Friday, March 29, 2013

We Other Cannibals: Viveiros de Castro and Deleuze and Guattari

I have always been more on Team Anti-Oedipus than Team A Thousand Plateaus. Partly this is autobiographical. I read Anti-Oedipus at a very impressionable time, too soon--in undergrad. I picked the book at City Lights in San Francisco partly because Hampshire Professor Margaret Cerullo had a blurb on the back. (This was the old Minnesota copy with the cover designed by Harold and the Purple Crayon.) At the time I was trying to navigate the world of "theory," designing my own major which combined anthropology and philosophy. I was positioned to understand less than a quarter of it, but the rest I thoroughly enjoyed. I stayed up all night on a red eye reading it. The other reason that I have continued to gravitate towards Anti-Oedipus, writing on it and teaching it, is that I felt that I could do more with it, plug it into my various conceptual machines, producing readings of primitive accumulation and Marx's ontology. In contrast to this A Thousand Plateaus seems to descend down so many rabbit holes that I cannot follow. I just don't know enough about birdsong and geology (another reason that I will never be a speculative realist, I suppose).

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

A Brief Encounter: Between Analysis and Affect

I was introduced to David Lean's A Brief Encounter by Slavoj Zizek and Sophie Fiennes A Pervert's Guide to Ideology.  The film is about a married doctor and a woman (also married) who meet in a train station and fall in love. The film documents their brief affair against a stifling atmosphere of propriety in Post-World War Two England.