Conference Agenda

Session
Alternative Tomorrows Where Deterritorialization and Reterritorialization Meet III
Time:
Wednesday, 07/July/2021:
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Session Chair: Gregg Lambert
Session Topics:
Alternative Tomorrows Where Deterritorialization and Reterritorialization Meet

Presentations
2:00pm - 2:30pm

A smooth heterotopia: on the cyberspace and dividual politics.

Pierluca D'Amato

Durham University, United Kingdom

Social life emerges from processes of mediation with the environment, always negotiated with and within its milieus. As other milieus, also the cyberspace structures the reciprocal relations of what occupies it and shapes the processes of individuation it hosts. In digital environments, however, social life is negotiated along different routes than those we are accustomed to in the analog dimension, for such milieus are structured as what Deleuze and Guattari named Riemannian or smooth spaces. As a consequence of this character, digital milieus represent not only additional settings for individuals and collectives to individuate through, but entail and characterise also the individuation of that specific type of entity only hinted at by Deleuze in his Post-scriptum sur les sociétés de contrôle: the dividual.

This paper aims at describing the configuration of the cyberspace through the concept of smooth space and to define the notion of dividual in order to outline the shifting entity that constitutes the political subject at the centre of the new structures of domination set up and enforced through the use of digital technologies. In order to map how the digital is going to orient future politics away from the figure of the individual and towards the figure(s) of the dividual, the paper links the idea of the smooth cyberspace to the Foucauldian notion of hétérotopie, discusses how the digital space affects and transforms the analog ones and asks, against this background, what is of class identity when these are not composed by individuals, but by dividuals?



2:30pm - 3:00pm

Territorializing the Geo-political India: Earth, Political Activism and Stratification

Saswat Samay Das, Deepak Mathew

Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, India

Territorializing the Geo-political India: Earth, Political Activism and Stratification

For Deleuze, Earth desires the continuous flow of desire on itself, and thereby continuously de-stratifies and decodes itself and undergoes continuous process of deterritorialization and reterritorialization. However, this primary coding that the Earth provides for the maximization of life’s potential is over coded with the arrival of the state and its varied apparatus of capture. And as a result, territories turn into land and geo-political nation states. In the context of the Indian nation-state, uneasy co-existence of multiple apparatus of capture within temporal proximity have wrought havoc. The non-syncretic disjunctive relationality between ruling right wing’s ideological over-coding of territorial India, and the communist left and the centrist blocs’ desire to restructure it as per their ideological orientations, have defamiliarized territorial India, turning it into an impenetrable force field or even worse a chaotic mass.

In the current Indian political scenario, the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), which seeks to further stratify India, has stirred the imagination of common people who have precipitated movements that while attempting to resist this Act aims to restructure India along partisan lines. This has led the masses of India into having multiple encounters with either an expanding chaos or inexorable thickening of stratification provided by multiple interest groups eventually leading to the formation of differential monoliths. We argue in our paper that a new assemblage effectively synthesising the post secular spiritual strands from the cognitive territoriality of the likes of Gandhi, Ambedkar and Deleuze might help us to transcend this cul-de-sac and eject us into a realm of new potentialities, while remaining true to the postcolonial palimpsest that India is and which it is keen to deepen.

So, our paper will first critically engage with Deleuze’s notion of earth and territoriality. Then it will explain the extraordinary political condition of India in the light of CAA which has guided India into a chaotic situation, and finally it will work out a new political assemblage which may release us from cycles of stratification.