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Tag Archives: Dysphoria

Anodyne More Light: The Material Heaviness of Depression

It seems this Dysphoria thing has stimulated all kinds of reaction. One of the more interesting is Anodyne Lite’s firm bio-genetic rejection that depressive feelings can be a “good thing” or harvested in a powerful way, here. The image I have is of a black hole whose time/space properties, if you get too close, will drag you into certain event horizon. And in a sense, material limits, the gravity of the chain of being is just like that, a great density that eventually (and Spinoza would tell you, always) collapses your will into a definite trajectory. In the comments section it seems that we are talking passed each other, but the point I want to bring about here is that while our brain chemistry and material grounds definitely ARE us, we all have to learn how to surf what we are (and surf what others are), and the primary way that we do this is through the reading of intentional behavior. And intentional behavior (including our own) is read through an appeal to our beliefs, desires and wants, our reasons for action. One only reduces these mental predicates to causes at the risk of losing a valuable resource for telling us about the world. And yes, depression, like schizophrenia, can be a deep, debilitating disease, a strong distortive mirroring of the world such that it seems that the mirror is not quite a mirror any more, but this does not mean that the wealth of what is felt passes away into mute material. It rather represents, perhaps, the outer edge of our societal chaoplexic folding. For those though that see the state of the world as fundamentally dysphoric, be they political agendists, or medical depressives, one senses that there are more important things to do with that state than preach revolution. As Deleuze tells us, we start in the middle, not at the beginning.

True Revolutionary Spirit and “the System”

Thinking on Anodyne Lite’s post on Radical Break revolution (and its attendant hatred for the dread neoliberalism), materialism, privilege and revolution, the following occurs.

For those who hadn’t seen it, Samberg’s satirical take on white positioning against “the System” is absolutely hilarious. But more than this it really captures for me some of the self-contradiction found in even the most academic anti-Capitalist pleas for a “radical break” from the perceived wholeness of Capitalist closure. As I’ve mentioned many times, these fairly wealthy (on world standard), usually older white professors/authors are essentially text machines producing books for largely white, affluent youths, all of which are “part of the system”. Zizek and Badiou of course prime examples.

Pristine is when Samberg choruses “I’m an adult!” We glimpse the kind of Dysphoric pleasures involved in standing up against the “System”. This is not to mention the complex ironies involved in white person’s rapping with ghetto force, and the grammatical games involved in whether or not one’s Dad is a phone. Important humor.