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Session Overview
Twelve Theses: Deleuze contra Stiegler/Stiegler contra Deleuze
Wednesday, 07/July/2021:
11:00am - 12:30pm

Session Chair: Joff Bradley
Session Topics:
D&G and (Post-)Media: from a Global Perspective

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Twelve theses: Deleuze contra Stiegler/Stiegler contra Deleuze

Joff Bradley

Teikyo University, Japan

Twelve theses: Stiegler takes up where Guattari left off regarding the question of universes of reference produced by the computation and digital revolution which began to accelerate in the 1980s and early 1990s. Firstly, it is Stiegler who addresses the psychical and societal effects of the technological revolution taking place in the early 1990s, for example, the growth of attention deficit disorder, intelligence decline, infantilism, passivity, effects which Deleuze and Guattari could not have forecasted. While Deleuze and Guattari could not know the full effects of the World Wide Web, it is after 1993 and the widespread use of the internet that modulation (a concept found in the postscript on the societies of control) takes on an accelerationist mode, according to Stiegler. Secondly, while Deleuze and Guattari speak of utopia, a missing people and a people to come, and the need to bring something incomprehensible into the world, Stiegler is right to note that at present we are suffering the incapacity to produce a new vision of the future. As such, the new generation, troubled by a state of disruption, is unable to dream of a different order of things. He calls on them to produce the incalculable. Thirdly, while Deleuze and Guattari both speak of the effects of television on consciousness, and note the way TV functions as a modulated control device and a remote controlling ritournelle, Stiegler probes what is beyond modulation, namely the capture of retention or memory via different platforms and networks. While Deleuze and Guattari pinpoint a new form of control as completely beyond models of alienation, Stiegler speaks of the manifestation of hyper control which operates through psycho power. This updates Deleuze and Guattari’s work in terms of voluntary servitude. Consequently and fourthly, through the concepts of pharmakon and general organology, Stiegler is essential for rethinking Deleuze’s concept of the machine because he is important for clarifying the distinction between techné, technics (a constitutive role in the formation of subjectivity), technicity and technology as such. Fifthly, using Stiegler’s architectonic of concepts alongside Deleuze and Guattari’s oeuvre, it behooves Deleuzians to write a new form of posthuman thought in the time of the Anthropocene and to question the meaning of end of the world. Sixthly, what must be underscored is Guattari’s singular importance for Stiegler’s philosophy as it was Guattari who was the first to pose the question of voluntary servitude in terms of the three ecologies. Seventh, while Deleuze and Guattari’s philosophy develops the notion of schizophrenia in a crucial way, we must consider the concept of disruption in Stiegler’s work to account for the new reality of the Anthropocene. This is again why a new Deleuze-Guattari-Stiegler assemblage is demanded. Eighth, we need a new concept of transformation in the “absence of epoch” as Stiegler calls it, as he rejects the Deleuzian emphasis on resistance, preferring the language of invention and the creation of weapons. Indeed, he notes the increasing irrelevance of the question of the revolution preferring the idea of bifurcation or negentropic bifurcation. Thus, he says we must rethink of question of bifurcation in the new context of the Anthropocene. This is important because the principle of bifurcation emerges out of the exhaustion, humiliation or stupidity of thought (a Deleuzian motif); as such it opens out towards other possibilities, manifesting an open thinking, a thinking of philosophy alongside nonphilosophy. Ninth, Stiegler is essential for updating Deleuze’s Marxism because we can use Stiegler's thought to rethink and reapply the concepts of proletarianization, immaterial labor, the culture industry, and the critique of marketing in computational or algorithmic capitalism. Tenth, Stiegler is central for Deleuze studies because he makes a useful distinction between desire and the drives, drives which in extremis are sometimes acted out in violent ways through a generalized spirit of disinhibition. Through contrasting Deleuze and Guattari with Stiegler it is hoped that we can reassess the concept of reason itself in a post-truth age where calculation is hegemonic to the extent that it threatens the possibility of thinking itself. Here we inquire: How would Deleuze respond to this provocation? Eleventh, the intention of this panel is to spell out the meaning of the ‘mechanosphere’ and its link to geophilosophy. This will be to contest the use of Teilhard de Chardin’s noösphere concept which finds its way into Stiegler’s and Yuk Hui’s work on cosmotechnics. As such, and as the twelfth thesis, both the mechanosphere and indeed Integrated World Capitalism must be differentiated from the noösphere concept in Vladimir Vernadsky and Teilhard de Chardin and indeed the Gaia hypothesis of James Lovelock. The point here is that there is simply no room for a Teilhardian Omega point in the immanent, atheist and this-worldly geophilosophy of Deleuze and Guattari.

Disrupting the New Barbarians: Bernard Stiegler’s The Age of Disruption

Stankomir Nicieja

University of Opole, Poland

In my presentation I would like to reflect on our increasingly evident atrophy of political ethos and persistent inability to evoke any convincing utopian projects. I am going to do it guided by the insights found in Bernard Stiegler’s recent The Age of Disruption: Technology and Madness in Computational Capitalism (2019). Although Stiegler’s book relies primarily on his personally charged readings of Adorno and Horkheimer (Dialectic of Enlightenment, 1944), Husserl (chiefly Ideas Pertaining to a Pure Phenomenology and to a Phenomenological Philosophy, 1913), Jacques Derrida (Writing and Difference, 1967) and Peter Sloterdijk (In the World Interior of Capital, 2013) it is also profoundly, yet less explicitly, indebted to Deleuze and Guattari. In my presentation I want to contemplate some realistic strategies of resisting the unrelenting encroachment of computational rationality and disinhibition that we can derive from both Stiegler and Deleuze.

Thinking Automation from the perspective of Deleuze and Stiegler

Alex Taek-Gwang Lee

Kyung Hee University, Republic of Korea

My paper is to discuss “automation,” the total combination of techniques making a system automatically. In the discussion of cinema, Deleuze defines automation as a process of thinking without the interaction of consciousness or cognition. For him, this automatic thinking is “machinic”, and the rational and conscious mind intervenes in the procedure to order the machinic automatism linearly and hierarchically. The automatic thought is the process of becoming and the encounter between the image of thought and cinematography, i.e., the technological image. For Deleuze, the pure material foundation of cinema is audio-visual images, the automatic image of movement. This feature of cinematic medium is what makes a difference between cinema and other visual technology. The cinematic image produces automatic and then autonomous movement, which is nothing to do with the subject, not anchored in a fixed point. I will apply this concept of automation for analysing the technological automation and challenging Stiegler’s idea of “automatic society.” My argument lies in the critique of Stiegler’s concept and attempts to reveal the problem of Stiegler’s technological determinism.

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