Gilles Deleuze & Félix Guattari: A Thousand Plateaus

04 October 2019


Direct discourse is a detached fragment of a mass and is born of the dismemberment of the collective assemblage; but the collective assemblage is always like the murmur from which I take my proper name, the constellation of voices, concordant or not, from which I draw my voice. I always depend on a molecular assemblage of enunciation that is not given in my conscious mind, any more than it depends solely on my apparent social determinations, which combine many heterogeneous regimes of signs. Speaking in tongues. To write is perhaps to bring this assemblage of the unconscious to the light of day, to select the whispering voices, to gather the tribes and secret idioms from which I extract something I call my Self (Moi). I is an order-word. A schizophrenic said: “I heard voices say: he is conscious of life.” In this sense, there is indeed a schizophrenic cogito, but it is a cogito that makes self-consciousness the incorporeal transformation of an order-word, or a result of indirect discourse. My direct discourse is still the free indirect discourse running through me, coming from other worlds or other planets. That is why so many artists and writers have been tempted by the seance table. When we ask what faculty is specific to the order-word, we must indeed attribute to it some strange characteristics: a kind of instantaneousness in the emission, perception, and transmission of order-words; a wide variability, and a power of forgetting permitting one to feel absolved of the order-words one has followed and then abandoned in order to welcome others; a properly ideal or ghostly capacity for the apprehension of incorporeal transformations; an aptitude for grasping language as an immense indirect discourse. The faculty of the cuer and the cued, of the song that always holds a tune within a tune in a relation of redundancy; a faculty that is in truth mediumistic, glossolalic, or xenoglossic.

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