29 september 2007

Protester fastnar i metaforen transport

Nedanstående text skrev jag för Resistance Studies.

The protest movement is trapped in the metaphor of transport. The protesters have special information, an insight or knowledge, which needs to get out and then transport itself through some kind of medium into the consciousness of those in power or the public. Speakers, leaflets, web pages or actions, are supposed to transmit the protest message to an audience. Something is then happening inside the recipient and the result will be change. Political work, actions, dialogues are understood as a transportation of information or insights to somewhere else - instead of ways to live the society one wants. I would propose more constructive metaphors like production, imprint and tools. And I still think the resistance metaphor from electricity and biology for disobedience and obstruction is useful. Displacement might be a metaphor to connect resistance and constructive work.

Per Herngren
September 10, 2007, version 0.11

14 september 2007

Antistrategi enligt Foucault

I tradition från Aristoteles och Kant vänder sig Foucault mot det instrumentella, strategiska handlandet där människor, organisationer och aktioner reduceras till medel för ett framtida mål. För Foucault är inte meningen i det politiska handlandet något mystiskt annat, något icke närvarande, ett frånvarande mål:

"If someone ask me what it is I think I am doing, I would answer: if the strategist is a man who says "what importance does a particular death, a particular cry, a particular uprising have in relation to the great necessity of the whole, and of what importance to me is such-and-such a general principle in the specific situation in which we find ourselves?" then it is indifferent to me whether the strategist is a politician, a historian, a revolutionary, someone who supports the Shah or the ayatollah. My theoretical morality is the opposite. It is "antistrategic": be respectful when singularity rises up, and intransigent when power infringes on the universal."

Source: "Is it useless to revolt" (Inutile de se soulever?). Quoted here from Foucauldian Reflections. Who quoted from Eribon, Michel Foucault, (pp. 290-91).