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Quentin's Weeknotes 9/29/18-10/5/18


This week


By contrast, there is something distinct about social sadism in modern capitalism, and in neoliberalism in particular. This is surplus cruelty in a specific sense, sadism supererogatory in relation to the – conjunctural, contested – ‘functional’ requirements of the system, a social formation characterised by the hedged, reversible, embattled but well-documented historical shift away from social punishment as overt – the qualification is crucial – spectacular, sanctioned, performative cruelty.

and perhaps more ambiguously, but hopefully

We build against sadism. We build to experience the joy of its every fleeting defeat. Hoping for more joy, for longer, each time, longer and stronger; until, perhaps, we hope, for yet more; and you can’t say it won’t ever happen, that the ground won’t shift, that it won’t one day be the sadisms that are embattled, the sadisms that are fleeting, on a new substratum of something else, newly foundational, that the sadisms won’t diminish or be defeated, that those for whom they are machinery of rule won’t be done.

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