Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The commons regime of attraction

Rereading parts of TDOO I came upon the following relevant to recent posts on the commons:

"Where critique focuses on content and modes of representation, composition focuses on regimes of attraction. If regimes of attraction tend to lock people into particular social systems or modes of life, the question of composition would be that of how we might build new collectives that expand the field of possibility and change within the social sphere. Here we cannot focus on discourse alone, but must also focus on the role that nonhuman actors such as resources and technologies play in human collectives. For example, activists might set about trying to create alternative forms of economy that make it possible for people to support families, live, get to work, and so on without being dependent on ecologically destructive forms of transportation, food production, and food distribution. Through the creation of collectives that evade some of the constraints that structure hegemonic regimes of attraction, people might find much more freedom to contest other aspects of the dominant order" (section 5.2).

Without such change in our economic infrastructure we are all prone to what Sloterdijk highlights in the Critique of Cynical Reason (same section). We know it's wrong to participate in a job that contributes to further income inequality and environmental degradation, yet we need to feed our kids. So our ideology becomes cynical, ain't nothin' I can do about it except play along. (Recall Stewart's recent comments on our response to gun violence.) Hence the need for jobs that exemplify the commons ethic and change the actual regimes of attraction.

Why Bryant has yet to discuss Rifkin or this movement after repeated prompting is beyond me, since it is right up his onto-cartographic alley. Although I have as yet read the new book, so he might yet prove me wrong.

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