“If there is any essence of left-accelerationism, it is the call to rigorously discriminate between the emancipatory potential of social and industrial technologies that have emerged within capitalism from the oppressive potentials that will inevitably be actualised should we fail to stop them. If technosocial acceleration means dystopia, then this is because we let it, and we have the option not to.”
“In an interesting and favorable notice of Changing Planes (which you can find elsewhere on the site, in Spanish and English), the Argentinean reviewer asserts that since Le Guin isn’t a hard science fiction writer, “technology is carefully avoided.” I stuck a footnote onto this in my translation of the article, and here is the footnote expanded — because this business is really getting my goat.
‘Hard’ sf is all about technology, and ‘soft’ sf doesn’t have any technology, right? And my books don’t have technology in them, because I am only interested in psychology and emotions and squashy stuff like that, right?
Not right. How can genuine science fiction of any kind lack technological content? Even if its principal interest isn’t in engineering or how machines work — if like most of mine, it’s more interested in how minds, societies, and cultures work — still, how can anybody make a story about a future or an alien culture without describing, implicitly or explicitly, its technology?
Nobody can. I can’t imagine why they’d want to.
Its technology is how a society copes with physical reality: how people get and keep and cook food, how they clothe themselves, what their power sources are (animal? human? water? wind? electricity? other?) what they build with and what they build, their medicine – and so on and on. Perhaps very ethereal people aren’t interested in these mundane, bodily matters, but I’m fascinated by them, and I think most of my readers are too.
Technology is the active human interface with the material world.
But the word is consistently misused to mean only the enormously complex and specialised technologies of the past few decades, supported by massive exploitation both of natural and human resources.
This is not an acceptable use of the word. “Technology” and “hi tech” are not synonymous, and a technology that isn’t “hi,” isn’t necessarily “low” in any meaningful sense.
We have been so desensitized by a hundred and fifty years of ceaselessly expanding technical prowess that we think nothing less complex and showy than a computer or a jet bomber deserves to be called “technology ” at all. As if linen were the same thing as flax — as if paper, ink, wheels, knives, clocks, chairs, aspirin pills, were natural objects, born with us like our teeth and fingers — as if steel saucepans with copper bottoms and fleece vests spun from recycled glass grew on trees, and we just picked them when they were ripe…
One way to illustrate that most technologies are, in fact, pretty “hi,” is to ask yourself of any manmade object, Do I know how to make one?
Anybody who ever lighted a fire without matches has probably gained some proper respect for “low” or “primitive” or “simple” technologies; anybody who ever lighted a fire with matches should have the wits to respect that notable hi-tech invention.
I don’t know how to build and power a refrigerator, or program a computer, but I don’t know how to make a fishhook or a pair of shoes, either. I could learn. We all can learn. That’s the neat thing about technologies. They’re what we can learn to do.
And all science fiction is, in one way or another, technological. Even when it’s written by people who don’t know what the word means.
All the same, I agree with my reviewer that I don’t write hard science fiction. Maybe I write easy science fiction. Or maybe the hard stuff’s inside, hidden — like bones, as opposed to an exoskeleton….”
“I have a metaphor . . . which I have never published but kept for myself. I call it thinking without a bannister. In German, Denken ohne Gelander. That is, as you go up and down the stairs you can always hold onto the bannister so that you don’t fall down. But we have lost this bannister . . . [In totalitarianism] those who were still very firmly convinced of the so-called old values were the first to be ready to change their old values for a new set of values, provided they were given one. And I am afraid of this, because I think that the moment you give anybody a new set of values–or this famous ” bannister”-you can immediately exchange it. And the only thing the guy gets used to is having a “bannister”.”
Hannah Arendt en “Hannah Arendt on Hannah Arendt”
Para Deleuze y Guattari, el concepto de diagrama remite a la forma estable, aunque siempre tensa, en que se componen y descomponen un conjunto de fuerzas. La noción de panóptico de Foucault, por ejemplo, es diagramática: describe de manera sintética la manera en que se vinculan los cuerpos en la sociedad disciplinaria. El concepto de diagrama es interesante porque consigue este grado de abstracción (en un sentido positivo), supone que hay un afuera que el diagrama nunca logra agotar y permite también ver cuáles son las “líneas de fuga” o los puntos en que ese diagrama parece desbordarse o estar a punto de volverse otra cosa. En ese sentido, el arte y la filosofía que les interesa a Deleuze y Guattari tiene un pensamiento diagramático: busca dilucidar qué lógicas están articulando las fuerzas de lo vivo (como en la noción de Panóptico de Foucault), pero al mismo tiempo busca observar en qué puntos se puede huir de esa lógica o hacer que varíe o quizá se transforme. Eso es lo que Deleuze ve en los diagramas de la pintura de Francis Bacon, donde las representaciones figurativas se vuelven una pincelada que ya no figura nada pero que muestra las condiciones de posibilidad de la figuración y los caminos para huir de ella. En síntesis, el pensamiento diagramático, para Deleuze y Guattari, busca describir la lógica que articula las relaciones de fuerza existentes (como lo hace la noción de panóptico de Foucault), sin agotarlas; y al mismo tiempo explora los caminos de fuga.
“Si pudiera fumarme el miedo, me haría un toque con ese cabrón,
y luego le daría dos buenos jalones… ya me puso, ya se armó”.
“It was always me vs the world
Until I found it’s me vs me.
Hail Mary and marijuana, times is hard.
Pray with the hooligans, shadows all in the dark.
Fellowship with demons and relatives, I’m a star.
Life is one funny mothafucka,
a true comedian, you gotta love him, you gotta trust him,
I might be buggin’. Infomercials and no sleep,
introverted by my thoughts; children, listen, it gets deep”
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