms of life, means therefore more than just being generated, more than simply to be alive. It means to perform our lives as a form of Ueberleben, a form of sur-viving while we are actually alive. This performative turn within a life is exactly the unstable, revolutionary, a priori moment at work IN a life. Every inherited habit, every schema, every type of action now becomes a dis-position, a form that can be simultaneously deconstructed and regenerated anew. Deleuze calls this stage the third synthesis of time: the critical time in the drama of a life in which a hero or heroine in revolt has to become capable of matching his or her own destiny. In this dramatic stage of a life, one literally has to prepare to counter-sign and endorse ones fate, to embrace the caesura in the double afrmation of a singular amor fati, and conrm that afrmation IN DEED once and for all. Zarathustras recovery obviously was not just about repairing the functionality of the already existing strings and chambers of his disposition in order to cure his chronic malaise of being infected by the destructive force of Christianity as he experienced it on its deadend road towards what he identied as European nihilism. The drama of his recovery was not just about repairing old strings and rotten instruments, but about the regeneration of his entire sensual sensorium. We are talking about the entire repertoire of his senses to which he can momentarily refer, and thus the whole way in which his feelings of being touched, inspired and moved by the world are perceived, prereectively understood through passive synthesis and nally interpreted pre-ontologically. All this is at stake in the process of his recovery. The feelings that are still created by mechanical recourse to the existing

76 Arno Bhler
chambers of his disposition have to be reconsidered anew, they have to be checked for the temper of their constitution, sensitively reviewed, and if necessary synthetically expanded, emotionally transformed, supplemented, completed and therefore constitutively reworked. For this reason a regenerative act is not just a recursive act by means of which one can simply refer, retentionally, to already existing chambers of ones disposition in order to use them for the umpteenth time. For if this happened, then this would just be a mechanical performance of feeling, nothing more than the production of a clich of emotion in which we habitually react to sensory impulses with this or that affective pattern. The contemporaneousness of the current situation would then not be taken into consideration; it would not be felt and experienced. Deleuze calls it
struggling on the one hand against Habitus, on the other against Mnemosyne; [. . .] refusing the overly simple cycles, the one followed by a habitual present (customary cycle) as much as the one described by a pure past (memorial or immemorial cycle). (Deleuze 1994: 94)

Not just this or that organ, to which Zarathustra up until now has had recourse, but the way he uses his entire sensitive sensorium is therefore at risk during the course of his convalescence. Interrupting the habitual habitus of his soul, so that the execution of emotional acts is examined during their execution and perhaps thereby ennobled and renewed: that is the recipe which not only Gilles Deleuze but also Zarathustra recommends in order to regenerate their emotional existence. Throughout the new instrumentation of his soul, Zarathustra thus was not only concerned with the composition of new songs and the creation of a new lyre, but he was also forced to immunise himself against all those who are used to translate every new song immediately into the same old recurring melody.

III. On Well-known Melodies and New Songs

As Zarathustra says on the way to his own dramatic convalescence, in order to do justice to the lives of others who were medially transferred to him in the act of his birth and therefore became his fate for his own way of life, he rst and foremost needs new songs. The old songs have become too dmod to reach him any longer. Do not speak on! his animals answered him again, rather even, O convalescent, fashion yourself a lyre rst, a new lyre! For behold, Zarathustra, new lyres are needed for your new songs (Nietzsche 1995: 220).

The Time of Drama in Nietzsche and Deleuze


Therefore it comes as no surprise that Zarathustras animals also speak of his teaching in a tone of voice that gives it the ring of a well-known melody: There will be a great year of becoming, they say, a monster of a great year, which just like a sand clock always has to be turned upside down again, so that it may run down and run out again, and all the years are alike in what is greatest as in what is smallest (Nietzsche 1995: 220). Fate catches up with every creature, and after a long cosmic minute it will be reawakened to life and the external circumstances will be repeated, so that it has to live the same life again that it has already led many times, and will live again in the future (Nietzsche 1995: 21718). This is how Zarathustras animals spoke to him on that morning, making a pretence of having spoken of him and his most abysmal thoughts. O you buffoons and barrel organs! Zarathustra replied and smiled again. How well you know what had to be fullled in seven days, and how that monster crawled down my throat and suffocated me. But I bit off its head and spewed it out. And you, have you already made a hurdy-gurdy song of this? But now I lie here, still weary of this biting and spewing, still sick from my own redemption. And you watched all this? (Nietzsche 1995: 218). While Zarathustra freed himself with a resolute bite from the historic burden of his own it was that beast, about whom he said that it smothered him with a great weariness his animals merely watched this dramatic display, almost as if they did not have any historic burden that strangled them. Almost as if the notion of the eternal recurrence of the same did not burden or bother them at all in their own animalistic existence. Almost as if they, his animals, could tolerate this idea without being ashamed of the eternal return of their own animalistic existence. Nothing in his teachings seemed to be painful for them. On the contrary, they make us believe that some of his teachings correspond to their own animalistic nature, which does not seem to know any resentful misgivings about their own lives. For the majority of human beings, however, Zarathustras teachings appear to be hard to digest. This is the sore spot that marks the decisive difference between the animalistic and the human interpretation of his teachings. For while animals have a right to interpret the eternal return of the same as a cosmic event in which their own life is fatefully entangled and fatally embedded, for human destinies it is proper to interpret the same event as the chance of a concrete challenge that all human beings need to face, give their own signature to, and hence have to engage in as long as they are alive. Zarathustras phrase the eternal

78 Arno Bhler
recurrence of the same is for humans never just a fatal truth, but rather a type of guiding principle (Leitsatz), which humans should not simply believe or treat as a given fact, but should cope with as something that has to be reciprocated in practice, that is to say, considered bad or good, cursed or agreed upon, wanted or refused. Only after a person has already chosen to make Zarathustras concept of the eternal recurrence of the same the maxim (Leitsatz) of his or her own life is such a person enforced to internalise it as the governing principle guiding his or her soul. The sensitive application of the teaching of the eternal recurrence of the same to an individual existence, as an act of maximisation and intensication of ones liveliness, is a re-creation of pre-existing dispositions in a living creature and clearly not just an act with a purely descriptive character. Rather it is a performative-synthetic act in which the contemporary dispositions of a soul are not just cited, but expanded, supplemented, re-created and creatively regenerated during the performance of such an act. Thus too the dispositions that Zarathustra confronts during the internalisation of the concept of the eternal recurrence of the same whether they concern his ability to feel, to think, to behave or to desire all these abilities cannot be merely used, cited and applied in their existing form. Rather, during the process of the internalisation of his teaching, they must be exceeded, reworked, and, if necessary, synthetically expanded and constitutionally reconstituted. In a passage that is given the title On Redemption, Zarathustra can say this about the act of redemption: To redeem those who lived in the past and to recreate all it was into a thus I willed it that alone should I call redemption (Nietzsche 1995: 139).

IV. On Redemption
To repeat what has been transmitted to us as a life what we ourselves hence did not bring forth and yet are forced to be to repeat this in such a way that we come to the point of afrming it by willing it: that alone would mean redemption for Zarathustra, since the burdensome character of the past that is thereby repeated would completely disappear and melt away in such a moment of amor fati. Once we do understand that Zarathustra, from the very beginning of his own recovery, started to cut and rene the genealogically transferred historical burden of his life in such a way that his rst nature became ennobled and puried and was made into a jewel by his life, then it is clear that Zarathustras notion of amor fati has nothing to do with a passive form of love. Since

The Time of Drama in Nietzsche and Deleuze


his reception of the life that has been transmitted to him, Zarathustras fullment of his own amor fati represents a synthetic act a priori, which Zarathustra has to perform and execute himself existentially in the course of his own genealogical becoming. Thus every living act, structurally speaking, represents a synthetic act a priori because the execution of a lively behaviour necessarily brings with it a moment of instability: the possibility of an event that leads to the restructuring of those very structures that were involved in the act from its inception.

V. The Dawn
Today, at the dawn of his convalescence, Zarathustra was nally prepared to bring the ill-tempered nature of his soul to a sudden end and to rid himself of the monster of nihilism that had overcome him. It is I or you! (Nietzsche 1995: 157) he cried out against his own melancholy. This morning Zarathustra sprang up from his bed and screamed with a dreadful voice: Up, abysmal thought, out of my depths! I am your morning cock, your dawn, you sleepyhead. Up! Up! My voice shall yet crow you awake! (Nietzsche 1995: 215). Now IT was time; now he was ready for the decisive, nal act. On this morning, a resolute Zarathustra began to plumb his souls abysses in order to hear what they had to say about his most profound thoughts. Once Zarathustra had seen a young shepherd lying on the ground, doubled over in pain because a heavy black snake had crawled into his mouth. Now, this morning, something in him cried out as well: Bite! Bite its head off! Bite! (Nietzsche 1995: 159). Not just any day had begun this morning, but rather that day over which was written the convalescent, a date which would mark the singular nadir in the life of Zarathustra. If Zarathustra wanted to recover by virtue of his own thoughts, a morning would have to come to him on which he should be prepared not just to teach others his own teachings, but also to perform them on and by himself, an act of biting, in order to free himself from the burden of his own legacy. And look, today the day has come, the day on which he will challenge his own abysses to divulge something of his most abysmal thoughts. The nal act in the drama of his convalescence should take place this morning and thus become a real event. You are stirring, stretching, wheezing? Up! Up! You shall not wheeze but speak to me. [. . .] I summon you, my most abysmal thought! (Nietzsche 1995: 21516). During the dawn of his convalescence Zarathustra dares his own anima to speak of his most abysmal thoughts. All of the life that was

80 Arno Bhler
in him should today speak to him. His most abysmal thoughts should today testify to his soul. From them he nally wants to know what they themselves have to say about his teachings. This morning it had nally come to the point where they had to show their true colours and testify to what touches them in the deepest depth. It is no longer Zarathustra who speaks to his soul in the dawn of his convalescence. Rather it is his soul that speaks to him today. Hail to me! You are coming, I hear you. My abyss speaks, I have turned my ultimate depth inside out into the light. Hail to me! Come here! Give me your hand! (Nietzsche 1995: 216). Now the doctrine, demand or law of the eternal return of a regenerating mode of repetition has nally become a stimulating one, one that does not stimulate merely our intellect as a social demand or duty but a stimulating promise that corresponds to Stendhals denition of beauty as the taking place of an unanticipated promise of luck, une promesse de bonheur (Nietzsche 1999b: 347). For the rst time Zarathustras teachings are reciprocated from the depths of his own soul. For the rst time his soul echoes him. No longer does his soul fear its own abysmal thoughts. On the contrary, today even its abysses speak to him of his abysmal thoughts. Have his teachings in the meanwhile really reached the deepest strings of his soul? Have they in the meantime really reached these depths and been desirously received in the deepest chambers of his anima? Shaken by the event that his soul reciprocated his own teachings, Zarathustra rst remained lying, pale and stricken. Seven days he needed in order to digest that which he experienced during the nal act of his convalescence. At last, after seven days, Zarathustra raised himself on his resting place, took a rose apple into his hand, smelled it, and found its fragrance lovely (Nietzsche 1995: 216).

VI. Amor Fati as an Elating Double Afrmation (Counter-Signature)

Nietzsches Zarathustra is clearly a drama, a theatrical work, writes Deleuze, summarising his theory on the drama of repetition-in-itself. The largest part of the book is taken up with the before, in the mode of a defect or of the past: this act is too big for me (Deleuze 1994: 92). The preparatory prelude of Zarathustras story culminates, according to Deleuze, in the transition from the second to the third part of the drama. In The Stillest Hour, the last section of part two, we are told

The Time of Drama in Nietzsche and Deleuze


that Zarathustra must again return to his solitude, precisely because his fruit is ripe, but he is not ripe for his fruit (Nietzsche 1995: 147). But Deleuze goes on to say, Then comes the moment of the caesura or the metamorphosis, the Sign, when Zarathustra becomes capable. Only a little later, in the second section of the third part, On the Vision and the Riddle, Zarathustras metamorphosis begins because he starts IN DEED to challenge his rst nature. Stop, dwarf! he says. It is I or you! (Nietzsche 1995: 157). The only way to free himself from his past had appeared to him in the vision and the riddle of a young shepherd writhing, gagging, in spasms, his face distorted, and a heavy black snake hung out of his mouth (Nietzsche 1995: 159). Zarathustra would have to detoxify himself from the poisonous grip of the heavy black snake of European nihilism, a monster similar to the one that had crawled down the throat of the young shepherd while he was asleep. Now the alchemic contest between the spirit of gravity (Nietzsche 1995: 158) and the performance of accessing his most abysmal thought, the thought of the eternal recurrence of the same, longs for a conclusive and decisive act. Zarathustra bites. The cut takes place. However, The third moment remains absent: this is the moment of the revelation and afrmation of eternal return (Deleuze 1994: 92). Deleuze assumes that Nietzsche did not have enough time to formulate dramatically this third stage in doing philosophy. Of course, the time after Zarathustras recovery, the smell of the rose apple and its lovely fragrance, is on the far side with respect to Nietzsches enterprise. But it is by no means out of bounds. It rather expresses his will of doing philosophy from a perspective located wholly within the scope and purview of The Use and Abuse of History for LIFE. In this sense, one can agree with Deleuze,
something completely new begins with Kierkegaard and Nietzsche. They no longer reect on the theatre in the Hegelian manner. Neither do they set up a philosophical theatre. They invent an incredible equivalent of theatre within philosophy, thereby founding simultaneously this theatre of the future and a new philosophy. (Deleuze 1994: 8)

Agamben, Giorgio (1999) Potentialities, Stanford: Stanford University Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1994) Difference & Repetition, trans. Paul Patton, New York: Columbia University Press. Nietzsche, Friedrich (1995) Thus Spoke Zarathustra. A Book for All and None, trans. Walter Kaufmann, New York: The Modern Library.

82 Arno Bhler
Nietzsche, Friedrich (1999a) Unzeitgeme Betrachtungen, Vom Nutzen und Nachteil der Historie fr das Leben, Vol. 1, in Smtliche Werke Kritische Studienausgabe (15 v.), Munich: Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag, pp. 243334. Nietzsche, Friedrich (1999b) Genealogie der Moral, Vol. 5, in Smtliche Werke Kritische Studienausgabe (15 v.), Munich: Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag, p. 347.

DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000826

Sense, Being and the Revelatory Event: Deleuze and Metamorphosis

Peter Hertz-Ohmes

State University of New York, Oswego

Metamorphosis is a sudden change, a becoming-other in life or in philosophical perspective. A revelatory event initiates in a double manner the move from Heideggers futile search for a transcendental IT that delivers perceptible beings to the condent positing of Deleuzes transcendental empiricism, suffused with the IF of incorporeal sense. In the process Deleuze dramatically enacts his personal connection between sense (Sinn) and being (Sein). Keywords: event, being, incorporeal sense, transcendental empiricism, becoming-other, Deleuze When working with philosophers who live philosophy rather than consider it an academic exercise, key words that they use can be traps that prevent rather than facilitate understanding. This is especially a problem when two or more languages are involved: French, German and English or Greek and Hebrew, not to mention Japanese and English.1 To grasp the problem, it can be useful trying to translate a major philosopher such as Heidegger, with all of his etymological baggage, or Nietzsche, with his idiosyncratic, aphoristic and purposely counterphilosophical vocabulary. With respect to French philosopher Gilles Deleuze, who draws heavily on both Heidegger and Nietzsche, the traps multiply because he also lays them deliberately and subversively in order to mislead academic explication and thus to force the kind of confrontation with conceptual dead ends that has the power to lead to enlightenment. Take for example Deleuzes use of vnement. This term translates easily into English event, a relatively innocuous, even weightless word. In German however, evenement becomes Ereignis, which, thanks to Heidegger and a long philosophical tradition, carries the whole weight of

84 Peter Hertz-Ohmes
Being on its shoulders. Both translations are clearly traps. What Deleuze calls evenement is decidedly neither event nor Ereignis. For Deleuze evenement is dramatically transformative, signalling a metamorphosis not just in thinking but also in life as lived. Lets begin by asserting that even in English events can be fundamental happenings, that an event is a process or eventuation or becoming, what Deleuze calls an actualisation or Heidegger calls a coming into ones own or coming into a way of existential being (seiend). We live after all in a world of givens, including ourselves, and in light of our nite powers of thought, there are always ultimate questions about how all our givens were given in the rst place. So then the age-old philosophical question naturally arises, as Heidegger would say, What in the last analysis is IT that gives? (Heidegger 1972: 16).2 While for a nitist philosopher that may be a question beyond answer, there certainly has been no lack of trying. And IT has never prevented one from giving Heideggers unknowable transcendent powers various names, like God or ideals, reason or noumena, and so on, causing philosophy endless trouble, not the least of which is competing with self-validating religious doctrines. For while all attempts to storm the transcendental realm philosophically seem bound to fail by denition, so to speak there have been no end of privileged communications from the transcendental into our world of reality. The word for such communication is revelation. Revelations constitute major turning points or, literally, cata-strophes in the life of an individual or group. They radically change who we are, give us a new identity, put us with newly gained conviction in the middle of an ongoing dramatic action, and allow us to proceed in life with a certainty we never had before. Harold Rosenberg, in the Tradition of the New a book highly praised by Deleuze (1994a: 916) calls attention to the tripartite dramatic structure of character change, using Hamlet as his prime example. He echoes thereby Paul Tillichs tripartite structure of religious revelation, which also involves the probing, unsettling uncertainty of an outsider looking in, a neardeath ecstasy, and consequent committed action in the midst of what Tillich calls an ultimate concern.3 There is then in this respect a
fundamental connection between religious and dramatic thought. In both, the actor does not obey his own will but rather the rules of the situation in which he nds himself. In both, change (and escape from the plot) can be accomplished through one means alone, the dissolution of identity and the reappearance of the individual in a reborn state. (Rosenberg 1971: 1523)

Or, as Gilles Deleuze would say, it is a question of becoming other.

Sense, Being and the Revelatory Event


Revelations take place in many areas of human endeavour, in religion and literary drama, to be sure, but also in revolutionary politics (Lenin), radical art (Bacon), Freudian psychology, the sciences Archimedes Eureka! is a prime example and even in mathematics, where Pythagoras and the revelation of the dreaded irrational numbers comes to mind. Thomas Kuhn calls such events paradigm shifts, which are certainly not without their dramatic moments. So what about philosophy? What part can revelation play in the very eld that regards revelation as nothing more than a crisis of thought and condones transcendental or inaccessible sources only as a last resort, when all else fails to glue a system together? Empiricists are particularly unhappy with the transcendental, yet in the last analysis the empiricists starting points, simple perceptions, have to come from somewhere too, no matter how successfully one disparages so-called universal truths as products of habit. A few philosophers actually admit to a revelatory aspect in philosophy, as in Nietzsches famous revelation of the eternal return or Schellings systematic treatment of revelation. But other philosophers take pains to deny that revelation has philosophical relevance. Nietzsche stands accused of having hallucinations, and Kierkegaard faults Schelling for misunderstanding the singular and personal aspect that makes revelation so special. Platos famous solution was to wrap the problem of revelatory communication in myth! So what about Gilles Deleuze? He should know something about revelation because early in his career he too went through a transmutational experience, a veritable philosophical metamorphosis.4 After the publication of his rst book on Hume (Deleuze 1991/1953), Deleuze endured eight years of silence, what he himself calls a hole in his life before emerging again with a spate of major books and a new philosophical buzzword: transcendental empiricism (Deleuze 1997: 138). This eight year hole in Deleuzes intellectual life does in fact represent [. . . ] a period of dramatic reorientation in his philosophical approach, says Michael Hardt (1993: xx). The movement from ordinary or classical empiricism to virtual-transcendental empiricism was for him an extraordinarily difcult crisis of reconceptualisation, profoundly inuenced by Nietzsches own crisis. The result thereafter: the astonishing consistency of Deleuzes thought, even if that is difcult to see under the breadth and complexity of his works. But how are we to understand this other Deleuze with his other philosophy? What in the world is transcendental empiricism? Isnt that a contradiction in terms, a non sequitur or even a joke? If it is

86 Peter Hertz-Ohmes
a joke, that may sound hopeless but it is not serious. If it is a joke, it is in line with Ren Thoms catastrophe theory. Catastrophe theory was all the rage a few years ago, before chaos theory took centre stage, and culminated in a book by John Paulos called Mathematics and Humor.5 But as Paulos knows, Thoms catastrophe singularities are not necessarily mathematical singularities at all but can be philosophical breaks or jumps between two ways of thinking, in this case between empiricism and transcendentalism. If Deleuze is cast as an empiricist, his difculty is clear: he is an outsider with respect to transcendental philosophy and cannot satisfactorily attack its presuppositions. This is Hamlets problem as well, and why Hamlet dithers and cannot kill the king in the rst part of his play. Deleuzes identity as an empiricist must undergo a radical transmutation if he is to re-emerge in the royal realm of transcendentalism and legitimately kill its assumptions. Somehow his empiricism must take on a virtual aspect it has heretofore avoided. But how can Deleuze manage that? His new condence, his new philosophical persona, can only be grounded if he can make sense of his new position. Make sense of his new position? No. Not make sense OF the new position, but make sense THE new position. In other words, Deleuze decides to insert SENSE in the catastrophic break or jump between empiricism and transcendentalism as a new kind of link between the actual or empirical and the virtual or transcendental. The point is basically as follows: Deleuze re-prioritises thought by moving from being to sense, that is (in German) from SEIN to SINN. Yes, transcendental empiricism is a kind of joke, but the joke is on the transcendentalists. We began by saying that the transcendental is a source from which emanate the laws and models, the forms and ideals, the originals and paradigms on which we base our accidental and imperfect real world. Its Being is unassailable from this side, that is to say, from the world of beings. But it communicates in privileged and personal communications with the world through those we call priests and rulers, prophets and principals. If like Kant we discount the personages who claim a connection to the transcendental, there are still the intuitions of reason or harmony or common sense to consider. Must we take these intuitions on faith? Or was Kant trapped by a search for integrative sources, just as certainly as Hume was trapped by a pointilism that simply could not coalesce to form the kind of actual worlds we all experience.6 As paradoxical as it may seem, it is precisely Deleuzes ingenious concept of sense that supplies the

Sense, Being and the Revelatory Event


conceptual glue Kantians and empiricists have both failed to produce. And this is the subject of the intentionally paradox-ridden Deleuzian Logic of Sense. How then can we characterise sense? In a way, Deleuzes sense is nothing at all, at least insofar as it is incorporeal and cannot be touched or felt as such. But if eventuation is a giving, the giving of perceptions, then, says Deleuze, the resulting extensive environment must necessarily be charged with a correlative given, a correlative sense. Incorporeal sense lies like a transparent skin on everything that is in the world, including and particularly the corporeal linguistic units, written or oral, whose various possible senses it implies. Philosophically speaking, sense can be considered the tissue of concepts that holds any particular culture together, whether yours or mine or the possible worlds of any social group we can imagine. This tissue is entirely this-worldly, not transcendental. On the one hand, sense is neither inherently virtual nor transcendental, any more than are the more or less exible concepts that make up sense. All this is truly real. But on the other hand, because it is incorporeal, sense is not imbedded in or directly attached to the physical or material world, including actualised time and space. It is truly entre temps or meanwhile with respect to the succession of time, and as such, unlike chronological time, sense is in a special way recurrent or superimposed upon itself (Deleuze and Guattari 1994b: 158). It thus bears some interesting resemblances, as we are beginning to see, to what Nietzsche calls the eternal return of the same or what Klossowski calls the vicious circle. The job of philosophy, as Deleuze understands it, is to create and/or dismantle concepts. Concepts make explicit implicitly held beliefs that are fundamental to a society. Concepts are generated geopolitically and self-referentially out of their own constituent parts, without the need of controlling emanations from a transcendental source. They are, as Deleuze says, real without being actual, ideal without being abstract (Deleuze and Guattari 1994b: 22). And, I repeat, constructing concepts is what a philosopher does, with perhaps a crisis of thought, but not with the help of otherworldly sources. Thus philosophy, by showing how concepts are constructed, has the means to eliminate classical realms of emanation. Nevertheless, incorporeal sense would be completely vacuous if there were no actualised worlds to cover. And no doubt we are all within a world that is both constant and changing all around us. So the question becomes, how can empiricism account for the being of the sensible? Or

88 Peter Hertz-Ohmes
to phrase the problem succinctly, why is there something rather than nothing? It is here that conceptual sense reexively re-introduces the virtual, but not as an attribute of an inaccessible superior Being. As conceived by conceptual sense, the virtual is comprised of collections of yet undened and indenite energies that, unlike the concept itself, have under the right circumstances the potential of corporeal, perceptual actualisation. And where are all these undened and indenite energies? All around us, in and among us, that is to say they are immanent. Taken all together they constitute a plane of immanence. Taken as fortuitous singularities, each singularity is a differential will to power Nietzsche again a differential will to power ready to differenciate itself differenCiate with a c through actualisation in the so-called real world (Rlli 2009: 36). The syntagmatic differenCiation of the differential means setting aside (although not losing) inherent difference through necessary conforming, as a perception, to the already present habitual conditions of, for example, subject/object, space/time and linguistic congurations, as well as of phenomenological consciousness in our case as humans. As preactualised differentials, the virtual plane of immanence can be considered transcendental, but this is a transcendental that is as fully accessible in its workings as those of Mallarms post-metaphysical, aionic Throw of the Dice. I quote: anxious, expiatory and pubescent . . . mute . . . laughter . . . that . . . IF (Mallarm 1994: 138).7 Theres that IF that says were on our own! Always the same repetitive throw (Heideggers IT), always the subtle differences (Mallarms IF) in its sense. Repetition and difference, Difference and Repetition: isnt that the true EVENT! Yes, event. If the throw of the dice is Heideggers Ereignis, then its IF is the Deleuzian event. And that IF is the tissue of sense, the incorporeal counterpart to the three passive syntheses of time: past experience, present instant and future indetermination. But being incorporeal means also that sense-as-event swirls around and through time, space and perceptions as a constantly counter-actualising force. We might say that Deleuzes Nietzsche or Mallarm oriented IF lights up Heideggers onto-theological IT. To put it another way, the Being of the sensible depends on the sense of that Being. There is no Ereignis without the splendour of the Event.8 It is appropriate to sum up in a special way. If one were to ctionalise the life of Gilles Deleuze as the great destroyer of the transcendent monsters emanating domain, one would make him rst the author of a Proustian novel.9 Then, for the end of his life which unfortunately gets all too little attention it would be necessary to cast him in a

Sense, Being and the Revelatory Event


Greek-like tragedy very much like the anachronistic play Empedokles by the eighteenth-century German genius Hlderlin. Heres how the whole Deleuzian story would play out from this perspective. As our young ctional Deleuze looks at the history of philosophy to the present day and realises that he is losing no, wasting time, he almost gives up his dream of becoming a philosopher. But then, having regained in a transmutational crisis the secret weapon called sense that hasnt been used since the Stoics, our ctional Deleuze morphs into a heroic knight, turns the transcendental dragon into Puff by writing a series of timely tomes, and is increasingly cheered by his disciples as the new philosopher king. But in later years Deleuze comes to understand that without the need for chosen leaders to interpret enigmatic messages from discredited transcendental sources, he must reject the kingship offered him. To quote Hlderlin, the time for kings has come and gone . . . You cant expect my help if you cant help yourselves (Hlderlin 1968: II, 1438 and 14523, my translation).10 These words ought to trigger a social revolution. But they imply more. Our ctional Deleuze must recognise, as did the philosopher Empedocles, that by having dismantled the royal mantle of authority, he cannot any longer stay around and argue with his detractors. No, he must once again become other. No longer individual or universal within his social milieu, he must entrust himself to the singular splendour of the fourth person, the truly immanent it-thatgives, and re-emerge for us through a nal re-generative metamorphosis as the legendary FREE MAN. As his works and his actions show, the free man
grasps the event and does not allow it to be actualised as such without enacting, the actor, its counter-actualisation. Only the free man can comprehend all violence in a single act of violence, and every mortal event in a single Event. (Deleuze 1990: 152)

We know from Hlderlin that Empedocles convinces his clinging friends to leave him. He then climbs the slopes of the chaotic volcano Etna and abruptly jumps into its molten interior. So in his own way does Deleuze.11 The revelatory sense of that event should continue to inspire Deleuzians both now and long hereafter.

1. For relevant discussions of translation problems, see the authors rst translation of Heideggers On the Way to Language in his Stanford dissertation (Hertz 1967), then compare it to the version that was revised to conform to other

90 Peter Hertz-Ohmes
Heidegger translations at the time, published in 1971 and still in print. For Greek and Hebrew see Boman (1960), and for Japanese and English see Nishitani (1982). We are still faced with the enigmatic IT that we named in the expression: it gives time, it gives being (es gibt Zeit, es gibt Sein). . . . When we speak of IT, we arbitrarily posit an indeterminate power that is supposed to bring about all giving of being and of time. . . . IT eventuates (ES ereignet). . . . Being is appropriated in the eventuation (Sein verschwindet im Ereignis). What remains to be said? The appropriating eventuation eventuates appropriately (Das Ereignis ereignet) (Heidegger 1972: 1624, revised P. H.). Revelation is the manifestation of the mystery of being for the cognitive function of human reason (Tillich 1951: 129). As Deleuze says again and again regarding metamorphoses in literature (Kafka, Carroll, Proust, Melville, et al.), there is nothing metaphorical about them. They are charts of intensities. See for example Deleuze and Guattari (1975: 65). See Paulos (1980) on the connection between jokes and Ren Thoms catastrophe theory. For a complete discussion of the traps Kant and Hume fall into, see Rlli (2003). The author of this paper is presently translating and editing the book for publication in English. On Aion as an empty and unfolded form of time, on an event-oriented playing of the game, and on Aion again as an infused and ramied chance, all in relation to Carroll and Mallarm, see Deleuze (1990: 5865). On the splendour of the event, see Deleuze (1990: 152). Prousts work is not oriented to the past and the discoveries of memory, but to the future and the progress of an apprenticeship. What is important is that the hero does not know certain things at the start, gradually learns them, and nally receives an ultimate revelation (Deleuze 2000: 26). (Becoming other, becoming writer.) Nietzsche, who venerated Hlderlin, incorporates the same line in Also Sprach Zarathustra, part III, Von alten und neuen Tafeln (Nietzsche 1999: v. 4, 263). Taking one last breath into his collapsed lung, he kicks away the machine, and leaps into the mouth of the open window . . . for dying [. . . ] gives him the right to begin anew. . . (Deleuze 1990: 65).


3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

10. 11.

Boman, Thorleif (1960) Hebrew Thought Compared to Greek, trans. Jules Moreau, Philadelphia: Westminster. Deleuze, Gilles (1990) The Logic of Sense, ed. Constantin V. Boundas, trans. Mark Lester with Charles Stivale, New York: Columbia University Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1991/1953) Empiricism and Subjectivity: An Essay on Humes Theory of Human Nature, trans. Constantin V. Boundas, New York: Columbia University Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1994a) Difference & Repetition, trans. Paul Patton, New York: Columbia University Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1997) Negotiations 19721990, trans. Martin Joughin, New York: Columbia University Press. Deleuze, Gilles (2000) Proust and Signs, trans. Richard Howard, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota. Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari (1975) Kafka, Paris: Minuit.

Sense, Being and the Revelatory Event


Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari (1994b) What is Philosophy?, trans. Hugh Tomliinson and Graham Burchell, New York: Columbia University Press. Hardt, Michael (1993) Gilles Deleuze: An Apprenticeship in Philosophy, London: Routledge. Heidegger, Martin (1971) On the Way to Language, trans. Peter D. Hertz, New York: Harper and Row. Heidegger, Martin (1972) On Time and Being, trans. Joan Stambaugh, New York: Harper and Row. Hertz, Peter Donald (1967) Martin Heidegger: Language and the Foundations of Interpretation, Stanford University. Hlderlin, Friedrich (1968 [1799]), Der Tod des Empedokles, M. B. Benn (ed.), Oxford: University Press. Mallarm, Stphane (1994) Collected Poems, trans. Henry Weineld, Berkeley: University of California Press. Nietzsche, Friedrich (1999) Smtliche Werke Kritische Studienausgabe (15 v.), Munich: Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag. Nishitani, Keiji (1982) Religion and Nothingness, trans. Jan Van Bragt, Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press. Paulos, John (1980) Mathematics and Humor, Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Rosenberg, Harold (1971 [1960]) The Tradition of the New, Freeport, NY: Books for Libraries Press. Rlli, Marc (2003) Gilles Deleuze: Philosophie des Transcendentalen Empirismus, Vienna: Turia and Kant. Rlli, Marc (2009) Deleuze on Intensity Differentials and the Being of the Sensible, in I. Buchanan (ed.), Deleuze Studies, 3:1, pp. 2653. Tillich, Paul (1951) Systematic Theology, vol. 1, Reason and Revelation: Being and God, Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000838

Forum Introduction: Deleuze, Whitehead and Process

Keith Robinson

University of South Dakota

At the First International Deleuze Conference held in August 2008 at the University of Cardiff, Wales, each of the three contributors here presented papers in the session on Deleuze, Whitehead and Process.1 For this Deleuze Studies special forum, we were invited to re-address the relation between Deleuze and Whitehead by developing and elaborating our conference papers or, indeed, writing anew. The purpose of the conference session, and now this forum, is to examine some of the resonances and disjunctions, the afnities and contrasts, between their respective systems of thought. That there are strikingly deep and instructive convergences between Deleuzes and Whiteheads thought is now achieving recognition, not only from those who already work seriously with and on Deleuze, but also within the scholarship on Whitehead.2 Indeed, as James Williams points out in his paper here, problems dealt with in the secondary literature on Deleuze and on Deleuze and Guattari often have parallels, sometimes remarkably close parallels, to those engaged with in the literature on Whitehead. Some of the most important interpretive issues raised within Deleuze studies in the last few years regarding, for example, the relation between the virtual and the actual or the problem of immanence, to name but two, have their counterparts in the Whitehead literature, and these problems are dealt with here in ways that are often directly relevant and illuminating for thinking about Deleuze. When placed in the context of either Whiteheads own thinking or the body of scholarship on his thought, questions pertaining to the meaning, purpose and scope of Deleuzes work, including questions on the nature of his thought and its relation to Western traditions of philosophy, science and aesthetics, are given a novel, surprising and untimely quality. Scholarship on Deleuze is clearly entering a new phase. The task now is to move beyond the introductory format stage that has hitherto characterised a signicant part of Deleuze Studies and attempt to come to terms with the sheer range and daunting complexity of Deleuzes

Forum Introduction


extraordinary legacy of thought. By bringing Whitehead to bear on Deleuze, this focus section will be a contribution to that task. Each paper engages some of the key concepts that dene the DeleuzeWhitehead encounter immanence and transcendence, creativity and event, process and life and each paper seeks to raise pressing questions about the role and status of these concepts in both thinkers. The promise of reading Deleuze and Whitehead together is that it will provide not only a new image of thought for each thinker, but also an image of thinking the new in itself alongside a restored belief in the world as ever in the making.

1. I thank Ian Buchanan and the conference organisers at Cardiff for giving our session plenary status. 2. Recent Whitehead scholarship in French has often referenced Deleuze. See Benot Timmermans, Perspective: Leibniz, Whitehead, Deleuze (Vrin 2006); Didier Debaise, Un empiricisme spculatif: lecture de Procs et Ralit de Whitehead (Vrin 2006); Isabelle Stengers, Penser avec Whitehead: Une libre au sauvage cration de concept (Seuil 2002). The Whitehead Research Network (http://whiteheadresearch.org/) has actively encouraged readings of Whitehead in the context of Deleuzes work and continental thought more generally.

DOI: 10.3366/E175022411000084X

Immanence and Transcendence as Inseparable Processes: On the Relevance of Arguments from Whitehead to Deleuze Interpretation

James Williams

University of Dundee

It is argued in this paper that recent work on immanence and transcendence in Whitehead scholarship, notably by Basile and Nobo, provides helpful guidelines and ideas for work on problems regarding immanence in Deleuzes philosophy. By following arguments on theism and naturalism in the reception of Whitehead, it argues that Deleuzes philosophy depends on reciprocal relations between that actual and the virtual such that they cannot be considered as separate without also being incomplete. It is then shown that Deleuzes philosophy allows for metaphysical terms such as pure without having to concede a separate and self-sufcient pure realm. Keywords: immanence, transcendence, God, relations, naturalism, metaphysics A discarded magnifying glass lies by the side of a country lane, a mere childs toy, given away free on the cover of a magazine. It captures, or prehends, the suns rays as they prehend its glass, focusing thereafter on withered, tinder-dry grass, setting it alight. A forest of mature trees is devastated in the subsequent re, never to return, or at least not plausibly, in the new climate that turned the undergrowth to perfect kindling while conjuring up summer winds of unmatched intensity. Ancient homesteads and chancy new builds suffered equally on the re front; those that did not or could not ee were choked then calcinated. It takes a very detached eye indeed to survey this loss and to claim equal value for the new scrub and the ancient settled hills with their natural complexity, animal life and human bonds. The world is thus

Immanence and Transcendence as Inseparable Processes


faced by the paradox that, at least in its higher actualities, it craves for novelty and yet is haunted by terror at the loss of the past, with its familiarities and its loved ones (Whitehead 1978: 340). This haunting is one of the forces behind the emergence of religion, with its clinging to transcendence as resistance to the passing of all immanent actualities: the culminating fact of conscious, rational life refuses to conceive itself as a transient enjoyment, transiently useful (Whitehead 1978: 340). Harmony, running from past to future through the accord of transcendent entities with passing and novel ones, allows for a dance of transcendence and immanence.1 Transcendent eternal objects carry forth the valuation of positive prehensions2 and, as a sum, as one, Whitehead will call them a side of God, his primordial nature:
In our cosmological constructions we are, therefore, left with the nal opposites, joy and sorrow, good and evil, disjunction and conjunction that is to say, the many in one ux and permanence, greatness and triviality, freedom and necessity, God and the World. (Whitehead 1978: 341)

Yet Whiteheads model for immanence and transcendence is very subtle and neither realm is full without the other, since each is formed by the other in creative processes.3 Gods consequent nature comes from actual creations, each one creating a new valuation and a new series of relation between eternal objects, but each novel creation comes from a creative pull in Gods primordial nature:
For Whitehead, God is therefore immanent in each occasion by supplying it with its initial subjective aim and instilling in it the desire for perfection as is possible in its immediate situation. On the other hand, as consequent, God is the conscious and unbiased reception of the physical world as it passes into the immediacy of his feeling [. . . ] So the mental, permanent side of the universe passes into the physical, transient side by the primordial nature of God, which is his guide for realisation. The one becomes many by the unity of Gods vision passing into the physical world. And the transient, physical side of the universe passes into the mental, permanent side by the consequent nature of God, which is his coordination of achievement. The many become one by reaching a nal completion and harmonisation in Gods eternal being. (McHenry 1992: 160)

Thus once Whitehead has set his speculative metaphysical categories in Process and Reality, he proceeds to describe and explain a set of derivative notions of which God is one. Derivative should be seen in a strong sense here, as logically derived from the categories, such that Gods consequent nature and primordial nature follow from categories for eternal objects and immediate occasions.4 Here we can see the

96 James Williams
folding of one and many into one another, not layered and hierarchical imbrications, such as the ones we shall see Deleuze move beyond a little later (see also Cloots 2009: 6970), but relations of mutual derivation and dependency where the fold is all and the folded things, mere passing abstractions. One of these folds leads to an entire multiplicity, the many in the one and the one in the many: The primordial created fact is the unconditioned conceptual valuation of the entire multiplicity of eternal objects. This is the primordial nature of God (Whitehead 1978: 31). Yet this entire valuation is itself created, something that draws Whitehead far away from traditional monotheisms:
One of the major aims of Whiteheads metaphysical endeavour is to provide a rational interpretation of the immanence of God without denying the necessary element of transcendence enabling him to be considered as the principle of concretion and in that sense primordial, whereas the direct consequence of Plotinus philosophical efforts was to carry the transcendence of God to its utmost extremity in his separation of the spiritual realm from the sensible world, placing him beyond being. (Wilmot 1979: 70)5

The consequent nature of God is the way this creativity and all-inclusive unfettered valuation touch the transcendence of a future destiny through concretions of prehensions: By reason of its character as a creature, always in concrescence and never in the past, it receives a reaction from the world; this reaction is its consequent nature (Whitehead 1978: 31). This creative circle moving from abstract eternal realm through a creative transformation in the actual and back to a now transformed virtual realm is akin to Deleuzes circle of destiny and his rejection of fatalism (Deleuze 1990: 149), where Ideas or sense move through surface or intensity to an actual realm, where a counter-actualisation reworks the form and power of the virtual, sending it back to return again as new creativity (Deleuze 1990: 151). It could seem that surface and intensity are the missing terms in Whiteheads account, but feeling can take on this role and intensity has been surveyed as a central component of his account by Judith Jones in this exact context:
The reference to the fulllment of Gods own being here is unfortunate, for it suggests a divine agency with a directive ofce somehow transcendent of the creative process in which there is aim at intensity of satisfaction. But Whiteheads God has no such ofce. Gods primordial appetitions, whereby there is this aim at intensity are not transcendent of creative process but primordial in it. (Jones 1998: 146)

The Leibnizian term appetition is taken up by Whitehead to describe the work of valuation and hence eternal objects (studied of course by

Immanence and Transcendence as Inseparable Processes


Deleuze in The Fold: Leibniz and the Baroque; Deleuze 1993: 7682) and God in the drive forward of immediate occasions (see Shaviro 2009: 246 and Williams 2009b: 2867). Where Deleuze often talks of the desires and compulsions shaping our destiny as genetic members of damned families or alcoholics (Deleuze 1993: 6970), Whitehead chooses the more universal example of thirst: Thirst is an appetite towards a difference towards something relevant, something largely identical, but something with a denite novelty (Whitehead 1978: 32). The elegance of his position comes out strongly here, refusing to lapse into notions of pure identity or essence towards which thirst would return us once we have satiated it, and insisting instead on the becoming within the organism and its creative novelty, explicable only through an external source, but one whose full work can only be when transcendence and immanence combine to project things forward: Appetition is immediate matter of fact including in itself a principle of unrest, involving realization of what is not and may be (Whitehead 1978: 32). Thus we nd transcendence and immanence on two parts of a circle connecting them where neither transcendence, God as the unity of all multiplicities, nor immanence, God as a consequence of specic actual creations, can be treated independently of one another: Gods immanence in the world in respect to his primordial nature is an urge towards the future based upon an appetite in the present (Whitehead 1978: 32). There is an important lesson for speculative metaphysics to take from Whiteheads characterisation of immanence and transcendence.6 It lies in his positioning of the main philosophical problem away from worries about the mixing of the two terms: The vicious separation of the ux from the permanence leads to the concept of an entirely static God, with eminent reality, in relation to an entirely uent world, with decient reality (Whitehead 1978: 346). Flux and becoming must be part of transcendence and immanence; it is a mistake to dene one in terms of perfect self-identity and to assign it the role of setting relative identity and being in the other realm. Instead, they are relations we should think of in terms of becoming of different kinds and with different, but complementary, processes. The real problem lies, on the contrary, in their vicious separation. The surprising use of this technical but also physical adjective could be read in many ways, for instance, as a worry about how the two terms are separated, or as concern for the denial of the priority of one or the other term in their separation. Yet what Whitehead means has little to do with how the terms are divided, or with a wish to preserve one or the other of them.

98 James Williams
Instead, the separation is vicious because of the results of the separation for both terms. Both suffer violence because they belong together and can only be separated at the cost of creating a false image of each one: But if the opposites, static and uent, have been so explained as separately to characterise diverse actualities, the interplay between the thing that is static and the things which are uent involves contradiction at every step of its explanation (Whitehead 1978: 346). For Whitehead, separated transcendence is pure stasis, meaningless because no change whatsoever can take place within it, a timeless and momentum free block. Yet pure immanence is equally nonsensical, since as pure ux we cannot explain its valued forward momentum and novelty, it becomes free of any realities and without sense. This sense is rendered, in Process and Reality, in terms of immortality and everlastingness (Whitehead 1978: 347). Again, though, the meaning of these terms is transformed by Whitehead. Immortality occurs through participation in a process of perfection through eternal objects and God, but not in them or as them: This factor is the temporal world perfected by its reception and reformation [. . . ] (Whitehead 1978: 347). Once again, this determination of the world as everlasting and completed as such is answered by a mirroring completing of God in the world7 :
In this way God is completed by the individual, uent satisfaction of nite fact, and the temporal occasions are completed by their everlasting union with their transformed selves, purged into conformation with the eternal order which is the nal absolute wisdom. (Whitehead 1978: 348)

Nonetheless, and against Whiteheads own critical reaction to brute materialism as a mistaken return to substance metaphysics,8 there have been persistent attempts to situate his philosophy on one or the other side of the immanence and transcendence divide, as either a philosophy that still culminates in a God consistent with the hierarchical transcendence of Christian monotheism,9 or as a form of immanent natural realism with no need for any reference to God, eternal objects and hence to transcendence in its strong sense implying different realms (even if these cannot be separated and share the same ontological status in becoming rather than being under the same metaphysical categories). The former interpretation is perhaps understandable given Whiteheads choice of language, even if it is very distant from his arguments and from the logical structure of his metaphysics.10 The latter interpretation, however, must bracket off Whiteheads work on God in the latter chapters of Science and the Modern World (1927), Adventures of Ideas

Immanence and Transcendence as Inseparable Processes


(1948) and Process and Reality (1978), in order to emphasise his search for metaphysics consistent with his contemporary sciences. Following Jorge Nobos work (Nobo 1986), George Lucas makes the following important points against the conation of immanence and naturalism in the non-theistic, naturalistic interpretations of Sherburne, Lowe and Ford11 :
Such an account of the ground of nal causation ultimately reduces Whiteheads category of creativity either to an account of mere randomness or to a mere reiteration of the past. In either case, no non-theistic rationale for the selective dominance in the present of some certain and speciable element of the past seems apparent whence the would be Whiteheadian naturalist cannot offer a satisfactory or coherent account of the origin of the novelty in discrete experience, which is the hallmark of Whiteheads own metaphysical system. (Lucas 1989: 164)

This understanding of the crucial role played by a transcendent realm completed by an immanent one in creativity and novelty is of course just as essential to an understanding of Deleuzes account of the third synthesis of time and the role of Nietzschean eternal return in Difference and Repetition. Equally though, this leads to the criticism that there is still too much transcendence in both philosophers as seen in critiques of Deleuze on creativity reminiscent of the early Marxs worries about Feuerbach and religion: Feuerbach resolves the essence of religion into the essence of man. But the essence of man is not an abstraction inhering in isolated individuals (Marx 2006: 117). Commenting on Deleuzes reading of Spinoza, Peter Hallward thus makes the following critical point: Rather than distinct facets of one and the same substance, the being-together of absolutely divergent modes can again only be thought via the pure afrmation of that unthinkable plane upon which their aberrant creating or deviant differing consists (Hallward 2006: 156). The key terms seeking to re-establish a transcendent reading of Deleuze via the idea of a lack of relation in his philosophy of creativity are absolute, pure and unthinkable. This breakdown of relations then allows Hallward to draw the following conclusion:
Deleuze knows perfectly well what unies the eld of being or creation in Spinoza isnt the idea of substance per se but the notion of God, that is, the idea of an innity and perfection of essence. Nowhere in his work does Deleuze put in question such innity or perfection; on the contrary his philosophy presupposes them at every turn. (Hallward 2006: 156)

100 James Williams

Yet, if we turn to Whiteheadian arguments about this insidious return of the transcendent in a philosophy of creation, we nd the counter that God (or Ideas, or the virtual or pure difference) is as much created as creating:
The result of these truncated, one-sided interpretations of creativity, according to Nobo, has been a failure to appreciate Whiteheads full commitment to the active, creative power of the past (as Whitehead himself describes it), of causal efcacy and of settled fact, and of the radical subordination (from Hartshorne onwards) of efcient to pure nal causality in a manner that transforms Whiteheads critical realism into a species of idealism or Kantian phenomenalism.12 (Lucas 1989: 174)

I will show below how this argument also applies in defending Deleuze against the same charge.13 I want to draw on three ideas from Whiteheadian scholarship in tune with Lucass points to show how this argument plays out in detail. The rst is from a recent interpretation by Pierfrancesco Basile where he argues, completely at odds with Hallwards steps with respect to Spinoza and Deleuze, that Whiteheads metaphysics of God and world is one of essential relation and mutual dependency:
[Whiteheads six antitheses] formulate a novel world view in which God and the world, although distinct, are essentially related, mutually dependent upon each other. This involves a signicant revision of the traditional philosophical theology derived from Aristotle Whiteheads God is still a mover, but not an unmoved one. (Basile 2009: 143)

The second idea comes from a more traditional source in the scholarship through Fords critique of Nevilles reading of Whitehead on God14 :
This creator God must be transcendent to all experience and its categories, and thus be quite unknowable. Such a God is akin to the causal nature behind the scenes that Whitehead has rejected in his earlier books on the philosophy of nature. Whiteheads whole effort to achieve maximum coherence takes the form of trying to conceive of all actualities, including God, within one set of common categories. (Ford 1983: 2723)

The use of maximum coherence ts with my earlier insistence on completeness in Whitehead and Deleuze. It is a point often missed in readings of Deleuze, such as Hallwards, because they take absolute, innity and perfection as applying to the whole metaphysical picture when in fact thinkers such as Deleuze and Whitehead15 are seeking to maximise coherence across different processes where one side may be dened as absolute or pure or unity yet nonetheless be incomplete in

Immanence and Transcendence as Inseparable Processes


relation to other processes, thereby requiring a maximisation against the background of creative antitheses (Whitehead 1978: 348) or creative paradoxes (Deleuze 1990: 100).16 So, to move to the third idea taken from Whitehead scholarship, the points about relations, mutual dependency and coherence mean that when we have a term such as potentiality it must never be seen as a pure and untouched reserve of possibility or as a creative fount or, to use Whiteheads term from earlier in this paper, as a form of eminence. This is Leclercs careful statement of this point, where we can see why Rorty was inspired by Leclerc for his own account of the complex relation of transcendence and immanence in Whiteheads thought:
Such potentiality is not a mere abstract possibility. It is a specic determinate possibility as potential for the subject in question. Potentiality includes possibility in its connotation, but potentiality in this sense is a determinate selection from pure abstract possibility [. . . ] the purpose and function of actualization is to contribute to subsequent achievement as the potentiality for that subsequent actualisation. (Leclerc 1983: 63)

The key argument here turns on the use of subsequent because it sets potential within a circle rather than at the high point of a ladder, even one that permits vibrations up and down it. Reciprocal determination in a circular motion means that there is never a pure origin in creation, or a privileged realm, all is subsequent, since were we to dene this realm as absolutely primordial we would miss the fact that it is so only when it is incomplete and shorn of an essential relation that determines it as constituted rather than constituting. To conclude then with Deleuzes own discussion of immanence in relation to transcendence in his short paper Les plages dimmanence, written in honour of his teacher at the Sorbonne, Maurice de Gandillac. The rst thing to note is the correspondence of themes between the paper and Whiteheads reection on transcendence and immanence studied here. Like Whitehead, Deleuze contrasts transcendence as eminent and emanation with immanence as a coexistence of two movements, complication and explication (Deleuze 2003: 244). Complication and explication would be Whiteheads two processes of creation in relation to God: complication for the consequent creation of God; explication for the creation in the world through the pull of the primordial nature of God. Two movements whose resulting relations Deleuze describes in exactly the same words chosen by Whitehead: The multiple is in the one which complicates it, as much as the one is in the multiple that explains it (Deleuze 2003: 244; my emphasis). There is then a play of

102 James Williams

immanence and transcendence where the immanence of the earth (of the world for Whitehead) pushes through celestial hierarchies banishing any thought of a pure or absolute realm, yet also mixing world and God in the two processes. This is an adventure of immanence in transcendence, where immanence in reections and geneses form the two bases of an expressionist [and hence a Deleuzian] philosophy (Deleuze 2003: 245). Of course, these short comments are more strongly in tune with Deleuzes early work and pertain to Gandillac, yet what I want to have suggested in this paper is that Deleuzes work is open to an interpretation where immanence and transcendence are never treated as fully separable, but rather must be considered as essentially and indivisibly related as processes. Neither term should be treated independently of the other. More importantly, as Whitehead teaches us, a great risk lies in treating one as a mere subset or as an eventually dispensable illusion within the other. I would suggest that Deleuze was always aware of this risk and that in praising Gandillac he is also adopting his measure and careful balancing of transcendence and immanence in their difcult yet life afrming relations. Should it still be said that this leads to an abstraction from life, the last word should be with Deleuze in his description of a valued individual human life in relation to all others through its creations:
Philosophical concepts are also, for their inventors and those who release them, modes of life and modes of activity. To recognise the world of hierarchies, but at the same time to make planes of immanence pass through it, bringing it down more than any direct engagement could; that is an image of life inseparable from Maurice de Gandillac. (Deleuze 2003: 2456)

1. This reciprocal relation or dialogue of immanence and transcendence, or one and many, is often seen as the core of Whiteheads speculative metaphysics. It underpins the reading set out here, and can be supported, for instance, through a reading of Leclercs interpretation of Whitehead: The being of an ousia is its becoming, its becoming actual. And it becomes actual in order to be potentiality for further ousiai. Whitehead sees the universe as in rhythmic pulsation, from potentiality to actuality, and from actuality to potentiality, from the many to the one and from the one to the many. For him the universe is to be understood as in the process, and not statically (Leclerc 1983: 667). Keith Robinson has also drawn my attention to William Christians work for a similar emphasis on transcendence and immanence in Whiteheads work (Christian 1959). I thank him for this and other illuminating remarks. 2. For a helpful discussion of the necessity of this valuation over and above other relations, see Roses treatment of the issue: [. . . ] while all things are constituted by their relations, all relations are further dened as value-relations,

Immanence and Transcendence as Inseparable Processes




5. 6. 7.

8. 9.



that is, relations of some positive or negative character (Rose 2002: 2). For a related account in terms of a leap into transcendence, see Whitehead (1948: 335). Note how the versions of these arguments about immanence and transcendence are much more sophisticated in Process and Reality than in Science and the Modern World, for instance in the way the distinction between primordial and consequent nature expands greatly on the idea of God as principle of concretion and principle of limitation in Science and the Modern World (Whitehead 1927: 21621). For a particularly interesting account of this logical aspect of Whiteheads work, see Martins rigorous reconstructions: [W] wishes to elucidate somewhat exceptional elements in our conscious experience those elements which may roughly be classed together as religious and moral intuitions. The extraordinary appeal of Whiteheads approach is that it seeks to accommodate these exceptional elements in the same categorical framework that it seeks to accommodate logic mathematics and empirical science, and not just supercially, in a telling phrase or two, but with a reasonably full delineation of basic notions, denitions, and fundamental principles (Martin 1974: 44). Wilmot gives a full theological as opposed to philosophical reconstruction of this relation of immanence and transcendence; see Wilmot (1979: 1657). For a defence of the use of metaphysics when referring to Whitehead and Deleuze, see Robinson (2009: 1323); see also Code (2007: 187). Martin gives a good account of this mutual completion in terms of the primordial and consequent nature of God: God creates the World in the sense of providing items in it with the initial valuations or subjective aims, but the World creates God in the sense of providing the physical data for those valuations (Martin 1974: 58). See Whiteheads discussion of materialism in Process and Reality (Whitehead 1978: 789) and his denition of historical materialism in The Concept of Nature (Whitehead 2004: 70). For an example of the use of Whiteheads thought as consistent with Christian monotheism, see Pittenger (1969: 54). For a much more developed account of the necessary move to a transcendent God based on freedom as a condition for creation and on the importance of explanations for evil, see Eisendracht: This theology, however triumphant, cannot be entirely sustained, for it would deny freedom and deal inadequately with the problem of evil. If God supplies the initial subjective aim of each occasion, and if He integrates all occasions into the perfection of His vision, how can Evil persist in the world? (Eisendracht 1971: 201). Wolfe Mays supports this point in drawing out the concern with religion in Whiteheads discussion of the eternal: We have already seen that Whitehead is concerned in his account of the concept of Gods functioning in the universe, with indicating the elements of permanence or eternality in the world, with which, he claims, religion has essentially concerned itself (Mays 1977: 130). Nonetheless it remains very important not to make the rapid step from concern with the religious drive and its value to an attunement with this or that religion and even less with this or that form of religious transcendence. For an alternative critique of this reductive naturalistic reading of Whitehead, we nd the perhaps surprising essay by Rorty (in his early pre-linguistic turn phase) on Whitehead where he distinguishes Whitehead from Aristotle, defending Whiteheads realist but not reductionist view of matter: If time is taken seriously, however, and it is thus recognised that actual world and actuality are token reexive terms, then one can escape the rst horn of

104 James Williams

the above dilemma [that forms are indistinguishable from their actualisation] by distinguishing between the deniteness of an entitys characterisation (its objective reality) and the decisiveness of its concrescence (its formal reality). The latter is actual, and therefore non-repeatable. The former is repeatable, and therefore potential, in the sense that it is related (externally to it, although internally to each entity which prehends it) to a potentially innite number of subsequent actualities by being present in them [. . . ]. Its second horn [that matter and form are so different that the latter cannot characterise the former] is escaped by replying that the difference between the characterisation of the actual and the actual entity is no greater, though no less great, than between past and present which, if one takes time seriously, is precisely the difference which one would expect (Rorty 1983: 956). Rortys ne analysis, indebted to Leclerc, is particularly acute in focusing on the role of time: an argument as important for a reading of Deleuze as anti-Aristotelian and non-reductionist. For an illuminating discussion of the relation of Whitehead to Rorty, see Hall (2004). Rorty wrote an MA thesis on Whitehead at the University of Chicago under the supervision of Hartshorne (Ramberg 2007). For an interesting discussion of the kinds of career pressures that led Rorty away from work on Whitehead, see Rortys own comments in The inspirational value of great works of literature: But it was dear to me that if I did not write on some such respectably analytic problem I would not get a very good job (Rorty 1998: 130). There is no space here to go into the relation of Whitehead to Kant and to transcendental philosophy and deductions. For a study of this in relation to God in the context of Kants transcendental philosophy, see Derek Malone-France (2007: 15872). For an excellent discussion of Whitehead, Deleuze and Kant in relation to creativity and aesthetics, and Deleuzes transcendental empiricism in particular, see Shaviro (2009: 337). There is no space here for a full reading of Isabelle Stengers work on this question around the concept of God in Whitehead, but many of the insights in that discussion are the starting points for this study (Stengers 2002: 5208; Williams 2009a: 1569). See Neville (1983: 26771). In no way should this rapprochement of the two thinkers be seen as a conation of their terms; see for instance the very different treatment of the concept of multiplicity in Process and Reality (Sherburne 1966: 230) and Difference and Repetition (Williams 2003: 1469). For a fuller account of paradox in this context, see Williams (2008: 6876).



14. 15.


Basile, Pierfrancesco Leibniz (2009) Whitehead and the Metaphysics of Causation, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Christian, William (1959) An Interpretation of Whiteheads Metaphysics, New Haven: Yale University Press. Cloots, Andr (2009) Whitehead and Deleuze: Thinking the Event, in Keith Robinson (ed.), Deleuze, Whitehead, Bergson: Rhizomatic Connections, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Code, Murray (2007) Process, Reality, and the Power of Symbols: Thinking with A. N. Whitehead, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Deleuze, Gilles (1990) The Logic of Sense, trans. M. Lester and C. Stivale, New York: Columbia University Press.

Immanence and Transcendence as Inseparable Processes


Deleuze, Gilles (1993) The Fold: Leibniz and the Baroque, trans. T. Conley, London: Athlone. Deleuze, Gilles (2003) Les plages dimmanence in Deux rgimes de fous, ed. David Lapoujade, Paris: Minuit. Eisendracht, C. (1971) The Unifying Moment: The Psychological Philosophy of William James and Alfred North Whitehead, Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Ford, Lewis (1983) Nevilles Interpretation of Creativity, in L. Ford and G. Kline (eds), Explorations in Whiteheads Philosophy, New York: Fordham University Press. Hall, David (2004) Whitehead, Rorty, and the Return of the Exiled Poets, in J. Polanowski and D. Sherburne (eds), Whiteheads Philosophy: Points of Connection, New York: SUNY Press. Hallward, Peter (2006) Out of this World: Deleuze and the Philosophy of Creation, Verso: London. Jones, Judith (1998) Intensity: An Essay in Whiteheadian Ontology, Nashville: Vanderbilt University Press. Leclerc, Ivor (1983) Being and Becoming in Whiteheads Philosophy, in L. Ford and G. Kline (eds), Explorations in Whiteheads Philosophy, New York: Fordham University Press. Lucas, George (1989) The Rehabilitation of Whitehead: An Analytical and Historical Assessment of Process Philosophy, Albany: SUNY Press. Malone-France, Derek (2007) Deep Empiricism: Kant, Whitehead, and the Necessity of Philosophical Theism, Lanham: Lexington Books. Martin, R. M. (1974) Whiteheads Categorical Scheme and Other Papers, The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff. Marx, Karl (2006) Early Political Writings, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Mays, Wolfe (1977) Whiteheads Philosophy of Science and Metaphysics: An Introduction to his Thought, The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff. McHenry, Leemon (1992) Whitehead and Bradley: A Comparative Analysis, Albany: SUNY Press. Neville, Robert (1983) Whitehead on the One and the Many, in L. Ford and G. Kline (eds), Explorations in Whiteheads Philosophy, New York: Fordham University Press. Nobo, Jorge Luis (1986) Whiteheads Metaphysics of Extension and Solidarity, Albany: SUNY Press. Pittenger, Norman (1969) Alfred North Whitehead, London: Lutterworth Press. Ramberg, Bjrn (2007) Richard Rorty in The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, ed. E. N. Zalta (online) http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/rorty/ [accessed 28 December 2009]. Robinson, Keith (2009) Deleuze, Whitehead and the Reversal of Platonism, in Keith Robinson (ed.), Deleuze, Whitehead, Bergson: Rhizomatic Connections, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Rorty, Richard (1983) Matter and Event, in L. Ford and G. Kline (eds), Explorations in Whiteheads Philosophy, New York: Fordham University Press. Rorty, Richard (1998) The Inspirational Value of Great Works of Literature, in Achieving our Country, Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Rose, Philip (2002) On Whitehead, Belmont: Wadsworth. Shaviro, Steven (2009) Without Criteria: Kant, Whitehead and Aesthetics, Cambridge: MIT Press. Sherburne, Donald (1966) A Key to Whiteheads Process and Reality, Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

106 James Williams

Stengers, Isabelle (2002) Penser avec Whitehead: une libre et sauvage creation de concepts, Paris: Seuil. Whitehead, Alfred (1927) Science and the Modern World, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Whitehead, Alfred (1948) Adventures of Ideas, Harmondsworth: Penguin. Whitehead, Alfred (1978) Process and Reality, New York: The Free Press. Whitehead, Alfred (2004) The Concept of Nature, New York: Prometheus. Williams, James (2003) Gilles Deleuzes Difference and Repetition: A Critical Introduction and Guide, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Williams, James (2008) Gilles Deleuzes Logic of Sense: A Critical Introduction and Guide, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Williams, James (2009a) Ageing, Perpetual Perishing and the Event as Pure Novelty: Pguy, Whitehead and Deleuze on Time and History, in Jeff Bell and Claire Colebrook (eds), Deleuze and History, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Williams, James (2009b) A. N. Whitehead, in Graham Jones and Jon Roffe (eds), Deleuzes Philosophical Lineage, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Wilmot, Laurence (1979) Whitehead and God: Prolegomena to Theological Reconstruction, Waterloo: Wilfred Laurier University Press.

DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000851

Interstitial Life: Subtractive Vitalism in Whitehead and Deleuze

Steven Shaviro

Wayne State University, Detroit

Deleuze and Whitehead are both centrally concerned with the problem of how to reconcile the emergence of the New with the evident continuity and uniformity of the world through time. They resolve this problem through the logic of what Deleuze calls double causality, and Whitehead the difference between efcient and nal causes. For both thinkers, linear cause-and-effect coexists with a vital capacity for desire and decision, guaranteeing that the future is not just a function of the past. The role of desire and decision can be seen in recent developments in biology. Keywords: Whitehead, desire, biology, decision, causality The deepest afnity between Alfred North Whitehead and Gilles Deleuze is that they both place creativity, novelty, innovation and the New at the centre of metaphysical speculation. These concepts are so familiar to us today that it is difcult to grasp how radical a rupture they mark in the history of Western thought. In fact, the valorisation of change and novelty, which we so take for granted today, is itself a novelty of relatively recent origin. Philosophy from Plato to Heidegger is largely oriented towards anamnesis (reminiscence) and aletheia (unforgetting), towards origins and foundations, towards the past rather than the future. Whitehead breaks with this tradition, when he designates the production of novelty as an ultimate notion or ultimate metaphysical principle (Whitehead 1978: 21). This means that the New is one of those fundamental concepts that are incapable of analysis in terms of factors more far-reaching than themselves (Whitehead 1968: 1). Deleuze similarly insists that the New is a value in itself: the new, with its power of beginning and beginning again, remains forever new. There is a difference . . . both formal and in kind between the genuinely

108 Steven Shaviro

new, and that which is customary and established (Deleuze 1994: 136). Deleuze and Guattari therefore say that the object of philosophy is to create concepts that are always new (Deleuze and Guattari 1994: 5). Philosophical concepts are not for all time; they are not given in advance, and they are not waiting for us ready-made, like heavenly bodies. Instead, they must always be invented, fabricated, or rather created afresh; philosophers must distrust . . . those concepts they did not create themselves (Deleuze and Guattari 1994: 56). For both Whitehead and Deleuze, novelty is the highest criterion for thought; even truth depends upon novelty and creativity, rather than the reverse. And it is because Deleuze and Whitehead alike take the New as the highest value, that they are both committed to process rather than result, or to Becoming as the highest expression of Being. Of course, Whitehead and Deleuze are not entirely without precursors in their afrmation of the New as an ultimate value. Deleuze explicitly invokes Nietzsches call for a revaluation of all values and for the continual creation of new values (Deleuze 1994: 136). And Whitehead and Deleuze alike are inspired by Bergsons insistence that life . . . is invention, is unceasing creation (Bergson 2005: 27). Whitehead and Deleuze, like Nietzsche and Bergson before them, denounce the way that, in traditional European philosophy, changeless order is conceived as the nal perfection, with the result that the historic universe is degraded to a status of partial reality, issuing into the notion of mere appearance (Whitehead 1968: 80). But appearance should never be qualied as mere, because the contents of appearance cannot be prescribed in advance. The ways in which things appear may well be limited, but appearances themselves are not. They cannot be known in advance, but must be encountered in the course of experience. This means that experience is always able to surprise us. Our categories are never denitive or all-inclusive. Being always remains open. The whole is neither given nor giveable . . . because it is the Open, and because its nature is to change constantly, or to give rise to something new, in short, to endure (Deleuze 1986: 9). Creative advance into novelty (Whitehead 1978: 222) is always possible, always about to happen. The problem, for Whitehead and Deleuze alike, is how to reconcile the emergence of the New with the evident continuity and uniformity of the world through time. In a sense, this problem is the opposite of the sceptical paradox introduced by David Hume, and which has been the primary focus of epistemological discussion for the last 250 years. Hume asks how causality is possible, given that the only ground for it he is able to discern is subjective expectation, or habit. That is to say,

Interstitial Life 109

Hume takes causality out of the physical world, and places it instead within the observing subject an assumption that Kant continues to endorse, when he gives his transcendental solution to Humes paradox. But isnt the problem of validating causality really just one, as Deleuze says in a different context, for the abstract thinker? And how could this thinker, with respect to this problem, not be ridiculous? (Deleuze 1990: 156). The real problem is not to validate causality against scepticism; it is rather to nd a way out from causality, an exception to the universal grip of what Whitehead calls causal efcacy (Whitehead 1978: 116). How can the future avoid being predetermined by the past or by the relentless chain of causes and effects? How is it possible, in the world described for us by physical science, for anything genuinely New to emerge? Deleuze takes up this problem in The Logic of Sense, by proposing a logic of double causality (Deleuze 1990: 949). He reverts to what he describes as the ancient Stoics cleavage of the causal relation (Deleuze 1990: 6). On the one hand, there is real, or physical, causality: causes relate to other causes in the depths of matter. This is the materialist realm of bodies penetrating other bodies . . . of passions-bodies and of the infernal mixtures which they organise or submit to (Deleuze 1990: 131). On the other hand, there is the idealised, or transcendental, quasicausality of effects relating solely to other effects, on the surfaces of bodies and things (Deleuze 1990: 6). This quasi-causality is incorporeal . . . ideational or ctive rather than actual and effective; it works, not to constrain things to a predetermined destiny, but to assur[e] the full autonomy of the effect (Deleuze 1990: 945). And this autonomy, this splitting of the causal relation, preserve[s] or grounds freedom, liberating events from the destiny that weighs down upon them (Deleuze 1990: 6). An act is free, even though it is also causally determined, to the extent that the actor is able to be the mime of what effectively occurs, to double the actualization with a counter-actualization, the identication with a distance (Deleuze 1990: 161). That is to say, Deleuzes counteractualising dancer makes a decision that supplements causal efcacy and remains irreducible to it, without actually violating it. The dancer thereby preserves the truth of the event, in its potentiality, from the catastrophe of its inevitable actualization (Deleuze 1990: 161). Whitehead also argues for a doubling of causality, in a way that preserves both necessity and freedom. Adapting to his own use a traditional philosophical vocabulary, he distinguishes between, but also seeks to reconcile, efcient and nal causes. These two modes of causality can be correlated, to a certain extent, with the two modes of perception recognised by Whitehead: causal efcacy and presentational

110 Steven Shaviro

immediacy. They can also be aligned with what Whitehead calls the physical and mental poles of any entity (Whitehead 1978: 239). Efcient causality refers to the naturalistic chain of causes and effects, or the way that an entity inherits conditions and orientations from the immortal past (Whitehead 1978: 210). On this level, the causal dependency of a given entity upon its predecessors, its status as an effect, cannot be distinguished from that entitys prehension (its reception, or non-conscious perception) of those predecessors. The problems of efcient causation and of knowledge receive a common explanation (Whitehead 1978: 190). An entity feels its precursors, and is thereby both affected and caused by them.
All our physical relationships are made up of such simple physical feelings . . . the subjective form of a physical feeling is re-enaction of the subjective form of the feeling felt. Thus the cause passes on its feeling to be reproduced by the new subject as its own, and yet as inseparable from the cause . . . the cause is objectively in the constitution of the effect. (Whitehead 1978: 237)

Efcient causality is a passage, a transmission (Whitehead 1978: 210), an inuence or a contagion. This objective inheritance constitutes the physical pole of the affected entity, its embodiment in a material universe. However, as this process of causality-as-repetition unfolds, the reenaction is not perfect (Whitehead 1978: 237). Theres always a glitch in the course of the vector transmission of energy and affect from past to present, or from cause to effect. There are at least two reasons for this. In the rst place, nothing can ever purely and simply recur, because of the cumulative character of time, its irreversibility (Whitehead 1978: 237). Every event, once it has taken place, adds itself to the past that weighs upon all subsequent events. No matter how precisely event B mimics event A, B will be different from A simply due to the stubborn fact that A has already taken place. The pastness of A or what Whitehead calls its objectication, or objective immortality is a constitutive feature of Bs world, a crucial part of the context in which B occurs. Thus, by the very fact that B repeats A, Bs circumstances must be different from As. Time is cumulative as well as reproductive, and the cumulation of the many is not their reproduction as many (Whitehead 1978: 238). The effect is subtly different from the cause whose impulsion it inherits, precisely to the extent that the effect prehends (or recognises) the cause as an additional factor in the universe. Whitehead thus extends Leibnizs Principle of Indiscernibles. Not only can no two occasions ever be identical, but also no two occasions can have identical actual worlds (Whitehead 1978: 210).

Interstitial Life 111

In the second place, the causal reproduction of the past in the present is imperfect, because no inheritance, and no feeling, is entirely neutral. The subjective form, as an element in the process of reception, differentially evaluates the data it receives, and thereby selects among these data. Every prehension, every causal connection, involves a valuation on the part of the receiving entity: a valuation that does not just take the transmitted data as given, but values [them] up or down (Whitehead 1978: 241). As a result, the actual world [is] selectively appropriated (Whitehead 1978: 233), according to the qualities of joy and distaste, of adversion and of aversion, which attach integrally to every experience (Whitehead 1978: 234). This affective response, with its selective and gradated conceptual prehension of the qualities (eternal objects) implicit in the data, constitutes the mental pole of the affected entity, its potential for change or novelty. Whitehead insists that every entity is essentially dipolar, with its physical and mental poles; and even the physical world cannot be properly understood without reference to its other side, which is the complex of mental operations (Whitehead 1978: 239). Every entitys simple physical feelings are supplemented by its conceptual feelings. Of course, these mental operations, or conceptual feelings, do not necessarily involve consciousness; indeed, most of the time, consciousness is entirely absent. But in every occasion of experience, both physical and mental poles are present. This means that everything happens according to a double causality. A nal (or teleological) cause is always at work, alongside the efcient (mechanistic) cause. If transition [from the past] is the vehicle of the efcient cause, then concrescence, or the actual becoming of the entity its orientation towards the future moves toward its nal cause (Whitehead 1978: 210). As with Deleuzes quasi-cause, so with Whiteheads nal cause: it does not suspend or interrupt the action of the efcient cause, but supervenes upon it, accompanies it, demands to be recognised alongside it. For Whitehead, the nal cause is the decision (Whitehead 1978: 43) by means of which an actual entity becomes what it is. However far the sphere of efcient causation be pushed in the determination of components of a concrescence . . . beyond the determination of these components there always remains the nal reaction of the self-creative unity of the universe (Whitehead 1978: 47). This nal reaction is the way that the many become one, and are increased by one (Whitehead 1978: 21) in every new existence. The point is that decided conditions are never such as to banish freedom. They only qualify it. There is always a contingency left open for immediate decision

112 Steven Shaviro

(Whitehead 1978: 284). This contingency, this opening, is the point of every entitys self-determining activity: its creative self-actualisation or self-production (Whitehead 1978: 224). And this is how novelty enters the universe. The decision is always a singular one, unique to the entity whose subjective aim it is. It cannot be categorised or classied: for that would mean returning the decision to the already decided, to the efcient causes at the point of whose conjunction it arose. To be sure, much of the time, this decision or nal cause is negligible in scope, and can safely be ignored (Whitehead 1978: 115, 245). In many inorganic physical processes, the space of contingency left open for immediate decision is vanishingly small. Novelty is nearly inexistent, and linear, efcient causality can explain (almost) everything. Nonetheless, even physical science is obliged to recognise that in certain limit-cases those involving quantum processes on the one hand, and processes of higher-order emergence on the other linear, mechanistic causality is inadequate, and an explanation in terms of purpose, subjective aim or decision becomes necessary. Both quantum processes and emergent processes remain controversial among scientists today, and obviously I cannot pretend to know what the eventual scientic consensus will be. Nonetheless, it is worth at least mentioning the Strong Free Will Theorem of John H. Conway and Simon Kochen, which
asserts, roughly, that if indeed we humans have free will, then elementary particles already have their own small share of this valuable commodity. More precisely, if the experimenter can freely choose the directions in which to orient his apparatus in a certain measurement, then the particles response (to be pedantic the universes response near the particle) is not determined by the entire previous history of the universe. (Conway and Kochen 2009)

In this sense, even subatomic particles make a decision of some sort, one that is radically undetermined or self-determined. In any case, the role of subjective decision becomes especially important, so that it can no longer be dismissed as negligible when we get to those emergent processes of self-organisation known as living things. It is precisely in the case of living entities that the recourse to efcient causes is most inadequate, and that we require explanation by nal cause instead (Whitehead 1978: 104). Indeed, Whitehead denes life itself (to the extent that a concept with such fuzzy boundaries can be dened at all) as the origination of conceptual novelty novelty of appetition (Whitehead 1978: 102). By appetition,

Interstitial Life 113

Whitehead means a principle of unrest . . . an appetite towards a difference . . . something with a denite novelty (Whitehead 1978: 32). Most broadly, appetition has to do with the fact that all physical experience is accompanied by an appetite for, or against, its continuance: an example is the appetition of self-preservation (Whitehead 1978: 32). But experience becomes more complex when the appetition pushes beyond itself, and does not merely work towards the preservation and continuation of whatever already exists. This is precisely the case with living beings. When an entity displays appetite towards a difference, Whitehead gives the simple example of thirst the initial physical experience is supplemented and expanded by a novel conceptual prehension, an envisioning (or envisagement) (Whitehead 1978: 34) of something that is not already given, not (yet) actual. Even at a low level, such a process shows the germ of a free imagination (Whitehead 1978: 32). This means that it is insufcient to interpret something like an animals thirst, and its consequent behaviour of searching for water, as merely a mechanism for maintaining (or returning to) a state of homeostatic equilibrium. Appetition towards a difference seeks transformation, not preservation. Life cannot be adequately dened in terms of concepts like Spinozas conatus, or Maturana and Varelas autopoiesis. Rather, an entity is alive precisely to the extent that it envisions difference, and thereby strives for something other than the mere continuation of what it already is. Life means novelty . . . A single occasion is alive when the subjective aim which determines its process of concrescence has introduced a novelty of deniteness not to be found in the inherited data of its primary phase (Whitehead 1978: 104). Appetition is the conceptual prehension, and then the makingdenite, of something that has no prior existence in the inherited data (i.e., something that, prior to the appetition, was merely potential). But if life is appetition, then it cannot be understood as a matter of continuity or endurance (for things like stones endure much longer, and more successfully, than living things do), nor even in terms of response to stimulus (for the mere response to stimulus is characteristic of all societies whether inorganic or alive (Whitehead 1978: 104). Rather, life must be understood as a matter of originality of response to stimulus (emphasis added). Life is a bid for freedom, and a process that disturbs the inherited responsive adjustment of subjective forms (Whitehead 1978: 104). It happens when there is intense experience without the shackle of reiteration from the past (Whitehead 1978: 105). In sum, Whitehead maintains the doctrine that an organism is alive when

114 Steven Shaviro

in some measure its reactions are inexplicable by any tradition of pure physical inheritance (Whitehead 1978: 104). Of course, contemporary biology is not prone to speak of nal causes, or to dene life in the way that Whitehead does. According to the mainstream neo-Darwinian synthesis, pure physical inheritance, when combined with occasional random mutation and the force of natural selection, is sufcient to account for biological variation. Innovation and change are not primary processes, but adaptive reactions to environmental pressures. Life is essentially conservative: not oriented towards difference and novelty as Whitehead would have it, but organised for the purposes of self-preservation and self-reproduction. It is not a bid for freedom, but an inescapable compulsion. The image of a life force that we have today is not anything like Bergsons lan vital; it is rather the virus, a mindlessly, relentlessly self-replicating bit of DNA or RNA. Even the alternatives to the neo-Darwinian synthesis that are sometimes proposed today like Maturana and Varelas theory of autopoiesis (1991), Stuart Kauffmans exploration of complexity and self-organising systems (2000), Lynn Margulis work on symbiosis (Margulis and Sagan 2002), James Lovelocks Gaia theory (2000), and Susan Oyamas Developmental Systems Theory (2000) share mainstream biologys overriding concern with the ways that organisms maintain homeostatic equilibrium in relation to their environment, and strive to perpetuate themselves through reproduction. It would seem that organic beings only innovate when they are absolutely compelled to, and as it were in spite of themselves. Nevertheless, when biologists actually look at the concrete behaviour of living organisms, they encounter a somewhat different picture. For they continually discover the important role of decision in this behaviour. And not only in the case of mammals and other higher animals. Even bacteria are sensitive, communicative and decisive organisms . . . bacterial behaviour is highly exible and involves complicated decision-making (Devitt 2007). Slime moulds can negotiate mazes and choose one path over another (Nakagaki, Yamada and Toth 2000). Plants do not have brains or central nervous systems, but decisions are made continually as plants grow, concerning such matters as the placement of roots, shoots and leaves, and orientation with regard to sunlight (Trewavas 2005: 414). In the animal kingdom, even fruit ies exhibit spontaneous behaviour that is non-deterministic, unpredictable, nonlinear and unstable. This behavioural variability cannot be attributed to residual deviations due to extrinsic random noise. Rather, it has an intrinsic origin: spontaneity (voluntariness)

Interstitial Life 115

[is] a biological trait even in ies (Maye et al. 2007). In sum, it would seem that all living organisms make decisions that are not causally programmed or predetermined. We must posit that cognition is part of basic biological function, like respiration (Lyon in Devitt 2007). Indeed, there is good evidence that, in multi-cellular organisms, not only does the entire organism spontaneously generate novelty, but each cell has a certain intelligence to make decisions on its own (Albrecht-Buehler 1998). Thus, biologists have come to see cognition, or information processing, at work everywhere in the living world: all organisms, including bacteria, the most primitive (fundamental) ones, must be able to sense the environment and perform internal information processing for thriving on latent information embedded in the complexity of their environment (Ben Jacob, Shapira and Tauber 2006: 496). Organisms would then make decisions which are free, in the sense that they are not pre-programmed, mechanistically forced or determined in advance in accordance with this cognitive processing. This ts quite well with Whiteheads account of conceptual prehension as the valuation (Whitehead 1978: 240) of possibilities for change (Whitehead 1978: 33), the envisioning of conditioned alternatives that are then reduced to coherence (Whitehead 1978: 224). But it is getting things backwards to see this whole process as the result of cognition or information processing. For conceptual prehension basically means appetition (Whitehead 1978: 33). It deals in abstract potentialities, and not just concrete actualities; but it is emotional, and desiring, before it is cognitive. Following Whitehead, we should say that it is the very act of decision (conceptual prehension, valuation in accordance with subjective aim, selection) that makes cognition possible rather than cognition providing the grounds for decision. And this applies all the way from bacteria to human beings, for whom, as Whitehead puts it, the nal decision . . . constituting the ultimate modication of subjective aim, is the foundation of our experience of responsibility, of approbation or of disapprobation, of self-approval or of self-reproach, of freedom, of emphasis (Whitehead 1978: 47). We dont make decisions because we are free and responsible; rather, we are free and responsible because and precisely to the extent that we make decisions. Life itself is characterised by indeterminacy, non-closure and what Whitehead calls spontaneity of conceptual reaction (Whitehead 1978: 105). It necessarily involves a certain absoluteness of self-enjoyment, together with self-creation, dened as the transformation of the potential into the actual (Whitehead 1968: 1501). All this does not

116 Steven Shaviro

imply any sort of mysticism or vitalism, however; it can be accounted for in wholly orthodox Darwinian terms. In fruit y brains no less than in human ones, the nonlinear processes underlying spontaneous behaviour initiation have evolved to generate behavioural indeterminacy (Maye et al. 2007: 6). That is to say, strict determinism no longer applies to living things, or applies to them only to a limited extent, because freedom, or the ability to generate indeterminacy, has itself been developed and elaborated in the course of evolution. As Morse Peckham speculated long ago,
randomness has a survival value . . . The brains potentiality for the production of random responses is evolutionarily selected for survival. As evolutionary development increases and more complex organisms come into existence, a result of that randomness, the brains potentiality for randomness accumulates and increases with each emerging species. (Peckham 1979: 165)

The power of making an unguided, and unforeseeable, decision has proven to be evolutionarily adaptive. It has therefore been forwarded by natural selection. Some simple life processes can be regulated through pre-programmed behaviour; but more complex interactions require behavioural indeterminism in order to be effective (Maye et al. 2007: 8). Organisms that remain inexible tend to perish; the exible ones survive, by transforming themselves instead of merely perpetuating themselves. In this way, the appetition of self-preservation itself creates a counterappetition for transformation and difference. Life has evolved so as to crave, and to generate, novelty. Such is Whiteheads version of double causality. Whitehead reminds us again and again that we never simply transcend efcient causality. Every experience is concerned with the givenness of the actual world, considered as the stubborn fact which at once limits and provides opportunity for the actual occasion . . . We are governed by stubborn fact (Whitehead 1978: 129). We are impelled by the accumulation of the past, and by the deterministic processes arising out of that past. Nothing can ever violate the ontological principle, which asserts that there is nothing that oats into the world from nowhere. Everything in the actual world is referable to some actual entity (Whitehead 1978: 244). But at the same time, these deterministic processes themselves open up an ever-widening zone of indetermination. In this way,
efcient causation expresses the transition from actual entity to actual entity; and nal causation expresses the internal process whereby the actual entity becomes itself. There is the becoming of the datum, which is to be found in

Interstitial Life 117

the past of the world; and there is the becoming of the immediate self from the datum . . . An actual entity is at once the product of the efcient past, and is also, in Spinozas phrase, causa sui. (Whitehead 1978: 150)

In this way, decision or self-determination subsists alongside, and supplements, linear, effective causality. This is a tricky argument, of course, and one that the popular positivistic philosophy (Whitehead 1968: 148) will not accept. How can a subject that is entirely determined by material causes also be said to freely determine itself? Whitehead answers this by positing, not an originary subject, but rather a subjectsuperject that is both a producer and a bearer of novelty, and that expires in the very movement by which it comes into being. Creativity, or the Category of the Ultimate (Whitehead 1978: 21), is the inner principle of freedom. It is unavoidably the case that whatever is determinable is determined according to efcient causality; but at the same time there is always a remainder for the decision of the subject-superject (Whitehead 1978: 278). And yet this decision or nal cause is itself entirely immanent. The entity that makes this decision, and that is determined by it, is evanescent or perpetually perishing. It fades away before it can be caught within the chains of deterministic causality. Or more precisely, its so being caught is precisely the event of its satisfaction and passingaway. Thus,
actual entities perpetually perish subjectively, but are immortal objectively. Actuality in perishing acquires objectivity, while it loses subjective immediacy. It loses the nal causation which is its internal principle of unrest, and it acquires efcient causation whereby it is a ground of obligation characterizing the creativity. (Whitehead 1978: 29)

Freedom, or the internal principle of unrest, is superseded by causal necessity, or the external conformity of the present to the past. The initiative that created something new in the moment of decision subsists afterwards as an obligation of stubborn fact, conditioning and limiting the next exercise of freedom. Although Whitehead nds the agency of decision to be at work most prominently in living organisms, his position is not that of any traditional vitalism. For
there is no absolute gap between living and non-living societies. For certain purposes, whatever life there is in a society may be important; and for other purposes, unimportant . . . a society may be more or less living, according to the prevalence in it of living occasions. (Whitehead 1978: 102)

118 Steven Shaviro

In addition, if life is a locus of appetition and decision, it is more an absence than a presence, more a vacuum than a force. Thus life is a characteristic of empty space . . . Life lurks in the interstices of each living cell, and in the interstices of the brain (Whitehead 1978: 1056). Life involves a kind of subtraction, a rupturing or emptying-out of the chains of physical causality. As a result of this de-linking, the transmission of physical inuence, through the empty space within [the animal body], has not been entirely in conformity with the physical laws holding for inorganic societies (Whitehead 1978: 106). These empty spaces or interstices are the realm of the potential, of a futurity that already haunts the present or of what Deleuze calls the virtual. For, just as the past remains active within the present by means of the vector transmission of efcient causality, so the future is already latent within the present, thanks to the multiplicity of pure potentiality (Whitehead 1978: 164) that can be taken up by the living actual occasion. The past is a nexus of actualities (Whitehead 1978: 214); it is still actual, still a force in the present, because it is reproduced as a datum, physically prehended by each new actual occasion. On the other hand, the future is available, without having yet been actually determined: it takes the form of eternal objects, or pure potentials, that may be conceptually prehended (or not) by each new actual occasion. Whitehead says therefore that, the future is merely real, without being actual (Whitehead 1978: 214). Strikingly, this is the same formula that Deleuze (borrowing from Proust) uses to describe the virtual (Deleuze 1994: 208). Where Deleuze describes novelty or invention as the actualisation of the virtual, Whitehead says that reality becomes actual (Whitehead 1978: 214) in the present, or in the decision of each living occasion. The process of actualisation is the hinge, or the interstice, not only between past and future, but also between the two forms of causality.

Albrecht-Buehler, Guenter (1998) Cell Intelligence, http://www.basic. northwestern.edu/g-buehler/cellint0.html Ben Jacob, Eshel, Yoash Shapira and Alfred I. Tauber (2006) Seeking the Foundations of Cognition in Bacteria: From Schrdingers Negative Entropy to Latent Information, Physica A, 359, pp. 495524. Bergson, Henri (2005) Creative Evolution, New York: Cosimo Classics. Conway, John H. and Simon Kochen (2009) The Strong Free Will Theorem, Notices of the AMS, 56:2, pp. 22632. Deleuze, Gilles (1986) Cinema 1: The Movement-Image, trans. Hugh Tomlinson and Barbara Habberjam, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1990) The Logic of Sense, trans. Mark Lester, New York: Columbia University Press.

Interstitial Life 119

Deleuze, Gilles (1994) Difference and Repetition, trans. Paul Patton, New York: Columbia University Press. Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari (1994) What is Philosophy?, trans. Hugh Tomlinson and Graham Burchell, New York: Columbia University Press. Devitt, Susannah Kate (2007) Bacterial Cognition, Philosophy of Memory, http://mnemosynosis.livejournal.com/10810.html Kauffman, Stuart (2000) Investigations, New York: Oxford University Press. Lovelock, James (2000) Gaia: A New Look at Life on Earth, New York: Oxford University Press. Margulis, Lynn and Dorion Sagan (2002) Acquiring Genomes: A Theory of the Origin of Species, New York: Basic Books. Maturana, Humberto and Francisco Varela (1991) Autopoiesis and Cognition: The Realization of the Living, Berlin: Springer. Maye, Alexander, Hsieh, Chih-hao, Sugihara, George and Bjrn Brembs (2007) Order in Spontaneous Behavior. In: PLoS ONE 2.5, May 2007, e443. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0000443 Nakagaki, Toshiyuki, Hiroyasu Yamada and Agota Toth (2000) Maze-solving by an Amoeboid Organism, Nature, 47.6803 (September 2000), September 28, p. 470. Oyama, Susan (2000 [second revised edition]) The Ontogeny of Information: Developmental Systems and Evolution, Durham: Duke University Press. Peckham, Morse (1979) Explanation and Power: The Control of Human Behavior, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Trewavas, Anthony (2005) Green Plants as Intelligent Organisms, Trends in Plant Science, 10:9, pp. 4139. Whitehead, Alfred North (1968) Modes of Thought, New York: The Free Press. Whitehead, Alfred North (1978) Process and Reality, New York: The Free Press.

DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000863

Back to Life: Deleuze, Whitehead and Process

Keith Robinson

University of South Dakota, Vermillion

In this paper I argue that Deleuzes thinking with Whitehead gives access to a range of novel conceptual resources that offer a route out of phenomenology and back to life, a movement beyond intentionality and back to things in their free and wild state. I lay out four conceptual and methodological markers (there are many more) creativity, event, prehension, empiricism that characterise Deleuzes metaphysics and provide a guide for showing how these develop through a sustained becoming with Whitehead. I conclude by looking at Deleuze and Guattaris use of the term most famously associated with Whitehead: the concept of process. Keywords: Whitehead, process, metaphysics, phenomenology, the new, creativity, event, prehension, empiricism, life In what follows I will try to develop some ideas to show how and why Whiteheads later thought functions as a central source for a good deal of what motivates Deleuzes entire philosophical project. The main strand of my argument will be that Deleuzes thinking with Whitehead gives access to a range of novel conceptual resources that offer a route out of phenomenology and back to life, a movement beyond intentionality and back to things in their free and wild state. Ill begin by looking at the commitment to metaphysics in Deleuzes work and suggest that Deleuzes metaphysics, like Whiteheads, is a metaphysics of the new. I lay out four conceptual and methodological markers (there are many more) creativity, event, prehension, empiricism that characterise this metaphysics and provide a guide for showing how Deleuze develops these through a sustained becoming with Whitehead. Ill nish with some remarks, somewhat critical, about Deleuze and Guattaris use of the term most famously associated with Whitehead: the concept of process.1

Back to Life 121

I. Metaphysics and Creativity

To begin then, rstly, I take it as given or should be that from beginning to end Deleuze is doing metaphysics. There still doesnt seem to me to be much recognition of this. I know some are smuggling it in by using the word ontology, but theres really no need to give up this rich term and there may be good reasons for abandoning talk of ontology in Deleuze. In my view, with Deleuze and Whitehead we move towards that remarkable point of modern metaphysics which all preceding discourse had indicated like a ickering compass (Descombes 1980: 136). The remarkable point of modern metaphysics referred to here is the achievement of an immanent or fully differential metaphysics that returns to life and the concrete world: a thoroughgoing effort to renew metaphysics in the wake of Kant and then Heidegger. This is what Deleuze recognised in Whitehead, and this is also no doubt one of the reasons why Whitehead, like Bergson, became marginalised by professional philosophy in the latter half of the twentieth century. Deleuze didnt have a problem using the term; as he declares, simply, I am a pure metaphysician (Deleuze 2007: 42). I agree with Arnauld Villani that Deleuzes afrmation of metaphysics is crucial to his entire philosophy, just as it is for Whitehead. There is much that one could say about this afrmative transformation of metaphysics. Perhaps one of the more important aspects of Deleuzes Whiteheadian inected renewal of metaphysics is that it operates on the basis of a new, yet incomplete, system of categories (with a new understanding of system and category). These are categories, as Deleuze says, that are not in the style of Kant, but in the style of Whitehead (Deleuze 2007: 41), and which are drawn and transposed from various disciplines and elements of experience. It is directly from Whitehead that Deleuze nds the means to retain and employ a new type of category, a problematic or virtual sense of category so that category takes on a new, very special sense (Deleuze 2007: 41). These new categories are no longer tied to structures of rational necessity that represent an essentially complete and unchanging real that inevitably suppresses the different, the contingent and the anomalous. If much of modern philosophy after Kant, and culminating with Heidegger, simply abandons categorical thinking, Whiteheads singular response is to reform or reinvent the category not as a structure of being or of cognition, but as the unique act or event of the self-differentiation of things. Indeed, when Deleuze says in Difference and Repetition that [Whiteheads] Process and Reality is one of the greatest books of modern

122 Keith Robinson

philosophy (Deleuze 1994: 2845), it is because Whiteheads categories or empirico-ideal notions, as Deleuze calls them, are precisely an effort to move beyond Aristotelian categories of being and Kantian categories of possible experience in the development of something completely new. Categories of the Aristotelian-Kantian type, although very different in themselves, belong for Deleuze to the world of representation, where they distribute and partition being according to the laws of sedentary proportionality. By contrast, Deleuze-Whiteheads own descriptive, nomadic or phantastical notions are said to be really open because they preside over a distribution of difference that is not governed by representational rules. Such notions are said to betray an empiricist or pluralist sense of Ideas that collapse the transcendent distinction between existence and essence, thought and being. Thus, rather than presupposing the validity of categorical thinking in the Kantian mode as the epistemological conditions for all possible experience, these notions are the conditions of real experience. Deleuze invokes Whiteheads empirico-ideal notions, then, as examples of a non-representational, differential and metaphysical structure or open system of categories where the Kantian map of critical reason is displaced and reworked. Here categories in the style of Whitehead become the immanent differences and intensities of the nomadic movement and processual distribution of being itself. It is in this sense that Deleuze can say to my mind, the conclusion of A Thousand Plateaus is a table of categories (but an incomplete, insufcient one). Not in the style of Kant, but in the style of Whitehead (Deleuze 2007: 41). This dynamism and becoming of the real in Deleuze and Whitehead is essentially a movement of creativity and so we could say that creativity is the rst and general category of this new metaphysics. It seems to me that Peter Hallwards basic claim in his book Out of This World (2006) that Deleuze offers a metaphysics of creativity is just about right, although I think he gets a good deal of the details wrong.2 For Deleuze, being, thinking and creativity are one. Deleuze gives us a metaphysics of creativity. If there is one designation that accurately characterises Whiteheads later philosophy, it is that it is also a metaphysics of creativity in which being, thinking and creativity are one. For Whitehead, the category of the Ultimate is creativity. It is, he says, the Universal of Universals characterising ultimate matter of fact (Whitehead 1978: 21). We could claim that Whiteheads metaphysics is in fact the rst metaphysics of creativity since he actually invented the concept, the English word creativity.3 At the very least I think we can claim that Deleuze, in appealing to creativity and creativeness (which

Back to Life 123

Deleuze writes in English), was thinking with Whitehead (as well as Bergson).

II. Event
Deleuzes metaphysics of creativity has a number of important constitutive elements or associated special categories. Perhaps the rst such element or category to mention is the event. Deleuze, of course, discusses the concept of the event explicitly with detailed attention in several books. Ive tried in all of my books, Deleuze says, to discover the nature of events. Its a philosophical concept, the only one capable of ousting the verb to be and attributes4 (Deleuze 1995: 141). In his Leibniz and the Baroque Deleuze even uncovers a secret school devoted to answering the question What is an Event? Of course, the successor to this secret school, the diadoche as Deleuze calls him, who inherits the question of the event is none other than Whitehead (Deleuze 1993: 76). Think of all the philosophers that Deleuze could have named here. Heidegger immediately springs to mind. Why is Heidegger not the successor, or Derrida, or even Foucault, who devoted a number of texts to the idea of what he called eventalisation? But Heidegger is after all the thinker of ereignis, the veilingunveiling as the event of Being. It seems to me that Deleuze naming Whitehead as the successor to the question of the event is important, and its related precisely to Whiteheads metaphysics of creativity. Ill come back to Heidegger later. In any case, its true that Whitehead also, like Deleuze, spent a good part of his career writing about the event. I want to suggest that what Whitehead offered Deleuze here was a model or logic for thinking the event in relation to creativity and the new that would come to inform Deleuzes own conception of the event. So, for Deleuze it is Whitehead who is the successor to the question of the event, a question that reaches back, according to Deleuze, at least to the Stoics who rst elevated the event to the status of a concept. The second great logic of the event comes with Leibniz for whom the event is a relation, a relation to time and existence. What, for Deleuze, constitutes Whiteheads unique contribution to this school, and the third great logic of the event, is to show precisely how the event can be thought in terms of the question of the new. Whiteheads creative advance over Leibnizs event, and as well see over phenomenology and Heidegger, is to lay out the conditions for thinking novelty and the new in itself. Such a thinking of the event would reveal the best of all worlds: not the one that reproduces the eternal, but the one on which new creations are

124 Keith Robinson

produced, the one endowed with a capacity for innovation or creativity . . . (Deleuze 1993: 70). What are the conditions for the event of the new? In The Fold Deleuze attributes four conditions or components to Whiteheads event and I want to suggest that each component nds an equivalent correlate in Deleuzes own event.5 Whitehead initially conceived of events as extending over each other in an innite relation of continuity between wholes and parts. The unique novelty of an event is given by its passage into another series of events either as part or whole. Deleuze makes this concept of extension the rst condition or component of Whiteheads event. Extensive series have intrinsic properties, for example height, intensity, timbre of a sound, a tint, a value, a saturation of color (Deleuze 1993: 77). If extension gives us something rather than nothing, then intension gives us this rather than that. Matter, or what lls space and time, always has characters, properties, degrees or intensities of value that determine its texture in relation to other materials that are a part of it. The second component of the event, then, is intension. A further condition of the event for Deleuze-Whitehead is the ingression of eternal objects. Eternal objects are thoroughly indeterminate pure possibilities and express a general potentiality unconstrained by any states of affairs, but when actualised or ingressed they instantiate fully determinate facts or forms of deniteness. However, in addition to these three components there is another. One crucial factor in the structuring of the event or actual occasion, as Whitehead came to call it, is its appropriation and creative use of the past in the formation of the new individual. This leads us on to our next special category and the nal condition of the event of the new: prehension.

III. Prehension
The creation of the new is achieved through what Whitehead called prehension. Next to creativity, and the three other conditions of the event, this is another element that converges with Deleuzes ontology and it is perhaps one of Whiteheads most important concepts. Prehension is a non-cognitive feeling that guides how the occasion shapes itself from the data of the past and the potentialities of the future. Prehension is an intermediary, a purely immanent potential power, a relation of difference with itself, or pure affection before any division into form and matter. Prehension, for Deleuze, is a passage or folding between states, a movement of pure experience or perception that increases or

Back to Life 125

decreases its potential through interaction and communication with those states. As Deleuze says, everything prehends its antecedents and its concomitants and by degrees prehends a world (Deleuze 1993: 78). All prehension, Deleuze remarks, is a prehension of prehension, and the event a nexus of prehensions (Deleuze 1993: 78). The event of prehension is double-sided and rhythmic in that it is the objectication of one prehension and the subjectication of another. In What is Philosophy? (1994) Deleuze and Guattari describe the rhythmic movement of prehension in the context of Whiteheads public/private coupling: The (public) matter of fact was the mixture of data actualised by the world in its previous state, while bodies are new actualisations whose private states restore matters of fact for new bodies. Even when they are non-living, or rather, inorganic, things have a lived experience because they are affections and perceptions (Deleuze and Guattari 1994: 154). Deleuze turns to Whiteheads theory of prehensions here to describe the creative ongoing rhythm of lived experience as a unity with two sides or aspects. There is no ontological gap or separation in the sides, only a gathering of things into a prehensive unication, and as the many become one so the many are increased by one. In The Fold Deleuze describes this two-sided rhythm of prehension through the process of perception in Leibniz. For Deleuze each distinguished or clear perception emerges through a genetic process from the dark depths of the world that is contained within each monad. Deleuze describes this double process in terms of the microscopic and the macroscopic, terms that Deleuze borrows from Whiteheads Process and Reality where they are used to refer both to the two meanings of organism and to the two forms of process.6 However, for Deleuze the essential difference between Whitehead and Leibniz here is that Leibnizs monad operates, famously, according to a condition of closure, whereas for Whitehead a condition of opening causes all prehension to be already the prehension of another prehension (Deleuze 1993: 81). This condition of prehensive opening onto incompossibilitites, divergences and bifurcations the opening onto the new in itself is a key feature of the event in Deleuze and Whitehead that Deleuze doesnt nd in Leibniz or phenomenology or, as well see, in Heideggers phenomenological ontology. Deleuze refers to prehension in several of his books. In addition to the explicit remarks on prehensions in The Fold (1993) and in What is Philosophy? (1994), especially the important concluding pages of that book, further references can be found in various places in A Thousand Plateaus (1987) and in the Cinema (Deleuze 1996a, 1996b) volumes.

126 Keith Robinson

It wouldnt be at all out of place in Deleuzes book on Francis Bacon (Deleuze 2003) because prehension, or its synonyms, forms the core of Deleuzes own theory of perception or logic of sensation.

IV. Beyond Heidegger

So, we have creativity, events, prehensions. I want to suggest that one way of measuring the signicance of these ideas in Deleuze, and Deleuzes thinking with Whitehead generally, is the extent to which they provide a conceptual route out of phenomenology, and beyond Heidegger in particular.7 Although Heidegger challenges Husserlian phenomenology at least, as Deleuze says, in the vulgar sense of the term: with intentionality (Deleuze 1988: 108) moving phenomenology towards ontology, Heidegger refounds intentionality in a new dimension that does not allow for a fully differential relation in which difference differs from itself. This can be seen, Deleuze claims, by the way in which for Heidegger the Lichtung is the Open not only for light and the visible, but also for voice and sound. The Open in Heidegger, Deleuze declares,
does not give us something to see without also providing something to speak, since the fold will constitute the Self-seeing element of sight only if it constitutes the Self-speaking element of language, to the point where it is the same world that speaks itself in language and sees itself in sight. (Deleuze 1988: 111)

For Deleuze this re-establishes an intentional relation, albeit between ontological forms rather than consciousness and its object, and if the correspondence between forms gives us the same world that speaks itself in language and sees itself in sight, then for Deleuze the Heideggerian ontological difference has not reached the being of difference and creativity. For Deleuze it appears that even recourse to the differentiated opening of the fourfold in later Heidegger restores an intentional eld, however radicalised, that falls short of providing the conditions required for the complex and paradoxical expression of the new. Deleuze will challenge the Heideggerian ereignis with a new conception of the event as a pure differentiator and he will look to Whitehead for the conceptual resources to construct a path beyond Heideggers phenomenological ontology. Creativity, events and prehensions provide the outline of that path. For Deleuze Whiteheads prehension surpasses intentionality and Whiteheads event is a passage beyond being. Deleuze subordinates intentionality to prehension because the latter reaches

Back to Life 127

further back into the genetic order of experience, antecedent to any intentional relation. Prehension is an event but not of the order of the Heideggerian ereignis since, outside of an intentional relation, it provides the conditions for the purely creative and differential unfolding of the new.

V. Empiricism
Where does this Whiteheadian inected path beyond Heidegger and phenomenology lead? If not back to the things themselves exactly (Deleuze says things in themselves in their wild state) then back to multiplicities and the radicalisation of empiricism. It was Foucault, in fact, who recognised very early on that empiricism was Deleuzes way out of phenomenology. As Deleuze says of his own metaphysics, it is inspired in its entirety by empiricism (Deleuze 1990: 20). Deleuzes empiricism presides over the movement from being to event, intention to prehension, or rather the move from Is to And that Deleuze calls Life. The path out of phenomenology and ontology leads back to life, back to erewhon and things in their wild state. This is the heart of Deleuzes metaphysics. But Deleuzes empiricist metaphysics, or metaphysics of the concrete to use Merleau-Pontys phrase, is obviously not any simple appeal to lived experience nor is it an aversion to concepts. Rather, the secret of empiricism, for Deleuze, is that it is the most insane creation of concepts in which, as we have seen, the concept becomes the thing in itself in its free and wild state. How do we nd the conditions of a life, or the conditions of a novel experience in-the-making? Philosophically, it is possible by following a multiplicity long enough to create a concept that corresponds to it. This is precisely the demand of a metaphysics of creativity: it is an experiment with the outside, Deleuze would say, in which he never renounced a kind of empiricism that sets out to present concepts directly (Deleuze 1995: 889). What is the source of this empiricism in Deleuze? Rather than classical British empiricism, the source of this empirical metaphysics is deeply Whiteheadian. In the preface to the English translation of his Dialogues, Deleuze says:
I have always felt that I am an empiricist, that is, a pluralist. But what does this equivalence between empiricism and pluralism mean? It derives from the two characteristics by which Whitehead dened empiricism: the abstract does not explain, but must itself be explained; and the aim is not to rediscover the eternal or the universal, but to nd the conditions under which something new is produced (creativeness). (Deleuze and Parnet 1987: vii)

128 Keith Robinson

Why doesnt Deleuze refer to Hume or Bergson here? One answer is that Deleuzes Whiteheadian empirical pluralism is more attuned to dispelling the illusions (the eternal, universal, etc.) and images of thought that prevent us from thinking the creativity and novelty of experience in itself. With the illusions dispelled, the conditions under which something new is produced can be made visible, enabling the construction of a plane of immanence that is a radical empiricism (Deleuze and Guattari 1994: 47). Radical or transcendental empiricism will not only reveal the extent to which phenomenology still participates in these illusions but, as an innovative thinking of the conditions of real experience, it enables a decisive break with the ultimate illusion: the verb to be and its attributes, so that nally is yields to and. As Deleuze says, empiricism has no other secret: thinking with And instead of Is. It is quite an extraordinary thought, and yet it is life (Deleuze and Parnet 1987: 57).

VI. Process
To summarise so far, Deleuze offers an empirical metaphysics whose ungrounded rst principle is creativity. Creativity creates events and is itself an event. Events are prehensions of prehensions, experience in the making. So we have creativity, events, prehensions, all little conceptual paths or lines of ight out of phenomenology, out of being, and back to life. These are the concepts that Deleuze constructs with Whitehead in order to lay out and populate a plane of immanence. Perhaps this is even enough to believe in the world again. But there is one other concept Id like to add, one other crucial Whitehead element that converges with Deleuzes ontology and that is, of course, the concept of process. Creativity, events, prehensions: they are all processes. To shift into a more critical mode for this nal section I want to ask whether process in Deleuze and Guattari fully reaches the conditions of the new and passes through the empiricist conversion that creativity, events and prehensions undergo. Although it is widely used throughout Deleuze and Deleuze and Guattaris work, I want to suggest that process is a concept that they never really explicitly theorise or create. Yet, they use it as a neutral conduit or vehicle for discussions of many of their own most important concepts, including difference, desire and becoming. Process in Deleuze, and in Deleuze and Guattari, always appears as subordinate to difference, becoming or desire. Process is always in a relation of dependence, and it is never given its own concept, never thought

Back to Life 129

in-itself. For Deleuze and Guattari there appears to be no philosophical school, secret or otherwise, devoted to answering the question what is a process? Indeed, just as the concept of process tends to be a necessary yet invisible support to the primary terms of the Deleuzian conceptual repertoire and process philosophy is overlooked as a positive tradition in Deleuze himself (a kind of anxiety of inuence since he prefers the invention and creation of his own schools and traditions, for example, the school of the event, the tradition of univocity), recognition of process thought, and the idea that it might play a key role in Deleuzes own intellectual formation, is almost completely absent in the reception of his work. A few readers of Deleuze have invoked the concept of process most notably Manuel De Landa in their reading of his texts, but this is only to include the concept as an empty placeholder within their descriptions and commentaries on Deleuze without ever subjecting the concept to a detailed explication or critical analysis. Thus, Deleuze, Deleuze and Guattari and some of their most well-known interpreters appropriate and rely upon a concept of process for their own theoretical practices and procedures without engaging in a genealogy, genesis or immanent critique of this concept or tradition. This claim would need to be elaborated at length and given detailed support, which I cant do here. But let me give just one example: in Anti-Oedipus process is used ubiquitously and deployed as a synonym for the sub-representative order of temporalisation and its expression as the three syntheses of time (developed in Deleuzes Difference and Repetition). This takes the form of a three-fold concept of univocal process as production (present), as producer-product (past) and as a process without a goal or end in itself (future): the three syntheses of process. Desire is the process of passive syntheses (connective, conjunctive and disjunctive), the primary order of process, working themselves out in the secondary order of the real as product. Thus, production as process is the immanent principle of desire accounting for the movements and activity of the unconscious syntheses. For Deleuze and Guattari, whether we invoke social (political, economic or labour) processes on the one hand, or libidinal processes on the other, desiring production is one process of reality. In my view process does a lot of work in these distinctions and discussions, but that work precisely as a process is not examined as such. They discuss the process of desire but not process itself. In Deleuze and Guattari, process is always immanent to desire or difference, immanent to something other than itself. Another way of putting this point is to say that process in Deleuze

130 Keith Robinson

and Guattari risks being reduced to a dependent state or condition of something else and not an act in itself, especially since processes are always of schizophrenia, difference or becoming. My worry, then, is that process in Deleuze and Guattari is in danger of failing what Deleuze calls the empiricist conversion, in danger of functioning as an abstract (and transcendent) substratum that differences or becomings move along or undergo, identical with its manifestation as difference, becoming and so on. One suspicion here is that Deleuze and Guattaris use of process is effectively a blind spot in their work resting on unquestioned assumptions about process embedded in the tradition of Western philosophy. One main assumption of that tradition is that process can only be admitted into ontology, if admitted at all, if it functions as a predicate dependent upon particulars like things or persons. It is precisely this assumption that Whitehead had rooted out in Process and Reality by developing a concept of the event as actual occasion in which being gives way to the reality of process. Process is of course not predicated of things and persons in Deleuze and Guattari, but it is arguably functioning as a silent predicate of events, differences and becomings. Roughly, what Deleuze said about the relation between substance and modes in Spinoza I want to say about the relation between difference and process in Deleuze. Did Deleuze and Guattari let their guard down when it came to process? For process to achieve immanence in Deleuze it would require a full ontological destruction or, in Deleuze and Guattari lingo, a thorough destratifying and empirical conversion of its traditional sediment so that it may be turned towards its creative potential. Process must be shown processing. Rather than make difference turn around another substance substitute, perhaps one of the real potentials of the DeleuzeWhitehead encounter lies in making process coalesce with and turn around difference. Only then will process be fully differential and difference fully processual.

1. This is a longer version of a paper presented at the session on Deleuze, Whitehead and Process at the 1st International Deleuze Conference, University of Cardiff, Wales, August 2008. Id like to thank James Williams for valuable comments on an earlier draft. 2. I dont have space to properly defend this here but I cant agree with Hallwards insistence throughout his book Out of this World on a unilateral conguration of creativity such that creativity divides into an active creans and a passive creaturum (27). For Hallward creating is active and virtual and the created is

Back to Life 131

actual and passive. In my view there are indeed different modes of creativity in Deleuze but it is as true to say that the virtual is active and the actual passive as to say that the virtual is impassive and the actual active. In fact, just like Whitehead, each half of reality in Deleuze has two sides and one can only begin to account for Deleuzes thought when justice is done to the constant movement, exchange, translation, tension, struggle, displacement and conversion between both of these halves and their sides. In one way or another the effort to attribute simple hierarchical dualisms to Deleuze, and the determination to polarise his thought, characterises not only Hallwards book but also the books on Deleuze by Badiou and iek. Whereas Badiou insists that Deleuze choose (and has already chosen) between animal or number, one or multiple, Plato or Aristotle (and a bunch of other dualisms) in accordance with a formally determined axiom of choice, iek claims that Deleuzes work rests on two conceptual oppositions that are incompatible: the logic of effect and the logic of production. iek uses this distinction to divide Deleuzes texts: The Logic of Sense versus The Anti-Oedipus and to separate Deleuze from Guattari. Although a number of commentators have objected, rightly, to these reductionist and divisive strategies and to their sometimes narrow and misleading emphases (e.g., Hallward on the theophanic, Badiou on the One), one virtue (among numerous others) is that both Hallward and Badiou situate Deleuze under the sign of metaphysics. 3. I thank Steven Meyer who persuaded me of this. See his introduction to Congurations 13(1) Winter, 2005. 4. The idea that, as Deleuze says, the event ousts the verb to be is important for my claims here since it suggests an overturning of ontology, or the subordination of is to and. In other words, Im suggesting that Deleuze offers a metaphysics that, after Difference and Repetition, attempts to twist free of ontology, a metaphysics of the creative and, and, and . . . where the creative event supersedes being. In this respect Heidegger, for Deleuze, remains tied to ontology and never really breaks with the isness of things and the verb to be. That Deleuzes model of the event and its folds is informed by Whitehead, not Heidegger, is explored in more detail in my Towards a Political Ontology of the Fold: Deleuze, Heidegger, Whitehead and the Fourfold Event in Deleuze and The Fold: A Critical Reader (Robinson 2010a). 5. Deleuzes concept of the event receives various formulations in his work but the basic structure is well known: on the one hand a state of affairs that relates to actualised bodies and individuals and, on the other, an incorporeal reserve of innite becoming and virtual movement. Treating this structure as a simple hierarchical dualism has been used to give a distorted image of Deleuzes thought (see note 2 above). I suggest that a better image is the between-two or fourfold where each component is internal to and completed by the other. In terms of the Deleuze and Whitehead event extension, intension, prehension and ingression each have a virtual/actual side and the process of conversion between them is carried out by different modes of creativity. Deleuze describes this in his own terms when he refers in both Difference and Repetition and Logic of Sense to two dissymmetrical halves. In Difference and Repetition he says that everything has two odd, dissymmetrical and dissimilar halves, . . . , each dividing itself in two (p. 27980). The dissymmetrical halves then become the entre-deux or fold between two that informs his reading of the event in Whitehead. For more on the event and the need to think it in terms of two multiplicities, see my Between the Individual, the Relative and the Void: Thinking the Event in Badiou, Deleuze and Whitehead in Event and

132 Keith Robinson

Decision: Ontology and Politics in Badiou, Deleuze and Whitehead (Robinson 2010b). 6. That Deleuze is borrowing these terms from Whitehead is conrmed by a footnote in The Fold. See Chapter 7 note 7 in The Fold: 154. 7. Deleuze studies still do not tell us that much about how to situate Heidegger in relation to Deleuze. Nor for that matter do Heidegger scholars. One exception is Miguel de Beistegui in his Truth and Genesis (2004). I suggest that Heidegger is Deleuzes primary philosophical rival and that Alain Badiou, in his book on Deleuze, is quite canny when he suggests that Deleuze himself didnt recognise how close he was to Heidegger. Difference and Repetition is one of the primary texts where Deleuzes indebtedness to and rivalry with Heidegger is played out and the conspicuous absence of Heidegger in Logic of Sense suggests that it is Deleuzes rst post Heideggerian book in which being is no longer the highest term, giving way to the event. The path beyond Heidegger is developed subterraneously in many of Deleuzes books but surfaces again explicitly in Foucault and The Fold (and to a lesser extent in What is Philosophy?), albeit in a highly compressed set of claims and arguments.

de Beistegui, Miguel (2004) Truth and Genesis, Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1988) Foucault, trans. Sean Hand, London: Athlone Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1990) The Logic of Sense, trans. Mark Lester with Charles Stivale, New York: Columbia University Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1993) The Fold: Leibniz and the Baroque, trans. Tom Conley, London: Athlone Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1994) Difference and Repetition, trans. Paul Patton, London: Athlone Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1995) Negotiations, trans. Martin Joughlin, New York: Columbia University Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1996a) Cinema, Vol. 1, trans. Hugh Tomlinson and Barbara Habberjam, London: Athlone Press. Deleuze, Gilles (1996b) Cinema, Vol. 2, trans. Hugh Tomlinson and Barbara Habberjam, London: Athlone Press. Deleuze, Gilles (2003) Francis Bacon: The Logic of Sensation, trans. Daniel Smith, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Deleuze, Gilles (2007) Responses to a Series of Questions, an exchange between Arnauld Villani and Gilles Deleuze, in Robin Mackay (ed.), Collapse, Vol. 3, Falmouth: Urbanomic. Deleuze, Gilles and Claire Parnet (1987) Dialogues, trans. Hugh Tomlinson and Barbara Habberjam, London: Athlone Press. Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari (1987) A Thousand Plateaus, trans. Brian Massumi, Minneapolis: Minnesota University Press. Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari (1994) What is Philosophy?, trans. Hugh Tomlinson and Graham Burchill, London: Verso. Descombes, Vincent (1980) Modern French Philosophy, trans. L. Scott-Fox and J. M. Harding, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Hallward, Peter (2006) Out of This World: Deleuze and the Philosophy of Creation, London: Verso. Meyer, Steven (2005) Introduction, Congurations, 13:1, pp. 133.

Back to Life 133

Robinson, Keith (2010a) Towards a Political Ontology of the Fold: Deleuze, Heidegger, Whitehead and the Fourfold Event, in N. McDonnell and S. Van Tuinen (eds), Deleuze and The Fold: A Critical Reader, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Robinson, Keith (2010b) Between the Individual, the Relative and the Void: Thinking the Event in Badiou, Deleuze and Whitehead, in R. Faber (ed.), Event and Decision: Ontology and Politics in Badiou, Deleuze and Whitehead, Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Press. Whitehead, Alfred [1929] (1978) Process and Reality, corrected edition, David Ray Grifn and Donald Sherburne (eds), New York: The Free Press.

DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000875

Book Reviews

James Williams (2008) Gilles Deleuzes Logic of Sense: A Critical Introduction and Guide, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 219pp. Originally published in 1969, Logic of Sense has an ambiguous place within Gilles Deleuzes work as a whole. Along with Difference and Repetition, which appeared the year before Logic of Sense came out, it is arguably one of his two most important single-authored books, but it is often overlooked by Deleuzians. This may have something to do with the fact that it has a rather hybrid quality: it is highly philosophical, drawing powerfully on Stoicism and having an ambivalent but important relationship with Husserl, but it is also steeped in structuralism, semiotics and psychoanalytic theory. The latter are the main reason for the relative neglect of Logic of Sense: they are often seen as the oldfashioned ideas that Deleuze was soon to be freed from by Guattari. However, it could be argued that there are genuine links with the later joint work, in particular the division of Logic of Sense into sries, which is very similar to the way in which A Thousand Plateaus is structured, but it is also a very valuable book in its own right. It engages with structuralism, semiotics and psychoanalytic theory in as fertile a way as Deleuze does elsewhere with earlier philosophers. There is a tendency to assume that the later joint work left such writers as Lvi-Strauss and Lacan behind, but there continue to be fresh interpretations of these writers as thinkers, so it is still worth exploring the boundaries between their ideas and those of Deleuze and Guattari. Logic of Sense is also probably closer to critical theory than any other extended work by Deleuze, mainly because it explores language and meaning in such detail and with such richness. It is closer to a complex hermeneutics than the concentration on affect and how the arts do philosophy within their own material terms that one associates with Deleuze. There is also an afnity with the fascination of French philosophers such as Derrida and Marin with performatives and linguistic pragmatics, although there is a compelling mix of meaning, being, event and change that goes beyond textuality in Logic of Sense.



Even if Deleuze and Guattari left behind performatives and pragmatics, there is a peculiar mystery of immanence in language in Austins ideas that can still be explored in relation to their work. It is well known that Logic of Sense uses Alice in Wonderland as a key text for developing its arguments, but there is another dimension behind this: as Charles Dodgson, Lewis Carroll was a professor of mathematics at Oxford and contributed to the analytic traditions work on logic and paradox. The sections of Logic of Sense devoted to meaning, nonsense and paradox are much closer to this tradition than one might think, even if Deleuze is concerned to go behind propositionality and has a more embodied sense of paradox, which partly explains the use of Alice in Wonderland. In general, what Deleuze has to say about being, event and process within a wider context of creative connectivity deeply challenges received approaches to the world and brings one closer to reality. There are also rich implications for a different model of social justice. Deleuze has a visionary quality as a writer, and he can produce powerful surges of affect in a sympathetic reader, but it is sometimes good to rein in that response and engage in a sober way with the astonishing power of his philosophical engineering: the architecture of the future can be as much about new building materials as it is about new ways of imagining space. The key to Deleuzes concepts lies more in the relational tools that bind and do not bind them together than in the concepts themselves. In a sense this is only to be expected in a philosophy that is about a shift from identity to an evanescent but semi-solidifying and individuating connectivity. James Williams remarkable Gilles Deleuzes Logic of Sense: A Critical Introduction and Guide deals very sustainedly with the philosophical engineering, which makes it a demanding but extremely valuable book. Williams has already produced a comparable and excellent book on Difference and Repetition (Williams 2003), a work that is primarily concerned with ontology, although Deleuzes ontology is more about becoming than being as it is normally conceived. Perpetual variation in the universe comes from the interaction of an asymmetrical, reciprocally determined binary pair, the virtual and the actual. This ontology, with certain additions and minor changes in terminology, appears again in Logic of Sense, but the binary structure is applied to other areas, producing new pairings: language and sense, human action and the unconscious, and two different conceptions of time. These pairs interconnect and overlap in very complex ways. Sense is also closely associated with the event, a concept drawn from Emile Brhiers classic work on incorporeals in Stoicism.1 The event is not the physical

136 Reviews
happening itself, while sense contains the difference between the before and after of the physical happening. What is fascinating about Logic of Sense is how becoming and meaning are intertwined: a rich fabric of different latent forces is woven around the actual and a bridge is established between the personal wound and the universal. Williams does not give a line-by-line commentary: indeed he often jumps intelligently around the sries that make up the main body of Logic of Sense in order to construct his arguments. Nevertheless, he more or less follows the overall movement of Deleuzes text across his central four chapters: Language and event, Philosophy as event, Morals and events and Thought and the unconscious. These chapters are framed by an introduction and a short conclusion. Williams explains the philosophical engineering in great detail, tries to show how a philosophy that can seem very abstract is relevant to realworld situations, defends that philosophy against possible objections, in particular from the analytic tradition, and is sensitive to the more aesthetic and psychologically complex sides of Logic of Sense, which may reect some of Deleuzes own vulnerabilities: he lived as a young man in the shadow of his older brother, who had been killed in the Resistance, and he had a lung removed in the very year the book came out. Williams deals excellently with the treatment of moral actions, especially the way in which three literary gures with vulnerable qualities Pguy, Bousquet and Fitzgerald are used as part of that treatment. He also has a good understanding of the general relationship between Deleuze and psychoanalysis, although he is less assured with some of the more detailed arguments, and he does not quite convey how essential the presence of a subtly modied psychoanalysis is to the overall vision of Logic of Sense.2 However, what is superb about Williams book is its exposition of the philosophical engineering of Logic of Sense: numerous concepts, all fascinating and specic to Deleuze (his philosophy was very much about the creation of novel exploratory concepts), are examined in an extended, highly detailed and rigorous way. They include the following: event, series and disjunctive synthesis; sense as innitives and its relationship to nonsense and meaning in the proposition; paradox; the interplay of the series of the signier and signied; the three images of philosophers; height, depth and surface; singularities; the nature of problems; static and dynamic genesis; higher empiricism (there is a good discussion of Deleuzes response to Husserl); quasi-cause; time and counter-actualisation. All these concepts are made fully available to the reader as tools for his or her own use.



The chapter on Language and event is particularly good, with a thorough and extremely clear treatment of Deleuzes ideas on signication, sense, paradox and nonsense. Here, fruitful parallels are drawn with the analytic tradition. Deleuzes very profound conception of time is dealt with in a number of places, and there is an interesting comparison between his approach to it and that of Badiou.3 Williams also explains the concept of the three images of philosophers very well, showing how it can be a tool for avoiding the binary oppositions that beset the way in which the history of Western philosophy is structured. Throughout the book, the position of Deleuze in relation to such binary oppositions as transcendental-immanent or empiricist-metaphysician is negotiated with exceptional subtlety. There are also occasional but illuminating references to quite a few other works by Deleuze. Williams is also sensitive to Deleuzes style in French and communicates the complex mixture of rigour, sensibility and energy that is to be found in Logic of Sense. One slight quibble might be that Williams does not always succeed in communicating how the asymmetrical binary pairs and the individual concepts t together and function as a whole. This is partly because he is trying to avoid oversimplication but also because Deleuze himself tends to employ the exceptionally plastic quality of his language and imagination rather than pure argument to conjure a more holistic impression of how the universe is for him. It is also possible that the structuralist elements in Logic of Sense give it a symmetrical quality, but this makes it all the more useful for exploring a potential disjunction between what could be binary or dialectical human thought and cosmic thought, which would be very different.4 Any minor faults should not detract from the fact that Williams has done something comparable to producing the rst commentary on one of Kants Critiques and that he has done so in an intellectually formidable and deeply passionate way: he has been worthy of the event. Guy Callan Independent practitioner and writer, London DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000887

1. For an excellent discussion of the inuence of Stoicism on Deleuze, see Alain Beaulieu (2005). 2. For a good reassessment of Deleuzes relationship with psychoanalysis, see Monique David-Mnard (2005).

138 Reviews
3. For an extended study of Deleuzes conception of time, see Yann Laporte (2005). 4. Williams mentions the mathematician, Albert Lautman, who had a particular interest in the underlying primacy of anti-symmetry within his subject, in an intelligent, more general account of how mathematics is relevant to Deleuzes ideas. For a worthwhile recent book on Lautman, see Emmanuel Barot (2009).

Barot, Emmanuel (2009) Lautman, Paris: Les Belles Lettres. Beaulieu, Alain (2005) Gilles Deleuze et les Stociens, in Alain Beaulieu (coord.), Gilles Deleuze, hritage philosophique, Paris: PUF, pp. 4572. David-Mnard, Monique (2005) Deleuze et la psychanalyse: laltercation, Paris: PUF. Laporte, Yann (2005) Gilles Deleuze: lpreuve du temps, Paris: LHarmattan. Williams, James (2003) Gilles Deleuzes Difference and Repetition: A Critical Introduction and Guide, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

Adrian Parr (2009) Hijacking Sustainability, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 209pp. As a poststructuralist who teaches Deleuze and Guattari in a School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape, I seized the opportunity to review Hijacking Sustainability. Sustainability has become an important trope in many space-related narratives and has produced such a range of truth effects that it may now be regarded as international orthodoxy for government-led spatial planning. Sustainable communities are all the rage, from eco-towns in the UK, to eco-villages in Europe and the USA. The much-vaunted triple-bottom-line of sustainability adds economic and social sustainability to that of eco- or environmental sustainability, implied above. As Hijacking Sustainability clearly demonstrates, however, the three elements often conict, with economic sustainability (also known as corporate viability or shareholder prot) dominant. Adrian Parr is interested in applying Deleuzian ideas in the context of politics, transcultural studies and ethics. In her previous work, Deleuze and Memorial Culture (Parr 2008), she suggests that trauma, given a transcendent meaning, produces a despotic connective synthesis. Her argument in Hijacking Sustainability is not dissimilar: sustainability has also achieved transcendent meaning and despotic connective synthesis, as her transcultural examples illustrate. Parr concludes Hijacking Sustainability by seeking a more socially and environmentally just ethical connective synthesis. Parr demonstrates clearly how sustainability is a cultural construct: an empty signier, meaning everything and nothing. Sustainability has



become a buzzword, evocative of a good thing, which carries indeed hijacks universal acceptability when attached to a wide range of things, from housing to burgers, celebrities to warfare. Deleuze and Guattari (1994) characterise philosophy as the creation of concepts through which knowledge can be generated. They use the term order-word (mot dordre) to describe a linguistic function compelling obedience: order-words tell people what to think (Conley 2005: 193). The word mot dordre also means a slogan or a military password in French: highly relevant to Parrs case illustrations of the militarisation of life in the name of sustainability. Order-words such as sustainability are not commands as such, but rather terms which relate implicit presuppositions and speech-acts to social obligations, and which produce tangible effects (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 79). If we understand sustainability as an order-word, we ask, not what it means, but, like Parr and her examples in Hijacking Sustainability, how the power-laden term sustainability works and what it produces in practice. Several of Parrs examples demonstrate the strong ideological power of sustainability when combined with the signier development. Yet the two signiers often contradict and negate each other: their rhetorical acrobatics creating merely illusion language without possibility (Gunder and Hillier 2009). The sustainable development of eco-villages (Chapter 3), for instance, purports to be grounded in scientic fact (of lower carbon footprints, of social bonding and so on) even if sustainability is itself indenable and unachievable (as in a reality of car commuting to work and parochial neighbour conicts). Yet such forms of violence are legitimated by the sublime truth of an unknowable transcendental ideal. In Hijacking Sustainability Parr illustrates how sustainability has become a political attitude of the multitude (4): a non-dualistic social practice which largely masks economic business-as-usual, with associated usual disproportionate negative impacts on the poor. Parrs provocative interrogation of examples including the provision of culturally appropriate disaster shelters in Asia (Chapter 7) and the greening of the US White House (Chapter 4) indicates how sustainability is akin to a Trojan horse, outwardly seen as good, while obscuring the corporate interests, government and military bads hidden inside. The book discloses the voids and illusions of situations and supports activation of agency for the currently disenfranchised. Sustainability pulls together assemblages of strange bedfellows, such as BP oil, Wal-Mart (Asda), the North American Sustainable Use

140 Reviews
Specialist Group, the US Military, UNCHR and even, I would add, Prince Charles. Parr traces how sustainability has been coded in various situations, with various results. For instance, US President Jimmy Carter installed solar heating panels on the White House roof in the name of energy efciency. Carters successor, Ronald Reagan, removed the panels to demonstrate Americas abundance of resources (72). Bill Clinton, in turn, wanted the White House to symbolise a model of efciency and waste reduction (73). He ordered the replacement: of the White House roof to maximise thermal integrity; of incandescent light bulbs with uorescents; of old air-conditioning units, refrigerators, windows and so on, and so on, saving some 845 tonnes of carbon a year. The presidencies of the two George Bushes, however, saw sustainability recoded as being an individual, voluntary choice. Neither Bush volunteered to publicise the presidential residence as a Green House, when espousing policies of militarism and neo-liberalism, refusing to sign the Kyoto Protocol or creating a midnight rule to bar consideration of global warming as related to the predicted extinction of polar bears. Parrs examples unveil the violences which make such enunciations and actualisations possible in the name of sustainability. Resonating more with Flix Guattaris (who is not mentioned in Hijacking Sustainability) writing (see especially 1995, 2000) than with that of Gilles Deleuze, Parr demonstrates how sustainability culture is not only a response to perceived problems, but also helps to create them in the rst place. Dominant modes of valorisation are translated into political and economic programmes newly labelled as sustainable, such as General Motors Hummer O2 . Dominant values subordinate everything under the imperative of a worldwide market and put social relations under the power of police and military machines. The double-sway of the market and military-industrial complexes, and their bracketing of problems such as poverty, racism, social justice and so on, is clearly articulated. In Part 1, Parr traces the conditions of possibility of ve case examples. She demonstrates the popularisation of sustainability culture such that everyone wants to be associated with its feel-good brand. Consumption of junkspace is increasingly greenwashed (Chapter 1), so that driving ones Hummer to shop in urban fringe Wal-Marts becomes environmentally and socially sustainable. Hollywood and its celebrities have enjoyed similar make-overs (Chapter 2), from the Oscars to celebrities pictured in proximity to cute, endangered species (though noticeably not endorsing campaigns such as Save the Slug!1 ).



As a scholar of cultural studies, Parr cannot explore the depths of sustainability which a planner, architect or sociologist might. I personally disagree with aspects of the, somewhat idealist, analysis of eco-villages (Chapter 3), as embodying real social and environmental sustainability compared with sub/urban gated communities. I would argue that eco-villages, as lines of ight from urbanisation, also harbour potentialities to perform as control societies, excluding others whose views and behaviours do not t the norm. Research into eco-villages suggests that there are potential problems: of engaging neo-primitivism, of extensive use of land, of cultural and social homogeneity, of cartravel to services and facilities, and so on (Barton 1998; Cummings 1999; Sizemore 2004; Sullivan 2008). Eco-villagers tend to opt out of the mainstream. While I do not criticise them for doing so, I would rather attempt to change the mainstream; to think transversally and to embrace more eco-sustainable ways of living, perhaps along the lines suggested by Flix Guattaris ecosophy and Three Ecologies (1995, 2000): ecology must stop being associated with the image of a small nature-loving minority (2000: 52). Like eco-villages, military sustainability represents striated space (Chapter 5). The idea of greening the military would seem a difcult concept to accept when related to agencies which count land mines and cluster bombs, depleted uranium and phosphorus in their arsenals. Yet the US Army now has goals of sustainability, including acting with integrity (79). As Parr indicates, however, sustainability becomes even more of an empty signier in military usage. Traditionally an oppressive structure of domination, military sustainability tends to bracket issues of environmental and social justice in favour of equating sustainability with US national security in broad terms. Recently introduced techniques, such as those of urban warfare, including human technology mapping (HTM), while badged as sustainable, take violent conict directly into the homes, for instance, of Iraqi and Palestinian citizens, as armed military personnel blast holes through walls between adjoining houses and regard men, women and children as suspected terrorists (see Weizman 2006). Meanwhile, in the US and UK, those branded as merely potential environmental activists are arrested in police swoops legitimated by anti-terrorism legislation (Taylor and Vidal 2009). Ironically, as Weizman points out, military institutions reading lists often include texts by Deleuze and Guattari, whose work on rhizomes and assemblages, smooth and striated space and war machines has

142 Reviews
inuenced military thinking. In this way, Parrs picture of the increasing militarisation of life (4) illustrates a relation between Deleuzes and Guattaris theory and practice which all the authors would surely nd abhorrent. Hijacking Sustainability interrogates practices of sustainability and raises critical questions about subjectivity, power and desire. In Part 2, particularly, Adrian Parr challenges orthodox thinking (the Deleuzian image of thought) on sustainability and indicates how such doxa must be resisted and replaced with new socio-ecological concepts if things are to change. Chapter 6 on waste/trash indicates not only how a culture of consumerism is accompanied by a culture of disposability, generating huge volumes of rubbish (another social construct) which must be hidden from view, but also how the poor are often themselves regarded as trash within the social fabric. Garbage dumps, incinerators and shiploads of toxic waste are thus located or dumped by the powerful on the worlds poor: power, as used in environmental discourse, entails the privilege to decide whose communities are polluted and whose are spared, to dene what constitutes a recyclable material on the soil of a developed country, and in turn to choose which environments can be sacriced like common waste (102). Parr argues that the key is to create a sustainable connection with the environment by attending to the processes of change implied within that connection (107). In doing so, we need to recognise that sustainability culture is a Western social construct within a Western plane of reference. We risk further subordinating other economic, social and cultural practices, both at home, and especially in the Global South, if we fail to break down the dominant framework and develop a more communal ethic. Hijacking Sustainability tackles the idea of urbanism as a process of signication with relation to disaster relief shelters and slum dwelling (Chapters 7 and 8). While I am unsure that disaster is indiscriminate (110), as some people are always more affected and disadvantaged than others, who may even benet from disaster situations, I agree that there should not be universal solutions, copy-pasted across different circumstances. There is a need to examine the materialities and expressivities of disaster relief and slum clearance alike, to unpack the force relations between elements, to trace and map potential trajectories and to stimulate creative opportunities, or lines of ight, as appropriate. Parr mentions the importance of informality in Latin American slums. She tends to regard informality rather negatively, however, compared with authors such as Ananya Roy (2009) who challenges what she



regards as such a traditional, hegemonic view of binary opposition. Roy demonstrates how and why informality is both far from unregulated and an internally differentiated mode of spatial production. Roy transcends the debate by reconceptualising informality as an oblique mode of power, or making do, which can be simultaneously legal and non-legal, regulated and deregulated, the rule and the exception. Sustainability is concerned with the not-yet, with ensuring that something remains for the people-to-come. As such, Parr advocates a form of machinic urbanism in which planners and designers would experiment with the material movements of life in all its variation (141). Machinic urbanism would produce connections and relations between elements to stimulate challenges to traditional economic, environmental, social and cultural doxa, to create lines of ight and alternative discourses from which to imagine, or fabulate, different futures (see also Hillier (2007, 2009) for a spatial planning perspective). Parrs machinic urbanism aspires to create conditions of agency without structural constraints. This would involve overturning traditional capitalocentric values, in favour of new forms of social innovation, such as social businesses in diverse economies (see also Gibson-Graham 1996) which have the potential to release the dynamic materiality of life. Hijacking Sustainability is a book for cultural geographers and cultural studies students. It successfully lifts the veil on crucial issues which lurk beneath sustainability culture. Adrian Parr clearly illustrates how sustainability rhetoric performs as a veil or smokescreen to cover the often-violent business-as-usual of economics and politics. The key question is how might we reimagine and rearticulate sustainability, not as a justication mechanism for yet more pro-market consumption, but as a means to displace economic and militarist imperatives from their domination of the wicked issues of class, social and environmental justice. Making progress requires a massive change of political, social and cultural mindset: one which reorients the objectives of material and immaterial production (Guattari 2000) and one which is sufciently strong to resist co-optation by vested interests, as happened with sustainability. Students will nd this a provocative and stimulating book, as I did, though I fear the extremely brief index is of little value. The case examples are Americas-dominant and it would be good if further editions could incorporate not only some non-Western cases from the Global South, but also some of their different views and approaches to sustainability.

144 Reviews
I congratulate Adrian Parr on Hijacking Sustainability, a text which lays bare the problems of the sustainability culture and offers us the beginning of a Deleuzian- (and Guattarian) inspired escape forward which the planet so badly requires. Jean Hillier Newcastle University DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000899

1. Save the Slug is a campaign by International Slugfest against the use of toxic insecticides to kill garden slugs, such as the endangered Canadian Dromedary Jumping Slug (EUT, 2007).

Barton, Hugh (1998) Eco-neighbourhoods: A Review of Projects, Local Environment, 3:2, pp. 15977. Conley, Verena (2005) Order-word, in Adrian Parr (ed.), The Deleuze Dictionary, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, pp. 1934. Cummings, Michael (1999) Eco-villages and Sustainable Communities, Utopian Studies, 10:2, p. 223. Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari (1987) [1980] A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, trans. Brian Massumi, London: Athlone Press. Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari (1994) [1991] What is Philosophy?, trans. Graham Burchell and Hugh Tomlinson, London: Verso. Endangered Ugly Things (EUT) (2007) Might as well jump, http://endangeredugly.blogspot.com/2007/04/might-as-well-jump.html [accessed 05/05/2009]. Gibson-Graham, J.-K. (1996) The End of Capitalism (As We Knew It), Cambridge, MA: Blackwell. Guattari, Flix (1995) [1992] Chaosmosis: An Ethico-Aesthetic Paradigm, trans. Paul Bains and Julian Pefanis, Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Guattari, Flix (2000) [1989] The Three Ecologies, trans. Ian Pindar and Paul Sutton, London: Athlone Press. Gunder, Michael and Jean Hillier (2009) Planning in Ten Words or Less, Farnham: Ashgate. Hillier, Jean (2007) Stretching Beyond the Horizon: A Multiplanar Theory of Spatial Planning and Governance, Aldershot: Ashgate. Hillier, Jean (2009) Spatial Planning as Strategic Navigation, paper presented at UK Planning Research Conference, Newcastle University, April 13 (copy available from author). Parr, Adrian (2008) Deleuze and Memorial Culture, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Roy Ananya (2009) Why India Cannot Plan its Cities: Informality, Insurgence and the Idiom of Urbanisation, Planning Theory, 8:1, pp. 7687. Sizemore, Steve (2004) Urban Eco-villages as an Alternative Model to Revitalizing Urban Neighborhoods, Cincinnati, OH: University of Cincinnati Press. Sullivan, Rachel (2008) Inside Ecovillage Life, Science Alert, 30/10/2008, http:// www.sciencealert.com.au/features/20083010-18378.html [accessed 05/05/2009].



Taylor, Matthew and John Vidal (2009) UK Police Raid Dozens of Homes as Climate Change Activists Arrested, The Guardian, 14/04/2009, http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/apr/14/police-raid-climate-protest [accessed 14/04/2009]. Weizman, Eyal (2006) The Art of War: Deleuze, Guattari, and Debord and the Israeli Defense Force, http://info.interactivist.net/node/5324 [accessed 11/05/2009].

Bernd Herzogenrath (ed.) (2009) Deleuze/Guattari and Ecology, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 290pp. In his contribution to Deleuze/Guattari and Ecology, Hanjo Berressem suggests that Felix Guattaris later texts, which contain his more explicit dealings with ecology, were a fallout of his general project . . . [Guattaris] ecosophy is more comprehensive than the more visible and mainstream versions of ecology (60). This also suggests a helpful way in which to conceptualise the aim of Bernd Herzogenraths collection. Certain disciplinary histories of ecology indicate that this eld of study devoted to organisms, environments and their interactions has itself evolved into something of a fallout without a general project. For instance, Dana Phillipss The Truth of Ecology (2003) highlights a self-alienating tendency that has crippled ecology as an academic enterprise. On the one hand, scientists in ecology push forward without being able to sustain their own body of theories and methods from dismantling critiques by physicists and biologists who enjoy a tradition of well-established facts and core concepts; on the other hand, scientic research in ecology often gets skewed into a utopian holism by popular environmental movements and oversimplied by the pastoral assumptions besetting most ecocriticism. Ecology, apprehended in this restricted and isolating manner, is in need of structural couplings with a generalised ecology towards which Herzogenraths collection gestures. Together, the essays inaugurate the productive syntheses that become from mapping the philosophy of Deleuze and Guattari in proximity to contemporary ecological concerns. Deleuze/Guattari and Ecology incorporates a broad array of perspectives that divide fairly equally between the sciences and the arts; indeed, one could categorise the essays along these two predominate lines. Yet Herzogenrath chooses not to divide any of the essays into thematic groups and his sequencing of the volume appears to be without a governing agenda. That said, I believe this (dis)organisational scheme reinforces the various ecologics theorised by the contributing authors and makes the collection especially suitable for non-linear or affective

146 Reviews
readings, which Deleuze himself promoted in texts such as A Thousand Plateaus (Deleuze and Guattari 1987) and Spinoza: Practical Philosophy (Deleuze 1998). In this way, the collection enacts Manuel DeLanda and Roland Bogues ideas on ecosystems: it is extremely complex and demands that one be knowledgeable in (or at least willing to engage with) a cacophony of disparate elds, and it plays host to a multitude of open-ended, autopoietic becomings and transversal encounters between authors whose diverse foci produce many innovative connections between Deleuze and Guattari, science and art, environmentalism and ecology. In the volumes opening essay entitled Ecology and Realist Ontology, Manuel DeLanda attempts to rethink realist ontology so that, among other things, we can properly understand the immense complexity involved with ecosystems. While DeLanda claims that (a combination of) scientic elds are better equipped to study ecosystems than semiotics or hermeneutics, he insists that philosophy must ll a number of vital vacancies neglected by scientists, many of whom are overspecialised positivists concerned only with directly observable entities and with predicting or controlling the phenomena in question (23). He contends that our understanding of ecological processes must treat entities like hydrogen atoms or electrons . . . every bit as real as large animals and plants and grant reality full autonomy from the human mind, but such ontology must avoid the nave essentialism that has previously turned intellectuals against realism (24). This Deleuzeinspired reconstruction of realism, following modern evolution theory, starts by substituting an open-ended becoming based on individual and universal singularities for the static and closed categories associated with the classication system of general essence and particular instance (40). What is ultimately at stake here, according to DeLanda, is the proposition that individuation processes are responsible for the identity of each individual entity and that one must then look to immanent (nontranscendent) abstract structure[s] for an account of any regularities in the [individuation] processes themselves (27). A more nuanced grasp of this proposition would require ventures into DeLandas lengthy interpretations of Deleuzes use of the terms intensive and virtual. Sufce it to say, in terms of its impact on ecological thought, DeLandas essay affords a substantial, hardearned condence boost to those who have posited or hypothesised an intuitive signicance to unconventional ecological phenomena in spite of the intellectual haziness that, as he suggests, inevitably stigmatises traditional ontological commitments rooted in idealism and positivism.



By situating Deleuze and Guattaris ideas about the mechanosphere with reference to recent technological advancements, Luciana Parisis Technoecologies of Sensation helps us cope with and unpack the dense writing found in, for example, the Guattari of Chaosmosis (1995) (especially the chapters Machinic Heterogeneities and Schizoanalytic Metamodelisation). Important to her argument is Guattaris assertion that machines, in contrast to structures, are self-organising processes and should therefore be regarded as a prerequisite for technology rather than its subset or expression (Guattari 1995: 33). Working from the premise that changes in technical machines are inseparable from changes in the material, cognitive, and affective capacities of a body, Parisi sets out to examine how the bionic tendencies of new media technologies leads to changes in sensation or modes of feeling (182). Beyond the taxonomy of form and content, Parisi conceives of new media technologies as technoecologies of sensation that usher in domains of sensation marked by an unprecedented contact with virtual forces. Thus, not only is sensory-motor perception extended, but technologies such as biochips become linked to what Parisi calls symbiosensation: the felt experience of a nonsensuous relatedness between organic and inorganic matter, adding on a new gradient of feeling in the thinkingesh (192). If, as Deleuze insisted, the cinema presents a challenge to thinking, then Parisis analysis of digital media architecture drives towards a related insight: bionic technologies evoke emergent nexuses between organic and inorganic milieus of information sensing that engender an extended proprioceptive sensation whereby movement or spatiotemporal orientations have become ecological (193). Scholars with a broader interest in this line of inquiry should consult the work of Gregory Ulmer, whose theory of electracy addresses the implications of digital media from a poststructuralist, often Deleuzian perspective. Technoecologies of Sensation, although environmentalists would likely overlook it, constitutes a difcult expedition into the more vague yet more real ecological phenomena that become accessible when we think beyond standard categories and subsets, as proposed by DeLanda earlier in the collection. (It is helpful to read DeLanda and Parisi together.) Both authors write in the spirit of Deleuze in Spinoza: Practical Philosophy, building on his preference for thought over consciousness in a quest to acquire knowledge of the power of the body in order to discover, in a parallel fashion, the powers of the mind that elude consciousness (Deleuze 1998: 18). Scholars of literary and cultural studies who work on globalisation issues will undoubtedly nd value in the Guattari-oriented essays

148 Reviews
by Jonathan Maskit and Verena Adermatt Colony. For Maskit, globalisation or integrated world capitalism names a nightmare of homogeneity in which mass-media circulate a dominant subjectivity that produce[s] desires and pleasures that are concordant with the products and services that can be provided through the marketplace (138). Maskits discussion of the problem of consumption penetrates right to the core of integrated world capitalism. There is much more to our desire for commodities than a sterile, rationalist approach would like to admit, and Maskit admirably complicates the issue beyond the reductive work in environmental philosophy that he criticises. Rather than attempting to control consumer desire and waste in a moralising fashion, Maskit essentially calls for what Guattari terms a value-system revolution, whereby a (processual) resingularising subjectivity generates new values that make an ecological mode of living achievable by afrmation (as opposed to negation and lack). Although the recommended practices listed in the conclusion of Maskits essay would have beneted from engagements with Deleuze and/or Guattari beyond just The Three Ecologies (2008), Maskit lays the groundwork for others to pick up where he leaves off by using their philosophy for the reshaping of subjectivity, in addition to critiquing capitalist subjectivity. Guattari would not be satised by the current omnipresence of green lists prescribing to readers how they should live and what they should or should not buy in order to be eco-friendly. Maskit is then right to qualify contemporary ecological concerns as opportunities for a rethinking of what it means to be human, but this realisation will be of little consequence if, in the end, we fail to generate the transversal tools necessary to facilitate such a rethinking (140). Guattaris later writings on the shift from mass-media culture to what he calls a post-media age seem especially relevant here, if we are to truly move in the direction of co-management in the production of subjectivity (Guattari 1995: 12). Conleys essay Artists or Little Soldiers? Felix Guattaris Ecological Paradigms has much to say in relation to Maskits. After Conley spends much of the rst half paraphrasing and elaborating on passages from The Three Ecologies, the essay takes on new life as it moves to examine the potential for afrmative creative resistance that builds as advances with the internet provide more and more people a venue to publicise cultural work (123). If we accept Maskits proposition to rethink subjectivity in the light of environmental crisis, then Conleys piece asserts the importance of singular and collective enunciation as a performance integral to processes of resingularisation (124). In other words, acts of creativity (including new forms of militantism) are



central to the nascent subjectivity that Guattari prioritises at the end of The Three Ecologies (126). Furthermore, Conley does a remarkable job of constructing an exciting dialogue between poststructuralist theory and current events, as does John Protevi in a brilliant and far-reaching essay on Hurricane Katrina, wherein Protevi performs an astonishing amount of historical research to tease out an urgent political lesson about government and solidarity (180). What alternatives can we turn when surrounded by that all too human face of the integrated world capitalism denounced here? Essays by Herzogenrath, Halsey, Abrioux, Fuller and Zepke each speak to the belief, paramount to Deleuze and Guattari, that the non-human pre-personal part of subjectivity is crucial since it is from this that its heterogenesis can develop (Guattari 1995). These ve essays, which traverse an impressive blend of ethological and aesthetic objects, are perhaps best read in the context of Gary Genoskos essay on subjectivity and art. According to Genoskos extensive treatment of Guattaris later texts, art should always be of interest to those concerned with ecological or environmental problems including creative works that do not explicitly valorise trees, owers, prairie dogs and so on. Heterogeneous exploration of the refrains of subjectivity, the conditions of its production, is what conjugates the arts with a generalised ecology. Genosko successfully emphasises the esthetic dimension of eco-praxis and shows how ecosophic activism resembles the work of artists (110). Herzogenraths essay searches for relations between nature and music that extend beyond representation. Thus, rather than the routine ecocritical study of how nature is depicted in selected works, Herzogenrath boldly asks: can weather itself be music, and can music itself be meteorological? Through a comparative analysis of three composers (Ives, Cage, Adams), via a surprising mix of Deleuze and Thoreau, Herzogenrath puts us in an excellent position to appreciate the full signicance of John Luther Adamss claim: As we listen carefully to noise, the whole world becomes music (228). While each of the authors mentioned above contribute innovative readings of off-beat genres (Intensive Landscaping and Art for Animals are prime examples), Herzogenraths originality is the most poignant. Essays by Roland Bogue and Hanjo Berressem shift the focus away from Guattaris explicit ecosophy and redirect our attention to ecological leanings of the collaborative works, namely both volumes of Capitalism and Schizophrenia. This move seems very pertinent given Deleuzes claim in the late 1980s that he and Guattari wanted to write a (last) book on their philosophy of Nature. Bogues essay A Thousand Ecologies

150 Reviews
seeks to discern what this (eco)philosophy might have looked like, while Berressem stages an epic interrogation of key concepts (e.g. autopoiesis and structural coupling) Deleuze adapted from systems theory and second-order cybernetics, ultimately showcasing the inuence of Deleuzes radical philosophy on Guattaris radical ecology (57). Indeed, both essays prove that Deleuze and Guattaris thought is quite applicable and enriching to ecological discourse, especially given their opposition to any denitive separation of the social, cultural, and technological world of humans from the non human world (50). Finally, in the pivotal moment of Bogues essay (arguably the books most important moment), the question of philosophys readiness to help us through ecological crisis doubles back on itself: what does philosophy stand to lose in an era of environmental degradation and endangered species? Bogues answer is subtle, distinctive, and chilling:
Modes of existence that destroy habitats, induce pandemics, or foster pathogenic disequilibrium inhibit a creative exploration of the possibilities of bodies and decrease the options for a reconguration of humans and the earth. The fewer the life forms available for becoming-other, the fewer the trajectories available for creative transformation. (54)

It should be noted that the sheer breadth of concepts mobilised in this collection renders it useful to a wide range of Deleuze scholars, but less so to ecologists who have never read Deleuze and/or Guattari (although the book could function as an inspiring point of departure to guide such readers). With the growing, international interest that now more than ever surrounds questions of environment and ecology, both established Deleuze and/or Guattari scholars, and younger ones rst encountering their work, are signalling an ecological turn that, ten years ago, was all but absent from studies of these two landmark thinkers. Of this recent publication trend, Maskit writes, there has been a slow trickle that is, perhaps, ready to become a stream (131). If it becomes a stream, expect Herzogenraths collection to be cited many times along the way. John Tinnell University of Florida DOI: 10.3366/E1750224110000905

Deleuze, Gilles (1998) Spinoza: Practical Philosophy, trans. Robert Hurley, San Francisco: City Lights. Deleuze, Gilles and Flix Guattari (1987) A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, trans. Brian Massumi, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.



Guattari, Flix (1995) Chaosmosis, trans. Paul Bains and Julian Pefanis, Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Guattari, Flix (2008) The Three Ecologies, trans. Ian Pindar and Paul Sutton, London: Athlone. Phillips, Dana (2003) The Truth of Ecology: Nature, Culture, Literature in America, Oxford/New York: Oxford University Press.