Radical media, politics and culture.


Brian Holmes writes:
"[There follows the lecture I gave at the expo "Geography - and the
Politics of Mobility" in Vienna. It revists the gift economy debates,
via Karl Polanyi, with some new ideas thanks to the talks at the
WorldInfoCon, all in the hope of understanding networked
mobilizations. Plenty of things for nettimers to disagree with
anyway! -- BH.]"

"The Revenge of the Concept:

Artistic Exchanges and Networked Resistance"

Brian Holmes

Since June 18, 1999, I have been involved in a networked resistance
to the globalization of capital. This resistance has been
inextricably connected to art. It has taken me from London to Prague,
from Quebec City to Genoa and Florence. It has given me an interest
in experimental uses of advanced technology, like the Makrolab
project. It has pushed me to explore new organizational forms, like
the research network developed by Multiplicity. It has encouraged me
to support cross-border solidarity movements, like Kein Mensch ist
illegal. And it has resulted in collaborations with Bureau d'Ètudes,
in their attempts to map out the objective structures of contemporary
capitalism. But the experience of the movement of movements has also
led me to ask a subjective question. What are the sources of this
networked resistance? And what exactly is being resisted? Is
revolution really the only option? Or are we not becoming what we
believe we are resisting? Are the "multitudes" the very essence and
driving force of capitalist globalization, as some theorists believe?

Anonymous Comrade writes:

The Vertigo of Philosophy:

Deleuze and the Problem of Immanence

Christian Kerslake

One of the few terminological constants in Deleuze's philosophical work is the word "immanence" and it has therefore become a foothold for those wishing to understand exactly what 'Deleuzian philosophy' is. That this ancient and well-travelled notion is held to have been given new life and meaning by a Deleuzian approach is evidenced in much recent secondary literature on Deleuze, and, significantly, in one central theoretical section of Hardt and Negri's Empire, which takes up the theme of 'the plane of immanence'. Yet on closer inspection it becomes clear that what is at stake in Deleuze's contribution to the history of this term is actually quite elusive. I will claim here that 'immanence', despite appearing to connote philosophical transparency, is in fact a problem for Deleuze; indeed perhaps it is the problem inspiring his work. Not for nothing does Deleuze suggest that 'immanence is the very vertigo of philosophy.'

Anonymous Comrade writes:

The nascent Center for the Humanities and Public Sphere, the
Department of English, and the Marxist Reading Group presents:

Born of Desertion: Singularity, Collectivity, Revolution

March 20-22 at the University of Florida, Gainesville

Keynote Speakers: Michael Hardt and Kristin Ross

Where is the Left now? How do we materialize collective
formations, and enact a justice in their name? How do we do this
at a moment when the world market and the right-wing body politic,
prodigiously engineering and rewriting the global imaginary, have
appeared as the frightening answer to certain strains of a
communal impulse so crucial to the Left?

hydrarchist writes:

"Intellectuals and Power"

A Conversation between Michel Foucault and Gilles Deleuze

MICHEL FOUCAULT: A Maoist once said to me: "I can easily
understand Sartre's purpose in siding with us; I can understand
his goals and his involvement in politics; I can partially under-
stand your position, since you've always been concerned with
the problem of confinement. But Deleuze is an enigma." I was
shocked by this statement because your position has always
seemed particularly clear to me.

hydrarchist writes:

This is Part II of "The Perverse Perseverance of Sovereignty" by Anthony Burke. You can find the first part here.

40. Yet we can reasonably ask whether this subject is so ripe for fruition, or whether the continued operation of modern technologies of sovereignty and identity might not be in danger of crippling its emergence; likewise we can ask whether in order to liberate the multitude we need to continue to critique and fight modern sovereignty, to fight its hold on subjectivity, its violence, and its complex enabling relationship with global capital. Only then can we begin to grapple with the irony William Connolly identifies: 'the more global capital becomes, the more aggressive the state is with respect to citizen allegiances and actions'. (1995: 135) In short, the teleological metaphor is the wrong one. We need instead to think in terms of a strategic coexistence of imperial and modern ontology whose objectives are somatic and spatial: the control and production of bodies, land and space as a necessary (but not always umbilical) adjunct to the flow and exploitation of capital.

Tactical Sovereignty: Post-Soeharto Indonesia

41. Contemporary Indonesia certainly provides one of the most stark examples of the work of Empire, but it is also an example of the perseverance of sovereignty. Pressed to open its capital markets during the 1990s, and long influenced by the liberal development advice of the World Bank (which chaired the aid consortium the Consultative Group on Indonesia), tens of billions of short-term capital flooded in during the 1990s, much of which was channelled into property and sharemarket speculation and the corrupt business practices of the Soeharto family and other cronies. Such capital account liberalisation, with its complex interrelationship with currency speculation, corruption and political crisis, was a major factor in the terrible crash of 1997-8. (Robison et. al. 2000; Bello et. al. 2000)

dr.woooo posts a long essay, in two parts. The second part can be found here.

"The Perverse Perseverance of Sovereignty"

Anthony Burke,
University of Adelaide

1. It's a familiar story: the withering away of the state under globalisation, or if not so much the state, the withering away of a certain idea and formation of sovereignty. A sovereignty that no longer possesses the fullness and power of its Westphalian ideal: a bounded territorial realm in which national authority is absolute, which provides a representative and political principle through which states and their people can manage and control the forces that affect their lives. With the increasing globalisation of capital and trade, the growth of supranational regimes of economic governance such as the WTO, the interventionist zeal of the World Bank and the IMF, and the might and influence of the transnational corporation, sovereignty appears to be a thing of the past - the nostalgic ghost of a world transformed.

2. Such views, with more or less sophistication, are visible across the political continuum. We can recall the Economist's stunning headline of 1986, 'The nation-state is dead', or point to the respected critical scholar of globalisation, Jan Aart Scholte, who maintains that, even while 'the state apparatus survives' and 'is more intrusive in social life than before…the core Westphalian norm of sovereignty is no longer operative'. (Economist 1995/6; Scholte 1999: 21) Even one of the most intriguing and profound discussions of globalisation in recent years, Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri's book Empire, falls prey to this logic. 'The passage to Empire', they write, 'emerges from the twilight of modern sovereignty'. (2000: xii)

hydrarchist writes:

The links to the articles indexed in this story were malfunctioning. They have now been fixed. Thanks to the AC who made us aware of the problem 17.12.02.

Earlier this year, the Italian journal and publishing house Derive Approdi issued an "Open Letter to the European Movements" requesting description of the social conflict in their countries and regions, and posing some specific questions that they felt merited attention. The desire was to conduct an "inquest" by which new contacts would be formed, experiences exchanged and the first steps of a common international discussion could be set out.

hydrarchist writes:

The following is a dialogue with Anne DuFourmantelle from Negri's recently published "Abecedaire Politique" (Calmann-Levy 2002), and was translated by Thomas Seay.

"B" as in Red Brigade [Brigades Rouges]

Toni Negri: One should be careful not to think of the
Red Brigade as the sum-total of the 70s movement; nor
should one think of that movement as set off in
historical parentheses, an absolutely isolated,
singular separate phenomena. In reality, the movement
was rather a trajectory, a common route taken by a
large part of my generation. There are still people --
some of them ingenuous, but more often stupid -- who
continue to present me as chief of the Red Brigade,
the malevolent brain behind the organization. Being a
professor and political activist or, better yet,
university professor and communist could mean none
other than that: the bad-boy teacher, cattivo
It's a source of consternation.

hydrarchist writes:

The following is a dialogue with
Anne DuFourmantelle from Negri's recently published "Abecedaire Politique" (Calmann-Levy 2002), and was translated by Thomas Seay.

E as in Empire

Anne DuFourmantelle: What can you tell us about the
concept of Empire that you developed with Michael

Toni Negri: Our work together has been most of all a
work on linguistic clarification. Indeed, the word
"Empire" might seem ambiguous. It immediately
appeared in political and journalistic vocabularies
and rapidly became static. Nevertheless, by "Empire"
we intend something very precise: the transfer of
sovereignty from Nation-states to a superior entity.
This transfer has almost always been understood in
terms of an "internal analogy", that is to say, as if
Empire were implicitly a nation-state the size of the

"Sibling Rivalry, Bretton Woods, IMF and the World Bank"

Henry C.K. Liu

The so-called Bretton Woods twins: the IMF and the World Bank, because
of recent noises made by Stiglitz, appeared to be at odds in their
policy focus. But this is mere sibling rivalry.


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