Consciousness Thought

Parables for the Virtual: Movement, Affect, Sensation by Brian Massumi

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By Brian Massumi

Even supposing the physique has been the focal point of a lot modern cultural idea, the versions which are normally utilized forget the main salient features of embodied existence—movement, have an effect on, and sensation—in prefer of techniques derived from linguistic thought. In Parables for the digital Brian Massumi perspectives the physique and media corresponding to tv, movie, and the net, as cultural formations that function on a number of registers of sensation past the succeed in of the interpreting recommendations based at the general rhetorical and semiotic types. Renewing and assessing William James’s radical empiricism and Henri Bergson’s philosophy of belief during the clear out of the post-war French philosophy of Deleuze, Guattari, and Foucault, Massumi hyperlinks a cultural common sense of version to questions of flow, impact, and sensation. If such innovations are as primary as indicators and significations, he argues, then a brand new set of theoretical matters seem, and with them power new paths for the marriage of clinical and cultural concept. changing the conventional competition of literal and figural with new differences among stasis and movement and among genuine and digital, Parables for the digital tackles similar theoretical matters by way of utilising them to cultural mediums as diversified as structure, physique paintings, the electronic paintings of Stelarc, and Ronald Reagan’s appearing occupation. the result's an exciting blend of cultural conception, technology, and philosophy that says itself in a crystalline and multi-faceted argument. Parables for the digital will curiosity scholars and students of continental and Anglo-American philosophy, cultural experiences, cognitive technological know-how, digital paintings, electronic tradition, and chaos concept, in addition to these focused on the “science wars” and the relation among the arts and the sciences in general.

"This is a unprecedented paintings of scholarship and suggestion, the main thorough-going critique and reformulation of the tradition doctrine that i've got learn in years. Massumi's prose has a blinding and infrequently slicing readability, and but he bites into very vast concerns. humans may be examining and conversing approximately Parables for the digital for a very long time to come."— Meaghan Morris, writer of Too quickly Too past due: historical past in renowned Culture

"Have you been disenchanted by means of books that promise to deliver ‘the physique’ or ‘corporeality’ again into tradition? good, your good fortune is set to alter. during this outstanding ebook Brian Massumi transports us from the dicey intersection among stream and sensation, via insightful explorations of have an effect on and physique snapshot, to an artistic reconfiguration of the ‘nature-culture continuum.’ The writing is experimental and adventurous, as one may perhaps count on from a author who unearths inventiveness to be the main targeted characteristic of pondering. the viewpoint Massumi unfolds could have an important impact on cultural idea for years to come."—William Connolly, Johns Hopkins University

"After Bergson, Whitehead, Deleuze, and Guattari, the nice radical empiricist protest opposed to naïve objectivism and naïve subjectivism resonates back, bringing ask yourself again into the commonest day reports. After examining Brian Massumi you are going to by no means hearken to Sinatra or watch a football video game an identical method again."—Isabelle Stengers, loose college of Brussels

"It isn't adequate to explain Massumi’s e-book as an excellent success. Seldom will we see a political philosopher increase his or her rules with such scrupulous awareness to daily human lifestyles, making a marvelously fluid structure of inspiration round the basic query of what the very fact of human embodiment does to the job of pondering. Massumi’s full of life critique of either social-constructionist and essentialist theorizations of embodied practices renews the Deleuzian culture of philosophy for our times."—Dipesh Chakrabarty, collage of Chicago

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Extra info for Parables for the Virtual: Movement, Affect, Sensation

Sample text

The limits of the fie/d of emergence are ;,, its act11al cxpression. lmplicit form may be thought of as the effective presence of the sum total of a thing's interactions minus the thing. It is a thing's rclationality autonomized as a dimension of the real. This a1110110- mizatio11 of relatio11 is thc condition under which "higher" functions feed back. Emergence, once again, is a two-sided coin: one side in the virtual (the autonomy of relation), the other in the actual (functional limitation) .

I f it is any consolation, conccpts from humanities disciplines undergo similarly "diplomatic" trcatment. Asidc from that, poaching a scientific conccpt in no way prcvents it from continuing to function in its homc environment. lt's not a zero-sum game. It's additive. The concept stili bclongs to thc culture of scicncc but has also been naturalized into the humanities. If I were a conccpt, I could emigrate a11d stay behind in my homc country. ) Which just lcavcs thc titlc. Thc gcnrc ofwriting most closcly allicd with thc logica) form of thc cxample is the parablc.

This a1110110- mizatio11 of relatio11 is thc condition under which "higher" functions feed back. Emergence, once again, is a two-sided coin: one side in the virtual (the autonomy of relation), the other in the actual (functional limitation) . What is being termed affect in this essay is precisely this two-sidedness, the simultancous participation ofthe virtual in the actual and the actual in the virtual, as one arises from and returns to the other. Affect is this two­ sideness as see11 /rom the side of the acwal thing, as couched in its percep­ tions and cognitions.

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