Re: Foucault and 'tsm' - death and (w)rites

malgosia wrote:
>I think my "death" argument goes something like this: unless the potential
>price of one's support/endorsement is commensurate with that paid by the
>immediate participants, the support involves an element which crudely
>can be described as having others pay for the pleasures of one's

I think this argument rests on two propositions: firstly that the
supporters and immediate participants are commensurate to begin with -
clearly the latter has more immediate concerns. However, lest this lead to
arguments against expressions of support, perhaps one might consider, say,
the support of international lawyers in the International Court of Justice,
who may be using discursive tokens, but who nonetheless may have some
influence on the ultimate treatment of those whose rights are so terminally
violated. At another level, for those lawyers (bad example I know, but I'm
just making an illustrative point here) to go in to bat, there needs to be
a perceived level of community support, otherwise countries wouldn't pay
for the process - and potential outcome, such a sanctions/intervention ...
anyway, my point is that those who support indirectly those who support
directly the case of the actual participants still, I would suggest, have a
role to play in providing that (discursive) support.
The second has to do with the notion of someone else 'paying' for the
'pleasures' of one's endorsement - are others really that responsible for
what I do? This seems to imply again a closer/more direct relationship
between my actions and the suffering of others than perhaps really exists.
there is a dilemma here: on the one hand if my actions have a direct
influence, then my support could mean the difference between life or death
for the direct participant - ergo morally I must show support.
Alternatively if there is no connection whatever between my 'discursive'
acts and the 'physical' acts of teh direct particants then it doesn't
matter whether I show support or not - they won't be 'paying' for my
bourgois language game either way. My suspicion is that there is a chain of
association, if not of causation, that would indicate action, at least of a
discursive nature.

> Now I am not absolutely certain that this argument has
>any merit at all,

I suspect it has some, but not in the black/white dichotomy you have

> but I don't believe that having one's writing erased
>is really commensurate with physical death, however well matched they
>may be metaphorically.

I agree, albeit with some reservations over the question of such a close
relation between the 'biological' and the 'discursive' implicit in this

Jerry Everard
ANU, Canberra, Australia

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