Becoming interactive - interactive becomings: a Deleuze-Guattarian approach to an ethics of interaction
thesisposted on 2022-03-28, 02:15 authored by Andrew Murphie
This thesis uses the work of Grilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari to outline a potential ethics of becoming, of interaction, and of the 'in-between'. It draws together several problems from diverse areas of study to focus on the crucial question of how to write and think about changing relations, not after they have occurred, but while they are occurring. The first problem is that of the Being/becoming relation. The discussion of this problem is drawn from twentieth century thinking about the relations between Being, becoming, ethics and technology. The uses and problems of Martin Heidegger's influential essay, "The Question Concerning Technology" will be discussed, followed by an account of Deleuze and Guattari's responses to Heidegger in this area with specific attention paid to Deleuze's comparison of Heidegger's ontological and Alfred Jarry's pataphysical questioning of metaphysics. Central to this section is a discussion of the related problem of the use of the theatrical, both in philosophical practice and in the discussion and theorisation of what can, or should, be done with interactive technologies. The second section of the thesis develops this discussion of the theatrical/performative in a discussion of recent practice and thought in the area of aesthetics. This section gives a theoretical and descriptive account of some of the work of artists such as Stelarc, Rebecca Horn, Joseph Beuys, Marina Abramovic and Ulay, Joyce Hinterding and John Cage. All the work of these artists throws light both on the problem of interaction in art and on the relations between art, ethics and technology. This section includes a detailed description of Deleuze and Guattari's own theorisation of becoming. The third section gives a detailed description of Deleuze and Guattari's 'thinking through' of the 'machine' and the implications of this for the ethics of a relation to interaction, to aesthetics and to 'new' technologies. Particular attention will be paid to the contemporary notion of the virtual. The final section is a conclusion. It argues for a thought and ethics which understand the primacy of interaction and becoming over the static 'state of things' and for the primacy of a theory of forces and affects over a theory which makes critical judgments come first.