Thursday, January 28, 2010

Concept: Event

The primary purpose of Part One of the blog is to develop a poetics or recipe for the construction of a "concept," as defined by D&G. We are not yet introducing our own concept, but creating a set of instructions for how to compose one, to be acted upon in Part Two. The formula for a concept includes the following components.

1. Concept
The "concept" slot in the template assigns a name to the concept (eg. Descartes' "cogito"). Our Theory calls for a stand (attitude towards thought) that replaces all subject/object orientations towards thinking. D&G name their replacement for the subject stand "event." We need to design a thought form that thinks from the position of "event," rather than from the position of subject. Event thinks in and through me. It is a collective dimension of thinking. "Event" is not the name of the concept we are constructing, but a description of the slot that any concept constructed according to their specifications must address.

D&G are proposing a thought adequate to the il y a, or es gibt, it rains -- phrases philosophers have used to characterize thought as reception (I don't speak language; language speaks me).


  1. Can you please elaborate on how the event is “a collective dimension of thinking?” Also, how is it that thinking from the position of event vs. from the position of subject moves us into the apparatus of electracy? Can we think of event as being “verbal” (i.e. a verb), so that we move from focus on the subject (of a sentence as well as subjectivity --> identity formation) to a focus on the verb/event, i.e. on what’s happening, on what something *does* (its position in a relational, dynamic network of causes/effects) vs. what something *is* (ontology, literate categorization)? And if I’m thinking along the right lines here, then how is this focus on the event a kind of image-categorization?

  2. This description or claim is derived from the inventory of "concept" features found in the Theory source (What is Philosophy?). "Concept" includes three registers: concept proper; conceptual persona to perform the thought (vital anecdote); problem field (plane of immanence, image of thought). Concept proper (the actual term, such as "routine" in our case) is positioned by D&G in a post-Cartesian order, within which thinking is not as subject but collective, with "event" replacing "subject" as the site of thought. "Routine" is designed (will have been constructed) to support thought from this collective stand of event, which itself is extracted from "what happens." This sort of thing is what makes Theory so entertaining!