Re: _ROM_ -- hunger for self-transformation

> I am curious about this desire for constant self-transformation, for not
> thinking the same thing. Is this a contemporary phenomenon? Where
> does it come from? Is it akin to the desire for salvation, for mystical
> experiences?

i cannot speak to whether the desire for constant self-transformation
is ONLY a contemporary phenomenon, but i do think that the contemporary
desire, at least in Foucault's case, can be understood as an appropriate form
of resistance to contemporary political conditions. there is the famous
passage from page 17 of the intro to THE ARCHAEOLOGY OF KNOWLEDGE where
foucault says that, in response to the publication of each of his books,
he is often asked:

`Aren't you sure of what you're saying? Are you going to change yet
again, shift your position according to the questions that are put to you, and
say that the objections are not really directed at the place from which you
are speaking?'

to which foucault replies:

I am no doubt not the only one who writes in order to have no face.
Do not ask who I am and do not ask me to remain the same: leave it to our
bureaucrats and our police to see that our papers are in order. At least
spare us their morality when we write.

it seems as though foucault is saying that in identity there is
domination. subjects are constituted within discourses (hence his claim that
power is creative) and such constitution serves as a limitation on the
possible ways of being. by making frequent shifts in his writing, foucault is
trying to break through these forms of domination.


p.s. thanks for starting the discussion of ROM.


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