September 14, 2004



Incredibly, given the traumatic - but I hope tragicomically resolving - events detailed at Radio Free Narnia, Mark Sinker has managed to come up with typically provocative and stimulating responses to my post on the politics of domesticity:

'don't really buy yr v.momus-ish assault on interior-decoration obsession on TV: as usual it lacks dialectics, as usual the key detail is omitted of where the mass unconscious is allowing itself to explore its resistance to the K-KAPITAL-machine wotsname (= nowhere) (without you say where generalised resistance is possible, the KAPITALMACHINE is totalised = game over = capitulation)

the fact that the "insides" of our lives are now being put up to Public Gatekeeper Contest is the first sign of the (possible) rebirth of politics, not the final sign of the retreat from it (ie it coincides with the ultra-ballardian obsession w.plastic surgery)

(to jump back a wave, feng shui is abt the placation of the gods =
implicitly political; being on TV = it can be discussed in the world = it is being/can be made explictly political)

(k-rad conclusion: we shd begin applying punk feng shui to the reconstruction of our FACES) (haha that's the grace jones line here - will yr feminist critics buy this i wonder?) (actually i therefore think it shd be a punk feng shui of our INTERNAL ORGANS) (the overall collage of TV points us to this gracefully enough: it's only invisible if you let yrself accept the genre boundaries which turn TV from a portrait of the totality into a labyrinth) (an effective prescient dramatisation of this = that dr who series the WARGAMES i think)'

Actually, there is a link between that post and the post on the Glampunk discontinuum that I hadn't thought about prior to reading Mark's remarks: Hamilton's collage (and the world - the exteriorized interior/ interiorized external world - it opens up).

In the C4 documentary on Pop Art and Pop/Art I referred to earlier, Ballard was especially enthusiastic about the way that Hamilton's 'Just What Is It That Makes Today's Homes so Different, so Appealing' zeroed in on what, in a parody of McLuhan, you could call the 'global living room' of consumer Kapital. Hamilton's collage is absolutely inside this strange world that has no insides, which McLuhan's near contemporanous Mechanical Bride still feels it is possible to critique. It will be a few years later, in his essay on Burroughs, before McLuhan-O'Blivion, now homeopathically innoculated to the Videodrome signal his theory is helping to amplify, can describe the new mega-mediated world from within it. It is a world, he said, in which the central nervous system has been externalised; where there is 'no privacy and no private parts'.

Baudrillard's theory, especially round the period of The Ecstasy of Communication, also sets up unhome in this same bunker-pod living space, this media-monad, this representational vortex which is both the object and the subject of a process of total mediatization that will culminate in the end of the inside. Or (Jameson): the production of a Kapital(ist) space in which there is only inside.

Astonishingly, Hamilton knows all this, back in skiffle-ersatz Britain 1956.

Look at the recording devices --- or are they transmitters? And the man and woman, effaced, replaced, by their own mediatized ideals. No longer the protected inner space, oedipalized magic circle ---- nothing here but us recordings.

Or, better: nothing here but the feedback.

As for dialectics, naturally, I plead guilty to not being dialetical enough!

One of the very many problems with the Cult Studs uptake of Gramsci was the grotesque appropriation of the concept of hegemony. Rather than stressing the idea that the working classes were complicit in their own repression, the Cult Studs lobby seemed to suggest that hey we can't condemn hegemony too much, coz, like, it has partly been produced by the working class...

But the working class is not the proletariat.

Freedom cannot come through new, better representations, but by fleeing representation altogether.

Conceiving of your own living space as first and foremost a representation - for the big Other' gaze to inspect - that's (intensive) death.....

Any way, Mark, I'm sure that everyone else in the Kollektive will want to send their best wishes for you and yr mum --- and we hope to see you for another walk again soon ----

Posted by mark at September 14, 2004 07:55 PM | TrackBack