You name it! Hell, the shorter list would be what’s sufficient. What was on my mind though was specifically insufficient dialogization, which may be something others have thought of before too but I just made it up now by banging some words together (part of what’s cool about language is you can bash one bit of speech together with another bit of speech and viola! new speech! kids excel at this, and sometimes reward it with satisfying laughs at stupid shit like “spaghetti pants” and whatnot), banging those two words together in particular in search for a name for a social condition of relative intellectual isolation. It’s been a long while but I have a vague sense that Nancy Fraser at one point talked about concepts or theoretical or political positions as ‘internally dialogized’, maybe she borrowed the idea from Whats-his-name Bakhtin? I don’t remember. Anyway. The idea is that an idea or perspective or whatever is formed in a context of other ideas (etc), and not in a sense of just externally related sense of bouncing off other ideas like balls in a game of pool but in an internally related sense of being in part woven from the other idea, being constituted by being in dialog with it. That seems reasonable to me as a claim, and I assume the implication is that we get more by reading works in relation to the other works they’re internally dialogized by.

It’s on my mind though lately, and for a long while recurrently, as not only a feature of texts or ideas understood as objects but as a quality of thinkers/writers/speakers themselves. Intellectual activity is in a sense always-already collective (though it’s important to stress that there are multiple modes of collectivity and the collectivity involved in writing something is different from the collectivity involved in collective action, say), and individuals both constitute and are constituted by that collectivity – again, not a pool ball, thinkers aren’t just externally related to each other and bouncing off one another.

I think there are at least two ways to think this quality of being always-already collective. One is qualitative: thinking is collective in a variety of ways. Another is mildly quantitative in the sense of being more vs less collective. This is where insufficient dialogization comes in. Being insufficiently dialogized is when there’s not enough other works and writers to live in dialog with. While an insufficiently dialogized thinker is still in one sense living out relationships to collectivity, in another sense, they are also just less collective and also, just… less. I’ve had this sense in my own intellectual life of being just kind of less due to lack of dialogization. It’s not only loneliness though that’s part of it. It’s also, like, a person forced into isolation may feel lonely, and they may also adapt to or have effects from the loneliness that remake who they are to some extent. That’s part of what I mean by insufficient dialogization.

Well it’s late and I can’t keep my eyes open any longer so I’m going to break off here. Might come back and add stuff here later, and might not! I’d be interested in trying to lay out more of a description of this as condition, and also some of its sources/some of the conditions that foster it, if possible.