Negatron, talking about some stuff I’ve not read:

For Simondon we experience something that is eternal in that we experience both our power and limits: we are aware that there is something in us that exceeds this moment, and something of us that is so ephemeral, disappearing the moment that it is experienced. In each case we are aware that our individuality is not the end all and be all of our existence. For Simondon it is situated between the preindividual components of our existence the transindividual relations that we enter into.

Muriel Combes has drawn out the implications of this remark in her book on Simondon, referring to the “intimacy of the common.” The common, the shared language, habits, and affects that make up the backdrop of our subjectivity, a common which exists only in and through social relations, transindividuality, is not something that we only experience in moments in collectivity, in the delusions and madness of crowds, but is always present. The reference to intimacy also underscores that what is common is not something that is exterior to our individuality, it is not some role that we play, but is constitutive. Thus, to draw the two remarks together, the eternal that we experience is perhaps the common, is the irreducible relational aspect of our existence.

This remark sent me chasing around the internet for a quote I barely remembered, John McDowell quoting Stanely Cavell, I used it in a paper in college ten years ago (I no longer remember the subject of the paper nor do I have a copy). The internet, glory be, found it for me:

“We learn and teach words in certain contexts, and then we are expected, and expect others, to be able to project them into further context. Nothing insures that this projection will take place (in particular, not the grasping of universals, nor the grasping of books of rules), just as nothing insures that we will make, and understand, the same projections. That on the whole we do is a matter of our sharing routes of interest and feeling, senses of humour and of significance and of fulfillment, of what is outrageous, of what is similar to what else, what a rebuke, what forgiveness, oof when an utterance is an assertion, when an appeal, when an explanation – all the whirl of organism Wittgenstein calls ‘forms of life.’ Human speech and activity, sanity and community, rest upon nothing more, but nothing less, than this. It is a vision as simple as it is difficult, and as difficult as it is (and because it is) terrifying.” (Stanley Cavell, “The Availabilty of Wittgenstein’s Later Philosophy”, in _Must We Mean What We Say?_, p52)

Strikes me as quite similar.

Advertisements