DELEUZE AND DRUGS: against the marginals’ conformismThe immanent molecular and perceptive causality of desire fails in the drug-assemblage. Drug addicts continually fall back into what they wanted to escape: a segmentarity all the more rigid for being marginal, a territorialization all the more artificial for being based on chemical substances, hallucinatory forms, and phantasy subjectifications. Drug addicts may be considered as […]
I freely admit that I have not read 1000 plateaus very thoroughly at all I’ve skipped around here and there…
I think the reason is is that to me it feels like he’s on acid on LSD. Granted he’s probably not tripping at the moment that he’s writing, but it just seems to me, and through my experiences I have become more able to trust my gut on certain things because most of the time when my gut says something and I’m almost trusting it, it turns out that it was right. So with Deleuze it feels to me that he’s took some good acid, and of course that he was intelligent of course, and that he saw the hallucinogenic experience as an arena to investigate. If you’ve ever encountered anyone who’s dosing really good, The way they talk, their rhythm, cadence, their rambling their associations and extrapolations sound like Delueze’s writings.
The problem with this is that everyone who likes D will immediately jump back in defend him from the accusation that he might have taken drugs. I wonder how many people doubted Freud because he was on cocaine; Hitler himself was on meth. By what criteria are we judging rationality, intellegence and sanity? It is kind of offensive to me that people are so offended at the mention of drugs when it comes to intellectual pursuit. We read Freud as if he’s some sort of demi god of psychology and conveniently set aside his more questionable ideas (such as the protogrnitor) and that may have been due to the fact that he was on cocaine . in one instance wesort through our ethical filters that which might have been influenced by cocaine from that which was not, or we minimalize effect that the drug may have had. And another instance we say that the effect of the drug was pervasive; we look at Hitler and we go oh of course he was on meth amphetamine.
Further; We listen to music from the 60s and 70s and say oh yeah everyone was taking drugs and they made great music, but we only have the recording’s for the most part of their good performances. We listen to Iggy Pop and we don’t see some fucked up junkie that’s playing shitty ass noise, we here powerful and emotional, real engaging art. We don’t hear all the other hundreds of Jimi Hendrix performaces solos that really may have kind of sucked; we only hear the ones in which his solos are really good. The great thing about the Grateful Dead is they have all their shows recorded; but more than this and what the wonderful thing about the grateful dead fans are is they understand about whole experiences, reality drugs performances good bad fucked up addiction recovery, death life… with the Grateful Dead you get the whole thing. You listen to the shows when they’re all apparently really high and I can’t play worth shit and you listen to it and you go that’s fucking rad because they’re fucked up and they’re playing like shit. Then you listen to other shows and they’re just on it and you go fuck yeah!
We read Deleuze and we see some super intellectual philosopher and we read him through the window of perfection: ” he couldn’t possibly be on drugs because drugs are bad and they make you sound like shit and they make you think stupid things”. These are the types of philosophers that we need to arm against; these are the type a thinkers that would have a stay in institutionalize norms well supposedly arguing against them towards a more progressive and better future, even if they do that; because many will honestly argue a D construction or some sort of analysis of gloom and doom. Both these kinds of extremes are playing the middle. They want to sound like they have such a great open mind but really they’re vision is limited and small, law-abiding.
When you read D — aside from the fact that I think that he sounds like he’s on acid, or at least has had a good trip recently — he is talking about this very same thing in the extended passage that Terrence gave us. People want to take D through a “psychoanalytic philosophy” so to speak. They want to appropriate everything he says to psychoanalysis and the plane of psychoanalysis as D outlined it. But they don’t see it that way; and this is what D is really saying what is pointing out. In terms of D, they want to understand what are you saying by molecular without really applying the meaning of what he saying to their appropriation of molecular. They want to maintain their psychoanalytic identity and use the terms of molecular philosophy to stick their claim for reality.
But back to my opinion of D being on acid: his works just sound to me like someone on acid. And I’ve had plenty of experience with LSD. If you haven’t then you won’t know and you won’t see it. And the thing is as D outlines in other areas of his work, there is no explaining to you how it is that I might have this opinion that he’s on LSD or has had a really good trip on acid and make you believe it. You will perpetually fall back into your experience of a general humanity in which your opinion of drugs are located in a certain offense. Only those with the most open mind will appreciate those who have had an experience that you have not had. I can’t proclaim to know anything about the American Indian experience, for example; I have to listen to them and I have to believe them and I have to trust them that what they are saying in a general sense it’s true even if it goes against my theoretical position of what is correct. Basically I have to allow myself the possibility to be wrong or at least lacking in some areas of intelligence. But when it comes to philosophy, for some reason everyone is a philosopher and everyone has equal access to philosophical things, this to the extent that there can be no exceptions; in the example of the philosopher who is never taking LSD, often enough that person will argue to the end to the reasonableness of doubt that he had ever taken LSD and stick to the fact that somehow he is intelligent without the need of drugs and completely missed the point that D is talking about with reference to the molecular and to drugs, but to psycho analytic posture in general.
It is interesting when you read D and G they are pretty much saying that only certain people will understand what they’re talking about; yet in almost every case everybody thinks they know what they’re talking about, yet everyone disagrees that is except so much as they’re involved in some sort of textbook reading about what they’re saying . And indeed once we understand the situation then we find that we understand the other philosophers of his time and the ones that came after him like Badiou and Laruelle in particular and the issues that they are addressing.
Thank you Terrence for that little bit. The reason why I say also that I feel like D and G or too close to the event (philosophically speaking) is because they have to go on and on and on and on and talking about these aspects in a molecular fashion. Reality through the experience has degraded and fragmented to such an extent that all that is left is the molecules, molecules without context, and so they had to somehow assemble a sort of fundamental meaning that really their only gaining through feeling itself, through a kind of sensual appropriation, and they had to find a way to talk about it to create a context. But because they were so close to the event the context had to be described as a myriad of instances. They were involved in the experience of LSD and hallucinogenic’s most probably. And this is not to say that they are drug attics, but what they are saying really has given me an opening to talk about addiction and recovery. Because they weren’t drug Addicts, but we’re actually having a particular experience of the dissolution of reality. I think D here in this excerpt is really saying that the drug addict is confined by psycho analytic confinements, what I generalize to say real structures of discourse. Whereas if the addict where to see the molecularization of their situation, it might be possible that they wouldn’t be drug attics but would be nearly have an experience that pertained to drugs in a particular fashion. I’m not sure if this is totally true in the rough fashion I just put it here, but at least they took a step into philosophizing about an actual experience that isn’t the interaction of nations and political strategies and terrorism and these large ideological framings of power.