Thoughts From the Bell Jar

I like thinking about this sentiment, both the original and the one about how we remember things being important:

Doesn’t Deleuze somewhere say that “there’s nothing more distressing than ideas that slip away half-formed and unarticulated”? That’s how I remember the quote; and the way we remember things is often what’s most important…

It reminds me of that feeling one has- well, I have it anyway- being close to remembering something, but it is like a shadow, and focusing on it doesn’t help it become fully formed, and sometimes one isn’t even sure what one is trying to remember… but it holds us in an unsettling way sometimes…  Since I didn’t remember the original sentiment quite like this, that made me need to hunt it down. “Nothing is more distressing than a thought that escapes itself, than ideas that fly off, that disappear hardly formed, already eroded by forgetfulness or precipitated into others that we no longer master…” (What is Philosophy, 201) but my brain linked it tightly to this following idea, “This is the instant of which we do not know whether it is too long or too short for time.” (ibid)
It is freeing, the way in which thoughts can free us from ourselves, just by being forgetful.

Larval Subjects .

the_bell_jar_by_kimded-d3cf4xqSo I haven’t been writing much lately.  Have I been busy?  Always, but not as busy as I should be.  Have I been sick of dealing with people online?  Sure.  We’re a pretty wretched, awful species, especially in a cool medium such as this.  Have I been in the “bell jar”?  Maybe a little.  My hope is that I’m like a fallow field.  I’m sure y’all learned about it in your highschool history classes.  Rotate the crops on a three year cycle and allow certain fields to lie fallow so that they might replenish their nutrients.  It was one of the great revolutions of the middle ages, as I recall.  Well, when I grow dry– and so much of my sense of self-value is tied up with whether or not I’m writing so I find the blank page deeply traumatic –I like to think that maybe I’m just fallow, that…

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this is where i might start gushing

cosmic thing

I think at one point, I was going to post this photo in relation to Deleuze’s articulation of time, via Leibniz (to some degree); the way in which he discusses the syntheses of time in the Cinema books; as well as the excellent cartoon of the converging narratives at the site of the ‘event’ in the Three Novellas in D & G’s ATP. At the time I was reading Difference and Repetition and was equally captured by his articulation of the third synthesis as potential, the virtual contained within the current state, regardless of its visible characteristic.

But now, having finally (FINALLY) finished D & R, I feel uncertain how Deleuze truly feels about Leibniz’s conception of the event/time. It seemed that he was not quite, but almost, dismissing the account of convergence upon one event, as it seemed to locate all focus upon the one element, which has the effect of effacing the pure difference that Deleuze is trying to hold onto. I think ultimately, for myself, focusing on the event directs the lines to one location still seems helpful, but within that recognition of the singular site/event, it is important to remember that it is but one point among countless others; and within the event, each person has their own horizon/positionality (ideological, physical, emotional) that they bring to bear on that understanding. I guess it still is reduced to representation, but it still seems like a fruitful way of conceptualizing an exterior event in relation to ourselves and our place in the world.

Of course, ultimately, I do not recall, what, precisely, made me thinking of Damian Ortega’s Cosmic Thing in relation to Deleuze. What I do know, I was entirely captivated by something D had written, which made me think of this piece. I could likely retrace the connections, but I think I’ll just throw this unfinished thought out into the world and keep moving.

inspired after the meeting with Becoming Poor 2.0, where we are currently looking at Anti-Oedipus… I’ve been reading Difference and Repetition for the first time while reviewing AO, and it’s hard to not see aspects of D/R in AO, and I find myself wanting to talk about both texts during the group… So I thought it would be helpful for myself and the group to write out the resonances. I’m sure this has likely been done somewhere, but nothing beats doing it for yourself.

Becoming Poor

Since I spent a lot of time on Friday attempting to get language and my brain to collaborate, I decided to work through the discussion of Deleuze’s syntheses of time in Difference and Repetition in relation to the syntheses of D & G’s Anti-Oedipus. Some of this is my own thoughts, some comes from paraphrasing James Williams’s text…  It’s also a rough articulation, so if something seems wrong- please correct me


1st: Living present. Defined by expectancy through habit; contraction

The past is synthesized or contracted in the present as a behavior towards the future. There is an inherent linear projection of time with this synthesis. Past experience informs the present condition, so that a future may provide an expectation of what is to come. Fundamentally, or teleologically.

An active consideration of a thing presupposes the passive synthesis. Williams uses the chair as example, where he states “syntheses can…

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