[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[xmca] Anthony Wilden: A thought

AT the bottom of the following passage, from Anthony Wilden's *System and
Structure*, is a quotation
from Marx that we have been thinking about here recently. The passage is
from an Essay on Montaigne on the paradoxes of individualism. I find a lot
of the ideas in the book and the essay interesting. But in what is below I
found myself reading the
paragraph that precedes the Marx and was caught by his observation, which I
encountered at just the right time, about the digital
being viewed as a means of exploitation, not in the service of social

Today, of course, we see the digital in relationship to the social quite
differently, but still, here we are concerned with the
issue of reduction to the digital and the liquidity of modern capitalism.

The Marx has special resonance with us because we feel just exactly the
melting of binaries in our community learning
activities. The going back and forth is mind expanding.


The only avenue of metacommunication that can escape the oscillations
of the individualistic ethic on which the paradoxical injunction depends in
our present pathological context, is that of the collective praxis of human
kind: the reduction of the digital to its natural function as an instrument
relationship, where now it is an exploitative device. For whereas there is
possibility - and no necessity - of overcoming our relation to Otherness,
and no need for a metalanguage which will disprove Godel, there will
eventually have to be devised a way of overcoming our present enslavement
to the Imaginary Other. This enslavement depends on a value-system
based on the maintenance of exploitative oppositions and identities. If our
species is to survive, humankind must find a way of reintroducing the
mediating function of difference and similarity into the social ecosystem.
As the young Marx put it (1844: 162):

It is only in a social context that subjectivism and objectivism,
ism and materialism, activity and passivity cease to be antinomies, and
thus cease to exist as such antinomies. The resolution of the THEORETICAL
contradictions is possible ONLY through practical means, only through the
PRACTICAL energy of man.

(Caps in original wilden, do not know about original marx.)
xmca mailing list