Malign Velocities: Accelerationism and Capitalism

Malign Velocities: Accelerationism and Capitalism

Benjamin Noys

Language: English

Pages: 130

ISBN: 1782793003

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


We are told our lives are too fast, subject to the accelerating demand that we innovate more, work more, enjoy more, produce more, and consume more. That’s one familiar story. Another, stranger, story is told here: of those who think we haven’t gone fast enough. Instead of rejecting the increasing tempo of capitalist production they argue that we should embrace and accelerate it. Rejecting this conclusion, /Malign Velocities/ tracks this 'accelerationism' as the symptom of the misery and pain of labour under capitalism. Retracing a series of historical moments of accelerationism - the Italian Futurism; communist accelerationism after the Russian Revolution; the 'cyberpunk phuturism' of the ’90s and ’00s; the unconscious fantasies of our integration with machines; the apocalyptic accelerationism of the post-2008 moment of crisis; and the terminal moment of negative accelerationism - suggests the pleasures and pains of speed signal the need to disengage, negate, and develop a new politics that truly challenges the supposed pleasures of speed.

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technology to communist ends. Second, the machine will be used as a substitute for living labor, but not in the capitalist form which leads to unemployment or the misery of working for the machine. The bonding of living labor and dead labor means dead labor does not replace living labor, but rather they can coordinate and work together. The machine can be used to free-up people to engage in one of Marx’s few positive views of a communist society: while in communist society, … , society

The inner parts of the machine consisted of electric batteries. For Tausk the machine is both a projection of the genitalia and the patient’s body. As the projection gets stronger becomes more like a machine and less like a body to protect her from recognising herself in the machine. The machine is operated by love objects, as a result of the transfer of libido. In fact in this situation some of our close love objects are also persecuted, which is because we do not distinguish them from

of the schizo-machine that exceeds the normalized body and normalized ego enforced by psychoanalysts like Freud and Tausk. Against the wholeness and integration preached by psychoanalysis, which they see as the true paranoid fantasy, they try to free up these frozen projections into zones of exchange and interaction. The task of schizoanalysis is not to force the patient to recognize a false projection and return it to the self, but to embrace the possibilities of fragmentation and dispersion

rational process. Today the world-spirit is not a person, for Hegel Napoleon, but a self-steering device. In contemporary terms, we might say the world-spirit is the drone. In some enigmatic passages of Speed and Politics (1978) Paul Virilio turns to the metaphysics of metempsychosis – the transmigration of souls – to suggest the tension of the loading of the soul on to various metabolic vehicles. Virilio argues that the soul is ‘plural, multiform, fluidiform, coagulated here and there in

p.110. 10.  Joseph Conrad, Lord Jim [1900], Project Gutenberg: http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/5658 11.  Karl Marx, The Poverty of Philosophy [1847], Marxists Internet Archive (2009): http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/download/pdf/Poverty-Philosophy.pdf 12.  Karl Marx, ‘Preface’ to ‘A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy’ [1859], Marxists Internet Archive (1999): http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1859/critiquepol-economy/preface.htm 13.  Karl Marx, ‘The Future

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