A Thousand Plateaus, definitions, Deleuze, difference, Difference and Repetition, French Translation, intensity, Logic of Sense, nomadic distribution, ontology, pre-individual, singularities, Theory / Philosophy, transcendental field, univocity, Untranslated Theory, Zourabichvili

Translation: Two Entries from Francois Zourabichvili’s book on Deleuze’s Vocabulary: Univocity and Pre-Individual Singularities

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The following are two entries from Francois Zourabichvili’s book La vocabulaire de Deleuze. Paris: Ellipses, 2003. Original Translation by Taylor Adkins 11/03/07.

Pre-individual Singularities

* We cannot accept the alternative which thoroughly compromises psychology, cosmology, and theology: either singularities already comprised in individuals and persons, or the undifferentiated abyss. Only when the world, teeming with anonymous and nomadic, impersonal and pre-individual singularities, opens up, do we tread at last on the field of the transcendental (LS 103).

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Bachelard, Barthélémy, becoming, bergson, communication, complexity, French Translation, individuation, ontogenesis, ontology, philosophy of science, physiology, Simondon, singularities, Teildhard de Chardin, transindividual, Untranslated Theory

Translation: Jean-Hugues Barthélémy on Simondon, Bergson and Teilhard de Chardin

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The following is the first half of chapter 1 from Jean-Hugues Barthélémy’s book Penser l’individuation: Simondon et la philosophie de la nature. Paris: L’Harmattan, 2005. p. 37-48. Original translation by Taylor Adkins on 10/22/07.

Chapter 1

The concept of object and the concept of subject, in the same virtue of their origin, are limits that philosophical thought must overcome. –Gilbert Simondon

1. Ontology and ontogenesis: from Bergson to Simondon

The philosophically fundamental watchword of all Simondian thought undoubtedly resides in the idea according to: the process of individuation cannot be ob-jectified by knowledge, since the former is produced by the latter if the knowledge of individuation is itself the individuation of knowledge. This is why the principal introduction of his thesis ends with these lines:

We cannot, in the usual sense of the term, know the individuation; we can only individuate, individuate ourselves, and individuate in ourselves; this seizure is thus, in the margin of knowledge properly stated, an analogy between two operations, which is a certain mode of communication. The individuation of the real exterior to the subject is seized by the subject thanks to the analogical individuation of knowledge in the subject; but it is through the individuation of knowledge and not by knowledge alone that the individuation of (non-subject) beings is seized. Beings can be known by the knowledge of the subject, but the individuation of beings can be seized only by the individuation of the knowledge of the subject.[1]

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abstract machine, assemblage, autopoeisis, becoming, being, change, communication, complexity, differentiation, Disparation, formalization, French Translation, individuation, information, materiality, metastability, model, modularity, morphogenesis, morphology, ontogenesis, ontology, philosophy of science, production, self-actualization, Simondon, singularities, structure, system, technology, Untranslated Theory

Translation: Simondon, Completion of Section I, Chapter 1, The Individual and Its Physico-Biological Genesis

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In the first place, singularities-events correspond to heterogeneous series which are organized into a system which is neither stable nor unstable, but rather ‘metastable,’ endowed with a potential energy wherein the differences between series are distributed. (Potential energy is the energy of the pure event, whereas forms of actualization correspond to the realization of the event). In the second place, singularities posses a process of auto-unification, always mobile and displaced to the extent that a paradoxical element traverses the series and makes them resonate, enveloping the corresponding singular points in a single aleatory point and all the emissions, all dice throws, in a single cast. In the third place, singularities or potentials haunt the surface. Everything happens at the surface in a crystal which develops only on the edges. Undoubtedly, an organism is not developed in the same manner. An organism does not cease to contract in an interior space and to expand in an exterior space–to assimilate and to externalize. But membranes are no less important, for they carry potentials and regenerate polarities. They place internal and external spaces into contact without regard to distance. The internal and external, depth and height, have biological value only through this topological surface of contact. Thus, even biologically, it is necessary to understand that ‘the deepest is the skin.’ The skin has as its disposal a vital and properly superficial potential energy. And just as events do not occupy the surface but rather frequent it, superficial energy is not localized at the surface, but is rather bound to its formation. Gilbert Simondon has expressed this very well: the living lives at the limit of itself, on its limit… The characteristic polarity of life is at the level of the membrane; it is here that life exists in an essential manner, as an aspect of a dynamic topology which itself maintains the metastability by which it exists… The entire content of internal space is topologically in contact with the content of external space at the limits of the living; there is, in fact, no distance in topology; the entire mass of living matter contained in the internal space is actively present to the external world at the limit of the living… To belong to interiority does not mean only to ‘be inside,’ but to be on the ‘in-side’ of the limit… At the level of the polarized membrane, internal past and external future face one another. [Gilles Deleuze, Logic of Sense. Trans. Mark Lester with Charles Stivale. New York: Columbia, 1990. p. 103-104.]

Gilbert Simondon, L’individu et sa genese physico-biologique (Paris: P.U.F., 1964), pp. 260-264. This entire book, it seems to us, has special importance, since it p Continue reading

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Deleuze, Difference and Repetition, Disparation, individuation, information, philosophy of science, potentiality, pre-individual milieu, Ruyer, Simondon, singularities, Transduction

Paper Proposal: Information, Disparation, Transformation: Simondon, Ruyer, Deleuze and the Affective Pre-Individual Field of Singularities

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Paper Proposal : Philosophy of Science

Information, Disparation and Affectivity: the Pre-Individual Field of Singularities in Simondon, Ruyer and Deleuze

On the importance of disparate series and their internal resonance in the constitution of systems, see Gilbert Simondon, L’individu et sa genese physico-biologique, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1964, p. 20. (However, Simondon maintains as a condition the requirement of resemblance between series, or the smallness of the differences in play: pp. 254-7). [Gilles Deleuze. Difference and Repetition. Trans. Paul Patton. New York: Columbia, 1994. fn. 25, p. 318.]

On depth, stereoscopic images and the ‘solution of the antinomies,’ see Raymond Ruyer, ‘Le relief axiologique et le sentiment de la profondeur,’ Revue de metaphysique et de morale, July 1956. On the primacy of ‘disparateness’ in relation to opposition, see Gilbert Simondon’s critique of Lewin’s ‘hodological space’ in L’individu et sa genese physico-biologique, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1964, pp. 232-4. [Gilles Deleuze, Difference and Repetition. Trans. Paul Patton. New York: Columbia, 1994. fn. 12, p. 330.]

Raymond Ruyer, La genese des formes vivantes, Paris: Flammarion, 1958. pp. 91 ff.: “The mystery of differenciation cannot be elucidated by making it the effect of differences in situation produced by equal divisions…”. Ruyer, no less than Bergson, profoundly analysed the notions of the virtual and actualisation. His entire biological philosophy rests upon them along with the idea of the ‘thematic.’ See Elements de psycho-biologie, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1946, ch. 4. [Gilles Deleuze, Difference and Repetition. Trans. Paul Patton. New York: Columbia, 1994. fn. 28, p. 328.]

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becoming, being, biology, equilibrium, flux, individuation, metastability, ontogenesis, ontology, Simondon, singularities

A Sketch of Gilbert Simondon

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Simondon, Gilbert. “The Genesis of the Individual.” Trans. Mark Cohen and Sanford Kwinter. Incorporations. Ed. Jonathan Crary. New York: Zone, 1992. 296-319.

At the same time that a quantity of potential energy (the necessary condition for a higher order of magnitude) is actualized, a portion of matter is organized and distributed (the necessary condition for a lower order of magnitude) into structured individuals of a middle order of magnitude, developing by a mediate process of amplification (304).

Simondon’s chapter in the Incorporations volume constitutes the introduction to his L’individu et sa genèse physico-biologique. In his review on that book, Deleuze stresses that Simondon articulates a rigorous distinction between individuality and singularity due to an examination of the principle of individuation. Simondon begins with the problem of inferring a principle of individuation because current schools of thought tend to view the individual as a given. This confers an ontological privilege to an already constructed individual. But Simondon sees this view as a backwards approach, or what he terms reverse ontogenesis. In fact, because Simondon believes that individuation is merely one stage in the becoming of a being and thus is not the totality of a being, individuality falsely attributes a unity and identity to a heterogeneous milieu of forces from which the pre-individual nature of a being enters into communication with another order of magnitude. Thus, instead of focusing on the individual in order to infer the principle of individuation, Simondon asserts from the beginning that his project is to understand the individual in terms of individuation, which can be considered now as ontogenesis itself.

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