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 Sloterdijk: Spheres

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Erik

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PostSubject: Sloterdijk: Spheres    Tue Jan 27, 2015 1:24 pm

According to Sloterdijk, the contemporary age is an age of foam, that is to say, a multiplicity of people, who rub up against each other with their own private semiologies. The metaphysical age was a bubble, i.e., God as the transcendent signified, who encased the Earth, like a dome. This divine macro-sphere provided a psychological immunization to the Lacanian ' real '. But now, since all the grand meta-narratives and transcendent signifieds have been deconstructed, in the contemporary age, we are in a state of existential nakedness, exposed to the Lacanian ' real '. The grand bubble has popped and now what remains is foam, the multiplicity of semio-spheres, which contain their own idiosyncratic logic and meaning. Understanding this macro/micro symbolism is conducive to the understanding of contemporary art. Much of modern art is extremely perplexing and ambiguous, even absurd - it isn't confluent with the metaphysical grand narratives and transcendent signifieds. The deconstruction of the transcendent signified has allowed room for play, as Derrida would say - the signifiers can now play around and create their own semiologies. Once you understand the personal bubble of the contemporary artist, his logic and meaning, you can begin to become part of his semio-sphere.


http://www.amazon.com/Bubbles-Spheres-Microspherology-Semiotext-Foreign/dp/1584351047

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PostSubject: Re: Sloterdijk: Spheres    Tue Jan 27, 2015 1:36 pm

The Semiotics of Immanence:
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The pre-metaphysical age, from the Paleolithic to the time of Plato. According to Sloterdijk in this epoch there was a semiotics of immanence. Being in the world was a matter of being in the body of the Great Mother. The typical movement was the journey downward into the depths and return. Time is cyclic and space is a commonly shared macrosphere, identified with the body of the mother. The individual is a cell in this organic totality, in the womb of the Great Mother. The artist is a shaman.

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PostSubject: Re: Sloterdijk: Spheres    Tue Jan 27, 2015 1:42 pm

The Semiotics of Transcendence:
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The metaphysical age, from the time of Plato to that of Heidegger. Each historical period within the metaphysical epoch has a privileged set of “iconotypes” or transcendental signifieds which fix meaning into organized significations. These semiotic systems and their signifieds are regularly de-legitimated and dissolved to make way for those of the next epoch. Being in the world is a matter of being inside the body of the Father. The semiotics is based on transcendence. In the Middle Ages, the typical movement is ascension and voyage in the celestial spheres. Truth is certainty. The artist is a cosmocrator, a creator in the image of God. In the post-Reformation period we have the advent of the age of the world picture. The macrosphere of the heavens dissolves and we are thrown into infinite space. Space is Euclidean, infinite, and three-dimensional. Time is linear. There is no macrosphere. The artist is an optician.

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PostSubject: Re: Sloterdijk: Spheres    Tue Jan 27, 2015 1:53 pm

The Semiotics of Fragmentation - The Post Meta-Physical Age:
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The post-metaphysical age, which divides into two epochs: the aperspectival or integral age from Heidegger to World War II and the post-aperspectival age, from the end of WWII till today. In the aperspectival age, a new macrosphere is constituted containing no longer just one perspective, but all perspectives. The world is no longer optical, what we see, but noetic, what we understand and imagine. Truth is multiple and relative to the different perspectives. The culturally specific iconotypes have been replaced by structural archetypes (geometrical or anthropological). Space is an integral hyper-dimensional macrosphere. Time is integrated into space-time. The artist is an archetypologist.

With the advent of the post-aperspectival age the reconstitution of hierarchically organized systems is no longer possible, and we are left with a “midden-heap” of abandoned, isolated, and fragmented signifiers. The artist can no longer presuppose a universal organized semiotic system, and is obliged to select and combine the signifiers of the present and the past, and hybridize them with new signifiers, into idiosyncratic, temporary, partial, multiple organizations, with no universal legitimacy. Truth is no longer just multiple, it is also a matter of degrees – from relativism, it has become quantized. Space is no longer a hyper-dimensional macrosphere, which has been deconstructed and dissolved. Space is an ocean of quantic foam. Time is miniaturized and discontinuous. There is no universal macrosphere, only individual semiospheres. The artist is a monadologist.

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PostSubject: Re: Sloterdijk: Spheres    Thu Feb 05, 2015 12:02 pm

In Bubbles, there is a lot of reference to theology, in particular, trinitarian theology. Sloterdijk states that the triadic relationship between " The Father, Son and Holy spirit " is the first spherological bubble of intimacy, without the dimension of space, as commonly thought of --- that the relationship itself IS the space, in a sense.



Peter Sloterdijk wrote:
"Therefore, places of God -- in non-theological terms, places of co-subjectivity or co-existence or solidarity -- are not things that simply exist in the external space. They only come about as sites of activity of persons living together a priori or in a strong relationship. Hence the answer to the question 'Where?' in this case is, in one another. Perichoresis means that the milieu of the personson is entirely in the relationship itself. The persons contained in one anther in the shared space locate themselves in such a way that they illuminate and pervade and surround one another, without being harmed by the clarity of difference." (Sloterdijk, Bubbles, p. 607)

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PostSubject: Re: Sloterdijk: Spheres    Tue Feb 10, 2015 7:49 am

In Bubbles, Sloterdijk mentions a concept called " the With ", which is another name for the placenta. It forms a primordial, dyadic relationship within the mother. This semio-sphere continues to haunt the human throughout the course of his life - he seeks to re-construct the conditions of the mother's womb, albeit unconsciously.

Quote :
Just as according to Aristophanes, contemporary man, in Plato’s Symposium, is the mutilated half of an originally rounded being which is whole; also according to Sloterdijk, humans originally comprised a two-part wholeness this side of the confrontative separation of subject and object. Sloterdijk employs the term Mit (With) to designate this state, which is hard to describe because of its prelinguistic origin. The fetus and its placenta are connected to each other like Orpheus and Eurydice. Every Orpheus is forced to leave his Eurydice. On parting, the latter bestows on him a space, “in which substitutions are possible.” The vacant space that the lost “primal companion” leaves behind in man, becomes the starting point for a consistently renewed search for new companions and new substitute spheres. The Eurydice of the placenta also leaves behind the navel, the bodily trace that points to our original bipolarity, for the Orpheus-like half-human.

For Sloterdijk the problem of the history of mankind begins (as does the problem of Sloterdijk’s version of this history for the reader) with the “excommunication” of this primal companion. Instead of being honoured as the lost half of man, the future of the placenta was either to be utilized by the cosmetics industry, or even, having been turned into granulate, to be used to accelerate combustion in waste incinerators. According to Sloterdijk, a “seamless alliance of silence” has formed, whose aim it is to make humans forget their original companion, the placenta, and to condemn them to an “absence of togetherness” (Mitlosigkeit). At this point, following Sloterdijk’s train of thought, modern individualism enters its hot phase. A “gynecological inquisition” has brought forth the the lonely modern subject. This condition in turn is to have facilitated the formation of totalitarian nations. “The birth of totalitarianism out of the spirit of midwifery? Someone here has apparently taken an overly hot bath in amniotic fluid” (transl. fr. German), as one critic jeered.

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