recentpopularlog in


« earlier   
The Spectacle of Disintegration | Public Seminar
The spectacle speaks the language of command. The command of the concentrated spectacle was: OBEY! The command of the diffuse spectacle was: BUY! In the integrated spectacle the commands to OBEY! and BUY! became interchangeable. Now the command of the disintegrating spectacle is: RECYCLE! Like oceanic amoeba choking on granulated shopping bags, the spectacle can now only go forward by evolving the ability to eat its own shit.

Even when it speaks of disintegration, the spectacle is all about particulars. The plastic Pacific, even if it is as big as Texas, is presented as a particular event. Particular criticisms hold the spectacle to account for falsifying this image or that story, but in the process thereby merely add legitimacy to the spectacle’s claim that it can in general be a vehicle for the true. A genuinely critical approach to the spectacle starts from the opposite premise: that it may present from time to time a true fragment, but it is necessarily false as a whole. Debord: “In a world that really has been turned on its head, the true is a moment of falsehood.”

This then is our task: a critique of the spectacle as a whole, a task that critical thought has for the most part abandoned. Stupefied by its own powerlessness, critical thought turned into that drunk who, having lost the car keys, searches for them under the street lamp. The drunk knows that the keys disappeared in that murky puddle, where it is dark, but finds it is easier to search for them under the lamp, where there is light – if not enlightenment.

And then critical theory gave up even that search and fell asleep at the side of the road. Just as well. It was in no condition to drive. In its stupor, critical thought makes a fetish of particular aspects of the spectacular organization of life. As Todd Gitlin says, the critique of content became a contented critique. It wants to talk only of the political, or of culture, or of subjectivity, as if these things still existed, as if they had not been colonized by the spectacle and rendered mere excrescences of its general movement. Critical thought contented itself with arriving late on the scene and picking through the fragments. Or, critical thought retreated into the totality of philosophy. It had a bone to pick with metaphysics. It shrank from the spectacle, which is philosophy made concrete. In short: critical thought has itself become spectacular. Critical theory becomes hypocritical theory. It needs to be renewed not only in content but in form.

Debord’s sometime comrade Raoul Vaneigem famously wrote that those who speak of class conflict without referring to everyday life, “without understanding what is subversive about love and what is positive in the refusal of constraints, such people have a corpse in their mouth.” Today this formula surely needs to be inverted. To talk the talk of critical thought, of biopolitics and biopower, of the state of exception, bare life, precarity, of whatever being, or object oriented ontology without reference to class conflict is to speak, if not with a corpse in one’s mouth, then at least a sleeper.

‘Sustainability’ is the Viagra of old world speculative investment.

The disintegrating spectacle replaces the monologue of appearances with the appearance of dialogue. Spectators are now obliged to make images and stories for each other that do not unite those spectators in anything other than their separateness.
westFAILia  spectacle  debord  Theory  critical_theory 
8 hours ago by jstenner
Complexity Classes
What’s easy for a computer to do, and what’s almost impossible? Those questions form the core of computational complexity. We present a map of the landscape.
EXPTIME  PSPACE  PH  NP  BQP  BPP  P  vs  Complexity  theory 
2 days ago by FredericJacobs
Distinguishing coloring - Wikipedia
It's fascinating to realize that if instead of color, you had three keys with those little plastic edge thickeners instead of paint, you could place the keys and keyring behind your back and always pick any key called for.
graph  theory  six_keys 
3 days ago by brentfarwick
Photography theory: a beginner's guide - Telegraph
Bewildered by Berger? Stumped by Sontag? We read the essential photography
theory so you don't have to
photography  theory  books 
5 days ago by lumios142857
Functional Data Structures
free ebook, online in the browser, on data structures and concepts
algorithms  books  functional  free  education  cs  theory 
5 days ago by nebkor

Copy this bookmark:

to read