Saturday, March 31, 2012

A comment on integrality

I've been using DeLanda's material from my recent posts in the IPS thread "Complexity and postmodernism." Balder said:

"Speaking of Deleuze (I agree DeLanda's presentation of him is very lucid), his notions of multiplicity and the 'manifold' play a big role in a number of the essays in Polydoxy.  There's a new, complex gestalt forming here, it seems, with these various thinkers and themes meshing in interesting ways (the manifold connections among which I admit to sensing more darkly and intuitively, rather than clearly and lucidly, at this point)..."

I replied:

And as I hinted in my last response to Dierkes, this new complex isn't even addressed by kennilingus so hence my loss of interest. Due to its mistaken prejudice of what is erroneously labeled as pluralism it misses what I think is the more accurate and emerging integral consciousness. Perhaps the kennilingual critique of incipient pluralisim was apropos but pluralism has evolved into polydoxy, while kennilingus and the hierarchical complexity upon which it was built is still using outmoded formal operations with which to model this emerging structure. As a result their own model is limited from seeing this development.

I like this from Polydoxy, quoting Deleuze:

"A multiplicity certainly contains points of unification, centers of totalization, points of subjectivation, but these are factors that can prevent its growth and stop its lines. These factors are in the multiplicity they belong to, not the reverse" (2).

Which reminds me of this post in the polydoxy thread, quoting Faber:

"Deleuze deeply honored Whitehead, and precisely because of the...appreciation of the unconquerable wildness of openended becoming over against any systematic derivation of multiplicity from hierarchical unity.... In a rhizomatic world of infinite differentiations and interrelations, 'unity' always appears as finite unification of multiple relations. Nothing is fixed; nothing is perfect; nothing is for ever. The metaphor of the rhizome frees our mind from 'false unifications' that defy multiplicity and, as a political category, empowers resistance against 'oppressive unifications' of hierarchies."

To put the above in language that Bonnie (and Tom) use, there is indeed an asymmetric relation between unity and multiplicity, with the latter being ground instead of the other way around. And of course multiplicty isn't just one side of a one-many pole, as that sort of framing only comes from the formal, hierarchical thinking inherent to unifiers. As stated previously, multiplicity (aka khora or differance to me) is the (an)hierarchic ground within which oppositions take form. Or put in DeLanda's terms above, multiplicity is the undifferentiated (withdrawn) virtual from which oppositions arise in the differentiated actual. And the virtual is embodied, immanent, without essence. I know, a tough, acerbic pill to swallow for a holist. Perhaps take Alanis Morissette's advice and swallow it down? If so you just might, as she says, learn.

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