By the Light of the Glow Worm

le plus grand ennemi du bien c'est le meilleur

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#1 2019-01-26 11:35:14

Belote
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Registered: 2017-03-27
Posts: 1,970

Ostracon

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#2 2019-01-26 11:47:22

Belote
Administrator
Registered: 2017-03-27
Posts: 1,970

Re: Ostracon

The private existence, which yearns to look like one worthy of human beings, simultaneously betrays the latter, because the similarity of the general implementation is withdrawn, which more than ever before requires an independent sensibility [Besinnung]. There is no exit from the entanglement. The only responsible option is to deny oneself the ideological misuse of one’s own existence, and as for the rest, to behave in private as modestly, inconspicuously and unpretentiously as required, not for reasons of good upbringing, but because of the shame that when one is in hell, there is still air to breathe.

https://twitter.com/traumazein/status/1 … 85664?s=21
We are familiar with the dangers of rhetoric: the crowd’s complicity with the call of arguments that become persuasive only as they are separated from their truth content. But we are less acquainted with the threat posed by the identity between a truth and its arguments. Foucault observed that had he known earlier about The Frankfurt School, ‘I would have saved useful time’ - he is perhaps the first to record, and what is now a common intellectual experience, the curse of critical consciousness which evokes arrival at, by long and arduous ascent, a vantage point which it is then discovered could easily have been reached via the gentle south face of reading Adorno’s less challenging works. But contrariwise, to have arrived there by way of such texts would be equally dispiriting; exegesis is the practical realisation that nothing shall be encountered other than the confirmation of, and consolation in, the reader’s own habitual bias. To this end, we may imagine the damage to Foucault’s project if he had indeed ‘saved useful time’. In the quoted fragment, as elsewhere in his writing, we discover how Adorno is all too right; the threat is posed by the succinctness of the prose in relation to its object, in what Adorno might call its adequacy. Where we are presented with an identity between a truth and its presentation, the effect is as malign upon the reading consciousness as that of rhetoric upon the crowd - the capacity to respond is attenuated  to suggestibility, to persuasion, to having been caught in the bevaiours of the easily swayed. Wherever truth is already given it performs fatefully upon consciousness which must then either allow it to implement its pattern upon existence, or is provoked into atavistic revolt. The problem presented to Foucault by The Frankfurt School was not one of error but of what is the inevitably correct, the readymade truth that is not discovered but weighs upon thinking, distorting it. If, as Foucault asserts, philosophy and rhetoric cannot appear in the same place, then the operation of rhetoric in the context of state-form right thinking becomes beneficial to thinking as such through its deviational interruptions.  Rhetoric only appears as the immediate form of a refusal of unavoidable truths - it swerves from the obligation to recognise constraint through its flight into the image repertoire. As an example, the original motivation for ‘trolling’, before bad faith argument in general became algorithmically strategised, and where it played against the growing network effect as an acephalous mode of rhetoric, was to activate defence mechanisms, playing both rhetorician and crowd, against the inevitable patterning, and funnel traps, of heuristic rationality or state philosophy. If the froth of trolling is as far removed from Adorno’s project as can be imagined, Adorno’s position also supposes a measure of exteriorising agency, as if he might separate himself from general barbarity - precisely the will to self-quarantine deployed by Prince Prospero in Poe’s story. The difficulty in the literature of pessimism is always the same, the reader may only begin where the writer ends.

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