11.14.2008

C as i C ul t u r e

"oui, pourquoi pas?"

I don't believe in culture, to some extent, but rather I believe in encounters. But these encounters don't occur with people. People always think that it's with people that encounters occur, which is why it's awful... Now, in this, that belongs to the domain of culture, intellectuals meeting one another, this disgusting practice of conferences, this infamy. So encounters, it's not between people that they happen, but with things... So I encounter a... painting, yes, or a piece of music, that's how I understand an encounter. When people want to connect encounters to themselves, with people, well, that doesn't work at all... That's not an encounter, and that's why encounters with people are so utterly, utterly disappointing. Encounters with people are always catastrophic.

(Gilles Deleuze interviewed by Claire Parnet, 1988)
He insists that whenever one does something, it is also a question of moving on from it, getting out of or beyond it (d'en sortir). When one does philosophy, for instance, remaining "in" philosophy is also to get out of philosophy.

C is for culture/ culture-as-encounter