You are on page 1of 13

"Come, don't be in a fright, but put on your clothes, and I'll let

you into a secret. You must know that I am Captain of

this ship now, and this is my cabin, therefore you must
walk out. I am bound to Madagascar, with a design of
making my own fortune, and that of all the brave fellows
joined with me...if you have a mind to make one of us,
we will receive you, and if you'll turn sober, and mind
your business, perhaps in time I may make you one of my
Lieutenants, if not, here's a boat alongside and you shall
be set ashore." -- Captain Henry Long Ben Avery
Avast ye mateys! My name is Captain Charlie Steinman and Im
a pirate. Here I am with my first mate Jon and weve
been exiled from the traditional norms of the debate
community, so here we stand sailing along the frontier of
the activity. We exist for our own autonomy and freedom
in this activity, to be able to read whatever types of
arguments wed like, not really like anyone else.
Sometimes Im a privateer, I work for the state in my own
interests, sometimes Im a buccaneer, living a simple life
almost outside of the community, but Im always a
pirate. And because Im a pirate I can look at the
resolution in a number of different ways, and as a pirate
and this resolution is about the sea, every single topic
lecture I attended took the resolution from the starting
point of traditional cartography that operates under the
assumption of us dividing the ocean up into neat little
compartmentalized categories of ownership and use that
only leaves untouched abyssal sea, and only until we get
the tech to extract from it. The Role of the Ballot is to
vote for the team that best presents a model for
exploring the oceans.
Kingsworth and Hine 2009 (Paul Kingsworth add Dougald Hine wrote The
Dark Mountain Manifesto and co-founded the Dark Mountain Project.
*edited for gendered language*
It might perhaps be just as useful to explain what Uncivilised writing is not. It is not environmental writing, for
there is much of that about already, and most of it fails to jump the barrier which marks the limit of our collective
human ego; much of it, indeed, ends up shoring-up that ego, and helping us to persist in our civilisational delusions.

there is no such thing as nature as distinct from people,

and to suggest otherwise is to perpetuate the attitude which has brought
us here. And it is not political writing, with which the world is already flooded, for politics is a human confection,
complicit in ecocide and decaying from within. Uncivilised writing is more rooted than any
It is not nature writing, for

of these. Above all, it is determined to shift our worldview, not to feed into
it. It is writing for outsiders. If you want to be loved, it might be best not to get involved, for the world, at least for a
time, will resolutely refuse to listen. A salutary example of this last point can be found in the fate of one of the
twentieth centurys most significant yet most neglected poets. Robinson Jeffers was writing Uncivilised verse
seventy years before this manifesto was thought of, though he did not call it that. In his early poetic career, Jeffers
was a star: he appeared on the cover of Time magazine, read his poems in the US Library of Congress and was
respected for the alternative he offered to the Modernist juggernaut. Today his work is left out of anthologies, his
name is barely known and his politics are r regarded with suspicion. Read Jeffers later work and you will see why.
His crime was to deliberately puncture humanitys sense of self-importance. His punishment was to be sent into a
lonely literary exile from which, forty years after his death, he has still not been allowed to return. But Jeffers knew
what he was in for. He knew that nobody, in an age of consumer choice, wanted to be told by this stone-faced
prophet of the California cliffs that it is good for [humanity] To know that his needs and nature are no more
changed in fact in ten thousand years than the beaks of eagles. He knew that no comfortable liberal wanted to
hear his angry warning, issued at the height of the Second World War: Keep clear of the dupes that talk
democracy / And the dogs that talk revolution / Drunk with talk, liars and believers / Long live freedom, and damn
the ideologies. His vision of a world in which humanity was doomed to destroy its surroundings and eventually itself
(I would burn my right hand in a [14] slow fire / To change the future I should do foolishly) was furiously rejected
in the rising age of consumer democracy which he also predicted (Be happy, adjust your economics to the new
abundance) Jeffers, as his poetry developed, developed a philosophy too. He called it inhumanism. It was, he
wrote: a shifting of emphasis and significance from [human] to not[hu]man; the rejection of human solipsism and
recognition of the transhuman magnificenceThis manner of thought and feeling is neither misanthropic nor
pessimist It offers a reasonable detachment as rule of conduct, instead of love, hate and envy it provides
magnificence for the religious instinct, and satisfies our need to admire greatness and rejoice in beauty. The

To unhumanise
our views a little, and become confident / As the rock and ocean that we
were made from. This is not a rejection of our humanity it is an
affirmation of the wonder of what it means to be truly human . It is to accept the
shifting of emphasis from [hu]man to not[hu]man: this is the aim of Uncivilised writing.

world for what it is and to make our home here, rather than dreaming of relocating to the stars, or existing in a
[human]-forged bubble and pretending to ourselves that there is nothing outside it to which we have any
connection at all. This, then, is the literary challenge of our age. So far, few have taken it up. The signs of the times
flash out in urgent neon, but our literary lions have better things to read. Their art remains stuck in its own civilised
bubble. The idea of civilisation is entangled, right down to its semantic roots, with city-dwelling, and this provokes a

if our writers seem unable to find new stories which might lead us
through the times ahead, is this not a function of their metropolitan
mentality? The big names of contemporary literature are equally at home in the fashionable quarters of
London or New York, and their writing reflects the prejudices of the placeless, transnational elite to which they
belong. The converse also applies.

Those voices which tell other stories tend to be

rooted in a sense of place. Think of John Bergers novels and essays from
the Haute Savoie, or the depths explored by Alan Garner within a days
walk of his birthplace in Cheshire. Think of Wendell Berry or WS Merwin, Mary Oliver or Cormac
McCarthy. Those whose writings [15] approach the shores of the Uncivilised
are those who know their place, in the physical sense, and who remain
wary of the siren cries of metrovincial fashion and civilised excitement. If
we name particular writers whose work embodies what we are arguing for, the aim is not to place them more

to take
their work seriously is to redraw the maps altogether not only the map
of literary reputations, but those by which we navigate all areas of life.
Even here, we go carefully, for cartography itself is not a neutral activity.
The drawing of maps is full of colonial echoes . The civilised eye seeks to
view the world from above, as something we can stand over and survey .
The Uncivilised writer knows the world is, rather, something we are
enmeshed in a patchwork and a framework of places, experiences,
sights, smells, sounds. Maps can lead, but can also mislead. Our maps
must be the kind sketched in the dust with a stick, washed away by the
next rain. They can be read only by those who ask to see them, and they
cannot be bought.
prominently on the existing map of literary reputations. Rather, as Geoff Dyer has said of Berger,

This division is the striation of a previously smooth ocean

space with grids, measurements, sea lanes, and
Lysen and Pisters 12 (Flora Lysen, PhD candidate at the University of

Amsterdam, Patricia Pisters, Film Studies Prof at the University of Amsterdam

Introduction: The Smooth and the Striated Deleuze Studies 6.1 2012
A Thousand Plateaus 1440: The Smooth and the Striated introduces smoothness
and striation as a conceptual pair to rethink space as a complex mixture
between nomadic forces and sedentary captures. Among the models Deleuze and
Guattari describe for explicating where we encounter smooth and striated spaces, the maritime model
presents the special problem of the sea (Deleuze and Guattari 1988: 479). The sea is
a smooth space par excellence: open water always moved by the wind,
the sun and the stars, nomadically traversable by noise, colour and
celestial bearings. Increased navigation of the open water resulted in
demands for its striation. Although Deleuze and Guattari note that this took hold progressively, the
year 1440, when Portuguese discoverers introduced the first nautical
charts, marked a turning point in the striation of the sea. Maps with
meridians, parallels, longitudes, latitudes and territories gridded the
oceans, making distances calculable and measurable. It meant the
beginning of the great explorations and of the transatlantic slave trade
and the expansion of the European State apparatus. The smooth and the
striated concern the political and politics. While the smooth and the striated
are not of the same nature and de jure oppositional, Deleuze and Guattari indicate that de facto they only
exist in complex mixed forms. Moreover, the smooth and the striated work in different domains. If
the sea is the spatial field par excellence that brings out smoothness and
striation, art is perhaps the domain that can give the most varied and
subtle expression of the complex dynamics between them. The present collection
investigates the smooth and the striated in the broad field of artistic production. It was instigated by the Third
International Deleuze Studies Conference in Amsterdam (2010) that focused on the connections between art,
science and philosophy. Along with conference papers, the role of art was explored through the work of
participating artists and in a curated exhibition, The Smooth and the Striated. This exhibition focused on the
constant interplay between delineating and opening forces in the works of the eight participating contemporary
artists. Together, the installations, videos, drawings and photographs spurred a wealth of new connections and
ideas in relation to the concepts of smoothness and striation: the artworks touched upon the solidification of
historical memory and the transformation of ever growing archival material; the striation of subterranean city
space; the politics of vast demographic datasets; the visualisation of scientific patents; and more.1 Similar to the
exhibited artists in the context of the Deleuze Studies Conference, the authors in this volume think with art to shed
new and interdisciplinary light upon the concepts of smoothness and striation, and, conversely, upon the way the
smooth and the striated can give important insights into artistic practices. The smooth and the striated directly
address processes in (social, political, geographical, biological) life, taken up in philosophy and art. Most of the
contributions in this volume discuss the concepts of the smooth and the striated in relation to specific artworks
that, in Claire Colebrooks words, are not representations of images of life, but, if we consider the emergence of
the genesis of art and philosophy, can be understood as something of lifes creative potential (Colebrook 2006:
30). Hence, the singular artworks or artistic practices are not to be taken as illustrations of the concepts but as
singular ways of embodying or expressing the various aspects that the smooth and the striated envision. If we
intuit the forces that produce any single work of art or any single concept, then we might begin to approach
singularity as such: the power of making a difference (Colebrook 2006: 30). The essays in this special issue
contribute to this power of difference in the complex interweaving between the smooth and the striated in its
philosophical and artistic dimensions.

This form of smooth space is a space of affects instead of

properties, in which journeys are spontaneous and
chaotic. Instead of of pinpointed explorations in which
we try to specifically find one plane on the floor of the
vast and open deep, we venture out into the South Seas
to hear the creaking of the ice, to encounter everything
we see spontaneously as the nomad.
Deleuze and Guattari 1980 (Gilles Deleuze, Felix Guattari A Thousand

Plateaus pp. 478-482)CEFS

The Maritime Model. Of course, there are points, lines, and surfaces in striated
space as well as in smooth space (there are also volumes, but we will leave this question aside
for the time being). In striated space, lines or trajectories tend to be
subordinated to points: one goes from one point to another. In the
smooth, it is the opposite: the points are subordinated to the trajectory.
This was already the case among the nomads for the clothes-tent-space
vector of the outside. The dwelling is subordinated to the journey; inside
space conforms to outside space: tent, igloo, boat. There are stops and
trajectories in both the smooth and the striated. But in smooth space, the
stop follows from the trajectory; once again, the interval takes all, the
interval is substance (forming the basis for rhythmic values).6 In smooth
space, the line is therefore a vector, a direction and not a dimension or
metric determination. It is a space constructed by local operations involving changes in direction.
These changes in direction may be due to the nature of the journey itself, as with the nomads of the archipela
goes (a case of "directed" smooth space); but it is more likely to be due to the variability of the goal or point to be
attained, as with the nomads of the desert who head toward local, temporary vegetation (a "nondirected"
smooth space). Directed or not, and especially in the latter case, smooth space is directional rather than

Smooth space is filled by events or haecceities, far more

than by formed and perceived things. It is a space of affects, more than
one of properties. It is haptic rather than optical perception. Whereas in the striated forms organize a
dimensional or metric.


in the smooth materials signal forces and serve as symptoms for them. It is

an intensive rather than

Body without Organs instead of an organism and organization. Perception
in it is based on symptoms and evaluations rather than measures and
properties. That is why smooth space is occupied by intensities, wind and
noise, forces, and sonorous and tactile qualities, as in the desert, steppe,
or ice.7 The creaking of ice and the song of the sands. Striated space, on
the contrary, is canopied by the sky as measure and by the measurable
visual qualities deriving from it. This is where the very special problem of
the sea enters in. For the sea is a smooth space par excellence, and yet
was the first to encounter the demands of increasingly strict striation. The
extensive space, one of distances, not of measures

and properties. Intense Spatium instead of Extensio.

problem did not arise in proximity to land. On the contrary, the striation of the sea was a result of navigation on the
open water. Maritime space was striated as a function of two astronomical and geographical gains: bearings,
obtained by a set of calculations based on exact observation of the stars and the sun; and the map, which
intertwines meridians and parallels, longitudes and latitudes, plotting regions known and unknown onto a grid (like
a Mendeleyev table). Must we accept the Portuguese argument and assign 1440 as the turning point that
marked the first decisive striation, and set the stage for the great discoveries? Rather, we will follow Pierre Chaunu
when he speaks of an extended confrontation at sea between the smooth and the striated during the course of

For before longitude lines had been plotted,

a very late development, there existed a complex and empirical nomadic
system of navigation based on the wind and noise, the colors and sounds
of the seas; then came a directional, preastronomical or already
astronomical, system of navigation employing only latitude, in which
which the striated progressively took hold.8

there was no possibility of "taking one's bearings," and which had only
portolanos lacking "translatable generalization" instead of true maps;
finally, improvements upon this primitive astronomical navigation were
made under the very special conditions of the latitudes of the Indian
Ocean, then of the elliptical circuits of the Atlantic (straight and curved
spaces).9 It is as if the sea were not only the archetype of all smooth spaces but the first to undergo a
gradual striation gridding it in one place, then another, on this side and that. The commercial cities participated in
this striation, and were often innovators; but only the States were capable of carrying it to completion, of raising it
to the global level of a "politics of science."10 A dimensionality that subordinated directionality, or superimposed
itself upon it, became increasingly entrenched. This is undoubtedly why the sea, the archetype of smooth space,
was also the archetype of all striations of smooth space: the striation of the desert, the air, the stratosphere
(prompting Virilio to speak of a "vertical coastline," as a change in direction). It was at sea that smooth space was
first subjugated and a model found for the laying-out and imposition of striated space, a model later put to use
Virilio's other hypothesis: in the aftermath of striation, the sea
reimparts a kind of smooth space, occupied first by the "fleet in being,"
then by the perpetual motion of the strategic submarine, which outflanks
all gridding and invents a neonomadism in the service of a war machine
still more disturbing than the States, which reconstitute it at the limit of
their striations. The sea, then the air and the stratosphere, become
smooth spaces again, but, in the strangest of reversals, it is for the
purpose of controlling striated space more completely.1 1 The smooth
always possesses a greater power of deterritorialization than the
striated. When examining the new professions, or new classes even, how
can one fail to mention the military technicians who stare into screens
night and day and live for long stretches in strategic submarines (in the
future it will be on satellites), and the apocalyptic eyes and ears they have
fashioned for themselves, which can barely distinguish any more
between a natural phenomenon, a swarm of locusts, and an "enemy"
attack originating at any given point? All of this serves as a reminder that the smooth itself

elsewhere. This does not contradict

can be drawn and occupied by diabolical powers of organization; value judgments aside, this demonstrates above
all that there exist two nonsymmetrical movements, one of which striates the smooth, and one of which
reimparts smooth space on the basis of the striated. (Do not new smooth spaces, or holey spaces, arise as parries
even in relation to the smooth space of a worldwide organization? Virilio invokes the beginnings of subterranean
habitation in the "mineral layer," which can take on very diverse values.) Let us return to the simple opposition
between the smooth and the striated since we are not yet at the point where we can consider the dissymmetrical
and concrete mixes. The smooth and the striated are distinguished first of all by an inverse relation between the
point and the line (in the case of the striated, the line is between two points, while in the smooth, the point is
between two lines); and second, by the nature of the line (smooth-directional, open intervals; dimensional Finally, there is a third difference, concerning the surface or space. In striated
space, one closes off a surface and "allocates" it according to
determinate intervals, assigned breaks; in the smooth, one "distributes"
oneself in an open space, according to frequencies and in the course of
one's crossings (logos and nomos).I2 As simple as this opposition is, it is not easy to place it. We cannot

striated, closed intervals).

content ourselves with establishing an immediate opposition between the smooth ground of the nomadic animal
raiser and the striated land of the sedentary cultivator. It is evident that the peasant, even the sedentary peasant,
the space of tactile and sonorous qualities. When the ancient
Greeks speak of the open space of the nomosnondelimited,
unpartitioned; the pre-urban countryside; mountainside, plateau, steppe
they oppose it not to cultivation, which may actually be part of it, but to
the polis, the city, the town. When Ibn Khaldun speaks oibadiya, bedouinism, the term covers

participates fully in the space of the wind,

cultivators as well as nomadic animal raisers: he contrasts it to hadara, or "city life." This clarification is certainly
important, but it does not change much. For from the most ancient of times, from Neolithic and even Paleolithic
times, it is the town that invents agriculture: it is through the actions of the town that the farmers and their
striated space are superposed upon the cultivators operating in a still smooth space (the transhumant cultivator,

So on this level we reencounter the

simple opposition we began by challenging, between farmers and
half-sedentary or already completely sedentary).

nomads, striated land and smooth ground: but only after a detour
through the town as a force of striation. Now not only the sea, desert,
steppe, and air are the sites of a contest between the smooth and the
striated, but the earth itself, depending on whether there is cultivation in
nomos-space or agriculture in city-space. Must we not say the same of the city itself? In
contrast to the sea, the city is the striated space par excellence; the sea
is a smooth space fundamentally open to striation, and the city is the
force of striation that reimparts smooth space, puts it back into operation
everywhere, on earth and in the other elements, outside but also inside
itself. The smooth spaces arising from the city are not only those of worldwide organization, but also of a
counterattack combining the smooth and the holey and turning back against the town: sprawling, temporary,
shifting shantytowns of nomads and cave dwellers, scrap metal and fabric, patchwork, to which the striations of
money, work, or housing are no longer even relevant. An explosive misery secreted by the city, and
corresponding to Thorn's mathematical formula: "retroactive smoothing."13 Condensed force, the potential for
counterattack? In each instance, then, the simple opposition "smooth-striated" gives rise to far more difficult
complications, alternations, and superpositions. But these complications basically confirm the distinction,
precisely because they bring dissymmetrical movements into play. For now, it suffices to say that there are two
kinds of voyage, distinguished by the respective role of the point, line, and space. Goethe travel and Kleist travel?

Tree travel and rhizome travel? But

nothing completely coincides, and everything intermingles, or crosses
over. This is because the differences are not objective: it is possible to
live striated on the deserts, steppes, or seas; it is possible to live smooth
even in the cities, to be an urban nomad (for example, a stroll taken by Henry Miller in

French travel and English (or American) travel?

Clichy or Brooklyn is a nomadic transit in smooth space; he makes the city disgorge a patchwork, differentials of
speed, delays and accelerations, changes in orientation, continuous variations ... The beatniks owe much to Miller,

Fitzgerald said it
long ago: it is not a question of taking off for the South Seas, that is not
what determines a voyage. There are not only strange voyages in the city
but voyages in place: we are not thinking of drug users, whose
experience is too ambiguous, but of true nomads. We can say of the
nomads, following Toynbee's suggestion: they do not move. They are
nomads by dint of not moving, not migrating, of holding a smooth space
that they refuse to leave, that they leave only in order to conquer and
die. Voyage in place: that is the name of all intensities, even if they also
develop in extension. To think is to voyage; earlier we tried to establish a
theo-noological model of smooth and striated spaces. In short, what
distinguishes the two kinds of voyages is neither a measurable quantity
of movement, nor something that would be only in the mind, but the
mode of spatialization, the manner of being in space, of being for space.
Voyage smoothly or in striation, and think the same way... But there are
always passages from one to the other, transformations of one within the
other, reversals. In his film, Kings of the Road, Wenders intersects and
superposes the paths of two characters; one of them takes a still
educational, memorial, cultural, Goethean journey that is thoroughly
striated, whereas the other has already conquered smooth space, and
only experiments, induces amnesia in the German "desert." But oddly
enough, it is the former who opens space for himself and performs a kind
of retroactive smoothing, whereas striae reform around the latter, closing
his space again. Voyaging smoothly is a becoming, and a difficult,
uncertain becoming at that. It is not a question of returning to
preastronomical navigation, nor to the ancient nomads. The
confrontation between the smooth and the striated, the passages,
but they changed direction again, they put the

space outside the cities to new use).

alternations and superpositions, are under way today, running in the

most varied directions.

The pirates function as the nomads of the sea to disrupt

striation on the smoothness of the sea.
Kuhn 10 (Gabriel Kuhn, independent author and translator in Stockholm, Sweden,
Philosophy PhD. from the University of Innsbruck, Life Under the Jolly Roger,
Reflections on Golden Age Piracy pp. 27-30)CEFS
*edited for gendered language*

2.2. Smooth vs. Striated: The Question of Space If it is true that the nomads have no history [but only] a
the question of space deserves particular attention. In the case of Caribbean
this specifically means the sea. Its significance can hardly be
overrated. All of Caribbean society has always been intrinsically linked to it: The sea led men to
the West Indies, and away from them. A unique fact about the Caribbee
islands was that all the inhabitantsCaribs, Arawaks, white planters,
merchants, and servants, and black slaves had arrived by sea in very
recent times. To these islands, with their motley populations, merchants and factors came and went with
some regularity; they brought craftsmen, servants, and slaves to the West Indies. Communication
from one island to another by means of small sloops was both facilitated
and obstructed by the incessant trade winds; Barbados lay so far eastward of the

geography,1 then

Leeward Islands that very little exchange took place. All life, everywhere, depended on wooden hulls: in the
outward passage they carried food and supplies of all kinds, and wines from Madeira and the Canaries; on the

voyage they took back the island staples and a few passengers.2 This meant ideal
conditions for aspiring pirates: While petty thuggery and brigandage
might be easily subdued close to home, these far-flung new trades routes
offered a tempting outlet for an entirely different breed of marauder, a
mobile and elusive adventurer who could sail to the far ends of the earth,
and seek his[/her] fortune amid its most lawless frontiers.3 In general, too,
the sea has long been a symbol of freedom, a free space par excellence.
Rdiger Haude calls it the unlimited, unpredictable space, the negation of
everything national.4 Marcus Rediker adds: The vast ocean cannot be possessed. It was a


commons, a place to be used by many, including the sailor who dared to turn pirate.5 This was especially true as
long as those who traveled the seas were dependent on the elements: The source of power that took them from
available, since it was only the wind.6 In the
terminology of Gilles Deleuze and Flix Guattari, the sea constitutes a
smooth space, perhaps the principal among smooth spaces, the hydraulic
model par excellence.7 As they explain: Smooth space is a field without
conduits or channels. A field, a heterogeneous smooth space, is wedded to
a very particular type of multiplicity: non-metric, acentered, rhizomatic
multiplicities which occupy space without counting it. 8 In simpler words,
the smooth space is a space for creating self-determined, creative, free
forms of life. Here, the nomads reach their full potential as raiders: With
practical skill a nomad band can strike, steal, and disappear beyond hope
of pursuit in the great waste, fading away without trace The
supplement to the open space of the sea were the pirates coastal
refuges, the many small inlets, lagoons and harbours,solitary islands
and keys.10 If we stick to the terminology of Deleuze and Guattari, we
might call this a rhizomatic terrain since a rhizome is open and
connectable in all of its dimensionsit always has multiple entryways. 11
All of the favorite operational areas of the pirates are described

one haven to the next was everywhere and always

accordingly: the Caribbean islands provided innumerable hiding places,

secret coves and uncharted islands;12 the Gulf of Honduras and the
Mosquito Coast [were] dotted with numerous small islands and protecting
reefs,creeks, lagoons and river-mouths;13 the American coast from Boston to
Charleston, South Carolina, is a network of river estuaries, bays, inlets, and islands.14 These coastal labyrinths
provided the pirates natural onshore environment. As surely as spiders abound where there are nooks and
crannies, wrote Captain the Hon. Henry Keppel, the great hunter of Oriental pirates in the nineteenth century, so
have pirates sprung up wherever there is a nest of islands offering creeks and shallows, headlands, rocks and
attack, for escape. 15 Between the extremes
of the wide open sea and the impenetrable coastal mazes of reefs, inlets,
and river-mouths, the pirates were able to escape the wrath of the law
for several decades.16 Eventually, however, the smooth space of the sea
and with it its coastal boundariesbecame striated, i.e. ordered,
regulated, and controlled. This contributed significantly to the end of
golden age piracy: The sea isof all smooth spaces, the first one attempts were made to striate, to

reefsfacilities in short for lurking, for surprise, for

transform into a dependency of the land, with its fixed routes, constant directions, relative movements, a whole
counterhydraulic of channels and conduits. One of the reasons for the hegemony of the West was the powerof
its State apparatuses to striate the sea by combining technologies of the North and the Mediterranean and by
annexing the Atlantic.17 The most tangible aspect of this annexationor the striating process was an increased
navy presence. The number of permanently employed royal ships in the Americas rose from two in the 1670s to

by 1723, increased surveillance on the sea routes by

the Royal Navy was severely limiting [the pirates] freedom of
operations,19 and by 1724, the world was becoming too small for a
wanted pirate to be able to find a safe hiding place.2 0 This coincided with
twenty-four by 1700, 18

significant technological innovations. As David F. Marley explains: Steam, advanced ballistics, telegraphic
communications and other technological innovations meant that the advantage swung decisively to the
professional services.21 Edward Lucie-Smith stresses the first in particular: What put an end, in its classic form,
to a crime which had existed since history began, was chiefly the coming of steam. Mechanical propulsion, which
meant that the men who traveled the oceans were no longer at the mercy of the winds, also removed much of the
danger they had hitherto felt from the [pirate] who made the wind his ally, and cast himself upon its mercy as the
of an irregular and ferocious independence.22 Robert C. Ritchie concludes: Ultimately the
buccaneers success in expanding their geographic range aroused the
forces of order and brought the pirates into collision with the demands of
empire. The struggle that ensued was lopsided: the resources mobilized
by the rising imperial states far exceeded those of the pirates. [This ends
a time] when the world was younger, when it was possible for a group of
men to seize a ship and sail to the end of the world seeking their fortune,
while living in a consensual society free of the constraints that
dominated their lives at home.2


This process of conceptual ordering in the striation of the

ocean erects a fascist bureaucracy in the minds of the
community that justifies violence from the macropolitcal.
Deleuze and Guattari 80 Gilles Deleuze and Flix Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus
pg. 214-215
It is not sufficient to define bureaucracy by a rigid segmentarity with
compartmentalization of contiguous offices, an office manager in each segment,
and the corresponding centralization at the end of the hall or on top of the tower.
For at the same time there is a whole bureaucratic segmentation, a suppleness of
and communication between offices, a bureaucratic perversion, a permanent
inventiveness or creativity practiced even against administrative regulations. If
Kafka is the greatest theorist of bureaucracy, it is because he shows how, at a
certain level (but which one? it is not localizable), the barriers between offices cease

to be a definite dividing line and are immersed in a molecular medium (milieu)

that dissolves them and simultaneously makes the office manager proliferate into
microfigures impossible to recognize or identify discernible only when they are
centralizable: another regime, coexistent with the separation and totalization of the
rigid segments. We would even say that fascism implies a molecular regime
that is distinct both from molar segments and their centralization.
Doubtless, fascism invented the concept of the totalitarian State, but
there is no reason to define fascism by a concept of its own devising; there
are totalitarian States, of the Stalinist or military dictatorship type, that are not
fascist. The concept of the totalitarian State applies only at the macropolitical level,
to a rigid segmentarity and a particular mode of totalization and centralization. But
fascism is inseparable from a proliferation of molecular focuses in
interaction, which skip from point to point, before beginning to resonate
together in the National Socialist State. Rural fascism and city or
neighborhood fascism, youth fascism and war veterans fascism, fascism
of the Left and fascism of the Right, fascism of the couple, family, school,
and office: every fascism is defined by a micro-black hole that stands on
its own and communicates with the others, before resonating in a great,
generalized central black hole. There is fascism when a war machine is
installed in each hole, in every niche. Even after the National Socialist
State had been established, microfascisms persisted that gave it
unequaled ability to act upon the masses. Daniel Gurin is correct to say
that if Hitler took power, rather then taking over the German State administration, it
was because from the beginning he had at his disposal microorganizations giving
him an unequaled, irreplaceable ability to penetrate every cell of society, in other
words, a molecular and supple segmentarity, flows capable of suffusing every kind
of cell. Conversely, if capitalism came to consider the fascist experience as
catastrophic, if it preferred to ally itself with Stalinist totalitarianism, which from its
point of view was much more sensible and manageable, it was because the
segmentarity and centralization of the latter was more classical and less fluid. What
makes fascism dangerous is its molecular or micropolitical power, for it is a mass
movement: a cancerous body rather than a totalitarian organism. American film has
often depicted these molecular focal points; band, gang, sect, family, town,
neighborhood, vehicle fascisms spare no one. Only microfascism provides an
answer to the global question: Why does desire desire its own repression,
how can it desire its own repression? The masses certainly do not
passively submit to power, nor do they want to be repressed, in a kind of
masochistic hysteria; nor are they tricked by an ideological lure. Desire is
never separable from complex assemblages that necessarily ties into molecular
levels, from microformulations already shaping postures, attitudes, perceptions,
expectations, semiotic systems, etc. Desire is never an undifferentiated
instinctual energy, but itself results from a highly developed, engineered
setup rich in interactions: a whole supple segmentarity that processes
molecular energies and potentially gives desire a fascist determination.
Leftist organizations will not be the last to secrete microfascisms. Its too
easy to be antifascist on the molar level, and not even see the fascist
inside you, the fascist you yourself sustain and nourish and cherish with
molecules both personal and collective. Four errors concerning this molecular
and supple segmentarity are to be avoided. The first is axiological and consists in
believing that a little suppleness is enough to make things better. But

microfascisms are what make fascism so dangerous, and fine segmentations

are as harmful as the most rigid of segments. The second is psychological, as if the
molecular were in the realm of the imagination and applied only to the individual
and interindividual. But there is just as much social-Real on one line as on the other.
Third, the two forma are not simply distinguished by size, as a small form and a
large form; although it is true that the molecular works in detail and operates in
small groups, this does not mean that it is any less coextensive with the entire
social field than molar organization. Finally, the qualitative difference between the
two lines does not preclude their boosting or cutting into each other, there is always
a proportional relation between the two, directly or inversely proportional.

Thus we advocate the exploration o the ocean that follows no fixed

path, has no goal, and has no forseeable end. We advocate the
zig-zagging exploration of the Earths oceans as nomadic
buccaneers and pirates.
Kuhn 10 (Gabriel Kuhn, independent author and translator in Stockholm, Sweden,
Philosophy PhD. from the University of Innsbruck, Life Under the Jolly Roger,
Reflections on Golden Age Piracy pp. 24-26)CEFS
Khazanov concedes, however, that some scholars have defined nomads as

all those leading a mobile way of life

independent of its economic specificity.2 If we apply this latter definition ,

the golden age piratesa

fluctuating community of marauding bands ranging in number from a few
dozen members to a maximum of about 200 without a secure home base
would definitely belong to the wider community of nomads. The
clearest expression of the fact that the golden age pirates themselves
who knew themselves to be homeless and cut off from their countries of
origin3 understood their community to be nomadic was the common
pirate response to enquiries about where they came from: From the Seas.
4 In fact, the early buccaneers of Hispaniola already revealed nomadic tendencies.
According to the French missionary Abb du Tertre, they were without any habitation or fixed
abode, but rendezvoused where the animals were to be found. 5 How
radically these tendencies expressed themselves during the golden age of piracy is best described

by David

Apart from the obvious desire to avoid North America in winter,

and a sensible use of the trade winds when crossing the Atlantic, there
was no consistency in the planning and execution of most voyages.
Indeed, there was very little forward planning by any of the pirate crews.
The democratic nature of the pirate community meant that a vote must
be taken by the entire crew before the destination of the next voyage
could be agreed on, and this inevitably led to many decisions being made
on the spur of the moment. A study of the tracks of the pirate ships
shows many zig-zagging all over the place without apparent reason.6
One aspect of the golden age pirates zig-zagging nomadism is the
complete lack of a productive economy. Pastoralists, for example,
develop patterns of movement that guarantee grazing opportunities for
their herds, while the pirates movements are bound to the availability of
prey. In this respect, the nomadic culture they most closely resemble in
terms of economics is that of hunters and gatherers. Raiding merchant
shipsand the occasional onshore community or trading postmight be a
peculiar way of hunting and gathering, of course, but a structurally
similar one. Golden age pirates share with hunters and gatherers a nomadism required by the foraging

The dependency on prey in the form of European merchant ships

reveals another structural similarity between golden age pirates and
other nomads, namely their dependency on the outside world. As Khazanov

explains: Nomads could never exist on their own without the outside world and its non-nomadic societies, with
their different economic systems. Indeed, a nomadic society could only function while the outside world not only

but also allowed for those reactions from itwhich ensured that the nomads

remained nomads.8

historian of the Caribbean realm confirms that this is true for the
buccaneers as well, who he calls essentially stateless persons who lived
comfortably by commerce with the settled communities of European

Pirates functioned as a transnational movement resisting the

power of the state, embracing death and chaos in their
unique identity, even raiding slaving ports.
Kuhn 10 (Gabriel Kuhn, independent author and translator in Stockholm, Sweden,
Philosophy PhD. from the University of Innsbruck, Life Under the Jolly Roger,
Reflections on Golden Age Piracy pp. 13-16)CEFS
c. 16901700: As the buccaneers disappear, the pirates proper arise.
Many former buccaneers have little interest in a settled existence and
intend to further secure their economic survival by raiding. Since official licenses
are increasingly harder to come by, they turn to illegal raids often on all ships,
regardless which flags they fly. Stephen Snelders describes the transition thus: In the struggle
for dominance in the seventeenth century, the Brotherhood had played its role in the
grey border zone between sanctioned privateering and outright piracy. In
the golden age its successors were relegated to a black zone, outlawed
by all nations.36 In the mid-1690s, the successful pirate voyages into the Indian Ocean by Henry
Every and Thomas Tew, both of whom get away rich and unharmed (at least initiallyTew dies during his second
voyage), help provide a new role-model for the whole fraternity of seagoing mercenaries37 and incite a pirate

They also give

birth to a distinct, transnational, pirate culture. As a result, soon after
the return of peace in 1697, there was an explosion of piracy on a scale
never seen before.38 In 1700, after an English navy vessel gives chase to
a ship under the command of Captain Emanuel Wynn, there are first
reports of pirates flying the Jolly Rogerthe infamous black flag adorned
by allegories of death (skull and crossbones, hour glasses, bleeding hearts, etc.). It soon
comes to signify an affirmative pirate identity, indicating that unlike the
generations of pirates before them, who called themselves privateersin
truth, anything but pirate for fear of the death penalty that soon came
with the namethe freebooters of the early eighteenth century said yes,
we are criminals, we are pirates, we are that name.39 Accordingly, a war against
the pirates is waged by the authorities: The problem was tackled in a number of ways:
by the introduction of legislation; by issuing pardons to pirates in the
hope that they would abandon their lives of crime; by stepping up naval
patrols in the worst affected areas; by promising rewards for the capture
of pirates; and by the trial and execution of captured pirates.40 The most
boom in those longitudes that also prompts the famed pirate settlements in Madagascar.

significant legal innovation is the 1700 Act for the More Effectual Suppression of Piracy, making it possible for a
seven-person court of officials or naval officers to try pirates wherever such a court is able to assemble, thus
making transfers back to England unnecessary. 17011713: The War of the Spanish Succession brings a relief from
unlicensed piracy as it produces a new need for privateers. With the big buccaneer communities dissolved, many
pirates return to raiding under national flags. As Peter Earle puts it: The pirates became patriots again.41

With the end of the war [of Spanish Succession ], piracy reemerges.
of demobilized soldiers fill the pirates ranks. While the navy enlisted more than


53,000 men in 1703, the number dwindles to 13,430 in 1715. 42 A year later, Caribbean piracy reaches
previously unknown heights with New Providence, Bahamas, as its headquarters. The island loses its prominent
role in 1718, however, with the arrival of British governor Woodes Rogers. The arrival of Rogershimself a
former privateeris part of a British government design to curb piracy. The plan also includes the offer of a
pardon and the dispatching of three warshipssomething to demonstrate to a wise pirate that the days of their

some of the New Providence pirates

vowing not to bow to any government authority and wagingwar on the
whole world instead. From this point onwards the only pirates were
those who explicitly rejected the state and its laws and declared
themselves in open war against it,44 as the anonymous authors of Pirate Utopias, an article
very pleasant way of life were numbered.43 While
accept the pardon and help

in the

Rogers turn New Providence into a stable, lawful colony, others

British anarchist journal Do or Die put it. Paul Galvin describes the situation

with the following words:

True outlaws working the fringe of a closing maritime frontier, these

pirates owed allegiance to none but themselves and preyed upon the
shipping of any nation, whether Spanish, English, French or Dutch.
Consequently, unlike their buccaneer forebears, they enjoyed no cloak of
legitimacy from any government (though many a colonial governor
colluded in trafficking their spoils) and were therefore doomed to swift
eradication.45 Once more, the pirates venture into the Indian Ocean, now
also raiding along the west coast of Africa, where many new slaving posts
have been established. The route between the Caribbean and the Indian
Ocean via West Africa and Madagascar soon becomes known as the Pirate
Round. This marks the strongest period of golden age piracy, a decade
or so of maritime hoodlumism set loose under the japing countenance of
the Jolly Roger.46 It is the time of the best known pirate captains,
Blackbeard, John Calico Jack Rackam, and Bartholomew Roberts, and of
popular figures like Anne Bonny and Mary Read.

Melancholy negates the will to act it makes us slaves of the

powerful and uses our fears to exterminate difference.
We must focus on the affects of piracy to reject the
salvation morality.

Deleuze and Parnet 87

famous philosopher, Professor of Philosophy at the Sorbonne, Dialogues II, European
Perspectives, with Claire Parnet, freelance journalist, translated by Hugh Tomlinson
and Barbara Habberjam, 2002 pgs.61-62
Edited for gendered language.
When Spinoza says 'The surprising thing is the body ... we do not yet know what a
body is capable of ... ', he does not want to make the body a model, and the soul
simply dependent on the body. He has a subtler task. He wants to demolish the
pseudo-superiority of the soul over the body. There is the soul and the body and
both express one and the same thing: an attribute of the body is also an expressed
of the soul (for example, speed). Just as you do not know what a body is
capable of, just as there are many things in the body that you do not
know, so there are in the soul many things which go beyond your
consciousness. This is the question: what is a body capable of? what affects are
you capable of? Experiment, but you need a lot of prudence to experiment.
We live in a world which is generally disagreeable, where not only people
but the established powers have a stake in transmitting sad affects to us .
Sadness, sad affects, are all those which reduce our power to act. The
established powers need our sadness to make us slaves. The tyrant, the

priest, the captors of souls need to persuade us that life is hard and a
burden. The powers that be need to repress us no less than to make us
anxious or, as Virilio says, to administer and organize our intimate little
fears. The long, universal moan about life: the lack-to-be which is life ... In
vain someone says, 'Let's dance'; we are not really very happy. In vain
someone says, What misfortune death is'; for one would need to have
lived to have something to lose. Those who are sick, in soul as in body, will
not let go of us, the vampires, until they have transmitted to us their
neurosis and their anxiety, their beloved castration, the resentment
against life, filthy contagion. It is all a matter of blood. It is not easy to be a
free [person], to flee the plague, organize encounters, increase the power
to act, to be moved by joy, to multiply the affects which express or
encompass a maximum of affirmation. To make the body a power which is
not reducible to the organism, to make thought a power which is not
reducible to consciousness. Spinozas famous first principle (a single substance
for all attributes) depends on this assemblage and not vice versa. There is a
Spinoza-assemblage: soul and body, relationships and encounters, power to be
affected, affects which realize this power, sadness and joy which qualify these
affects. Here philosophy becomes the art of a functioning, of an assemblage.
Spinoza, the man of encounters and becoming, the philosopher with the tick,
Spinoza the imperceptible, always in the middle, always in flight although he does
not shift much, a flight from the Jewish community, a flight from Powers, a flight
from the sick and the malignant. He may be ill, he may himself die; he knows that
death is neither the goal nor the end, but that, on the contrary, it is a case
of passing his life to someone else. What Lawrence says about Whitmans
continuous life is well suited to Spinoza: the Soul and the Body, the soul is neither
above nor inside, it is with, it is on the road, exposed to all contacts,
encounters, in the company of those who follow the same way, feel with
them, seize the vibration of their soul and their body as they pass, the
opposite of a morality of salvation, teaching to soul its life, not to save it.