Ending the World as We Know It

I recently interviewed Andrew Culp about his new book Dark Deleuze. Read the whole interview here.

Alexander R. Galloway: You have a new book called Dark Deleuze (University of Minnesota Press, 2016). I particularly like the expression “canon of joy” that guides your investigation. Can you explain what canon of joy means and why it makes sense to use it when talking about Deleuze?

Andrew Culp: My opening is cribbed from a letter Gilles Deleuze wrote to philosopher and literary critic Arnaud Villani in the early 1980s. Deleuze suggests that any worthwhile book must have three things: a polemic against an error, a recovery of something forgotten, and an innovation. Proceeding along those three lines, I first argue against those who worship Deleuze as the patron saint of affirmation, second I rehabilitate the negative that already saturates his work, and third I propose something he himself was not capable of proposing, a “hatred for this world.” So in an odd twist of Marx on history, I begin with those who hold up Deleuze as an eternal optimist, yet not to stand on their shoulders but to topple the church of affirmation.

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