Voice as Vice? : Thesis 4 : Whether delivering information, opinions, perspectives, dissenting arguments or humorous asides, the human voice is typically open, natural, uncontrived.
Where we are is where we are. I am beginning to think that tautologies are the nature of this thesis writing I’m producing here. Where is Derrida? What would he say of my work? Not quite a soup question, is it? Perhaps it is. But the soup question is for another project—one of my life because I wonder at things incessantly. It can be daunting, all this wonder.
You see, I am writing in my form of stream-of-consciousness right now. Typing as fast as my fingers can grasp the signals of my thinking, which is quite fast. I’ve had my coffee this morning. I am attempting what Walter Benjamin, the surrealists, and many other poets and prose-its can tell you feels liberatory: writing off the cuff of thought. Just going. No editing. Take my typos to take my soul.
All in the name to see what comes.
What comes from going in for the speech is conversation. Johanna (@sargoth. and now I’m using names, go me!) writes very profoundly (as always) about the way she approaches twitter: without motive, purpose, or point. That’s the point.
And if we’re going to return to what I mentioned in my thesis 1 discussion, we can officially argue that to do so is the precise subversion of capitalism’s take on conversation.
I can say this because I have some texts here that tell me I can. I’m going to quote some dudes, then we’re going to see where we are with this whole thing.
In his Reason in History, Hegel be speaking bout community though we have to make a few moves:
Due to such a condition of history, this rich, indeed immeasurable growth of families into tribes, of tribes into nations, and their expansion [helllloo globalisation] due to this increase—a series of events which itself suggest so many complications, wars, rebellions, ruins—all this has merely happened without real history. What is more, the extension and organic growth of the realm of sounds connected with this process itself remained voiceless and dumb—a stealthy unnoticed advance. It is a fact of philosophical evidence that the languages that peoples have spoken in their rude conditions were highly elaborate; the understanding threw itself with great ingenuity and completeness into this theoretical work.
What Hegel be doing is he be commenting on the silence oppressed unto people who haven’t spoke in “high” English. Sho nuff he isn’t saying this directly; Hegel was writing in 1837 when the Western languages were spreading their viral relationship over the world just as capitalism and christianity were doing.
Because “we” can’t have one without the other.
Colonisation is as about physical occupation as it is linguistic. I would say that if it weren’t for guys like Hegel, Marx, Trotsky, and all those post-Enlightenment thinkers, we wouldn’t have had the modernist rupture that came to us late 1800s, early 1900s. (the Enllightenment thinkers were just stoked to be writing to question their own words too much. But if you find some evidence to prove me contrary, please bring it to my attention with a ping.)
Entrée the surrealists, Eliot, Pound, and all the Levinas-Heidegger-Wittgenstein era folk. They started doing something real cool around this time a lot of the time. They were writing manifestos. Now the manifesto is this little text that works harder than any other text, and I’m going to show you how…
When you read the word ‘manifesto’, you are immediately making an association of meaning, aren’t you?
Many of us think immediately of Marx and Engels’s The Communist Manifesto. Depending on our relationship to capitalist ideology—whether we buy into the buying = democracy algebra fiction, or not—we will think of this text and this word in certain ways. Then there are those of us ‘who’ have actually read it. We know what it means to be a manifesto. We know what being a manifesto is not.
So a whole bunch of dudes were tired of shit in the world. They didn’t like this globalisation thing they saw happening everywhere. They saw it happening through the physical assault of occupation, they saw it in the raping of people and places, and they saw it in the canon. So then they thought up this great idea: “Let’s start writing manifestos and changing the narrative.”
Then they did.
Even Wittgenstein, who didn’t want to succumb to the inherent necessity of change that the manifesto brought, wrote one. This is how the modernist era happened. This is how we got surrealism, magic realism, Dadaism, and all sorts of amazing new ways of writing. Those guys said ‘nuff bitches, I’m me and I’m going to write me.
Ladies, gents, and bots, Walter sex-god-of-rhetoric Benjamin:
There is always in such movements, a moment when the original tension of the secret society must either explode in a matter-of-fact, profane struggle for power and domination, or decay as a public demonstration and be transformed.
Life only seemed worth living where the threshold between waking and sleeping was worn away in everyone as by the steps of multitudinous images flooding back and forth, language only seemed itself where sound and image, image and sound interpenetrated with automatic precision and such felicity that no chink was left for the penny-in-the-slot called ‘meaning’.
To live in a glass house is a revolutionary virtue par excellence. It is also an intoxication, a moral exhibitionism, that we badly need.
No one before these visionaries and augurs perceived how destitution—not only social but architectonic, the poverty of interiors, enslave and enslaving objects—can be suddenly transformed into revolutionary nihilism.
They bring the immense forces of ‘atmosphere’ concealed in these things to the point of explosion. What form do you suppose a life would take that was determined at a decisive moment precisely by the street song on everyone’s lips? [ßsex]
The trick by which this world of things is mastered—it is more proper to speak of a trick than a method—consists in the substitutions of a political for a historical view of the past.
I cannoned these out at you from the entrances of thought they are. Pieces of delectable, savory cum from the mouth of Benjamin for a reason. (I am writing in these terms for a reason as well, get at it.) He shows us not just what to do, but how to do it. Is this a manifesto of his? Ha. I have a better, a bolder, a more naked question for you:
Is this a manifesto I am writing?
Benjamin thought we should get more naked, real, “sinful”, and more true to who we are. He thought it would take something radical like *gasp* writing off the top of our heads as we caroused the streets with everyday life (where the real is—where capitalism ain’t able to go) to see who we were. He knew this would show us who we become.
Yet, I read a little text yesterday which subverts Baudrillard’s “Precession of Simulacra” by retelling it in codemesh and slang. In there, he says something to the effect that this is how ethnographer’s ruin humanity.
Ah, it can be.
The move to study humans as human subjects is unhealthy. I will argue this up and forthcoming. This allows us to other each other. But to only look at humanity as entrances into conversations is a much different task.
It is a being a human.
Language and discourse acquisition isn’t something that is all Lockean, where we just know how to speak with each other despite differences. We have to listen and understand one another if we are going to participate and be in a conversation. @sushi_goat says this in his thesis 2. This is what capitalism does not do.
Instead, it searches for meaning to commodify. And, yes, Jakob, it can only do so generally.
However, what we can do to prevent our words, thus ourselves, from being commodified in this digital culture where big data scrapes our identities from conversations with each other to packages market shares of humans, is rock our voice.
The voices we have, no matter where we are, are human. They are the words we think, and send to each other. Be them text, type, speech, touch, taste, or whatever. These will always be pre-marketed stimuli.
As soon as we realize that it is us who converse first, we actualize the power of human conversation.
The liberation will ever-lie in the voices of our speech—what it is we do with what we say and how we communicate before history makes it what it is.
That is how is is a sext, @sargoth_ebooks.