Notes on Bogue, R.  (2003) Deleuze on Literature. London: Routledge

Dave Harris

[Brilliantly clear yet detailed.  Obviously it helps if you have read both Deleuze's own commentaries on people like Proust or Kafka, and, ideally, had a go at the originals as well]

Chapter one.  Sickness, signs, and sense

[An excellent and clear discussion of some of the earlier works on Masoch and Nietzsche.  Particularly clear on the arguments in Logic of Sense, for which much thanks]

One interest of Deleuze in literature is clear from the Essays, Critical and Clinical project: we find the first appearance of a suggested connection in the book on masochism, but hints of it also appear in the work on Nietzsche.  The discussion shows what is distinctive about literature as compared to other forms of writing.

Nietzsche is credited as offering total and positive critique, examining the values underneath truth and morality, unlike Kant.  Nietzsche both interprets sense and evaluates value, both efforts turning on combinations of forces in relation, and the corresponding will to power that is possible.  The sense of an object is derived from the force that appropriates it, and the history of the thing is a history of the succession of forces that have taken possession of it, leading to power or interpretation.  Sometimes these forces are masked.  Overall, a phenomenon must be taken as a sign or symptom of a force, hence philosophy as a symptomatology or 'semielogical system'[the odd  spelling arising from the fact that semieology does not just consider language, unlike semiology].  Thus Nietzsche shows that there are different interpretations of what is good according to whether this is the interpretation of the slave or the master; the slave assumes a masked version of the master's evaluations, deploying reactive forces and so on.  We have to judge whether forces are active or reactive, noble or base.  The valuation additionally involves the will to power, that which joins together and gives qualitative dimensions to forces [active or reactive], as a dynamic element, relating different quantities of forces and producing relations between the qualities.  Dominant and active forces combine to become affirmative, dominated and reactive negative.  Thus the will to power decides the value of a thing. However, the will to power is not a will over another person – that is what slaves think.  To dominate forces means to impose particular forms, to transform, to pursue Dionysian goals in activity, release potential powers.  Being affected similarly is not just a form of passivity, but a greater quality of potential sensibility or sensation.

Thus bodies are always a multiplicity of forces and each is related to multiple forces both active and reactive: everything depends on marshaling the affirmative elements.  The nobility still encounter superior forces, but do not develop resentment, and can move on.  Slaves can never move on and contaminate everything with reactive forces.  The affirmative will ultimately becomes 'an artistic sensibility' (12), one that can transform joyously and creatively.  Mastery is not a matter of just subjugation, but rather a 'a creative donation of value'(13), an openness to being affected and affecting others, acting and reacting instead of just brooding.  But the reactive forces have triumphed, and bad conscience has prevented masterly creativity.  Philosophers must diagnose these conditions and also prescribe the cure, new possibilities for life, 'as an artist'. Critique in particular should always be done from the standpoint of the philosopher-artist, both assessor and creator.  Users, reception, is ignored for both arts and language.  Affirmative interpretation and evaluation is the goal, although this is not simple yea-saying.  Affirmative critique can also involve a 'joyous destruction of all that is negative', as 'pure affirmation'.

However, the role of art is not made explicit in the book on Nietzsche, even though Nietzsche's literary style is praised—the aphorism and the poem.  The first articulates sense, in the form of a fragment, involving a double interpretation.  It helps to point to different combinations of forces, like a poem, which can be either affirmative or negative, although both are usually implicit.  Philosophy is required to make these elements explicit, through being able to 'ruminate' (14) upon them.  Literature is thus the first level of interpretation and critique which needs then to be submitted to philosophy.

In the book on masochism, arts and medicine are joined more specifically, since the work of Sacher-Masoch is both a literary work and a clinical study, and Deleuze combines both literary criticism, and medical [Freudian] analysis.  However, there is more emphasis on literary creation, which appears in the denial that sadism and masochism are simply inversely related: instead, the work can be seen as examples of anthropology, relating to an entire notion of 'man culture and nature'(15), and they are capable of artistic creativity in describing feelings and thinking and using a new language.  In this way, they are able to comment on civilization as a whole not just individual pathology [or some compound Freudian syndrome].  This relates them to Nietzsche, as symptomatologists.

The term symptomatology also unites the notion of medical diagnosis through understanding or interpreting patients' appearance and behavior, and, in the best examples, an attempt to 'regroup signs'(16) to produce new syndromes.  Deleuze argues that it is a technique that belongs to literature as well.  Indeed it is a literary method used in medical diagnosis: in both cases, signs have to be named and interpreted.  Also, the notion of the [Freudian] phantasy joins both literary creation and medical symptoms [see Logic of Sense on this].  However, there can be either artistic or pathological work involved in the phantasy.  Literary approaches can draw upon phantasies but also work on them as objects to produce entire works. [More on the differences between Sade and Masoch and their worlds p17.  Sade attempts to create a world of primary nature, a cruel order, based on the phantasy of the father as destroyer.  Masoch draws upon the three female figures etc.  The contract is crucial to Masoch to disavow reality, p 18, which leads to mocking the law and ritual etc].

Work on the fantasy unites literature and medical diagnosis, but the work on literature specifically is just suggested, say in the appendix to Masochism—we must go from the figure to the problem, the obsessive phantasy which discloses the problem, which can then be grasped by a theoretical structure.  This theoretical or ideological structure is what lends the phantasy value as a generalization about human nature or the world.  Literature therefore attempts to construct a double of the world, including violence and excess.  It would be wrong to just focus on the sadomasochistic content: rather it is the theoretical ideological structures that are important, and they are clearly divergent between Sade and Masoch, with the latter valuing disavowal, suspense, waiting and fetishism [discussed 20].  In Masoch, one series involves the three types of women, and this is represented in a phantasy which is to be turned into reality, after denying the real.  The elements of the phantasy become motionless objects or components of scenes, whereas sadism seeks constant movement and repetition.  Both are really best understood as writers about pornography rather than pornographers, inventing new functions for porn's 'obscene commands'.

Both turn their fantasies into objects of their work, 'material for artistic invention'(21), creations of a double of the world. This necessarily involves a diagnosis of the problems of civilization and discussing creative alternatives.  Real structures are transformed, ironically or humorously, using apparently pornographic terms, but also showing the limits of language -- Deleuze talks about violence which does not speak.  This is possible because language is also doubled, with the invention of new commands and descriptions.  Such language, Deleuze claims, can act directly on the senses.

So, symptomatology is some kind of 'zero point', where artists, philosophers, patients and physicians meet.  Patients can only report disorders in a confused way, but writers can articulate the world in such a way as to display a coherence.  Artistic thought is like philosophy, but  produced in different forms, including scenes, dramas and actions and 'doubles of the world and language'.  Fiction needs to guide psychoanalysis in these matters, for example seeing the strange formalism of masochism as a novelistic element [very close to Lacan here?].  Literary thought will help us distinguish 'true symptoms from false syndromes', and individual pathologies  worked on by writers can reveal underlying conditions of civilization and other possibilities for life: their double of the world is both sickness, and a creative disruption of the real.

In the 13th series of L of S, critique and clinique are discussed in terms of Carroll, Artaud, madness and childhood.  The two versions of jabberwocky are discussed.  'Poetry, nursery rhymes and mad ramblings must not be confused' (22), however.  Different questions are addressed in each case.  The point is to analyze what Deleuze calls 'progressive and creative disorganization' in both approaches, with critique focusing on how oh language changes.  The main problem is one of relating surface to depth, and the linguistic distinctions can teach us about neurosis and schizophrenia.  When it comes to Carroll, Deleuze describes the 'enigmatic surface of meaning' (23) in terms of Stoic notions of the incorporeal: substantial organic bodies are the main things that operate as calls and effect, and surface features should be understood accordingly as something incorporeal.  Thus the greening of the tree is a surface effect produced by the self development of the body of the tree.  Deleuze goes on to derive the notion of Chronos from this approach, the duration of a body in an extended present.  However, the time of the event is different, and seems to refer to pasts and future dimensions, despite their having no real existence except being manifested in the event -- this is Aion, indicated by the infinitive, extending over past and future but not having an actual present in the normal sense: it is 'a time of pure becoming', relating to events not bodies.  This explains the irritating example of the battle as an event, which cannot be described by listing specific interactions between warriors: the battle a 'emanates from the bodies, hovers over them like a fog.  It is produced by the bodies as an effect, yet it preexists them as the condition of their possible encounters'(24).

So events are 'attributes of bodies', best thought of as verbs, compared to the characteristics of bodies which are adjectives relating to nouns.  However, language can depict events particularly clearly since language is also becoming.  Thus the most important Stoic incorporeal is the '"expressible", or "thing meant"', a quality of the physical sound emitted which has a 'surface effect of meaning'[clearly used in that wacky stuff about how rocks express themselves in ATP].  So words express and give meaning to an attribute.  The meaning is both the surface of the sound and off the thing, 'a single surface of meaning - events', an articulation, preserving the difference of bodies and language for Deleuze, and what he calls 'sens, sense or meaning'.  As with events like battles, meanings are both produced by words and yet precede them.  Sense exists as an overall 'sphere' in which speakers are located in order to produce designations. 

Meaning 'is also never fully present'(25), in that one utterance needs to be interpreted by another, and yet another in an infinite progress.  Meaning is like an event which inhabits past and future but not the present.  It includes nonsense in the form of imaginary entities or nonsense words.  Good sense is a limited version of sense 'in a single direction'[the word sens means both sense and direction in French].  Nonsense can also reverse temporal sequences or confuse identities, offering a form of becoming, or deliberate ambiguity as in the size of Alice [her size changes in Aion but not Chronos, says Bogue], a form of becoming 'in all directions'. Thus Carroll can be seen as illustrating the whole 'multi directional field of sense within which good sense takes place together with nonsense, so the latter can be seen as generating the former, quite deliberately in Carroll's case [where portmanteau words are used to 'generate two divergent series of elements'—the example is the snark --and thus act as aleatory points, 'seemingly and both lines at once, yet never at any single point at a given moment' (26).

This is the basis of any structure, producing the domains of both sense and events.  For the latter, the aleatory point is the empty space, or the 'figure for difference', representing a continuing generative differentiation producing actual determinations which diverge.  Thus jabberwocky displays divergent series of terms, illustrated by nonsense words like brillig which means the time of day when you begin by broiling things, 4:00 PM.  Further divergences arise with Artaud, however [which are apparent in French—discussed 27], and his version produces further interactions between the words, 'profligate and unregulated mixtures, interminglings and interpenetrations'.  This squares with the schizophrenic experience of words as 'lacerating, persecuting objects that rip into the flesh', '"passion - words"' connecting with bodies seen as sieves or fragments.  Sometimes these can be totalised but not as an organism, rather as a body without parts or BWO, which communicates somehow directly through breathing or fluid transmissions.  This body produces corresponding action words, not passive like passion words, but representing a definite '"language without articulation"', a series of tonic values, breath words or cry words, 'sonic amalgams'. This is a non-sense produced by bodies.  It is found in Artaud on jabberwocky, which reveal passion words, action words, 'terrifying body fragments and the glorious body without organs, phonetic fragments and tonic fusions' (28).  It would be a mistake to see Carroll as schizophrenic, from the point of view of both psychiatry and literature.  It all turns on how surfaces are related to depths: Carroll slides from good sense into nonsense in a way that preserves the normal surfaces between words and things, and nonsense is organized, albeit differently from sense.  Artaud's disorganization is more radical, dissolving even signs into phonetic fragments and tonic notes, shattering and accreting sonic blocks.  The issue then is where '"nonsense changes its figure"'.

Children can also play with the surface effects of language, in their rhymes or nonsense phrases, and writers can also experiment with language: yet there is no '"grotesque Trinity"'.  Writers are more in control with their inventions, so Carroll develops an entire logic of sense, with clear philosophical roots.  Even Artaud can organize his 'cry words and breath words into a theater of cruelty'(29).  Authors' abilities to diagnose the ills of civilization take different modes.  There is a neurotic novel, in the family romance, but novelists can also  'extract from surfaces a "pure event", one that is depersonalized and then unfolded through the characters and actions of a given work of art'.  This 'artistic autonomy and impersonality' is what distinguishes them from children and neurotics.  This is also a difference between Wolfson and Artaud for Deleuze, with the latter achieving autonomy, and producing cry breaths that are capable of taking on multiple forms.

None of this appears in a AO or anywhere subsequently, unless the designing machine and bodies without organs are a common tree on surfaces and depths and how they are combined.  There might also be a link to assemblages and planes of consistency in ATP.  However, LofS ends with a psychoanalytic account of the genesis of the surface from the depths of the body, 'utilizing the full panoply of Freudian and Lacanian terminology'.  However, this is later rejected, in AO, and sense is seen as a matter of surfaces exclusively, with Nietzsche replacing Stoic ideas in terms of relations of force and the will to power.  The consequent 'emphasis on forces and power as determinants of all semiotic systems' (30).  Similarly, the deep connection between language and events is replaced by the language of becomings, which, in ATP, 'can exist outside language'.  This deep connection also leaves room for a theory of the arts where each art engages the event in its own 'autonomous mode'.

So these earlier works clearly show the relation between literary criticism and medical diagnosis, but as Deleuze rejects psychoanalysis, this specific connection is minimized.  What remains is a broader idea of the writer as an interpreter of signs and a critic of civilization.  This appears in the work on Proust and Kafka [up next].

Chapter two Proust's sign machine

The extended version of Deleuze's book [which I have] concerns first the interpretation of signs, and then the production of signs.  In both cases, the issue is how to to grasp multiple aspects of the Whole that is time.  The aspects are not to be seen as explications of a [philosophical] principle, but rather as an effect of a multiple.  We have to see the whole book as an apprenticeship, first decoding signs, and then grasping how signs work in art.  The whole work can be seen as 'a machine that produces "unity affects" as well as changes in the reader' (31).  Time is the active subject.

The novel is not to be understood as an exploration of involuntary memory and subjective association, although there are such subjective signs.  Overall, signs are enigmatic, hieroglyphs [so we must be Egyptians—see notes].  The contents of signs are enfolded within them, so that interpretation means unfolding, explication, with the madeleine as the best example.  There are different source of signs however: (1) worldly signs which turn on social conventions and forms, or which convey meaning in particular social circumstances.  They are formal rather than content rich.  (2) signs of love, where the loved one represents a whole mysterious world or landscape from which the lover is necessarily excluded, hence the room for 'jealousy and disappointment' (33), and the inevitable deception of love.  (3) sensual signs like the madeleine or the uneven paving stones, which produce involuntary memories and the explication of the world.  These produce joy [not if you are a depressive], and prompt or demand interpretation.  They disclose essences of Combray or Venice, although these are fleeting.  (4) the signs of art dematerialize essences [abstract them] and become autonomous. Overall, the point is to see a progression towards the fourth kind, a search for truth.

This is not always easy, and goodwill and voluntary action is not enough.  Intelligence only produces logical truths from arbitrary starting points.  [Actual or proper] truth can also involve chance encounters that selects themes, both interpreting signs and explicating them: it's not just subjects who do this, however because signs are self developing.  Truths are also always temporal, truths of time.  Four structures of time, each with their own truths, arise in the course of the apprenticeship.  First, there is '"Time that passes"' (34), a part of lost time, the time of alteration, aging and destruction.  We see this in the obvious signs of physical decline in social figures and also in changing fashions; love itself ages and seems set to destroy itself; sensual signs can also exhibit decay [a strange example where Marcel removes his boot and remembers his dead grandmother].  Only the signs of art can overcome time that passes.  Secondly, there is lost time, wasted time, including that wasted in various indulgences, although sobriety does not necessarily lead to truth because that is still under the control of the will and not contingency.  Wasted time can be even seen as necessary, a part of an apprenticeship, so that everything provides learning, exposure to signs.  Thirdly there is time regained, when the intelligence grasps [by reflection? ] truths embedded in experience [maybe, 35], extracting the truth of the sign 'and hence the truth of time'.  In this way, the experiences of the writer can have the same role as the experiment for scientists, except that intelligence follows experience in the first case. Intelligence can produce general laws, such as those governing the career of a love affair, or certain 'immaterial essences' revealed by involuntary memories.  The fourth kind of time exists only in the work of art, time regained, pure time, above all worldly and sensuous signs.  This is discovered right at the end of the search.

The novel reveals all sorts of misunderstandings of two main kinds.  First, the sign is seen as a simple indication of the truth, so that sipping tea will reveal the essence of Combray [so there's a bit of positivist practice in here?], or that people can be interrogated to get to the meaning of the code for social signs [so ethnography is rebuked as well, rather as Bourdieu does?].  Desire and love are also seen as necessarily aimed at desirable objects.  Intelligence 'has an inherent tendency towards objectivity' and shared truth.  'Traditional discursive thought' together involves these prejudices.  However, signs never just simply designate objects but have a remainder [I put in that Adorno term].  The first way to grasp this is through 'a compensatory subjectivism' (36), subjective associations.  Involuntary memories look as if they involve these, but subjectivism always introduces an infinite number of possibilities, and deny that any [transcending or immanent] meanings are accessible through art [close to a circular argument here—art must simply offer this set of meanings as an agreed principle].

The signs of art are immaterial, essences or ideas, even if they are conveyed through material objects like musical instruments.  Essence for Proust involves connecting differences.  Each point of view in art involves difference, but this is not a function of the subject, rather that something that already belongs to the world and its differences: 'the subject and the world emerge together through the unfolding of that difference'.  The essence of the world is implicated in the subject, so every subject is like a monad in Leibniz, already containing the whole world, folded within itself, and unfolded according to particular perspectives of the monad.  However, there is no preestablished harmony of this kind for Proust, and each subject expresses a really different world, which can only be linked through art: art enables new percepts to be developed [me again] so that we can see that the world is multiple. In the text, we see this with Swann realizing that his familiar little phrase is part of a sonata, so a new world opens to him.  Every work of art offers this possibility for Proust, and so does observing the faces of adolescent girls seeing them as elements of nature [early becoming-woman for Guattari] .

Artistic time is also disclosed.  Deleuze tackles this through using the terms of Greek philosophers involving complication (enveloping the multiple in the one), outside normal chronological time and representing the state of time itself, 'time wrapped up within itself, a pure form of time which subsequently unfolds itself in the various dimensions of actual temporal experience' (37-8).  We see this in the connection between artistic essence and time regained.  We have to interpret the physical materials of artworks and the way they are arranged, and this is style.  This does not just involve detailed interpretation of a single episode, but pursuing the connection between two different objects, for Proust.  We think of this as a unique connection in art as opposed to the laws of causality in science.  One technique is to develop a metaphor, where style itself can be the metaphor expressing a common quality, the expression of an essence, liberated from the normal contingencies of normal time.  Deleuze modifies this [because he doesn't like metaphors] to mean a process of metamorphosis [see what he did there?], and the example turns on the paintings of Elstir, where land becomes sea.  For Deleuze, the '"unstable opposition, the original complication"'must be preserved and not hidden in a metaphor.

In this sense, essence is always 'an ongoing power of creation' (39), 'both an originary difference and an individualizing force', incarnated [in a determined way] in objects  which are linked in style, a repeating difference, self differentiation.  Both difference and repetition can be seen as productive powers of essences.  Fundamental differences repeat themselves across various milieux and among diverse objects, so that we see that even diversity can be understood as the play of difference and repetition.  Art has to render matter in a way 'adequate to essence', which means they must be transparent to essence, and linked by an equally adequate style showing the powers of difference and repetition.  We have to remember that style is not just the invention of the artist, but '"the self differentiating difference that unfolds itself and a world that includes the subject as point of view"'.

Once Marcel has understood art he can then go back to reinterpret sensual, amorous and worldly signs, especially those of involuntary memory.  The joy he experiences in the last volume arises from the revelation of the operations of time regained, the reality of the past, similar to Bergson and the idea of the past as a cone, the past as virtual and thus real, recalling the past as a link back into the virtual past.  Deleuze says that Marcel does this right at the end, discovering something common to past and present and therefore essential [the quotes from Proust's novel actually seem to mention phrases such as real without being actual, ideal without being abstract (40)].  [This explains the vividness of senses in their recall of the past] [the liberation from time bit means that moments have been rescued from this past, and some sort of pure time experienced—phenomenologists would call this through and through interconnectedness, of course].

So the virtual past has been discovered, but so have essences as differences, as above, which explain the identity of two moments separated in objective time, the taste of the madeleine both now and then, the recovery of context that ensues.  So we have a tricky combination of difference and identity in essences, as well as a qualitative difference in that Combray as presently recalled is an ideal version that never actually existed, although 'ideal' in this sense means essential, even true.  Involuntary memory therefore supplies an analog to art, but art is more transparent and pliable, [deterritorialized].  So involuntary memory alone will not lead to regained time, since it retains bits of materiality and contingency, rather than just essence unfolding itself.

Art is more adequate to signs and their meaning, freely chosen, and necessary, following the inner necessity of the essence, not restricted to subjectivity since the artist is part of the world.  Essence can take a singular form, a singular point of view in a specific artist. This also seems to be the case because sensual signs are more general, shared between people, 'common worlds' that are so predictable as almost to yield laws.  We see this in the patterns and series displayed in the various love affairs, although there are also subdivisions.  Love affairs  even take the form of 'transsubjective series', links between the affairs of Marcel and Swann, for example.  At its most general, we get discussion about sex itself, the parallel worlds of the sodomites, based on some 'primal hermaphroditism' [very apologetic I thought].  So we have sequences and links at different levels and the revelation of an essence, possible only after affairs have ended, leading to 'the joy of understanding' [avoids blame and guilt?] (43).  The pain of love forces this search for meaning.  The appearance of this essence is uneven, and depends a great deal on external conditions and subjective contingencies, chance events—because subjective relations are themselves like this.

Worldly signs also reveal generalities and thus hint at essences, in this case the peculiar rules of social manners, revealed in detail.  These worldly signs seem to be significant, especially if they turn on political historical matters, but they are ultimately 'signs of stupidity', dominated by ritual and formalism.  The essence here appears in cliche and group mentality, open to the observer, raw material for the artist.  The signs are interpreted in their own right at first, but then reread retrospectively, as part of the general revaluation of signs as 'implicated essences' (44).  Different notions of time also become apparent.  Gradually, the signs of art emerge and transform all the other signs, as implications at various degrees of generality and contingency.  This provides the 'thematic unity'of the work, the form of the novel, the discovery of the unfolding of the sign [this time, the development of the sign occurs at the same time as its interpretation].  This is the apprenticeship leading to the final truth of time and its multiple guises, its material for an artistic outlook leading to multiple worlds.

The second section of Deleuze's book turns on the production of signs.  This helps correct the impression from the first section that the whole novel is simply a kind of coming of age life story narrative [bildungsroman], making sense only at the end as the story unfolds.  However, this is not a smooth progression towards an understanding, nor a simple worldview at the end [so it's not simple realism then—but isn't the ultimate truth of the novel that reality is complex etc?].  There is no single semiotic, and no simple unification, no notion of a single world essence.  Overall, this can be seen as a rejection of an underlying logos: 'Proust's thought is an antilogos' (46).  There is no great Whole or truth to be deciphered in the parts, no triumphant role for intelligence [then a digression about whether Proust has any links with Plato—it turns on the role of the subjective  in uncovering objective essence, and argues that the point of view in the novel is not that of an individual subject but 'the principle of individuation', belonging to art].

Modern literature revises classic notions of objectivity and unity, denying any underlying order in nature or ideas.  Only art preserves a certain coherence amid the chaos—initially, only subjective associations, since there is no external objectivity.  Eventually, the subject has to be abandoned as well as we saw.  Parts or fragments no longer get their value simply as parts of totality, shown best in the inability to relate fragments of time to some total notion of time [so time regained is not a totality?]: Deleuze says that time is best understood in terms of fragments and parts of different sizes and forms, working at different rhythms and speeds [so Aion is more fundamental than time regained?].  The internal structure of the work provides its unity, and elements providing unity are themselves only parts, such as fragments of involuntary memory which are anomalous, not standing for a totality.  This is seen in Proust describing reminiscence as '"an anomalous associative chain...only unified by a creative point of view"' (48).  Fragments act as do seed crystals, changing the state of solutions, in a 'cascade of individuations'.  The yellow patch in a Vermeer painting is one such seed crystal for Bergotte [an epiphany transforming his view of the value of art], and so is the little phrase for Swann. 

The disparities between these fragments is the first step in understanding the novel, together with 'two basic figures' that relate them—'boxes and closed vessels', connecting contents and containers, and parts and wholes respectively.  Signs are like closed boxes with inner complications to be unfolded, and this is the first stage of interpretation.  But analyzing the production of signs involves a lack of common measure between contents and containers: when the boxes are opened, disparate things are found, like beings and names, and the meaning of the madeleine is not simply contained in the box.  Essential meanings overflow subjective associations and take on a life of their own.  Narrators themselves can be 'captured' (49) by the worlds that are unfolded.  A nonpersonal point of view can arise as a result of these overflowings.  Deleuze wants to describe this dramatically as '"the death of the self"'.  Music especially 'sustains a [new] conflict of the parts' overflowing earlier understandings.  The sealed vessels refer to the separation of phenomena that the artists can see are really connected—the two 'ways'[of life represented by the two aristocratic families].  The parts do not communicate even though they may be contiguous.  They are actually determined 'through a relation of non communication' (50).  The sealed vessels are not stable wholes and can split into subworlds or multiple selves [many Albertines], so their identity is only 'statistical'.  However there can be communication of a particular kind – the transversal connections between the two 'ways'[as in Swann's meandering between the two?].  Transversals do not unify, but rather emphasize difference [and the example is how the train journey intensifies the difference between  departure and arrival].  Transversals therefore [always? ] maximize intensity between differences. 

When we study closed vessels, we extract them from a network of transversals.  We see this when we awake and in effect choose a self and a world from the multiple selves and worlds on offer in sleep [I read this as Marcel struggling to regain the exterior pose necessary for his survival in challenging circumstances].  This choice is apersonal, a 'pure act of interpretation'(51) [by some disembodied interpreter, it seems].  Transversals are also chosen in the same process.  This apersonal stuff leads Deleuze to argue that the subject of the novel is also disembodied, choosing among Swann, the narrator, or other characters.

So there is a 'force of incommensurability' or non communication joining the various containers and vessels, 'and both these forces of the forces of time', non spatial distances, distances without intervals in Deleuze's terms, thrown up by time [as in involuntary memories?]: Time can also put or alter intervals between the contiguous, as when we forget connections, or revive others.  These associations define the transversal  as 'a passage without interval that affirms a difference'.  Time itself is the system of distances without intervals, 'the great transversal', and thus the ultimate interpreter, bringing together pieces which do not form a whole in space or in normal time, and making connections between all possible spaces and conventional times.

When subjective associations break, and apersonal points of view emerge, when transversal links are revealed between closed vessels, a new truth emerges independently of signs, but only emerging from their interpretation.  Interpretation does not involve discovery nor pure creation, but the production of an effect 'to make something happen' (52).  This productive quality means that 'the modern work of art is a machine', something that works, something that opposes purely logical interpretation relating things back to wholes, and that relies only on functioning [asignifying to use a later terminology—hence the [misleadingly 'pragmatic' stuff about how art is a matter of usage not meaning].  Proust's novel is a machine, working on signs to produce truth, producing 'thought within thought', using imagination and reflexivity in his terms, driven by pain and suffering.  After much interpretation, apersonal points of view are produced [Swann is able to put his passions into context and into persepctive].  Certain truths appear and these relate to time: apparently, in the second part there are three types of time, lost time, regained time of essences and 'universal alteration', relating to aging and death, and each is produced by a machine.  The first machine fragments objects and produces heterogeneous boxes and vessels, the equivalent of partial objects, and the eventual 'truth' that it is series and groups that produce these.  The second machine 'produces resonances' as in in voluntary memory, where isolated moments resonate, but also in art where individual instruments resonate with each other in duets.  This is a form of 'vibratory communication', and this second machine produces its own fragments and '"the singular Essence, the point of view superior to the two moments that resonate' [some emergent quality as when one listens simultaneously  to two tunes in harmony?]. 

The third machine 'produces the truths of universal decay' that makes time palpable—at the end of the novel, it all seems pointless and about to obliterate everything that has gone before.  However, Proust recuperates by thinking of the idea of deaths and the notion of the dilation of time—he thinks about all the vast periods that have elapsed 'before such a revolution could be accomplished in the geology of a face'(53).  In such thoughts, the living merge with the dead, death seems everywhere, but also the elderly bridge whole epochs concealed behind the slow passage of time.  Also, habits become visible [what seems normal is contextualized?] So even the idea of death can produce ideas and thoughts.

Proust has not only discovered these machines, for Deleuze but has embedded them in the work, especially with the second machine, which not only describes sensuality and its ecstasies, but show the workings of 'a properly literary machine', seemingly working at full stretch to produce all kinds of involuntary memories and also suggesting their origin not in subjective memory but in art itself.  This is what art contributes to the ecstatic experiences, 'an autonomous and self determined production of resonances'(54), the affect of a deliberate style which adds meaning to that which is provided simply by the unconscious.  These machines produce effects in readers as well: Proust hoped that we would all be able to read our lives as he had done, gaining a new viewpoint on their worlds, just as painters provide.

The three machines are now called 'a partial object machine, a resonance machine, and a forced movement machine' (55) and they do produce effects, but there is no essential unity between them.  They provide a sufficient description while remaining broken and fragmented.  The apersonal point of view does not unify all the other points of view [so not realism then?], but appears alongside them.  Differences are not resolved, but rather individuated [multiple points of view—of equal weight?].  The style does not unify, since it follows separate associative chains, unfolding signs and generating effects.  It is the assemblage of fragments that provides the unity, an effect of the machines not of some universal principle.  Proust has resisted the temptation to bring together all the fragments in a completed unity, as a kind of after effect, a retrospective unification, the end of a process of crystallization, although he seems to admire authors like Balzac who do that.  Instead, there is a different kind of unity, one based entirely on the structure of the work of art alone [back to the stuff about chaos we saw above].  The structure is the network of transversals as above, that connects while affirming difference.  This convention is found in other works as well, and maybe general to all modern literature, Deleuze thinks [and he gets very close to notions of intertextuality here, suggesting links between writers and connections with the public]. 

So the two parts offer different emphases, corresponding to the activities of reader and writer respectively.  There is an insistence that interpretation and unfolding 'simply follows the sign's own explication of itself', and that, although signs can impinge on interpreters, an apersonal point of view is really what is on offer in art, one that includes the interpreter [anticipates interpretation?] Signs themselves are the key here since they produce interpretation and even produce the interpreter.  Following an apprenticeship in signs necessarily leads to the vocation of the 'interpreter as artist', a producer of signs.  The machine introduced in part two as a concept reminds us that this is not just a matter of subjective meaning, nor an attempt to uncover some deep privileged meaning of the sign.  We are reminded that it is not significance but function that matters.  Nevertheless there are truths of signs, but these are produced by machines.  Even the apersonal point of view is only something produced by a machine, a production that shows the complexities of differences and repetition.  Art attempts to grapple with fragmented chaos, but it offers no fundamental salvation.  Nor are we left with mere formalism, since the work of art is not independent from the world with which it engages.  Its function is to produce effects, to produce an autonomous universe different from the old world.  It gains its unity from multiplicity, adding something to the apersonal point of view, making it into a seed crystal [this seems to be one of those optional final unities suggested as a last thought by some writers as above—it's not clear if Deleuze is approving or not].  The former is best described as transversality, connecting things that are incommensurable and noncommunicating, providing an intensity to difference.  Art is a response to the world, a chaosmos, accepting that there is chaos but developing 'the singular, individual cosmos of the artist' by developing and explicating multiplicity.  [I'm still not sure whether this is deeply insightful or horribly evasive]

Chapter three Kafka's law machine

[Begins with discussion of AO]

Deleuze and Guattari further develop the notion of the writing machine, focusing in particular on expression.  Transversal links are not so important, however, and the emphasis is more on the social and political effects turning on the notion of minor languages.  We also hear echoes of desiring machines from the extended discussion in AO.  Again the emphasis is on effects being produced, not attempts to uncover external significance [especially Freudian attempts]. 

Indeed, id, ego and superego [in AO? ] are replaced by notions of desiring machines, body-without-organs [BWO] and the nomadic subject as components of desire in production, referring to initial impulses to produce, then attempts to inscribe, and then to consume or consummate [same word in French apparently] respectively, as in the example of the infant's mouth machine coupled to its mother's breast machine, leading to effects on the various machines in the intestinal body as flows of nutrients are converted into energy circuits.  Desiring machines therefore occupy whole 'chains or circuits through which flows pass' (60).  Since these machines in humans are capable of different functions, like mouths, there are also switching mechanisms, sometimes involving contact with other circuits such as olfactory circuits [a nopte connects this argument to modern embryology --see DeLanda ]  The circuits are found on the body without organs which represents 'a single map of coexisting [or disjunctive] circuits'(61).  We should note that the circuits also extend beyond actual empirical bodies, so that the infantile BWO includes the mother's breast, odors, digestive bacteria and so on [that is a new interpretation, to me anyway -- it is an empirical multiplicity as well?].  The BWO is not unified in the sense that it contains disjunctions and heterogeneity so that its role in production involves multiplicity: if there is a totality it is one of those that unites the parts without totalising or unifying them [all this from AO].  The the BWO is real, at the virtual level, both produced by the desiring machines and also a condition of possibility for their functioning, 'that great of potential circuits that any given chain of desiring machines might actualize at a specific time' (62).  Particular configurations of desiring machines and BWO are the paranoiac machine and the miraculating machine [not specific to the case of Schreber then?].  However, there are no regular fixed organizations, rather 'disjunctive synthesis', so in that sense there is anti production as well, constant breaking down and disconnection, and reconnection of desiring machines in new multiple ways.  The paranoiac machine follows a rebellion against unity [with outside objects?] as 'a persecutory order', the miraculating machine attracts desiring machines to the surface of the BWO [my rendition].  The nomadic subject has no fixed identity, wanders over the BWO, using elements produced by the desiring machines, 'an errant point flashing here and there along the various paths', consuming.  It is created by the 'celibate machine'[don't remember this bit, but much more below] which can produce '"a new humanity or a glorious organism"' (63) [with ludicrous lyrical stuff in support.  It might refer to a state of intensity without any kind of erotic charge?].  The desiring machines operate with affective intensities at different levels, unlike the zero intensity of the BWO, offering degrees of attraction and repulsion [which might be balanced in the celibate machine?].  There is no overall equilibrium, but a series of states through which the subject passes.

AO defends the term machinic not as a metaphor but through defining it as a 'system of cuts': the 'portioning- cut', the 'detachment - cut' and the 'remainder - neutral cut'.  The second produces the BWO, and the last one the nomadic subject.

The first one describes how the machine slices into a material flow, considered as 'a single process', (63) producing material for the machines connected to it via various 'relays and processing stations'[ Bogue says one type of process is the 'schiz-flow']. Matter is considered as a continuous and infinite flow, and includes energy, information and signs, not just ordinary positivist matter.  Cutting into it implies ideal continuity [terms imply their opposites—but does this mean that both are equally real?], and indeed we can see cuts as 'a connective synthesis'[seems to be some sort of idea that separated flows further along a system can be seen as emanating from a single flow? Typical problem with intensive terms -- you never simply divide or add them?, hence a connective synthesis as a series of 'and...and...and' etc instead of add..add..add]. The 'schiz flow' similarly generates 'multiple elements operating within a single, unlimited process' (64).

The second one offers disjunctive synthesis -- a or b -- but since we must be affirmative in our differentiation, no alternative is excluded.  Instead, they produce 'the grid' of the BWO.  They can be seen as comprising the code of the machine to control its various options.  Options may be produced by the impact of various 'associative chain[s]', of odors or other sensations as above.  A specific block of functions and associated circuits is produced, various '"detachable segments, mobile stocks"' (65).

The third one leaves the remainder or residue, adjacent to the machine, and this is the  nomadic subject, possessing no fixed identity but acting as 'a nomadic flicker of intensity traversing the grid' of the BWO.  It is a collection of parts produced by the various blocks and partitions produced by the other cuts.  Bogue says that some sort of unity is still implied, or rather a conjunction without a principled unity, 'a summary moment'[but is it emergent in some way?  It might be temporarily unified around the role of consumption?].

The overall machine is a system of these cuts and syntheses.  Together they constitute a multiplicity, 'heterogeneous entities that function together without being reducible to a totality or unity '(66).  The machinic concept comes to dominate the other components outlined above, as both the BWO and the subject can become 'partial' versions of desiring machines, so machinic themselves [partial objects are not the same as the BWO, but share an a 'mutual cofunctioning' and thus can be seen as a single entity [with a bit of weaseling from AO page 66-7 – the BWO becomes the "brute matter of partial objects", while partial objects become "direct powers of the body without organs", appearing as intensities that produce the real—clear as fucking mud as usual, and probably resulting simply from some philosophical anxiety about consistency].  Partial objects also back to some external limit of the pure multiplicity, and as elements like working parts operated upon by the BWO, inseparably [for all practical purposes, that is, but we seem to love abandoned the fine distinctions beloved of philosophy in other areas].  The nomadic subject is 'simply the consumption and self enjoyment (or auto-affection) of the states through which this single machine passes', and in this sense, it can be seen as a kind of designing machine again, linked to the BWO in the ambiguous way described above, implying its existence [and picking up on the definitional notion of states of the machine].

Are these real machines and not metaphors?  The language here attacks 'common sense distinctions between entities'[which is a different point].  The cuts are also syntheses, but there is a more general problem concerning how heterogeneous parts come to form machines and assemblages of machines.  In AO we're told this arises from passive synthesis, some indirect association, 'non conscious and automatic'(67) [all by definition again].  There is no unified whole and therefore no centralized determination, only 'open-ended, and directed addition of a part to a part' (68).  Overlapping flows produce associative chains, permutations of partial objects  [permutation is a another synthesizing activity, a bit like the internal  differentiation in Difference and Repetition?].  It joins overlapping and connective syntheses [in producing reality?].  So machines are always synthesizing, without completely absorbing their parts.  That is because '"Machine" is the name for that which puts parts in nontotalizing relation with one another'[so it is definitional—we 'explain' synthesis by just asserting that it must take place in machines by definition].  Machines can machine themselves [in infinite regress].  So defining it as a real entity means it cannot be a metaphor [!].  'The cosmos consists of nothing but flows and cuts' including various connections of flows and machines.  They must be real 'since there is nothing in the real other than machines'[!], and machines essentially do the machining that we've described.  [Pathetic!]

The celibate machine arises from the production of the nomadic subject, itself arising from 'reconciling' repulsion and attraction between partial objects.  The term is borrowed from a description of fantastic machines in various literary sources, including Roussel, and Kafka (In the Penal Colony).  Apparently, a certain Carrouges noticed similarities between Kafka's machine and Duchamps' painting The Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors, and spotted other analogous machines in other artistic work, which led him to suggest there was a modern myth '"of the celibate machine"' (69) referring to machinism, terror, eroticism and religion or anti religion.  These are seen in Kafka's execution machine [and the short story -- In The Penal Colony -- is described 69-70].  There are 'copious religious allusions' about divine judgement and its secularization, technological terror, and 'a latent voyeuristic sexuality'.  The same themes are found in Duchamp's description of his painting [which apparently includes a panel called the bachelor machine—further described on 71].  Both offer modern mythical accounts of mechanical culture 'devoid of the sacred and dominated by a sterile, voyeuristic eroticism'.  D and G two not entirely agree, but like the term and it has influenced their work on Kafka.  Bogue thinks that Duchamp's painting is 'a better example of desiring the production' than those chosen in AO, because it looked really indicates flows and cuts [more on 72].

D and G combine Kafka and Duchamp in their account of the celibate machine in AO, which lends 'humor, irony and absurdity' to Kafka, and 'social and political ramifications' to Duchamp.  The term for bachelor in French means both an unmarried male, or one who chooses to be celibate [as in English], and this combines the erotic desires of unmarried males with a machinic sexless libido in Duchamp.  When applied to a machine, it also implies something anticonjugal.  This connects to the discussion of incest in Kafka's Metamorphosis, where incest with sisters takes a schizo form, not the classic oedipal one.  Both male and female characters in Kafka represent  'anticonjugal antifamilial desire' (73).  [So it is this that makes them celibate?  This is why celibate machines are useful to avoid Oedipus?]

The execution machine in the Penal Colony is a good example, but there are others producing celibate desire.  The execution machine is too isolated, abstracted from social context, and thus easily misunderstood, say in oedipal terms.  In general, a writing machine must synthesize flows of different kinds, as above.  They must avoid reterritorialization, especially by becoming paranoid or fascist.  The '"schizorevolutionary"' pole case of machine can follow lines of flight of desire, but the paranoid type has dominated, in various epochs like primitive, despotic and capitalist stages.  Psychoanalysis represents another form of discipline.  Kafka is seen as moving towards a suitably flexible writing machine in his letters, short stories and novels [and description of each ensues, 75].  We see the gradual emergence of the literary machine, first when the letters stand for the love relation itself, when Kafka splits into a double subject [enunciating subject and subject of enunciation], and in the interminability of the machine which makes it hard for humans to break with these conceptions.  The short stories continue, pursuing possible lines of flight, but also the blockages that prevent them [for example the re-familiazation of Gregor in Metamorphosis].  Some possible lines of escape are noted in various kinds of becoming, of human, or, conversely of animal.  Again these reach limits.  At best, 'the stories provide machinic indices rather than fully constructed machines' (77), and machines are not always well developed [one of these indices concerns the two bouncing balls that Deleuze and Guattari admire and keep citing – it is in the story called Blumfeld, an Elderly Bachelor, which, after introducing the mysterious bouncing balls as some kind of unwelcome transformation of his personal life, goes on to describe Blumfeld's monotonous life in a office plagued by two dozy assistants rather like the ones in The Castle].  The novels produce a full account of lines of flight and their functioning, like the interminable machines in The Trial or The Castle [remembering that the death of K in the trial is interpreted away by D and G], providing endless connections with 'specificity and multiplicity' (78).

The Trial is the best example of an abstract law machine [I agree -- The Castle is a pale imitation].  There are few technical machines, but constant elements of the Law.  Bogue admits that we cannot interpret the actions of this machine in terms of the notion of cuts in AO, and notes D and G smuggling in a notion of a social machine, referring to the pyramids via Mumford.  [Which is the notion taken up in DeLanda on war machines].  The social machine produces according to desire, it penetrates the whole of society, with interchangeable personnel.  'The law is eroticized' (79) by the appearance of women, and there is some masochistic eroticism in the whipping scenes.  Individuals appear in different assemblages with characteristic 'discourses, codes and objects', as in the office the studio or the cathedral.  The connections are open-ended and interminable.  Is the point just to show the absurdity of the law?  There is no explicit political critique, but rather an 'immanent critique' (80), where assemblages are identified beneath or behind social relations, and are then dismantled.  The novel almost takes the form of the scientific investigation. 

This is effective politics.  First of all familiar social codes and institutions are rewritten in the terms of the social machine, so the conventional logic of the law is undermined.  Authority is similarly diffused and inaccessible, and the whole thing is 'a Byzantine mechanism of power, unrelated to norms of justice and fairness' [nowhere near as good as Marx nonetheless].  There's a culture of guilt grounded in religious tradition.  D and G say there is more—that power is not inherently centralized, nor is it something owned or lacked, rather 'it is relational'[just like Foucault then, as Bogue acknowledges].  Everyone is involved [everyone really desires to be involved is the point-- power is equated with desire].  Apparently, 'this is not to deny the existence of genuine oppression' but to argue that oppressor and oppressed are secondary products [but why is it always the poor what gets the blame?]: repression is in effect of the machine not the other way about.  There is a dismantling through the analysis and the 'unpredictable configurations' (81) that are produced.  These are paranoid options, although Kafka also describes the law as 'a schizophrenic deployment', connecting different components 'in unprescribed relations' [but this makes repression worse? it never leads to liberation.].  K himself can be seen as the crucial switching mechanism between these elements.

We see that paranoid and schizophrenic poles are in operation simultaneously in social fields, and that the law takes both forms, transcendent paranoiac and schizo immanent [as in the diagrams in the book].  The second one tends to constantly dismantle the first, in the form of 'disruptive, mutant connections'[but this is a pretty abstract dismantling, almost ending in fatalism?].  We come to see the law actually as 'a mega machine, which is constantly constructing itself as a paranoiac hierarchical Law, and at the same time dismantling itself through a schiz law process' (82).  Kafka's description of the law like this is a dismantling [feeble], but it is not just a simple reflection of current realities, since Kafka is also indicating diabolical powers of the future in various major nations.  D and G see these as 'virtual vectors of unfolding relations' that only later get actualized, as examples of a general function [sounds like Poulantzas on the state now], which features its own lines of flight, 'tendencies, becomings, directions of movement' (83). 

Kafka is developing a 'diagrammatic machine' that does not just represent present reality but hints at a new type of reality.  This is a complicated model, says Bogue: every modern social order has been produced by reconfiguring preceding ones, combinations of de and reterritorialization [only grasped backwards, once we know what's happened? And always heading into more control according to the schema of codes etc in AO].  General models, say of bureaucracies, 'serve a pilot role' (84) here, and can point to 'paths of deterritorialization that are simultaneously reterritorialized' [classic example of political vacillation].  Specific forms cannot be determined in advance, and 'better' social orders are equally possible [utopian].  There is, of course, no notion of systematic theorizing of revolution [nor of the forces that might produce one outcome rather than the other] , rather a growing sense of intolerability and analysis that leads to 'an intensification of destabilizing, deforming and decoding forces' [the 'accelerationist' reading].  Kafka thinks we should head towards 'absolute, molecular deterritorialization' (85) rather than pursue conventional critique.  There is no guarantee that positive results will ensue, since desire can be both 'good and bad', an inevitable mixture of revolutionary and bureaucratic elements.  We can only hope that lines of flights will become apparent, even modest or '"trembling"'ones, ideally those that are '"asignifying"'. We can even see the social machine as both transcribing and dismantling itself, with the role of the analyst to accelerate deterritorialization, and thus uncover 'metamorphic tendencies'.  This is what Kafka does with his active dismantling, his experimentation.

It is one thing to develop the machine in order to manage a love affair, and another to engage in political analysis, but D and G 'insist that there is no opposition between life and art in Kafka' (86), no attempt to compensate for life in literature, no ivory tower, no refuge.  There are also 'multiple transverse connections' between the short stories the letters and the novels—becoming-dog appearing in both letters and short stories, bureaucratic apparatuses in the short stories and the novels.  It is not just that life influences art in the conventional sense, rather that Kafka's writing machine is at work in these different areas, within the whole 'extended social machine of which he is a part'.  Kafka is aware that all the activity results from his experiments with '"a literary machine of expression"', that networks connect everything, just as in The Trial [I assume the stuff about expression and minor literature will be discussed in the next chapter].  In this way, writing is a form of social action, interrelated with social practice.  This notion replaces the model of base and superstructure, or material reality versus mental images of it.  Kafka fully participates in social life as he writes, in his own bureaucratic organizations and with revolutionary movements.

While Proust can be seen as operating a functional writing machine, Kafka operates with 'a tripartite machine enmeshed within a world of machines' (87).  The machine operates as in AO, synthesizing and managing flows and the overlaps or permutations, fashioning 'circuits of which they are a part'.  Kafka extends the operation of the machine to connections with private lives and feelings as well, desire, even if this operates discordantly.  The Proustian machine is a multiplicity, an unfinished network linked by transversals, and this is even more apparent in Kafka, openly appearing as a burrow, interconnecting tunnels, a rhizome, 'a decentered proliferation of points, any one of which may be connected to any other' (88).  The letters, short stories and novels are 'the nodes of the crabgrass rhizome, and the diaries "are the rhizome itself"'.  The writing machine is 'a "rhizoming" machine and the rhizome it forms'.  As it develops, it becomes more incomplete, encountering blocks as in the short stories or letters, isolated as an abstract machine as in the penal colony, interminable as in the novels.  The machine only exists to machine, and this activity itself means it 'necessarily creates an open multiplicity'.  The point is to describe the writing machine not interpret it, see how it functions, how it is connected to social machines and to desire.  This is what makes it political. 

There is also the issue of the particular language developed by Kafka...

Chapter four minor literature

[A very clear discussion off Kafka and others, linked this time to the material on linguistics in ATP]

Kafkap is only one writer to offer minor literature, but it is a well worked example.  Deleuze also extended the notion to the theater of Carmelo Bene.  The material on Kafka drawls on Kafka's own diary entries, where he reflects on social factors affecting literature, '"nothing less than an essay on the sociology of literature"', citing Robertson (92).  In the first place, literature can unify national consciousness, and build morale in a hostile environment, through things like specialist journals and literary magazines.  It can also talk about relations between the generations [literally between fathers and sons], and openly discuss national faults.  Such social functions also increases respect for writers and builds demand for their works.  Literature of this kind can act as a diary of a nation, and can stimulate cultural vitality.  Other features include the absence of great literary figures, so that no one is intimidated, or over-influenced, and, similarly untalented hacks who imitate great literature are not so common.  Kafka a claims this means that the canon is not so liable to changes of taste [I think because great works are often judged by their aura and reputation, which can change].  Works of minor literature do not go in and out of fashion, and so persist as a kind of cultural whole.  Defending minority literature also becomes a political project, but the politics are complicated, since there is no coherent political agent—but then no marked separation between the activities of literature and politics either, so that political implications can appear everywhere.  There are also no pressures to turn such literature into mere propaganda.  There's also a link between the personal and the political, partly because personal critique of writers and readers can also inform literary effort [maybe—94], and these serve to make literary discussion absorbing for everyone.  So a healthy and lively conflict is found in minor literature, unregulated by great masters, and 'intimately involved with the life of the people'.  Bogue says this is not just a description of Czech and Jewish literature, but also an ideal literary community to which Kafka wanted to belong.  Deleuze and Guattari particularly emphasize these political implications and public elements.

They also add additional characteristics.  It offers a strong element of deterritorialization, and it also shows the effects of a collective assemblage of enunciation.  The first characteristic is based on Wagenbach's commentary on Kafka and literary Prague, which was peculiarly mixed between German, Czech and Yiddish elements.  The result was partly to adversely affect attempts to renew literary German, and to contaminate German with Czech elements of 'pronunciation, syntax and vocabulary' (95), cropping up as 'nonstandard turns of phrase.  [Like the entry in Wikipedia which I found helpful] there are 'incorrect uses of prepositions…  The misuse of  pronomial verbs and the omission of [pronomial again?] articles' (96), and a general impoverished vocabulary, a gain partly borrowing from Czech usage [the example is where the verb 'to give'is used generally instead of specifics like 'to lay, to set, to put, to remove'].  Other commentators have also notice these curious linguistic characteristics, including excessive use of terms such as 'similes, metaphors, oniric symbols neologisms arabesques, circumlocutions'.  Kafka purified this sort of language and made it far more correct and cold, a purism and a literalism: Deleuze and Guattari see this as a further form of deterritorialization 'through ascetic limitation'.  Kafka himself noticed this in his introductory talk on Yiddish, which he noted was characterized by fluidity, medley, the influence of dialect, although Yiddish could not be translated precisely into German, but had to be understood intuitively, drawing upon powers within the community, 'a field of forces that is less known than intuitively understood' (97). This is a way of 'inhabiting language, and minorities means of appropriating the majorities of tongue and undermining its fixed structures', for D and G, a minor use of language.  It goes together with a minority literary community, and literature which uses it is thus 'the convergence of linguistic experimentation and political action'.  It is this deviant use that makes it minor, not a matter of numbers.

In ATP, we have a notion of language as a means of action, dominated by performatives [encouragement for action], designed to impose order through coding the world.  Language organizes reality 'according to a dominant social order' (98).  One effect is to induce '"incorporeal transformations"'[which might have some connection to Halliday and transformational grammar?], where codification transforms things [by naming them, or connecting them with particular actions].  These in turn imply 'socially sanctioned networks of practices, institutions and material entities'.  These networks can be understood as assemblages, 'collections of heterogeneous actions and entities that somehow function together'.  There are two broad categories of them: 'nondiscursive machinic assemblages of bodies', linked together through actions and passions, connecting at the bodily level; and 'discursive collective assemblages of enunciation', involving acts, statements and transformations, as above, of bodies.  The first produces entities, the second linguistic statements.  Collective assemblages of enunciation indicate the whole context of statements, the conventions of behaviour, and notions of particular social codes and so on, but also nondiscursive practices, like the division of labour.  So they're often intermingled although they can be separable in theory.  In particular, they can be seen as relating to expression [linguistic] and content [machinic], and we have to understand this not in terms of signifers and signifieds of course [but via Hjelmslev –—planes of expression and content are separate, and both can have form and substance: this dethrones the importance of conventional language and of structural linguistics].  There is no overall simple representation, and language acts as an intervention when it expresses and also attributes content [I don't think I had realized this implication before, that language decides on the plane of expression to use and the plane of content to refer to?  I had thought of expression as something far more non linguistic, rooted in the virtual].

Thus it is patterns of action that produce the apparent constants and invariants in language.  There are virtual multiple "lines of continuous variation" which become actualized in assemblages [and then?] in 'specific concrete instances' (99).  The example turns on different pronunciations of words, where the pronunciations form 'a continuum of sounds, a line of continuous variation, which has a virtual existence': the correct pronunciation is determined by the dominant social order.  Similarly, syntax lies on a line of variation, with particular forms depending on 'regular patterns of action', and so does semantics, including what might appear as 'the stable denotative core', with a permitted range of nuances: each speech act or performance actualizes a particular point on a continuum. 

Together, these lines of continuous variation form an abstract machine.  The non discursive patterrns of action are components of it as well.  Together, enunciative and machinic assemblages actualize the abstract machine, and the abstract machine is what provides the connection between them.  Nonactualized possibilities remain immanent within assemblages, and can actually appear as nonstandard actualizations  'that destabilize norms and rules' (100).  This is what the nonstandard bits of Prague German are doing, undermining standard German and, by implication standard 'practices, institutions, entities and states of affairs as well'.  This is why deterritorialized language is a political action for D and G [
classic cultural politics, limited to a politics of culture?].

They think this is what Kafka is doing, making himself a former and is own language, emphasizing the possibilities in his own language to develop a 'minor or intensive usage'.  D and G provide no actual examples, but they do refer to other writers and how they deterritorialize language, including Artaud as above.  Apparently Celine in Guignol's Band [I'm about to read this] provides another example, using various short exclamatory lines.  They also cite ee cummings in ATP, and stammering in Luca's poem about passion [rendered here as ' Passione nez passionem je/je t'ai je t'aime/je je jet jet'ai jetez/je t'aime passionem je t'aime and eventually a 'final sonic block'... JE T'AIME PASSIONMENT --  in Essays apparently].  Beckett also breaks up words into components, sometimes interjecting punctuation marks [also in Essays]

Some critics think that Kafka is far more sober and purist, but he just uses different ways to 'induce disequilibrium, to activate from within the language itself the lines of continuous variation [which are] immanent'(102).  Proust also agrees that writers invent their own foreign language: Deleuze [book on Proust]  says this is pursued 'through sobriety, creative subtraction'.  This is what Kafka does in '"a pitiless rectification...  Schizo politeness, drunkenness from pure water"'.  Its very strangeness comes from this 'hypercorrectness', although the technique is similar to the overloading of individual words in Prague German and its reduction of vocabulary, which 'pushes each word a few steps closer toward an inarticulate extreme, toward a vanishing point at which all sense must be expressed in a single sound'.

Minor languages also offer intensive usages of language.  They develop asignifying techniques which might include using 'words as asignifying bits of sound' (103).  Apparently, Kafka noticed this about the connections between some of the consonants and vowels in his writing.  He also used a free association technique of her name in a letter to Milena.  He does refer to 'strange asignifying sounds' like buzzing or twittering [The Burrow and Metamorphosis], but Bogue thinks that it could be a category mistake to confuse these sounds with their conventional verbal representations [like the standard word 'twittering']. 

However, D and G identify them in Kafka, and use their examples to explain the difference between metaphor and metamorphosis, and 'the relation between sound and sense in the process of "becoming - animal"'.  Apparently, in Kafka, the word is dominant and gives birth to the image.  D and G in investigating this process, argue that any language involves '"the deterritorialization of the mouth, tongue and teeth"'[book on Kafka], which makes sounds, breaking with animal functions and reterritorializing around the interests of making sense.  Making sense both regulates sound to designate words and, in '"figurative sense"'controls images and metaphor as well.  Minor languages can undo this process of reterritorialization, breaking the relation between sound and word, which 'neutralizes sense' (104), and make words into a 'an arbitrary sonic vibration'.  However, something remains from the original sense, which means that this breaking of the relation can become a line of flight [maybe] [the example seems to imply that if we linked together words with a dash, such as human - insect , we would be indicating a line of flight between the two, not a literal nor a figurative meaning.
{Why not a portmanteau word like 'humsect'? 'Cyborg' is a good one. I suppose we are not far off the silly punctuation marks developed by Sellars and Gough? Perhaps none of these could be used in a 'sober' literature?}].  By neutralizing conventional sense, we are left with '"a sequence of intensive states, a scale or a circuit of pure intensities that one can traverse in one direction or another"'[again quoting the book on Kafka] [so conventional sense is replaced by some state of intensity, some emotional or attentional arousal?]

It is the passage [hinted at or alluded to?]  between these two states which is important, and which becomes an intensive continuum, 'in which words and things can no longer be differentiated', and this is becoming [book on Kafka], metamorphosis rather than metaphor.  Metaphor still depends on proper or figurative sense, but indicating a break with sense leaves only 'a distribution of [intensive] states in the range of the word' [the feelings aroused in the reader?].  [Pronunciations and imports?] in minor languages also deterritorialize the conventional link between a sound and an object, so that the word becomes 'an arbitrary sonic vibration'.  Yet the original senses still direct the line of flight [so we get some clue about Gregor based on our conventional understandings of human and insect?], but there is no metaphorical sense to guide us, 'no longer a literal or a figurative sense to the words', rather a sequence of intensive states, produced by the image, the passage, and these are not collapsed into a metaphor, or the objects 'human' or 'insect'.  Again we see this by thinking about sonics, '"language tonalites"' (105), the noises of the special words used by the becoming - animal [again I could only think of onomatapoeic words like 'twittering' or possibly 'howling'].

This does not exactly fit the 'staid and rather lucid narrative' of Metamorphosis, says Bogue, and this forces D and G to see the work not as complete, but as indicating 'a compositional process' that results from constructing metamorphoses.  There is a parallel with the paintings in Bacon, which often start with a representation or image which is then distorted deliberately by the addition of something like 'a nonrational tactile blotch'.  Bacon calls the result the diagram and uses it to develop more directions aimed at metamorphosis or mutation, so that the painting increasingly becomes a matter of 'tendencies, vectors or movements, towards new elements and states of affairs'.  It is possible to see these diagrams in the paintings, and we can see the same 'sonic disturbance' in Kafka, producing the same 'local catastrophe that guides invention'.  The diagram can only be seen in things like the twittering or in the 'ascetic intensity' of the writing.  The same process can be found in The Trial, as the process is unfold and as 'multiple speech- acts' develop.  In particular, the conventional segregation of speech acts into things like industrial or familial is destabilized.  A diagram is formed which shows how phrases such as '"I swear!," "Guilty!"...  "Under arrest!"'suggest passages between these realms (106), and show themselves as composite structures, as when the bank includes a back-stage torture chamber to flog the assistants.  The novel itself emerges from this diagram as different parts are traced, and the machine only appears in particular 'non sequiturs' and again the 'ascetic simplicity of the narrative's language'[presumably this is much more detectable in the original.  The only traces I can find in my English translations are the strange matter of fact way in which extraordinary events are recorded, or the narrator describes his personal relations].

The diagram also shows how word and thing [sound?] can be joined in paradoxes and intensities [I still don't get a bit about intensity—does it mean emotional intensity or does it mean a value on some intensive scale which cannot be precisely measured, as in continuous variation etc?].  They reveal a virtual dimension of immanence in language, showing unrealized 'lines of continuous variation, vectors of intensities'.  The operations occur with matter rather than substance, function not form, on both planes of expression and content.  But the new matter remains unformed semiotically and physically.  Instead there is 'an immanent Function- Matter' and this eventually finds forms of expression and content, but not conventional ones: the new configuration can be a genuine invention.

The relation between expression and content is also challenged in Kafka, seen in the essay on stuttering [Essays].  The point is to make the language itself starter, breaking conventional relations between forms of expression and forms of content, the latter including murmuring, stuttering, the vibrato and reverberation [must go off and reread it]—the example in Kafka seems to offer a reverberation between twittering and the oscillations of Gregor's body.  The cited quote seems to indicate that there is some direct effect produced by these particular words [a kind of physical or affective effect of onomatopeia?].  In great writers, words become affective intensities themselves, and cease to signify in the conventional way.  In Melville and Kafka and this can come from descriptions of particular sounds, echoes, confirmative reverberations between words and physical actions as above.  They can also be some evoked 'atmospheric quality, a milieu' (108), providing a directional force or a mode of transmitting 'affective reverberations'[so intensity does seem to refer to affect here?].  It is down to style and to the greatness of the writer, some 'adequation between the peculiar strangeness of each writer's use of his language and the objects described'[inevitably circular in my view], including the link again between the spare prose and the transformations represented by it in Metamorphosis.  This enables affects to 'communicate with one another, above and through the words'[a personal impact, extended by philosophical analysis, and, through the slippery pronoun, generalized to an authoritative reading?  A fancy French alternative to the favorite game of English critics of hunting the symbol or having a Stendhalian emotional reaction, which only the properly educated can detect, of course?].

There might be a contradiction between seeing Kafka as a great writer, and also as offering minor language, in which there are no great writers, only a collective assemblage of enunciation.  D and G escape by saying that it is not great writers so much that are missing in minor literature, more authoritative writers who establish canons.  It is a matter of whether dominant social codes are dismantled [how much? in what direction?] .  In capitalist coding, individualism and the separation of the personal from the political are crucial elements, reflected in major literatures, or at least offering a milieu for them [we are used to this weaseling around Althusserianism by now], while in minor literature, writing always connects with the political [explicitly or says the critic?]: but a great writer in minor language need not be a fully autonomous individual figure.

All languages presume collective assemblages of enunciation, and non discursive machines, which are coordinated by an overall abstract machine, so, technically, there can be no subjects only collective assemblages.  Language is a social creation, a 'rather unexceptionable observation'(109), and no writer can create 'ex nihilo'.  However writers can accept themselves as depoliticized individuals in conformity with a social order, or not, and rejection involves a different relation to the collective assemblage of enunciation.  It may be that a completely radical alternative collective does not yet exist, so that the people it addresses are yet to be.  Literature therefore assumes the role of producing an active solidarity, expressing a different community, not just describing it but helping to produce it.  This is done by dismantling conventional assemblages and extracting alternatives from the virtual assemblages.  There may be hints of diabolical powers to come or of revolutionary forces.

Inventing something means that its shape cannot be foreseen, because it is at the end of a process of metamorphosis with an unpredictable outcome.  Critical writers therefore can have no guarantees.  In this sense, expression precedes content.  In major literature, it is the other way about since the content is already given,  in coded forms.  Since this provides us already with the notion of good sense, minor writers must 'suspend sense' (110).  One way to do this is to treat words 'as asignifying sounds', and to replace standard images, including metaphors, with passages of intensity which blur the distinction between words and things [still don't get it, although I can think of much better examples like portmanteaux in Carroll.  Does retaining a political function mean that sobriety is essential, and that nonsense must be eschewed even if it is much better at demolishing standard uses for words, or is this specific to Kafka?].  We are breaking with the existing order of things, even if we risk worse alternatives in future [serious dangers of adventurism here]

If is there is no revolutionary community, marginal and solitary writers can become their voice, but not as individual subjects.  An artistic singularity can therefore function for a broader community even one that does not yet exist.  This is common enough to become 'a defining characteristic of [proper] literature' for D and G [there's also a reference back to the notion of the bachelor machine, which I assume is what is meant by  a Célibataire].  Thus a connection between an actual singular celibate and the virtual community comprises the collective assemblage.

[there is a summary of the argument so far, 111-12]

Overall, the notion of minor literature involves all three of: numerically small nations, the literature of oppressed minorities, and the 'modernist avant-garde'.  The categories do not always coincide, as when small groups attempt to create their own canon, new major literatures.  Numerically larger groups can also form linguistic minorities if they deviate from the norm [like women].  Linguistic minorities might have their own ethnic tongue, or speak a particular variant of the common language.  The last group interest D and G most.  The link between such minorities and the avant-garde is rather flimsy, formed only by an interest in experimentation.  The reason for the link here is more to 'invent possibilities for future literary endeavor'[so it is not even political, more like hijacking politics to inspire artistic invention?].  It helps provide modernism with a politics, denying that it concerns itself merely with formalist innovation [this works at the philosophical rather than the real level?  It is a classic justification of cultural politics which will otherwise look completely irrelevant].  D and G apparently supported experimental writing among minorities, and certainly opposed sentimental notions of majorities, but overall 'their aim is to issue a manifesto for new literature' (113).

 Similarly, individual authors like Kafka become [puppets for their ventriloquism], a source of 'provocation' for theorizing.  It is an inevitably selective reading.  It is not a convincing account of Kafka's own experiments and purposes.  But their treatment has revived elements in his writing, especially the critical ones which are implicit; the emphasis on his humor has helped challenge psychoanalytic readings [because he introduces oedipal themes just as 'bait', say D and G]; the machinic analysis helps counter the mystical appropriations of his work.  Their discussion of his style is 'the most confusing aspect of their analysis' (114), and they provide no concrete examples.  They like to include him in categories which include quite different writers, so it seems as if they 'are merely willing Kafka into being the writer they want him to be'.  Yet discussing him shows that 'ascetic, sober use' of language can still produce 'a strangeness' [reminds me of the cliches used to describe Arnold Wekser plays -- an atmosphere of creeping menace etc -- rich material for Pseuds' Corner] .  They also usefully address compositional practice which may not be manifestly present in the actual work [but this leaves room for even more weaseling].  They have addressed the politics of language, and its role in assemblages of enunciation, as in the strange multiple connections between the sites in which the action takes place, and how the different speech acts reveal relations between them.  Bogue likes the examples of becoming animal as extensions of Artaud's cri-souffles experiments.  He also likes the ways in which the overall effect of the style is analyzed as producing a 'an atmospheric medium' in which particular cadences or dictions, forms and contents are rendered 'strange and foreign'[seems to me they need the Freudian concept of the uncanny or unheimlich here].

Chapter five Kleist, Bene, and minor theater

[I have struggled to grasp a lot of this, partly because I cannot get hold of an English translation of Superpositions, which contains the script of Bene's stripped down version of Richard III, or the Horrible Night of a Man of War, and an essay by Deleuze.  Nor have I yet read Kleist's play Penthesilea, although it is in the post, and I have read some of the short stories by Kleist to which Bogue refers.  I recognize some of the references to other work by Deleuze, and went back to my own notes on Dialogues, and the strange remarks on warriors and their becomings in A 1000 Plateaus, especially Plateau 10.  For my own benefit, I have started with quotes from my own notes. As you can see, I am a tiny bit sceptical here and there.

Dialogues first:

Traitors are not tricksters [elaborated quite a lot, page 41].  French literature features lots of tricksters [this is about the superiority of Anglo-American literature] .  Shakespeare’s Richard III, shows treason, however, a becoming [apparently, when he chooses Anne, this displays ‘a woman-becoming’ (42)

[Parnet's summary] Assemblages not words or ideas, concepts or signifiers are the ‘minimum real unit’ (51).  Assemblages produce utterances, which are always collective and which refer to ‘populations multiplicities, territories, becomings, affects, events’ (51).  Proper names do not designate subjects but the relations between terms.  Authors might be subjects in the sense that they enunciate, but writers are not.  Writers invent assemblages ‘starting from assemblages which have invented him, he makes one multiplicity pass into another’[!] (52).  Assemblages are not necessarily homogenous, but cofunctioning, sympathetic or symbiotic.  It is ultimately an interaction of bodies, and their accompanying populations.  We’re not talking necessarily about physical or biological bodies.

The author as enunciator can identify with characters, with the idea they represent, or act as an observer and critic.  None of these create worlds though.  It’s necessary to speak and write with the world or with people, assembling encounters between inner and outer worlds, being in the middle. 

Distance and identification are traps.  It is easy to get contaminated by neurotics who want to reduce to their states, or scholars who try to convince us of their scientific observations.  Instead, we need to struggle to exert sympathy and to write, on behalf of life, to assemble.  This involves extraction of life forces from madness or from addiction.

Then ATP:

The same kind of homology explains the social relations inside clans, like those between warriors and young women (261)  [discussed in more detail later-- the ref is to a French study of ancient Greece] - there is a homology between young women refusing marriage and warriors refusing to fight by disguising themselves as women [not from cowardice, but from tactics, it is later argued. A whole discussion about the priority of becoming-woman ensues! From this!]. ..We can now explain the remark made earlier about warriors disguising themselves as girls - not a shameful matter, but the warrior's tactic to pursue a line of flight by camouflage - 'the warrior arises in the infinity of a line of flight'[literary bullshit again].  Girls who refused to marry are doing the same thing.  Again they do not resemble each other nor are they equivalent.  The bisexuality and homosexuality of military societies is also not imitative or structural, but instead represents 'an essential anomie of the man of war'.  Warriors are also swept up in the general furore of combat and become - animal.  But this is only possible once they have developed as warriors, and this follows the phase of becoming-women above [specious bollox], the contagion spread by the girl becoming-woman is inseparable from becoming-animal in this case, occupying 'a single "block"'.  The contagion works the other way too so that the girl 'becomes warrior by contagion with the animal'.  Everything occupies 'an asymmetrical block of becoming, an instantaneous zigzag' (307), in 'a double war machine'[a massive construction based on very flimsy arguments].]

Superpositions is the only work by Deleuze on drama, and indicates further how literature can develop the project of developing minor language.  Deleuze sees Richard III as above, a man of war and becoming woman, and Bene has a similar treatment.  They met and became friends.  Deleuze had already commented upon Richard III as in the quote from Dialogues above—the bit about being a traitor indicates that Richard is not just out to capture the state but to assemble a war machine, and in this sense, it has a specific object, 'a becoming'.  His relationship with Anne is a similar commitment to his becoming - woman.  Both of these themes are also found in Bene, and may have influenced Deleuze's later treatment in ATP, including the remarks on war machines, and setting up the connection between 'war, betrayal and becoming-woman'(117).  Kleist also offers a discussion of these concepts, and was influential in the discussion of Shakespeare.

 Deleuze got his idea originally from Penthesilia.  ATP argues that notions of war machines against the state appear in all of Kleist's work, developed in terms of anarchic and chaotic tendencies on the one hand, and state regulation and order on the other.  The state has to capture the war machine and domesticate it as a military institution, but this is never stable.  Contradictions between war and state are found in many early IndoEuropean myths.  Warriors have always been suspected of various sins including treason against the social order.  The war machine is not primarily aimed at waging war, rather at constructing and occupying smooth space.  It is an important component of nomadism.  It can be both revolutionary and artistic.  It acts as pure exteriority, deterritorializing and then 'fashioning assemblages that follow and disclose lines of flight'(118): these themes are found in Kleist.

In Penthesilea, according to the critic Carrière, much cited by Deleuze and Guattari, war is a central dynamic.  Kleist was himself a military man, and he certainly writes a lot about 'war, violent struggle or insurrection'[the only example I have read is The Betrothal in Santo Domingo, set in the context of the slaves' revolt against the French in Haiti-- hang on though, The Marquise D'O is also set amidst war].  There is a larger issue, how war infects, disorganizes and deterritorializes, '"the invasion of a multiplicity of bodies by another multiplicity"' (119).  War is an affective encounter [!].  Kleist pursues these affects rather than sentiments, 'non personal atmospheric states that ignore the distinction between exterior and interior, defy rational control and disrupt logical time'.  The forces in conflict are themselves multiplicities involving both 'actual external bodies' and 'internal states of a given individual'.  Kleist makes central a figure involving 'the point of intersection of two infinite lines', two chains of events, where we find both immobility and the traces of frightening speeds [citing
Carrière].  At such immobile points of intersection, a certain grace can be visible: this is explained in terms of a Kleist essay on marionettes, where grace appears from some kind of balance of the mechanical forces of the puppets, something unconscious [something close to muscle memory?], something threatened by reflection and self-consciousness.  [ I have read this very short story -- the stuff about immobile points and lines converging on a point etc are all Kleist. The main spokesperson for all the stuff about grace is a ballet dancer who wants to critique forced, ungraceful ballet moves. The point seems to be to trace a straight line in choreography,and let limbs, human and marionette,  follow the natural shapes they trace in movements -- curves as they follow their moving centres of gravity. Turning all this into a whole philosophy looks a bit forced itself --talked up by Carriere?]. At the immobile points, 'unconscious yet mysterious forces, mechanical yet divine' [divinely beautiful and natural, darling?] (120) are released.  The same might be said of an affect, a combination of 'forces colliding at maximum acceleration and the motionless, catatonic seizure', often depicted in the characters falling into trances or walking in their sleep [can't say I've noticed this particularly] .  Affects and immobile points of this kind represent a break in rational consciousness and in chronological time, and in this 'moment of a temporal disequilibrium, no sense of self exists'[not dissimilar to Lyng's  'approaching the edge' in terms of undertaking perilous adventure?].

War can produce a climate of affects like this, and Penthesilia illustrates this.  [Description of the plot ensues. As the Amazons appear on the battlefield, their queen, Penthesilia, sets out to attract Achilles and this releases the instability of Amazonian practices involving the capturing of men and their subsequent encouragement to mate.  Carriere sees the play as describing the movement from one affect to another, with Penthesilia experiencing the immobility of affective shock when she first meets Achilles, followed by a response to seeing him being attacked.  Achilles correspondingly falls in love even at considerable risk.  Desire grows between them.  Achilles pursues the lady instead of fighting with Agamemnon, and Penthesilia also betrays the correct procedure for capturing men.  Together they produce a war machine, and it all ends in tears: as Achilles pursues becoming - woman, Penthesilia is pursuing becoming - animal, joining in a pack with her hunting docs to attack Achilles.  In each case, 'affects are junctures of transformation, moments of metamorphosis' (123) and are very risky, as when desire turns into destruction.  I'll add some personal comments after I have read it].

For D and G, we have an analysis of war and its relation to the war machine, its opposition to the state, a force of metamorphosis that disrupts social stability.  This is why warriors are traitors.  War itself offers a process of becoming-other to human subjects, 'between the binary poles of stable oppositions'.  The general process is becoming - other, which can take more specific forms.  This process  'operates through affective intensities, apersonal, nonrational junctures of force. at once immobile and speeding out of control' (124).  New stable subjects are not formed.  We realize that stable forms are only appearances, produced themselves by a particular '"conjunction of lines on a plane of immanence"'[quoting ATP].  Affects can appear as exterior states, stripped from human subjects where they take the form of sentiments, and once released can achieve considerable force and speed, so that 'love or hatred are no longer sentiments but affects', and these provide 'instances' of becomings.  Affects traverse the body.  The forces produced are always dangerous, but can be constructive.  Kleist speculates that the state ultimately will triumph, so that these dangerously creative forces will either be domesticated as the military organ, or become internal and suicidal.

Turning to Richard III, it is clear that Richard is also a man of war, prepared to commit treason against social order, and ready to pursue anything that undermines that order, hence his open pleasure in destruction.  The uncontrolled forces end in his destruction.  He is becoming - other, specifically becoming - woman, and we can see this in the courtship of Lady Anne.  Critics have often noted that it is an improbable encounter, but this precisely indicates becoming other with its rejection of expectations and good taste.  Anne begins by hating him yet ends by accepting him.  Physical deformity plays a major part, and Bogue thinks this gives him grace at a point of immobility, just as with Kleist and the puppets.  Again, Richard choosing a particular woman is a clear sign of becoming woman, just as with Achilles choosing Penthesilia [he ignores reasons of state and chooses the lady on the basis of a new appreciation of womanly characteristics, or is this too literal?]: 'not an imitation of the feminine but an engagement with graceful, affective forces of metamorphosis' (126). 

Bene apparently addresses the same questions as the key reading of the play.  [Biography ensues, 126-7].  He seems to have 'severely truncated' the script, although he adds stage directions to produce new actions and various 'strange goings-on'.  This involves stripping out many of the actors, adding two female characters, and seeming to focus on physical deformities [lots more details 128] in a 'sequence of vignettes'.  The added actions seem to turn on death and deformity, and lots of women undressing and dressing again.  Richard delivers the lines in a stammering manner and often falls to the ground.  He pulls out various prosthetic limbs and attaches them to his own body, which apparently arouses Lady Anne and himself.  Bene says the whole focus is on difference and the feminine, the impossibility of the unique, and 'the obscene' of the feminine in history [more below].  The point of theatre for him is to 'create a fact and liquidate an anecdote' (130), and he wants to present facts somehow directly and brutally to avoid the mediation of conventional narratives.  He is against interpretation just as is Deleuze, and in favor of immediacy, the non discursive and non representable.  Discourse and representations only put ideas outside us so that we do not live them.  The conventional notion of the individual subject needs to be criticized as 'imbecilic'(131), because it does not recognize difference: unconscious difference is the basis of the unique.  Bene even cites Deleuze on repetition as difference without concept.  His project is to liquidate anecdotes and preserve immediacy, disrupting conventional narratives in the form of 'an " eternal undramatization as undoing"', fully recognizing the impasse for the theatre that is involved.  Wherever communication exists it is corrupt and rapidly becomes 'a circulation of clichés, received ideas and tired values'[there seems to be an obvious notion of challenging the audience to break with convention, no doubt with liberating intentions, and therefore subject to the usual critiques by Ranciere]. Richard becomes radically other, 'a deformed monster', stumbling literally and physically over the immediate, deliberately deforming his body further and further, but, eventually achieving a 'genuine grace' after a break with nature. 

Back to the obscene, defined as '"the excess of desire...  continual transgression"' (132).  There are links with Bataille and Sade.  Work is the main distraction from eroticism or [excess] luxury and this is the curse of the human tradition, dehumanizing workers.  Hence his slogan [sounds a bit like a lyric from Niggaz With Attitude—'"Kill.  Massacre.  Plunder.  Steal.  Give play to your life...  Never take a job"'.  The erotic challenges all fixed social orders and relations.  Living luxuriously is also living tragically, risking suicide, but also taking part in social transformation [in culture alone, that is]: he cites as evidence a cultural revolution after the election of some communists to his local community. Richard's progressive deformation is also a form of excess, a disruption of norms, and, as he relates to Anne, he develops 'an erotic politics of self mutation, in which desire and decoding are one' (133)[ a body-without-limbs!] All the byplay with prosthetics and the undressing women shows the connection 'between deformation and desire', and there are hints of excess in the construction of the 'artificial body'.  Lady Anne become debauched and there is violence as well as eroticism.  There are also utopian moments of unity, representing the good side of difference, in action not thought [serious category mistake here in that the 'spontaneous' and 'immediate' action on the stage is of course a result of considered reflection and thought on the part of the director.] 

The stuff about history terms on a complex relation between the obscene and history.  On the one hand, immediate utopian revolution can be antihistorical.  History is also governed by comforting narratives so that anti history breaks those and rational time in the immediate.  At the same time, history is depicted in the play, [in terms of a kind of career for Richard].  However, politics somehow stands outside of history since it is driven by desire, it is obscene.  Richard defies normal history in his tactical pursuits of his political fortunes, but in the end becomes excessively autonomous, outside history and 'disconnected from desire and the other'[becomes to believe in himself as supreme?].  It is different when he stands outside history for a moment with Lady Anne.  At the end, it is all 'self referential and delusional'(135).  He has escaped from history too far, into a 'delirium and isolation'.  Overall then, lived history involves 'concrete political action' and is not a coherent narrative but is 'obscene, excessive, non rational'[illustrated with more scenes from the play, 136].

Overall, Bogue thinks that the utopian function of the theater is being displayed.  There is a constant slippage between the characters and the actors and their relations [including the characters as actors].  Self understanding is apparent when characters reveal themselves as actors [reads like poor man's Goffman.  And hasn't Brecht done all this?].  They can then explain to the audience [who won't know anything about all this, the poor deluded plebs] .  The byplay with the prosthetics can be seen as showing the audience that Richard is a constructed unnatural body, as are kings generally.  Such displays also liberate on stage 'a body of desire'.  Bene is trying to show that theater is actually impossible, that the immediate cannot be presented.  The point is to make performance create the event, with the characters acting and the actors discovering, liberating the excess of desire.  Bene adds some words to the script to make this clear.  What develops is a kind of comment on characters going on at the same time [as in the role distance of the professional?] , and the presentation of difference 'the disproportionate, the chaotic, the dissimilar' (137), something that is both ' hyperpolitical' and 'metapolitical'.  The theater presents an artificial space like a utopian island, but also 'an intensification of the world' where erotic politics can be shown to develop.

Deleuze is interested in Bene as 'a theater of subtraction'[and he likes subtraction as a philosophical and artistic technique].  Bene also constructs additional characters, in a dual process.  This notion of fabrication and constitution is at the heart of Bene's critical experimentation.  If we subtract first, we can see what emerges and what new constructions can be formed.  In Richard III, we subtract all the royal accoutrements leaving us with the monster, the man of war.  There is also a sign of the crucial relation to women, which affects Richard, as in his serial deformation, on a '"line of continuous variation"'(138).  We see this war machine opposing the state, and it is all the conventional elements of power that are subtracted.  Again, this can be seen as 'a minor usage of major structures', involving setting becomings against history, and active lives against culture.  There are specific themes arising from theater as well, involving the issue of representation on the stage.  Critiquing conventional representation is again a critique of power.  The conventions also have to be subtracted, including any residual structures in the text or in language, even dialogue, because this '" transmits to speech [parole] the elements of power, and makes them circulate: it's your turn to speak, in such-and-such codified conditions"'[quoting Superpositions, 139].  What is left is new '"light, sounds and gestures"', in which everything can be grasped anew.

[Then some examples of what Bene actually does to subtract—Bogue says that the new direction of different actions provides an alternative structure, and that dialog is interrupted 'through various performance practices - stammerings, screams and whispers;...  electronic distortion of their voices; overlapping deliveries of exchanges; blockings, postures and actions that contradict the texts implicit interlocutionary relationships'(140) [sounds like a Godard film—Pravda for example].  Dialogue is replaced by a 'kind of music of interactions'.  Discussing subtraction of the text, Deleuze means that performance practice dominates over written script, precisely to subvert the notion of a faithful representation of an original: Bene gives the performance 'relative autonomy'.  He also adds comments, directions and observations, which are more than just stage directions, to create his own text, treating Shakespeare as just 'a "simple material for variation"'.  The directions are nontextual, yet they help to express '" the scale of variables through which the statement passes, as in a musical score"', producing operational writing, like a score, 'neither literary nor theatrical'(141).  Apparently, Bene also produced written accounts of these operators, producing a further level of relative autonomy for the writing.

There are links with the discussion of minor language in Kafka.  There is the same argument that the apparent constants and invariants of language 'are actually power relations that a minor usage sets in continuous variation'.  However, in Superpositions, we see that far more is involved than the manipulation of words.  Performance of language becomes crucial.  The stuttering poem by Luca shows that we should ideally listen to the poem, or attend a public reading by Luca himself.  There are other examples of how context varies the meaning of semantic units [hardly revolutionary—pretty banal in fact].  So the same statements of disgust screamed by a woman rejecting a man, or child shrinking from something ugly are 'different speech act[s]', and each can be seen as an 'actualization of a virtual line of continuous variation'.  Some actualizations will obviously be minor usages: Bene shows the line of variation and the effects of different modes of delivery, including variations in tone or accent or posture.  Conventionally, all these are seen as para or extra linguistic elements, but they're all important components of a minor style, and they have their own internal affects on other components—the strange whispers or moans interfere in other movements, as in Richard and stumbling.

Bene shows that there is no point in distinguishing between variation of gestures and variation of words.  They produce a single continuum, especially as the performance proceeds in a way that makes this visible to the spectators, '"the Idea become visible, sensible, the political become erotic"'[Superpositions again, 143].  The excess of desire disrupts codes [the audience gets turned on enough to forget the need to repress them?].  We see in the variation of all the components, 'a generalized becoming', similar to that produced in music: indeed, Bene insists that the actors are singing in his work, oscillating between speech and singing.  Similarly, the images provided are musical in this sense, a composite construction which 'is that of speeds and intensities'.  Components become 'metamorphosing movements'. 

This metamorphosis finds a parallel in Richard's deformities.  Deleuze cites a 14th century scholastic [!] referring to the geometry of speeds and the distribution of intensities, or affects, where diverse forms are developed in contrast to a single form, the smooth progression of uniform qualities.  The work comes over into modern notions of deformation as an undoing, and transformation as a creative function of the new sequence of metamorphosis: of the 14th century term difformation includes both.

Overall, Deleuze has connected a critique of power with a critique of representation, the difformation of theatrical procedures and elements with a critique of language itself, and an emphasis on its performance.  Linguistics becomes 'a subset of pragmatics' (145), and contexts of action are crucial for understanding the meaning of words.  This is why he 'seems vague when discussing the narrowly linguistic characteristics of a minor style'.  Style involves the continuous variation 'of all the elements of language', and minor usages in particular emphasize performance or enactment.  This is illustrated particularly well by Bene's theater which makes all the processes explicit.

[Bogue goes on to discuss whether this is a valid reading of Bene, 145--9].  Deleuze obviously sees the play through a lens [sic] provided by his notion of a man of war.  That in turn is based on Kleist.  War is not stressed so much in Bene's play, but Bene is making clear his 'basic compatibility'(146) with Deleuze, even though they use different languages.  Nevertheless, Deleuze's is 'only a partial reading', focused particularly on a first part only, and one critic has suggested that he has misread the basic tragedy in Richard's self mutilation as a result.  He also thinks that the power of the theater to unsettle power relations is only ever temporary, despite Deleuze's optimism.  Bogue defends Deleuze a bit, page 147, noting that Deleuze has warned us that intensities may become dangerous, and black holes develop from lines of flight and all that.  Bene's agreement on the temporary affects of radical theater was apparently designed to rebuke self congratulatory avant garde posturing, and he rehearses the phrase about how his theater is for a people that is necessarily lacking, given the huge reproductive power of the social order.  Classically, he, like Deleuze, argues that 'the only solution is to invent a new people' [highly reminiscent of Hitler], by critiquing the codes of power, a part of his acknowledgment of the impossibility of the theater, which must be attempted nevertheless.  But Deleuze says the point is to produce a potentiality not represent an actual conflict.

The work on Bene brings together Deleuze's work on war machines and Kleist with minor languages and Kafka.  Bene also articulates the relation between language and the non linguistic world.  More of such articulations ensue in the next chapter.

Chapter six life, lines, visions, auditions

Essays argues that the issue is the relation between literature and life, the outside.  That literature which does not connect in such a way as to 'further the activities of life' (151) is unhealthy.  Writing has to invent a new language within existing language, and produce a process [machine?] to move from conventional to unconventional.  This also reconnects literature to the outside world, including to non linguistic elements [which will include the visions and auditions as above].

In Dialogues, Deleuze talks of the superiority of Anglo American literature in terms of its ability to trace a line of flight.  He is influenced by DH Lawrence on American literature [which includes a piece on Whitman].  Melville, for example, wanted to escape, to cross into another life, and this is also a theme in Whitman, with the notion of the open road.  The point is to engage sympathy with other beings, where sympathy involves emotions like both love and hate.  Deleuze sees this as a matter of 'becoming and the line of flight' (153), including contact with the nonhuman life.  The line of flight is like the open road, offering a purified notion of self and an open connection of sympathy, 'a general affectivity' [in the usual sense of affect this time?].

Deleuze talks about writing as fleeing, betraying, becoming, tracing lines of flight.  Here, and line of flight is a line that converges on the vanishing point on the horizon.  Melville literally crosses horizons in sea stories, for example.  Flight involves delirium, 'exactly to go off the track' (154), following an uncharted course, leaving behind conventional sense and preexisting codes.  This explains why it always includes treason.  Lines of flights makes something flee, or leak, misdirecting or derailing something.  Betrayal of this kind is difficult but it is the essence of creativity.

That which makes something flee is a creative deformation, a becoming, something which 'passes between two terms such that both are modified' (154).  It is not a matter of exchanging terms, since becoming is continual, tending towards 'becoming-imperceptible'.  What is left is a series of 'mere vectors, directions, movements...  Flows'.  Writing means to become a flow conjoining with other flows, to become minoritarian.  Conjoining flows means making assemblages, 'collections of heterogeneous elements', acting through '" sympathy, symbiosis"'(155) [so sympathy is not sentimental identification].  Assemblages arise in the middle, on a line of encounter between an interior and an exterior world, and writing involves opening this encounter: as the writer becomes imperceptible, effaces their identity, so the outside becomes [more perceptible?].  There are similar processes when writers connects personal lives to their literary works.  So, '"the goal of writing is to carry life to the state of a non personal power"'.  Writers realize that life is not something personal [all this from Dialogues, second chapter].  A general deterritorialization ensues, which undoes codes and conventional expressions and contents, producing '"a zigzag, broken line of flight"'.  Lines are abstracted from persons 'and all other stable entities' writing engages these abstract lines, just as does painting or music [but with fewer possibilities, as we shall see]

To write is to be delirious, to become, to form assemblages and to deterritorialize.  The line of flight is the crucial element.  Lines are explored further in the [much neglected] plateau eight of ATP on the novella.  After discussing three novellas, [more detail 157f]  D and G finally get to classifying lines, arguing that we are all made of lines, and that lines of writing include [these other] lines between them.  A line of flight tends to the horizon as above, but it frequently goes off the track to break the routines of daily life, which are other source of lines [segmented or at best supple].  Lines can be seen as flows 'traversing the body without organs like a network of gradients' (156). Collective assemblages are organized patterns of lines, and they have within them immanent lines of variation, beyond actualized forms and shapes.  They act like melodic lines or refrains [another much neglected term in ATP -- see Plateau 11].  All individuals have lines of various kinds, such as '"geodesics, tropics, zones"', which operate with different rhythms. 

So lines are always dynamic, vectors or trajectories, some regular and predictable, others erratic or zigzagging.  The dynamic bits are 'always between points, in the middle'(157).  They are abstract in the sense of tracing the 'surges, flows and wakes' of stable things.  They connect components of assemblages, including machines [to revert to the vocabulary of AO]

[Bogue's summary of Plateau 8 stresses the secret and the discovery, which has the effect that 'the present and future are experienced as already past'[since the issue then is to ask what happened].  The secret acts as '"an unknowable or an imperceptible"' (158).  The lines of the novella are specific, and this emerges through the examples.  The heroine in James lives a [molar] life of segmentarity, but then encounters a line of supple segmentation at the molecular level, having discovered a secret, which encourages her to try new forms of relationship.  She even experiences a line of flight when all her past obscurities and securities are transformed.  In Scott Fitzgerald, the crack up is produced by molecular lines that break routines and dissolve old certainties, and the line of flight appears with the possibility of a clean break with the past, 'a qualitative rupture' (160), although there's a danger in following that line of flight since it leads to 'radical selfishness and the promise of minimal social respectability'.  In Fleutiaux, again 'molar contours' are disrupted, and only when a storm disrupts the system, can the narrator find a possible liberation.  Bogue summarizes again the three lines, and suggests that the hard segmentarity belongs to the molar which can be disrupted by 'molecular perturbations', so that we can then ask what happened.  The form of the secret then emerges.  A line of flight often opens momentarily, sometimes as 'an instant of harsh light beyond interpretation' (161), but this is often recaptured. The three novellas also tell us about the links between life and the work.  The three lines are seen as 'each immanent within the others and equally present across the domains of the personal, social, and political' (162).  There is an obvious preference for the line of flight, which can be seen as primary: it is certainly the line of creation, to be engaged by writers].

We can see from Dialogues that minor literature shows how all literature should properly function, building on these universal lines.  In the work on Kafka, minor literature is seen as political and collective, but in Essays, [from which the remaining discussion follows] the main theme is on becoming, the invention of the people to come, and stuttering.  Deleuze also talks about visions and auditions, as 'a fourth aspect of literature' (163), and this is relatively new and late.  Language when it breaks with convention also implies a certain seeing and hearing, and this appears as a limit for linguistic communication, a surface between language and the outside, to use earlier terms.  Sounds and visions are expressed in language but 'are themselves non linguistic', rendered in language, but somehow behind it, hence Beckett trying to bore holes in language to see or  hear what lay behind it [more below].  Good literature deconstructs the mother tongue, invents a new language within language, and also creates visions and auditions '" which no longer belong to any language"'(164).  Linguistic experimentation eventually leads the discovery of and outside of language. 

Auditions and visions are actual Ideas, that writers see and hear a '" in the gaps of language"' (164).  We have already discussed sonic deformations in Kafka.  Linguistic stuttering as in Luca occurs when affects and intensities 'impinge on phonemic and syntactical elements' { still citing Essays ch. 1].  Forms of expression may be left intact, if the form of content somehow gathers up the disturbances required, and goes back to affect the words [examples are not very clear here—a reverberating silence and particular noises in Melville's Pierre, or the old example about twittering being 'confirmed' through bodily tremors in Metamorphosis, the suspense—a kind of pregnant silence?—in the boudoir for Masoch].  These can strain language [because they cannot be conventionally represented?], and reach the limit of language, even if they are eventually represented conventionally [for example through onomatapoeia?]: at the limits, literature reveals its links with painting and music, but using words.

It is 'more helpful' (166) to examine visions, as in Deleuze on TE Lawrence [essay on Seven Pillars...]  Apparently, Deleuze begins by 'paralleling' Goethe on colors as in effect shadows of light, a thickening that acts as an affect on human eyes to produce the visible.  This notion of an initial blinding pure light, leading to indistinct halos of black and whites, and then to the 'colors and contours of distinct figures'can be found in Lawrence on the desert, in his descriptions of landscapes which follow the same kind of progression, as in 'the genesis of seeing, the stages of emergence of the visible' (167).  It is also the Idea which is being made visible like this, and invisible force expanding into different 'fundamental visibilities' [must be a metaphor here, surely?].  Ideas take shape, following movements, as entities: they are not transcendent, but have real material existence including political consequences.  The Idea behind the Arab revolt is also light, spreading out into space, opening space, conveyed by preaching, capable of deeply affecting the Arabs in their nomadic movements. 

Lawrence, like other great writers, is able to '"shape aesthetic percepts as veritable visions"'.  Their descriptions of actual landscapes include 'a visionary landscape'[Stap me!  Modern geographers would be delighted with this].  This is usually seen as a subjective element, at work within the author.  We can see in Lawrence in his projection of his self image and that of his Arab comrades as well.  All the great figures of history do this.  It is a component of the '"fabulatory function"'(168), and necessary to inventing a people to come.  Some reservations about subjectivity ensue, since this force is political, erotic and artistic [or in the collective sense, 'non personal and the extent that they are successfully projected, autonomous'(169).

Abstract ideas can become material entities, as in Lawrence again.  Such entities '"pass into the desert"'as a kind of doubling of the images, thus possessing a visionary dimension.  However, once realized, these entities can react back on Lawrence's style [weird stuff about its granularity, its archaisms—can't say I ever noticed].  Abstract ideas become emotions or affects, potential powers, and they come to people the desert, presenting obstacles to their representation [maybe].  Lawrence's particular style shows the general possibilities.  All the historical and tangible objects described in Lawrence have these inner visions projected onto them.  This results in lending entities an affective force, and this eventually disturbs language, although they can take on a force in their own right [I am of course vulgarising the lovely words of Bogue and Deleuze—hey, it's what I do].

These visions have a subjective disposition but are not subjective, not belonging to discrete selves, not just phantasies but Ideas.  They are always collective.  They derive from the real and have a real life of their own.  The mechanisms are explained in the essay on Little Hans, which 'elaborates on the distinction between subject - centered psychoanalytic phantasies and impersonal, asubjective visions' (170).  [Good summary follows].  Freud reduces all the elements to the castration complex, but for Deleuze desire is invested in the world in the form of '"qualities, substances, powers [puissances] and events"' (171).  We can draw a map of Hans' milieu, all the different places and objects like buildings or animals, and then trace his projected movements, 'actual, anticipated, dreamed, imagined, dreaded', to get to the 'affective circuits of his world', as a 'map of desire'.  The journies that are involved combine, as above, the personal qualities and powers with those of the milieu.  We could then construct a second map of intensities, 'or movements in "intension"'.  These maps show different densities which fill spaces and underpin ['"subtend"' -- stretch beneath] trajectories.  This also charts affects, like the lists of affects of the horses.  'A map of intensities plots a distribution of affects...  powers of affecting and being affected—that is, becomings'.  The affects of horses are particularly powerful, and thus Hans is attempting a becoming - horse,, especially with the significance of the trajectory from the house to the warehouse, but all these intensive becomings are detectable beneath the extensive trajectories. Again it is necessary to stress that we're not talking about links between the real and the imaginary, external objects and internal psychological states.  The two maps 'are inseparable' (172): voyages require an element of the imaginary, and actual voyages are involved in becoming.  There is a single trajectory '" with two faces"'. 

Deleuze also uses the notion of the crystal to show the relation between the virtual and the real, the process of actualization.  [Bogue says this is the conventional terminology that underpins the stuff about visions].  There can be crystals of the unconscious.  We also know from the work on cinema that there can be 'cinematic time images in which the virtual and the actual are seen simultaneously in the same image'.  We can also see the same figure in the work on Proust, where present moments coexist with bits of the virtual past.  In the cinema, the crystal proliferates virtual images, 'just as Bergson's virtual past extends from every present moment into the entire field of the past'.  The crystal both shows the double nature of an object, as actual and virtual, and shows how they coalesce in a single image.

Normal consciousness fails to notice the virtual moment, as do a normal perceptions of landscapes.  The virtual has to be extracted and then put back into relation with the actual, in a process whereby the two are used to inform the other term [my gloss.  I see this as a process rather like abduction, a circling between virtual and actual].  Once we are aware of such crystals of the unconscious, we can see '"trajectories of the libido"' (173).  Deleuze's actual example is the [brief] discussion of an artistic project [in the same essay on Hans], were a group of artists talk and existing path around lake Geneva and 'intervened' in it, to convert it into a work of art and make it signify something, make us aware of what a path is.  In one example, glacial erratics were exposed to make geological lines of force visible: these were then put in some sort of poetic relation with other features.  We then see the combination of different flows of force [reminds me of the definition of the haecceity].  We can take this as typical of any artwork intertwining real and virtual paths, but the intention is not to produce a formal structure, rather 'a double map of extensive trajectories and intensive becomings'.  This is how we should understand that particular artistic project, as a libidinal map [talk up by critic].  Apparently, 'we must assume' this, and how it connects with the artist's other activities. 

Back to Lawrence, and his journeys which are clearly affective and erotic [in that they include suppressed homosexual urges and secret sexual satisfactions between the Arabs, but also they seem driven by the personal likings for Arab leaders more than by official by British tactics].  The personnel combine in various combinations of qualities and substances: we can see 'a becoming-Arab of Lawrence' (175), and lots of other becomings as well, including becoming - camel and becoming - imperceptible.  The actual journeys are paths revealing lines of metamorphosing force that have been actualized.  The landscapes become images, revealing virtual landscapes 'immanent within each landscape'.  Individuals become 'loci of non personal, non individuated forces'.  Landscape crystals are formed, as a timeless image, 'both extracted from the actual landscape and detached from any personal, psychological world'.

The projection of such images 'is the process of artistic creation'.  Seven Pillars is not just a diary or documentary [as TE says himself]  but a specific configuration of journeys and becomings.  This configuration is extracted from the real and projected back into it, producing something which is  dependent on the work itself, but which exceeds the words.  We can see the affect of various invisible forces which become visible, just as with the images of painters.  The landscape images 'communicate with the fabulative images of a people-to-come' (176).

So [and this is getting seriously complex], sights and sounds exist 'above words, between them', as a kind of content of words.  They are Ideas, here seen as abstractions, in the sense above in the discussion of Lawrence, emotions and affects, invisible material forces.  These are produced by 'the "passage of life within words"'.  Literature can demonstrate becomings, of people for example, of literary characters which become, transcending all their individual traits [the example is Ahab and Moby Dick].  However, these are always collective, never a private affair.  They are produced by delirium, pushing language to the limit when it becomes threatened by silence.

The last essay is on Beckett and his technique of linguistic stuttering.  He adds interjections to interrupt the surface of words, break them open [and one example quoted by Deleuze is "folly seeing all this—/this—/what is the word—/this this—/this this here..."] (177) [note that here, the dots and dashes are 'traits' in French].  There's also a series of short one or two word sentences: " less best.  No.  Naught best.  Best worse.  No..." The ideas to argue that Beckett attempts to use these non linguistic means to show the limits of conventional language, by creating visual and sonic images and through 'the exhaustion of space'.

Beckett was increasingly unhappy with using words, especially official English.  He wanted to bore holes in conventional language to see what lurks behind it.  He wants literature to catch up with some of the practices developed in music and painting, which are able to disrupt the surfaces of sounds with silence.  The point is to reveal the meaning of the pauses between the words and phrases.  In Rembrandt and in Beethoven, there is a technique of 'dehiscing' [I had to look it up, it means the spilling out of something when a container is pierced] which exposes something "behind the pictorial {representational?} pretext" [quoting Beckett this time], an efflorescence.  (178).  Apparently, in Rembrandt 'pictorial figures and objects separate from one another'  drawing attention to the empty space between them.  This empty space is seen as an a 'entire expanse beneath the surface of the painting, the background depths from which the painting arises', just as silence is the depth from which music arises.  This is a nonrepresentational, non linguistic depth, but it should not be seen as merely a nothing: it is a positive void, '"silence in itself"'[quoting Deleuze this time, 179], 'the virtual, the plenum of forces on the plane of consistency'.

However, it is more difficult to tear apart the surface of language, since words have so many connotations and significations.  It is difficult to break away from clichés, as Deleuze puts it in the work on Francis Bacon and to reveal the underlying '" fact"'.  Painters and composers can undo narratives to create pure images, working from specific cases [the example is depicting the death of a particular young girl in such a way as to represent "the indefinite [a young girl dies] as pure intensity that pierces the surface".  It is much more difficult with words which are stuck with the general or the particular.

Beckett tries at least in the television plays, to exhaust the possible, by offering all possible combinations, for example, of movements of characters costumes, lighting and other effects [a great example in Essays, rendered as a diagram of a Beckett play, rather like the diagram of movements in his Film, see Negotiations, another abandonment of naturalism and the sensori-motor schema].  Four actors 'traverse all possible paths connecting the four corners of the square' etc (180).  They are 'stripped of all preference, or purpose and all signification such that they form a closed set of terms whose permutations are finite'.  We are meant to infer that this is the same with language, so that exhausting the possible can undo language, 'dissolving the glue of calculations, significations, intentions, personal memories and old habits that cement words together'.

Beckett constructs metalanguages to undo ordinary language [ again quite unlike English notions of creativity].  In the first kind, '"the relations between objects are identical to those between words"' [quoting Essays], so that "combinatory relations replace syntactical relations", referring only to nouns, appearing as isolated words.  At the second level, another metalanguage refers to voices, 'linguistic corpuscles'(181), with the intention to break the flows and waves of narration pursued by the 'din of incessant voices'.  However, a paradox appears because if we speak of these voices, we run the risk of reinstating them, hence the need for a third level of metalanguage referring to '"immanent limits that are ceaselessly displaced, hiatuses, holes or rips"', referring to something outside language, which, for Deleuze, is a "Image, visual or sonerous"'[I assume here that 'image' is used in the Bergson sense, something between illusion and reality,  a bit like a phenomenom, something constructed in memory by duration].  This is a pure image, something singular, not personal or rational, something disconnected from normal language and conventional representations, something that exists to preserve some tension that will '"loosen the grasp of words"', something independent from logical memory.  Such images have high levels of energy, but tend to 'dissipate' by 'capturing' the possible [something like exposing inexhaustible possibilities briefly before recoiling from the task?: after all, ordinary language only works by restricting possibilities? ].

In this third language, we see not only images but an 'any - space - whatever' [asw -- a big concept in the cinema books] (182), and this can take the form of an abstract geometrical square or circle, an indefinite space in the play, and in this space, possibilities of movement can be exhausted, and also a 'visual and sonic images may arise, explosive events tearing apart the surface of words and dissipating into the background expanse beneath'[even Bogue has to resort to incantatory language here].  More concretely, Deleuze rephrases the 'four means of exhausting the possible' in Beckett as: (1) forming an exhaustive series of things; (2) drying up flows of voices; (3) '"extenuating the potentiality of space", while (4) "dissipating the power [puissance] of the image" [conventional images that is, not the pure image?].  The first two appear in dramas and radio plays, but the last two 'come to the fore in the television plays'.  [Quad, movements inside a square, is the example, and is described a bit more on 182—one interesting bit is where 'a closeup of the actor's face in the mirror above the pallet' becomes 'a floating decontextualised smile of an indefinite yet determinate visage-image' {pure bullshit I fear} while 'incessantly repeated sound images from Beethoven' fade away]. 

In another example […  but the clouds…], there is another asw, this time a circular area.  A voice describes a man's repeated movement from point to point and also discusses 'the pure image that appears on the screen from time to time, a closeup of a woman's face "reduced as far as possible to eyes and mouth"', citing Beckett].  Another play [Nacht und Traume] has a dreamer in a dark empty room while his dreaming self appears above the dreamer, and a voice humming Schubert before finally singing the leid of the same name.  So Beckett dispenses with words entirely, reduces them to song lyrics, or places them in an [abstracted, decontextualized] asw.  These sonic and visual images represent the outside of language, and Beckett offers as 'a kind of pedagogy of visions and auditions, the dramatization of the complex and elusive relationship of images to words'[and is therefore open to the classic critique of pedagogic theater in Ranciere]: words appear if at all as sonic components, related to images in different ways.  The ideas to suggest 'at least for a moment, that words and images emanate one from another, words producing images, images summoning up words'.  (183) [more detail from the plays 183-4, accompanied with more luvvie commentary, alas]. 

So Beckett 'works by subtraction, by paring away the significations of words, the stories of voices, the individualizing features of space, the universal or particular aspects of images' (184).  Sometimes words do not even appear.  This 'ascetic' practice leads not to nothingness but to purification, such as 'the creation through elimination of a pure [asw]'.  Impersonality 'makes possible the production of asubjective, anorganic, asignifying intensities' (185).  Asceticism produces intensities, as in the example of getting drunk on water, '"becoming - sober for a richer and richer life"', subtracting 'subjective and conventional associations', leaving the real, with representations like words or voices becoming a 'part of a single intensive plane of consistency'. [Seems to  oppose 'delirium' though?]

Non linguistic visual and sonic images are made possible through language, and act as a membrane between language and its outside.  Images are produced by convergences of forces 'that explode and dissipate as they appear'.  They can act as crystals of the unconscious, combining the virtual and the actual in a way that doubles yet divides, a form of coalescence [a bit vague here compared to earlier discussions, I thought: the power of the crystal image is that it shows a state where the potential to crystallize—immanence—is combined simultaneously with an actual crystal, is what I got from the above].  Although these images are autonomous, 'they only come into existence through artistic creation', following extraction from the actual, and given an 'internal coherence' by the art work itself, its [autonomous] becomings.  These extend 'through the artist and into the world he or she inhabits'. We can map the becomings of an artwork and it will reveal 'an affective miieu, made up of qualities, substances, powers and events'.  Sometimes these lines will be molar and segmented, sometimes as something more molecular [Bogue doesn't seem to like the term 'supple'], but ultimately a line of flight 'opening toward an Outside'.

In 'commonsense terms'[sic] Deleuze is noticing that sonic and aural images can sometimes take on a 'solidity, vividness and autonomy' (186), as if they had been produced by words as contents.  This could be a simple illusion, given 'the complex relationship between language and sense experience', which are not completely harmonious.  But Deleuze insists that these are real objects, 'on the mutual surface between words and things'.  Commonsense distinctions, like those between inside and outside or subject and object must be abandoned, and therefore so must commonsense explanations [apologetic, but a cop out nevertheless?].  We can simply reassert Deleuze's argument that 'visions and auditions render visible and audible the invisible and inaudible circuits of forces that are immanent within the real'.  We can describe the circuits only in terms of velocity and affect, trajectory and becoming, and Bogue suggests that they form a 'plane of consistency'.  If so [and to reject this possibility would mean we have to tear up Deleuze altogether?], on this plane, a sound or sight could not be differentiated from a word: 'here, there are only lines'.  Artists of all kinds experiment with these lines and attempt to find different ways to manifest them in actual constructions of vision, hearing and words.  However, writers are more limited than the others and can only 'make sensible the limits of language'.


Writers work within a 'broad domain of practices and power relations' (187) which clearly affects language.  The sort of writers Deleuze likes generate lines of flight as well.  Any constants in language result from structures of power.  At the virtual level, there are 'immanent lines of continuous variation' which can be activated.  Writing involves developing 'a regime of signs...  a discursive, collective assemblage of enunciation and a non discursive assemblage of social technological machines', the two operating so that assemblages of enunciation produce 'incorporeal transformations of things through speech-actions'.  Literary works function rather than signify, acting as machines.

Deleuze admires the writers who 'experiment on the real' (188) which involves a critique of power relations.  Kafka, for example, offers a literary machine connected to larger social and material machines so that 'no firm distinction exists between [the] work and world'.  It is constructed like a burrow or open network connecting heterogeneous spaces.  These connections are never finished.  By contrast, Proust's machine 'has a kind of unity', although it contains many transversals.  The 'unity - effect' is an extra part 'like a seed crystal', which can produce a 'cascade of crystallizations'.  The whole  that is inferred is a chaosmos, 'a chaos-become-cosmos that issues from a dynamic, self differentiating difference'.  Proust goes through an apprenticeship in signs, leading Deleuze to discuss both interpretation and artistic creation.  The sign itself is 'dynamic self differentiating difference', 'like a fertilized ovum'.  The process of division is unfolding or explication of this dynamic difference, since actualizations are folded differences.  In this way, signs, when explicated or interpreted, reveal the primary difference.  The cosmos of signs so produced 'is like a city, which may be viewed from many perspectives'.

Interpreting signs starts from a disequilibrium, the hidden difference produced by the hieroglyph, which hints at 'a world beyond itself'(189), like the world of Combray implied in the madeleine.  But this is the essence of Combray, not the actual past, and this essence is 'self differentiating difference'[I think this is so by working backwards from Proust who says that we must think of a thing, then a very different thing, and then see what it is that relates them].  This discovery 'initiates a process of creation'[which seems to come close to social constructions of reality].  This is why interpretation and production of signs can be linked.  After some experiment, Marcel realizes that producing artistic signs is the only way to grasp the essence.  There is no simple 'subject of expression of the self or a simple objective recording of reality'.  Instead, the perspective develops is 'an apersonal view'[ideologists have always claimed that their particular views are in fact universal ones: the stronger argument is that a view must be apersonal because it is produced by a machine?  But then ideologists could claim that their views are produced not by their personal selves but by a machine?].  The reality disclosed by the view has, 'in another sense' been created by the view.  Writers are always engaging the actual world, but also creating a world, 'or rather they are cocreating with the world' (190).

[This takes a particular form] in Nietzsche, who is diagnosing the symptoms of disease and health in civilization, but also evaluating or critiquing it.  And all [proper] writers do this, as in the cases discussed.  However, conventional language also needs to be critiqued, hence Proust's view that great works are written in a foreign language, or in Deleuzian terms, that language is made to stutter, or adopt a minor usage.  This involves experimentation with sounds, syntax and semantics, and includes non linguistic elements.  Performance becomes important as language becomes a form of action.  Again, each unit can be seen as 'an actualization of a virtual continuum', and actualizations take place in the context of convention and power.  [Because it represents all of these elements], the theater 'may be seen as the paradigmatic form of literary creation'[Bogue's particular contribution?].

Deleuze admires writers who attempt to push language beyond itself.  Carroll on the surface between words and things which can produce 'paradoxes of the incorporeal event'; Artaud on the lacerations of the surface, and 'sonic blocks ecstatically melding with the body without organs' (191), like the cris-souffles, or animal howls.  Celine, Luca and Beckett [and ee cummings] are also admired for breaking language with exclamations [Celine], making 'amalgamations of incompatible syntactic structures' [cummings -- see examples], stuttering [Luca], or 'obsessive repetitions, accretions, deletions and permutations [Beckett].  Even more conventional writers produce 'an atmospheric strangeness' through which can pass 'auditions, hallucinatory sonic elements at the edge of language', or visions in the case of TE Lawrence.  These lie below language, and Deleuze insists they are real.

'From first to last, literature for Deleuze is a matter of health'.  Great writers both criticize and create.  They create lines of flight and minor usages [what of their critique though?  How good is it, compared to say Marxism?].  Literature can become sick when '"words no longer open onto anything, one neither hears nor sees anything through them"' (192).  Healthy literature 'carries words from one end of the universe to the other', follows zigzag paths, and reveals or invents 'an anorganic life'[as in literary machine rather than in the sentimental identification with forces in the universe of contemporary anti humanism?].  'Writing is a becoming - other', opening up 'forces of variation' within language and 'lines of flight without'.  [And here is one for Gale and Wyatt: 'To write is to be delirious, to leave the track, to betray, to become, to conjoin flows, to form assemblages, to deterritorialize...  More than anything...  To trace a line of flight and thereby engage the line of an an organic life, a line-between toward health as new possibilities for living'

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