Fractal Politics 2.1

Rough Beasts Emerging

Photograph Source: Fractal made by the Tierazon program using a quartic formula – CC BY 2.0

While the sphere of finance is ruled by algorithms that connect fractals of precarious labor, the sphere of life is invaded by flows of chaos that paralyze the social body and stifle breathing into suffocation."

Franco "Bifo" Berardi, Breathing, 2018

Two paragraphs convey the assumptions of Fractal Politics 1.1:

The coastline of the American mass psyche is fractal, which means it's not continuous or connected but full of gaps, fissures, unbridgeable enclaves. Bridges are not only too far but non-existent. Porosity not grounding firmament is here. Commensurate with Goethe's own assumption that what is inside is also outside, what is manifest is thus also a fractal order of things, cultural, in Raymond Williams' whole way of life definition of culture.

One of the causes of these fractal states is the absence of a commonly accepted rule of understanding and judgment running throughout. Another has to do with the usurpation and replacement of the real by simulacra creating a hyperreality which no form of reasoning, empirical or rational or even consensual, can have a hold as there is nothing to hold on to.

The fractal state then can be understood as a pharmakon, a means of producing something, in the political sense, simultaneously resistance and remedy, but whose nature, fractal, is antithetical to any coherent, unified order. Thus, as Derrida pointed out, the pharmakon is both the poison and the remedy. This is a complexity that enables realities to be represented outside and beyond the web of the hyperreal, disconnected and isolated as they are from any totalitarian or hyperreal presumption of order. The fractal nature of psyche, culture and politics in particular partake of the pharmakon, for our resistance to all unity, coherence and continuity, our antidote to any form of totalitarianism, abide in our DE centeredness, our framing of reality within mutually inconceivable domains, our isolated coherences fashioning an overall incoherence.

In our fractal state we cannot achieve a universally accepted rule of judgment that would lead to common understanding. Our poison is in centers being everywhere; our remedy to the centering of anyone, including our hyper-capitalism, is in centers of a fractal order being everywhere.

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Joseph Natoli has published books and articles, on and off line, on literature and literary theory, philosophy, postmodernity, politics, education, psychology, cultural studies, popular culture, including film, TV, music, sports, and food and farming. His most recent book is Dark Affinities, Dark Imaginaries: A Mind’s Odyssey .

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