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Re: <eyebeam><blast> Barthes, Derrida and Deleuze/Guattari

DJ Spooky that Subliminal Kid

>I think that philosophers of psychological
>fragmentation like Donna J Haraway, Trin T. Minh-ha, and Frantz Fanon
>are becoming far more relevant than the tired discourses promulgated by
>the Derrida/Barthes/D&G axis.

An opinion that I also see growing, though many who increasingly draw on
Haraway, Minh-ha or Fanon would not separate their work from
Derrida/Barthes/D&G. The common thread to me, at a pretty high level of
abstraction, is the committment to multiplicity or a refusal to create
closure or to totalise. Though Brian Holmes has rightly pointed out the
differences between French theorists (if you had put
Derrida/Foucault/D&G, you would have had three who publicly disagreed
with each other, Derrida and Foucault wouldn't talk to each other for
years after Foucault called Derrida in print 'a determined little
pedagogue' and Foucault stated he did not agree with D&G's theory of
desire), there is some point to putting them together as, broadly
understood, the theorists who explored (with others) how we think when
we know the dreams of Truth are only dreams.

All these theorists (French and other) approached their work in ways
that, as Olu Oguibe argued earlier , refuse thinking of the Other in
favour of multiplicities. Even Fanon's impassioned commitment to
humanism is being reinterpreted as leading away from the slave/master or
same/other dialectics. The question becomes, what sort of politics 
results from these sorts of thinking? What is a politics of

At one level, I can see a simple answer. It is the politics of analysis.
IOD's web stalker fits here because it is a multiple engine for
producing the politics of web-sites. At another level, I wonder whether
a politics of liberation can exist within thought one of whose main
tasks is to break down unities into their hidden differences. How can
multiple collectives be thought and practised? This is partly why I
objected much earlier in this discussion to Olu Oguibe's rejection of
the characterisation of same and other on the net. Not because I want to
reinstate and designate Others, but because it seems important to grasp
which groups of people are in what sorts of exploitative relationships.
But if the fact of claiming that some groups of people are exploited is
itself exploitative (because it submerges the differences of the
exploited into an Otherness), how can liberatory thought and practice
move? How do we think non-universal, non-essential, social groups
(particularly exploited groups) without simply helping to establish
their otherness?

This seems to me a question that is posed in the shift from the 'French
thinkers' to those like Haraway/Minh-ha/Fanon, which is itself a shift
that tries to take forward multiple thinking and practice but also
recognises problems such thinking and practice create.

Tim Jordan

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