Tuesday, 8 May 2012

NIHILIST COMMUNISM: a public statement on the controversy surrounding the text Nihilist Communism as an adequate expression of the life and opinions of the 0.00000007142857142857143% (approx)

Links political economy
To reference Ivor Cutler's Search for Grace, it seems indisputable that the rate of discussion on Nihilist Communism has increased globally year on year to its current unprecedented proportions: 2003/0, 2004/0, 2005/1, 2006/0, 2007/0, 2008/1, 2009/2, 2010/0, 20011/1, 2012/1. 

This text is intended as a sort of bookmark, or perhaps flag, for those whose curiosity has been pricked by all the hoo-ha generated around Nih-Com that has been so difficult to avoid of late. 

Those who have been sufficiently motivated into discovering more will have entered the term nihilist communism into an internet search engine and will thereby, and without too much trouble, have found themselves reading this. 

It is to those who have arrived by the above mentioned route, or by some other route I cannot imagine, that I must now make a clarifying statement. 

However, such a statement is not forthcoming. 

The mystery remains: What is Nihilist Communism?
In the place of a clarifying statement I will record yet further ruminations to fill this white space and in the process, no doubt, will give succor (and even reassurance) to the 99.99999993968253962% who had no interest in nihilist communism before and are now fully confirmed in their indifference. Sobeit!

A deep sigh precedes this. Nihilist Communism is not a political practice, or a prescriptive manifesto. It is not equivalent to Tiqqun's 'The Call'. It would be better to describe it as a record of two person's correspondences, reflections, experiences and 'interventions' as well as their happily making things up (or what used to be called, 'revolutionary self-theory'). 

It enacts, and is also about, the processing of the difficult, upsetting, worrying stuff of life.  

Nih-Com's technique and goal is anti-populism. 

Nih-Com is at the same time both a tying up of loose ends and unpicking the Suebian knot of activist 'involvement'. Historically, Nihilist Communism appeared at the end of something in proletarianised experience, i.e. it was written in a 'pre-internet' context and refers to a trajectory which is now done-for. It is also pertinent to record that since its initial publication, the normative discourse of social management (which Nih-Com refers to), and the sub-class which carries it, has accelerated its domination of the forms of expression of the 'pro-revolutionary milieu'.  

However, as a means to diverge from ideological realism, Nih-Com has also opened up different spaces to contextualise sets of new activities which otherwise could not have appeared. Such activities define themselves specifically outside of the context of organisationalism and seek both a more direct relation to the expressions of proletarian alienation and a means for reflecting upon the flaws of voluntarist political activity. 

Why is Nihilist Communism denounced?
After Wittgenstein, MD attempted to make a distinction between motivation and causal relation in the explanation of class antagonism, social relations and the potential for small groups of individuals to make a conscious difference to these. 

Nih-Com's readers will not find any answers about what they should do given that they can objectively achieve nothing... nobody comes out of it well. There is no attempt to snatch the victory of this or that set of values from the jaws of defeat. 

It doesn't seek agreement with what it has to say (what difference would that make?), it doesn't tell the Truth, it doesn't explain the world – it is simply the record of some marginal opinions written by unimportant individuals. In other words: Nih-Com radically diverges from the cultish tenets of what Camatte describes as the repressive consciousness of the milieu.

In fact, as a text, Nih-Com needs no readers – it is a deep code, a recording, which has set other bodies in motion, bodies which do not then look back to it; it is not quotable, it is not an authority; it is a founding document which no longer needs to be referred to by those who have passed through its discursive field.

Nihilist Communism is not a text at all – it is a field of reference towards which a small number of others may develop their own responses, embellishments, enthusiasms, departures and experiments so as to better articulate capitalised existence. For this reason, the publication of Nih-Com has been both a good and necessary thing – for a few individuals the Nih-Com field of reference has become the way out of the trap of belonging to the milieu, it has also become a way into the trap of not belonging to the milieu. 

Further Reading
This web journal, Insipidities, The Theological Turn and Horns further explore some of the space created by Nihilist Communism and demonstrate the possibilities which become available through the adoption of N/C type constraints. 

I think it is still fair to say that correspondence may be entered into with the editor of Letters Journal which could be described as a project of departure from Nih-Com. 

The deleted Wikipedia page may be view here: Monsieur Dupont