Some kind of posting interregnum

January 25, 2010

Some more non-revised fragments. Currently preoccupied with imagining a conversation between Adorno and O’Hara based around the latter’s ‘The Critic’. Beyond that, predominately Benjamin’s convolute N. The engine of his time-travelling conceptual locomotive in avuncular Dr Brown style.

‘The concept of progress must be grounded in the idea of catastrophe. That things are “status quo” is the catastrophe. It is not an ever-present possibility but what in each case is given. Thus Strindberg (in To Damascus?): hell is not something that awaits us, but this life here and now.’ [N9a,1] Around this the methodology is constructed. Earlier Benjamin writes of conversation with Brecht that you ‘don’t start with the good old things, but the bad new ones’. The focus of his method is not grounded in a longing for things as they were, but through the exploration of things as they could have been, a generation of possibility beyond what they are now. A methodology of excavating the false starts of history, an integration of the countervailing as valid political thought. Benjamin states that concepts are words. The role of the philosopher, and by extension the political agent, is to set these concepts to best use. In his nautical imagery; a trimming of sails, a setting of course.

On a loose conceptual tip, this here is an ex-lecturer’s lecture on Deleuze’s Cinema 2 as his most political work.


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