Accelerating Capitalism; the internal tensions of Accelerationism


28 Dez , 2017  

Accelerationism talk – Rotterdam – 19.4.15

I want to begin by admitting that I am not an Accelerationist. I usually work between the fields of philosophy, art and politics, and my main reference point is the work of Deleuze and Guattari. So while my account of Accelerationism is obviously effected by my own influences and ignorance, the fact that Accelerationism misuses its sources at least gives me the room to do the same to them. The fact that Accelerationism mis-reads, or at least provides a perverse reading of its forbearers is in no way a criticism, and is perhaps a version of Deleuze’s philosophical ‘ventriloquism’, by which Accelerationism becomes the mutant child of Deleuze and Guattari, Lyotard and Camatte, amongst others. Better this, as Robin Mackay points out, than accept the very questionable history of Accelerationism exemplified by Futurism. This creative genealogy builds on Speculative Realism’s laudable desire to return philosophy to original thought in the face of the empty eulogising and vapid enthusiasm of much Deleuzean scholarship, for example. In this sense, Accelerationism insists that the production of the ‘new’ is the strongest form of political engagement, but the ambiguity of what constitutes this new becomes clear when Accelerationism also insists that the only way beyond capitalism is to go through it. While its ambition is surely good, the question remains as to whether Accelerationisms means and end remain compatible. The introduction to the Reader clearly states the dilemma, on the one hand techno-revolution could be a high-speed crash equal to apocalypse, and on the other political radicalism becomes indiscernible from acquiescence. The first risk can be exemplified by Nick Land, and his claim that; ‘A consummate libidinal materialism is distinguished by its complete indifference to the category of work. Wherever there is labour or struggle there is a repression of the raw creativity which is the atheological sense of matter and which – because of its anegoic effortlessness – seems identical to dying.’1 The second risk of acquiescence is exemplified by Alex Williams and Nick Srnicek’s manifesto, which proclaims in a frenzy of social democratic revisionism; ‘the material platform of neoliberalism does not need to be destroyed, it needs to be repurposed towards common ends.’2

I think this tension between acquiescence and apocalypse, between revision and revolution is a very important one, because it not only maps the emotional extremes of Accelerationism – from the common sense of the manifesto to the balls-out insanity of Nick Land – but it also describes a kind of productive diagram of the movement, inasmuch as contemporary Accelerationism seems an attempt to inoculate itself against Lands violent vision of capitalism. As a result, while Accelerationism is unified in its concern for embracing technology as the enabler of political transformation, the nature of this transformation is sharply divided between revolutionary and revisionist platforms. Revisionist Accelerationism seems to want to immunize itself against desire and libido, against the unconscious, against the hallucinatory and vital horrors of death, and finally against the agonies and ecstasies of aesthetic experience. Everything, in other words, that Lands capitalist nightmare serves up in bucketfuls. Perhaps we can even give this immunization a name; Speculative Realism. So; instead of desire, the unconscious, all the threatening yuckiness lurking in the subjective depths we have objective rationality and the search for Absolutes; instead of the vital, creative energy of thanatos we have an inhuman intelligence as the Promethean gateway to the future; and instead of the unforgivably indeterminable realm of aesthetics we have the scientific calculation of a realist world and its objects. Forget hurtling headlong into the night, heres some dispassionate analysis of computer modelling that will allow us to fix things up. And perhaps most disappointing of all, we are not androids sent from the future to terminate the human race, as Land believed he was, just some geeky philosophy types telling everyone that everything will be alright.

Land’s position as both the genesis of Accelerationism, and its obscene and embarrassing error is both fascinating and slightly hilarious. Land was the teacher of the core of Accelerationism, including Mark Fisher, Robin Mackay, Ray Brazzier and Iain Hamilton-Grant, and indirectly Reza Negarestani, as well as a profound influence on the generation of philosophers who came after him at Warwick University, including Alberto Toscano and Luciana Parisi, amongst many others. As Robin Mackay notes in a touching account of Land as a teacher, Land not only offered conceptual mastery of philosophical ideas, but sought to put them into action. Land attempted to melt both his thinking and his life into the revolutionary processes he described, not simply representing or analysing them but actualising and expressing them in a living analogue. This extraordinary intimacy, passion and personal commitment Land brought to teaching was precisely what made him such an inspirational figure, and what made his work seem like a genuinely new approach to philosophy. So given that Land provides the philosophical and biographical impetus to Accelerationism, it seems remarkable that very little of Land’s philosophical and personal style remain, apart from Accelerationism’s uncomfortable repudiation of them. I want to mention two examples, first Robin Mackay, in the midst of his laudatory account of Land offers this awkward comment; ‘Let’s get this out of the way: In any normative, clinical, or social sense of the word, very simply, Land did ‘go mad’.’3 And second, from Mark Fisher, who as part of a discussion of Land’s aesthetic strategies says their ‘problem was that the future had already happened, so all you could do was get on board with it or not: and that produced a kind of self-hating impotence’.4 From Land’s perspective of the time both comments are high praise, as madness and self-hatred were integral parts of his method, but from the position from which they are uttered, from Accelerationism today, they are criticisms that describe, and in some sense try to excuse, Land’s ‘failure’.5 The fact that Land now agrees with this assessment is beside the point, the point is rather that it is uttered on behalf of a sane, ‘normal’ academic who is able to hold the historical Land on the end of his tweezers and dispassionately describe his pathologies. This is precisely one of the things that Land so intensely railed against, smug philosophical detachment. That this detachment grounds Accelerationisms supposed potency’ is a claim no more convincing now than it ever was, but is nevertheless an effective antidote to Lands so-called madness.

This repressive embrace of Land turns him into something like Accelerationism’s unconscious, one that has more recently returned to regurgitate monsters even more terrible than the cyberpunk nightmares and Lovecraftian entities he had earlier celebrated. Today Land has come back as a self-identifying right winger, a ‘neoreactionary’ spouting libertarian doctrine and flirting with the eugenics of so-called ‘ethno-nationalism’. This is truly worse than Accelerationism as a revisionary and ultimately acquiescent brand of social democracy, the Land of today announces Accelerationism as neo-liberalism’s racist cheerleader. But it would, I think, be a mistake to simply read the early Land through his resurrection and return as a right wing ideologue.6 This, at least partly, is the embarrassed knee-jerk behind his containment as ‘a mad experiment’, and perhaps even behind the return to the more sober and rational approach of the next Accelerationist generation. But in truth, it is the earlier revolutionary Land that projects the radical generation of his French forebears into the future by taking risks and doing it for real, and it is a sad reflection on things today I think, that we now find this embarrassing.

The early Land doesn’t offer us an economics but an aesthetics, one in which capitalism is the mechanism by which desire is able to gleefully turn against its captors, human subjectivity and its organic body. Land envisages a program of radical revolution through and by a capitalism let off its humanist leash. This is the utterly schizophrenic capitalism of Deleuze and Guattari’s Anti-Oedipus, whose ontological force of absolute deterritorialisation opens humanity up to a machinic future in which we no longer exist, and offers as a political program the cruel joy of our self-destruction. Riffing on Artaud and Nietzsche Land espoused a philosophical vitalism, albeit in a severely ‘thanotised’ form that emphasised the creative role of death in the permanent revolutions of life. On Land’s account capitalism is a world-historical contingency erupting in the present, ripping it apart, announcing the arrival of the future. In this sense, Land remains within the line of transcendental materialism that he draws upon, where real experience – now cybernetically enhanced – necessarily implies the sublime overcoming of the human, all too human.

For Deleuze and Guattari rational thought is conditioned and so limited by human interests, which transcend and seek to control the material ‘energetics’ of the Cosmos. As a result, revolutionary politics is centred on the realm of sensation or experience, which can actualise and express forces that go beyond humanitys rational and organic limits. These forces are not necessarily outside capitalism, inasmuch as capitalism itself is driven by the same schizophrenic power, but capitalism also continually relativises this movement to the outside within the axiomatics of the human subject and their structures of representation – and in particular that of capitalist value – in order to produce political control and financial profit. The revolutionary acceleration of capitalism’s schizo-ontology produces, Deleuze and Guattari argue, aesthetic experiences that break through their containment by capitalist valuations and the human subject. In this sense, art is the accelerator of capitalism to its possible post-capitalist phase, inasmuch as it is art that is able to create inhuman sensations existing as an internal outsideto the ‘Human Security System’, as Land called it. The trajectory of Land’s work is a perfect example of this. From the early philosophical essays on Kant, Nietzsche and Schopenhauer he moves to increasingly delirious affirmations of a cyberpunk capitalism focussed on AI and the concept of the ‘singularity’, before abandoning philosophy in its usual form in favour of fictional texts and typographical experiments that were almost unreadable. From here Land moves into the collective subjectivity of the CCRU group, before finally turning to what he called ‘mechanomical’ research and a kind of numerological materialism. At this point, as Robin Mackay has observed, ‘he had returned to a kind of poetry, albeit a poetry subtracted from all expression and all meaning.’7 On the one hand then, Land’s strict reading of schizo-capitalism as the ontological engine of all radical transformations is entirely consistent with Deleuze and Guattaris Anti-Oedipus, even to the point of rejecting their later, more conciliatory statements in A Thousand Plateaus regarding the necessity of caution and dosages, while on the other his own increasingly ‘aesthetic’ texts push Deleuze and Guattari’s affirmation of art as the most effective political mechanism into the realms of popular culture and techno-nonsense.

The inclusion of Lyotard’s Libidinal Economy – or as with Anti-Oedipus – a small but much quoted part of it in the Accelerationist Reader seems to have both biographical and theoretical motivations. First, Land’s Goth version of Deleuze and Guattari’s vitalism was taken directly from Lyotard’s book, as was his ramped up non-philosophical style. More important however, was the idea that Anti-Oedipus hadn’t gone far enough, and in separating a schizo-capitalism from an Oedipalised one it had kept the transcendental and ontological element of desire separate from the world that controlled it. Instead, Lyotard insisted that there was only one libidinal economy, and it was capitalist. This was the source of Lyotard’s shocking affirmation of the proletariat’s ecstatic pleasure at being crushed by the wheels of industry, of their perverse desire for self-destruction in the name of a machinic afterlife emerging from their pulverised corpses. On the one hand Lyotard imagines the proletariat embracing their own destruction as a joyous process of rebirth, now melded with the machines that were their tormentors, while on the other he imagines the jouissance of production to be a feeling that escapes the rationality of production itself, a kind of pointless excess that both negates the logic of capitalism, and opens a path beyond it.

While the inclusion of Deleuze and Guattari and Lyotard in the Reader gives the background to Land’s development, they are also part of what is so vigorously denied by so-called ‘left’, or as I call it, ‘revisionist Accelerationism’. The schizo desiring production of the libidinal economy and its Nietzschean vitalism of permanent self-overcoming becomes, in Brassier and Negarastani’s work in particular, the rational consciousness of the Enlightenment, whose ‘Promethean’ or ‘inhuman’ intelligence enabled it to develop beyond any existing limits. In other words, rather than production producing an indeterminable aesthetic excess that always escapes it, instead, according to Robin Mackay, ‘acceleration is to do with hooking the project of human emancipation to the essentially psychotic project of scientific rationality which demands that if any path can be explored, then it must be… Which is not an end as such, it’s just a protocol for escape.’8 It’s as if the same components Land takes from Deleuze and Guattari and Lyotard are still here – psychosis, the human, scientific rationality and escape – but their relations have now been rearranged into a kind of consensus. Scientific rationality allows humanity to escape capitalism, and this search for knowledge is what makes it psychotic! We may be disappointed by this, but we shouldnt be surprised, given that Ray Brassier poses Enlightenment rationalism as a ‘corrective to the vitalist proclivities of its post-structuralist predecessors’.9 The problem with vitalism for Brassier, is that it posits a necessary relation between thought and being, and understands immanence through this relation. The more radical immanence Accelerationism takes from Francois Laruelle exists undetermined by human thought and experience, and so requires a non-correlated rationality, one found, as James Trafford has put it, in ‘the nonintuitive mobility of formal languages’.10

If we require a nonintuitive rationalism to conceptualise the reality of ‘the great Outdoorsas Miellesoux has famously called it, then clearly the function of aesthetics would no longer be to create sensations, but to support the practical objectives of representing or ‘mapping’ the world in such a way that we could effectively manipulate it. Here, aesthetics becomes absorbed into the wider task of ‘epistemic acceleration’, which is to attain a rational grasp of the world that allows for a practical level of command and control over its operations. This is the side of Accelerationism that can sound a little like Keynesian social democracy, only run by intellectuals. It also sounds a lot like Logical Positivism, not only in its turn to logical systems and analysis but as well in its determination to turn Philosophy into a hand-maiden of science.

The other side of this epistemic Accelerationism is cyber-positive love, although obviously ‘love’ is the wrong word for it. Machinic symbol systems and data analysis tools allow us to externalise cognitive processes in computers, and process information in ways the biological brain is unable to. This allows us to think beyond the correlation, and escape humanity’s inherent ‘doxastic conservatism’ or tendency to confirm its existing beliefs. Nevertheless, Accelerationism seeks to retain control over this ‘inhuman intelligence’ as Negarestani puts it, in order to turn it against current capitalist excess. Hence the importance of a ‘return’ to a Rationalism that seeks in the absolutes of science and mathematics the means to create, as the manifesto has it, ‘an acceleration which is also navigational’.11 This desire for control forms a large part of the manifesto, even leading to a definition of democracy as a ‘collective self-mastery’ by which ‘we will come to rule ourselves’.12 Accelerated democracy involves the ‘collective control’ of a ‘legitimate vertical authority’ which seems to be technocratic inasmuch as it is based on an ‘intellectual infrastructure […] tasked with creating a new ideology, economic and social models’.13 While we should not expect too much detail in a manifesto, the call for collective control of a vertical authority does rather beg some questions. Perhaps it is this that Toni Negri complains of in his mostly positive reply to the manifesto, that it underestimates the cooperative dimension of production as compared to its affirmation of technological mechanisms.14 In other words, rather than place the emphasis on the community of workers as the revolutionary mechanism capable of ending capitalism, we have an intellectual elite taking control in order to ‘repurpose’ capitalism to more egalitarian ends. This is a distinction that seems to strike at the very heart of the manifesto’s ‘Marxist’ credentials, which appear ambiguous at best.

Perhaps we could says that Accelerationism advocates a purely ‘realist’ form of Marxism, which in its emphasis on planning and control echoes Leninism and the avant-garde of the ‘Party’. Indeed, the manifesto even quotes Lenin on the necessity of ‘planned state organisation’.15 While this is perhaps partly a rhetorical device aimed against contemporary advocates of autonomous communes and the occupy movement, its advocacy of practicality does seem to counter-act any sense of its radicality, and rather disturbingly recalls Lenins purge of the Anarchists. As Ive mentioned, at one point the manifesto claims that ‘neoliberalism does not need to be destroyed. It needs to be repurposed towards common ends.’16 It’s not immediately obvious what this might mean, given that the opposition it assumes between individual and common interests is certainly not one that neoliberalism would itself accept. There is a sense here that the manifesto is neither particularly radical in its proposed methods, nor particularly ambitious in its political aims. But this slightly deflationary project for social democracy is made up for by the enthusiastic embrace of modern technology.

The manifesto is certainly of the opinion that technology will save us. The left, it tells us ‘must develop sociotechnical hegemony’ in order to gain operative control on the level of platforms, or ‘the material transcendental of society’.17 This includes gaining control of mass media networks, which is certainly a practical ambition that moves towards the otherwise rather untouched area of political subjectivation. This affirmation of technology echoes Land’s calls for schizo-tech revolution, but without Land’s rabid anti-humanism it rather begs the question as to how techno-science might detach itself sufficiently from the interests of capital in order to take control of our destiny. For all the questionable commitments of Land’s revolutionary Accelerationism it at least had the merit of clearly identifying the enemy; the enemy is us. And while the manifesto is eminently sensible in focussing on the question of planning, its philosophical foundations in Speculative Realism assume a thought on the other side of the correlation, and so tends to jump over problems concerning subjectivation. The gambit seems to be that a post-correlationist cybernetic thought detached from the human body and subjectivity is capable of reasserting capitalism’s rationality, and looking after the bodies and subjects it has nevertheless left behind. At this point revisionist Accelerationism seems diametrically opposed to that part of its own heritage which insisted on capitalism’s irrationality as its only possible vector of escape.

This then is really where the ‘optimism’ of Revisionist Accelerationism becomes a limitation, because its assumption that techno-science and capitalism are separable is neither supported nor obvious. No doubt the purported objectivity of post-correlationist thought makes for a refreshing change after Land’s aesthetic excesses, but as a side-step to the question of science’s complicity in capitalist exploitation it seems unconvincing. When we look at the manifesto in this way we can see how hard its rhetorical strategies work to make its rather remarkable premise of scientific objectivity plausible. Its emphasis on objectivity makes cybernetic thought seem ‘natural’, and the ‘rationality’ of its position allows it to separate itself from capitalism at least enough to be able to influence it. By doing so the scale of the problem is immediately diminished, as are the measures required to fix it. Revision rather than revolution, correction rather than catastrophe. But if rational thought has already passed over to the other side, as it were, and is working beyond the subjective correlation, then what could inspire it to save humanity? This question seems to be brushed aside in Accelerationism’s political ‘realism’, whose assumed self-evidence privileges practical engagement. This is a practical engagement also justified – if that is the right word – by a constant stream of abuse aimed at the left for its failures and mistakes. Direct, localised action, we are told, is not practical because it confuses the personal satisfaction of action with actually having made a difference. While this point may resonate with those who have participated in direct action, it seems unclear to me how a strategy of technologically repurposing capitalism might be more effective, simply because it seeks to divest itself of subjective satisfaction. There is a whole discussion to be had here about micro-political possibilities and the value of direct-action, but in a measure of Accelerationisms Speculative Realist commitments, any strategy hinging on the correlation seems to be regarded with suspicion.

Finally, I would like to turn to the work of Jacques Camatte and Communization theory. Camatte is included in the reader as one of Accelerationism’s predecessors, an inclusion not immediately obvious inasmuch as Camatte advocates abandoning rather than repurposing capitalism. To briefly summarize Camatte’s position, in the face of capitalism’s total subsumption of the essence of humanity – what Camatte calls community (Gemeinwesen), following a passage from the early Marx – the only political mechanism left to the proletariat is the negation of that part of capitalism they still retain control over, the proletariat itself. The proletariat must negate its own status as an integral moment in capitalist production and valuation. Doing this means leaving this world, perhaps to an anarcho-primitivist community, as Camatte himself did. In this sense, then, and as the editors of the Accelerationist Reader helpfully explain; ‘Camatte’s trenchant pessimism outlines Accelerationism in negative’.18 Camatte advocates secession, while Accelerationism advocates a revisionist approach, Camatte repudiates any productivist politics in favour of retreating to the timeless human essence of ‘community’ qua revolutionary will, while Accelerationism rejects any such mystifications in favour of an engagement with capitalism’s productive forces that ‘align with their revolutionary force but against domestication.’19 Domesticationis a term taken from Camatte, for whom it describes the inevitable and univocal power of real subsumption. As we shall see, it is precisely the detachment of domestication from the real subsumption of capitalist production processes that marks Accelerationisms distance from Communization theory. In direct opposition to Camatte’s pessimistic desire for escape is Accelerationism’s optimistic desire to take charge of the process. As the introduction to the reader has it; ‘the only way out is to plunge further in’.20

Ray Brassier has written an interesting essay about Camatte that claims his work reveals the necessity for articulating conceptual and social abstractions, which in terms of Accelerationism means articulating its two arms of epistemic and political acceleration. Creating feedback between these two aspects of abstraction is precisely what will establish a link between knowledge and politics. Camatte, Brassier argues, effectively revealed how cognitive abstractions are determined by social abstractions, and in particular by abstract-labour, surplus-value and money. The question then becomes how to free thought from its determination by the capitalist reality that has produced it, and in particular that thought that imagines itself to be emancipatory. Camatte argued that the domestication of humanity by capital, or real subsumption, meant that any attempt to organise resistance to it has already accepted its conditions, and this, he claimed, was particularly true of radical leftist groups. As a result, the only political possibility available was full secession from capital. Later versions of Communization theory have rejected this call for secession, or at least reinterpreted it as being a constant process of negating capitalist social abstractions wherever possible.

Brassier suggests that while Accelerationism and Communization are ‘radically antagonistic’,21 they nevertheles reveal each others blindspots. Communization shows Accelerationism’s need for connecting conceptual and social abstractions, while Accelerationism reveals Communization’s need of a more practical plan of engagement. As a materialism Accelerationism argues that conceptual forms are not inherent, but produced by concrete social relations, the most important being value as general equivalent, which reduces what is actually the production of value – ie., labour as the socialization of production – to a representation of value (or commodity). In this way, the capitalist form of social production subsumes all conceptual production in advance, and rather than producing capital, social production (ie., labour) is reduced to being the mechanism of capital’s self-valorisation. It is in this sense, then, that reclaiming the means of production means reclaiming the priority of labour, or conceptual production, over its capitalist subsumption, which in turn means creating new abstractions capable of representing life apart from its capitalist valuation. This would be the way that Accelerationism would update its nostalgia for Enlightenment self-mastery through a form of Marxist materialism. The question is how it might be possible to create abstractions that could grasp the realm of social production, and in particular could offer an alternative to capitalist valuations that subsume production. For Brassier, Camatte’s essentialist, and so ahistorical abstraction of Gemeinwesen or community is a parochial communitarianism that is far too exclusive. Instead, he argues, what is needed is ‘a maximally expansive human solidarity’ forged from abstractions whose impersonal, impartial and objective qualities give the greatest possible inclusiveness to the ‘we’ they define. For Brassier ‘Prometheanism’ would be one such concept. On this level the Communization idea of the proletariat dissolving itself is paradoxical, as it would also mean the dissolution of the class being freed from the class relation. To counter this Communization posits a transcendental human spontaneity that grounds human agency outside of the class relation. But as Brassier rightly observes, this simply resuscitates a mysterious and supernatural ‘will’ similar to vitalism,22 and risks positing a conceptual secession from capitalism that has no equivalent in reality because it refuses to acknowledge its own social construction. Switching secession into negation does not achieve much in this respect, as it merely freezes, and perhaps even fetishizes the antagonism. Brassier instead suggests an approach that draws on the work of John Sellers, which treats the meaning of abstract entities as anchored in linguistic functions, which are in turn determined by social practice. The question then, would not be to find or create an abstraction capable of seceding from capitalist mediation, which is anyway impossible. ‘What is required’, Brassier argues, ‘is an understanding of social practices that would allow us to begin distinguishing between oppression and emancipatory forms of mediation.’ In other words, we need to explore technologically mediated linguistic functions for the potential to exceed their capitalist valuation, because to simply negate this ‘functional context’ is to negate the possibility of emancipation itself. Brassier’s argument here rests upon the renomination of real subsumption within the realm of social production as the ‘functional context, and the assumption that the ‘recontextualisation’ of existing functions – or what he also calls the ‘repurposing of capitalism’ – will be able to liberate us from exploitation. What is remarkable here is that the problem of connecting conceptual and social abstraction, and so of connecting epistemic and political Accelerationism, can be solved through the idea that some subsumption is more real than others. This is remarkable because if we remember it was precisely the relation of real subsumption (or social production) to conceptual production that anchored Accelerationism in a materialism recognisably Marxist. Brassier seems to be arguing that the conceptual abstractions of epistemic Accelerationism are materially determined by social production, but this determination is not of the order of real subsumption, but instead allows the possibility of conceptual abstractions gaining an antagonistic traction on social production, and thereby creating a political acceleration. How this will happen we are not told, and at best I think the whole scenario can be described as ‘hopeful’. Certainly it is solid evidence of Negri’s point, Accelerationism does seem to under-estimate the realm of production, both in terms of its power of subsumption and as a potential realm of liberation.

Once more then, we are back to what Negri rather kindly called Accelerationism’s ‘optimism’, but which also sometimes seems like the reassuring idea that things arn’t as bad as we might have thought. Perhaps it is true that such an idea is necessary if we are to regain our modernist mojo and ride the machines to the Enlightenment promised land of rational self-government. But equally, this ‘optimism’ can appear a nostalgic fantasy for technological control over the economy, over the environment, over the media and indeed over ourselves that seems an image of the future straight out of the 1930s. Faced with this somewhat timid revisionism, and at times depressingly hopeful analysis one wonders if the monsters of Nick Land are not, at least, more realistic.

1Nick Land, ‘Making it with Death: Remarks on Thanatos and Desiring-Production’, Fanged Noumena, Collected Writings 1987 – 2007, Urbanomic, 2012. p. 286

2Alex Williams and Nick Srnicek, ‘#Accelerate: Manifesto for an Accelerationist Politics’, #accelerate# the accelerationist reader, edited by A. Avanessian and R. Mackay, Urbanomic, 2014. p. 355.

3Robin Mackay, ‘Nick Land – An Experiment in Inhumanism’, Umelec magazine, 2012/1. p. 6.

4Mark Fisher, ‘Discussion’, Speculative Aesthetics, edited by R. Mackay, L. Pendrell, J. Trafford, Urbanomic, 2014. p. 120.

5Robin Mackay and Ray Brassier say that Land’s ‘project in transcendental empiricism […] experimentally failed’. ‘Editor’s Introduction’, Fanged Noumena, Collected Writings 1987 – 2007, Urbanomic, 2012. p. 53.

6To be fair, Brassier and Mackay acknowledge this in their ‘Editor’s Introduction’, Fanged Noumena, p. 52.

7Robin Mackay, ‘Nick Land – An Experiment in Inhumanism’, Umelec magazine, 2012/1.

8Robin Mackay, ‘discussion’, Speculative Aesthetics, p. 88.

9Ray Brassier, ‘Wandering Abstraction’, Mute, 13.2.14.

10James Trafford, ‘Towards a Speculative Rationalism’, in Speculative Aesthetics, edited by R. Mackay, L. Pendrell, J. Trafford, Urbanomic, 2014. p. 59.

11Alex Williams and Nick Srnicek, ‘#Accelerate: Manifesto for an Accelerationist Politics’, #accelerate# the accelerationist reader, edited by A. Avanessian and R. Mackay, Urbanomic, 2014. p. 352.

12ibid, p. 358

13ibid, p. 358-9

14Antonio Negri, ‘Some Reflections on the #Accelerate Manifesto’, #accelerate# the accelerationist reader, p. 375.

15Manifesto, p. 353

16ibid., p. 355.

17ibid., p. 357.

18Robin Mackay and Armen Avanessien, ‘Introduction’, Accelerationist reader, p. 13.

19ibid., 13.


21Ray Brassier, ‘Wandering Abstraction’, Mute, 13.2.14.

22I have discussed the vitalist dimensions of Communization theory, and their similarity to Deleuze and Guattari’s concept of schizoanalysis in Anti-Oedipus in ‘Schizo-revolutionary art; Deleuze, Guattari and Communization Theory’, Schizoanalysis and the Visual Arts, edited by I. Buchanan and L. Collins, Bloomsbury, 2014.

Taken from here

Foto: Stefan Paulus


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