Why wasn’t capitalism born in China?: Deleuze and the philosophy of non-events

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Lundy, C (2013)
  • Publisher: The Johns Hopkins University Press

In this paper, I will address Deleuze and Guattari’s consideration of capitalism’s aborted birth in China by approaching the problematic from within their philosophy of history. To begin with, I will set out Deleuze and Guattari’s immediate answer, canvassing their machinic ontology and the significance that they place on immanence to the emergence of capitalism. In doing so, the question of history and historical interpretation will be raised. Following, I will investigate the status of such questions and inquire as to why Deleuze and Guattari ontinually pose them. From this analysis I will suggest that a critical philosophy of non-events can be found in Deleuze and Guattari’s work that is related to but distinct from their philosophy of the Event.
  • References (7)

    29 Friedrich Nietzsche, “On the uses and disadvantages of a history for life”, in Untimely Meditations, trans. R. J. Hollingdale, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1983, p. 60.

    30 Friedrich Nietzsche, “On the Utility and Liability of History for Life”, in Unfashionable Observations, trans. Richard T. Gray. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1995. As it happens, Deleuze fails to include the first half of this quote every time that he references it (see Difference and Repetition, p. xxi, Nietzsche and Philosophy p. 107, The Logic of Sense p. 265, and Two Regimes of Madness p. 346). For more on the significance of this, see Craig Lundy, “Deleuze's Untimely: Uses and Abuses in the Appropriation of Nietzsche”, in Jeffrey A. Bell and Claire Colebrook (eds), Deleuze and History. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, pp. 188-205.

    31 Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus, p. 194.

    32 Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus, p. 193.

    33 Gilles Deleuze, The Logic of Sense, ed. Constantin V. Boundas, trans. Mark Lester with Charles Stivale (London: Continuum, 1990), pp. 1-2.

    35 Henri Bergson, Creative Mind: An Introduction to Metaphysics, trans. Mabelle L. Andison (Mineola, NY: Dover, 2007), p. 82.

    37 Gilles Deleuze, Foucault, trans. Sean Hand (London and New York: Continuum, 1999), pp. 21-22.

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