alterity, being, difference, expression, harmonics, history, language, memory, post-modern, radiation, science, time, transcendence, writing

The Thought of Language

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The human being is in the most literal sense a political animal, not merely a gregarious animal, but an animal which can individuate itself only in the midst of society.

(Karl Marx, from the introduction to Grundrisse)

Between being and language there is an interval, a purified difference articulated through individuation, a difference in time or development: language is in such a way that it always is yet to be as a being. Language becomes through the production of alteration or mutation: we can and cannot formulate the sense or direction of writing — it is always in a process of developing into an exotic, immaterial, and “purified” being — or even into a different kind than “being.”

Through a coincidence of non-identicals, language plunges into becoming in order to reverse its temporal structure: pure language is tachyonic, a signal reversed in time, whose being unfolds in waves, inverting the radiation of light and noise, subverting distribution of space, producing an unusual, internal co-resonance which unfetters time (alterity) itself.

Language is radiation, interference; thus linguistics is a kind of harmonics: a science of language without phonetics, a science of noise and parasitic diagrams, which would already in some sense be reducible to a violently “purified” mathematics (the “post-modern” is but footnotes to Aristotle, a fervently anti-idealistic “clarification” of ontology.)

The analysis of linguistic structures unconsciously proceeds in (genea)logical fashion: yet should we not also seek language in its positive or generative aspect (which correlates with a larger sense of language as expressivity, productive recording,) that is also to produce new languages of pure forms, and also to invent mathematical and scientific languages; and between and underneath both to produce instructions for pure machines?

The difference between being and language is produced through the process of language itself — that is, it is expressed in expression, this difference is what is produced in production, it is the expressivity innate or inherent within all production.

All generation is linguistic, all genealogy is rhizomatic. There is “truth” in the signifier as such only to the degree writing itself is degraded, misunderstood, improperly measured or approximated. Linguistics is already dangerously fragmented; we do not even know any longer either the way to language or where writing is going (and this impossibility or incredulity of knowing is perhaps what rescues us, what “redeems” genesis from the brink of madness) — nor indeed, if writing is already gone.

Perhaps historians will someday place an arbitrary mark somewhere in the dense folds of the 21st century, saying: “Look, this is where writing becomes something else, where the signifier failed and something new therefore had to be produced.”

Or re-invented…– Writing experiences degeneration and salvation more intensely than human beings, it is a more intense activity to revive language than to “simply” attempt a direct revival of the being or essence of humanity (whether singularly or as a multiplicity or even as something else entirely) — yet in practice these different impulses, which are by nature so profoundly divergent, cannot be distinguished.

Writing precedes speech as both a degeneration and transcendence, as the possibility of science, perhaps more profoundly as memory itself: a science of language which is not a writing, a non-serial or “first” writing which comes (“chronologically”) last.

Language is analyzing and recreating itself, despite our conservatism.

The patterns of intensity only amplify through time; radically divergent investigations more and more often intertwine. Time is inter-linked, history is alive.

Memory and the future, science and the humanities: twins, embryonically interwoven, yet as divergent, as radically other to one another as extraterrestrials to ourselves. Degeneration and transcendence: a science of language without being a writing, a first science which imposes upon philosophy a new challenge.

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