like necking with siamese twins

Why should violence be disavowed? After all, its just part of a tragic narrative seen within the context of the world’s greater failure and shortcomings. Perhaps, if we can remove the varnish of its mythology, we can, as Jean Genet said, “free the dream inside the dreamer.”… With religious devotion a struggle for the redemption of the defeated is conducted;  the defeated of the bygone, of history are redeemed from oblivion, and those defeated in the present find themselves redeemed from manipulation by the current order.For Genet, like Walter Benjamin, redemption is an interpretive leap into the past which determines the present; a way to save memories of the oppressed unredeemed in the mists of time. Well, maybe they should ask them if they want to be redeemed, and go through the suffering and necessary violence of becoming that arises out of the dormant and deceased state. Redemption  turns out to be the interpreter’s aesthetic institution of what Benjamin called “now-time.”

The interpreter, in an act of aesthetic selfishness, finds lofty goals of liberation a side-show, a fragment of purpose since, as Genet asserted, literature is built upon a choice of vocabulary; Genet said he wrote books for the taste of words, even for the taste of punctuation, commas and the taste of the sentence. But,  seeks their own salvation, and courting the  danger of annihilation from  vagueness and void, false consensus, there are those fragment which inexorably  burst into what Benjamin called “now-time,” a magic of time and space. Inexplicable.

Eugene Delacroix. Arabs Skirmishing. ---Horkheimer assumed that as long as some amount of freedom persisted collective violence would also persist. He equally opposed the idea of merging freedom and justice in the future ideal society: he argued that there was no room for positive utopianism because in principle freedom and justice were opposed. "In the end, whatever hopes Marx did hold on behalf of true society, apparently they seem to be the wrong ones, if - and this issue is important for Critical Theory - freedom and justice are interlaced in a mutual opposition; the more justice there is, freedom will diminish accordingly”--- Read More: image:

However, Benjamin and Genet implicitly abandoned what they considered naive revolutionary calls for justice, which they saw was simply by exchanging current  laws with others perceived as being more just. Such demands , then appear as  mythical, violent contentions, opposed to divine purposes. Its still barter, market and exchange with different types of goods. A quantifying experience. From their perspective, all revolutionary efforts to achieve utopia is viewed as a vanity of  mythic forces which oppose the messianic.

His pessimism discloses the presence of violence within the continuity of “the whole time everything is the same” as a cosmic fate, a fate grounded in mystic necessity. He regards reality as essentially tragic, jet not as a partial historical stage or as an accident, but as normality itself. “The tradition of the oppressed teaches us that the ‘state of emergency’, in which we live is not an exception, but a rule.” The fact that “everything continues as usual” is the eternal “catastrophe,” which according to Benjamin discloses the boundless dominance of the mythical. This is the basis of the “Kafka-like situation,” which determines the subject as described in the article “Franz Kafka.” The “original sin” makes itself present at each moment in history, and according to Benjamin it turns out to be a reaction to the subject’s being a victim of cosmic injustice permanently directed against him. Read More:

Kuspit:The avant-gardizing and idealizing of the commodity as aesthetic entertainment is the grand climax of its capitalist development. And, one might add, the post-avant-garde or post-modern development of avant-garde or modern art—the ironical destiny of what Clement Greenberg called aesthetic purity, or, as I would call it, aesthetic fundamentalism, which began with Impressionism. The avant-garde commodity appropriates and subsumes modernist aestheticism, reminding us of its connection to capitalist innovation—the capitalist invention of novel commodities. Thus Yves St. Laurent’s Mondrian dresses and rainboots obscure and even shed their commodity identity by their use of Mondrian’s pure abstract art as decorative design, raising their exchange value as well as that of Mondrian’s purity, thus reifying abstraction as a marketable commodity. Even countercultural anti-art, such as Duchamp’s readymades, and anti-elite non-art, such as Kaprow’s happenings—the pseudo-art of the pseudo-eureka moment, as I think of it, more particularly, throwaway art made by quasi-chance in contrast to art made in the belief that it would last forever, that is, art that identifies itself with eternity rather than the specious present—will be acculturated as elite commodity art and preserved in the museum of the capitalist spectacle. The literary critic Murray Krieger has written about “the fall of the elite object,” but he fails to note that it rises again as an elite commodity, as everything collected as capital does. The society of the capitalist spectacle is a society of collectibles, and everything is collectible in a capitalist society... Read More: image:

It’s always there. The glance over the shoulder in anger. The deception and the sense of betrayal. Fatalistic and amoral, Jean Genet’s projection lives in a habitat of contradictory impulses and unexpected conclusions.Genet continued to steal even when he was rich. Theft may have been more of a necessity when he was young, but now he no longer needed to steal for survival, or even for material purposes. Theft had become an ideological act – an act against capitalism, an act against the society that had so excluded him and humiliated him. Perhaps there are parallels with today’s rioters in that the causes of Genet’s criminality were far from simple – but this did not mean his actions were apolitical or anti-political.

---The discourses of heterosexuality, whiteness and capitalism reproduce themselves into a model of power. For the rest of us, there is death. In his work, Jean Genet asserts that the life of a queer, is one of exile - that all of the totality of this world is constructed to marginalize and exploit us. He posits the queer as the criminal. He glorifies homosexuality and criminality as the most beautiful and lovely forms of conflict with the bourgeois world. He writes of the secret worlds of rebellion and joy inhabited by criminals and queers.--- Read More:

In 1957,   Genet brought existential philosophy and absurdest theater together in what eventually resulted in one of his most famous plays: The Balcony. Set in a high-class brothel, the play follows a group of people living out their fantasies while a revolution blazes outside in the  streets. The viewer is introduced to the brothel keeper, her assistants, and various clientele of particular tastes….

---It is fashionable to scorn "bourgeois" creeds like Christianity and capitalism. Jean Genet, the French criminal and writer, said, however, that if one is truly to reject middle class values, one must learn to like licking spit from the sidewalk. Hygiene, too, is middle class. To deplore Christianity while wearing clean underwear is mere intellectualizing. Similarly,if one is to be really legitimate, to reject speciesism, as is becoming fashionable, one must put intestinal parasites on a par with the camel. Or the poodle. The avoidance of speciesism is essentially an intellectual exercise with little application to reality. The most eager supporters of the welfare of other species are often, in fact, the most blatant practitioners of species discrimination.--- Read More: image:

…Haver quoted Genet as saying that the day the Palestinians become an ‘institution’ or a ‘nation’ he would no longer be on their side. His loyalty was to the Palestinian ‘political and military’ movement which he called the ‘violenc

the revolution.’ Genet argued that the violence of the revolution was different from state sponsored or organized brutality’as in the case of Sabra and Shatila. For Genet, there was an essential difference between the violence of the Palestinian fedayeen, or freedom fighters and the ‘rationalized institutional’ brutality of the State.

According to Haver, Genet believed that the Palestinians felt that through their actions’the violence of the revolution’they could prove they exist. However, their acts were geared towards a goal, the liberation of national territory. Based on his readings of Genet, Haver came to his own understanding of violence. He argued that to try to establish protocols to which ‘we could with any degree of epistemological confidence distinguish between violence and the presumptively non-violent, between terror and whatever would not be terror, is to assume that the decision as to what is or is not terror or violence is not itself violent.’

---Two maids – Solange and Claire – plot to assassinate Madame, their employer and idol. Their act is emblematic of class rebellion- the underclass rising up against their oppressive master or mistress. But the maids are also reliant upon Madame for their livelihood. As much as they hate her, they desperately love her too. They dress up and perform her. Their attempted murder of their glamorous employer is in many ways an attempted suicide. Indeed the play ends in self-destruction, as Claire drinks, quite literally, her own poison – the poison she has prepared for Madame.--- Read More: image: Chelsea Klein

…The revolution is also seen in the embodiment of the prostitute Chantal, who quits the brothel and joins the revolution with radical fervor, acting as a foil to the trinity of societal power players. It is class conflict that would make Karl Marx swoon. The play does not, however, bank on the politics and ethos of class consciousness and struggle.It dives even deeper than that. This work is really no more than a depiction of the struggle between illusion and reality, posing the question to the reader: “What is real and what is not?”

The bishop, judge and general are obviously men in costumes acting out roles, but as representatives of a dying society, they ultimately take on the form of the status quo, vainly attempting to quell the revolution. In their eyes, they live in reality and the revolution is an illusion. But, in the case of revolutionary Chantal, they are the illusion and she is reality…. Read More:

---Soros spokesman Michael Vachon said that Soros has not “funded the protests directly or indirectly.” He added: “Assertions to the contrary are an attempt by those who oppose the protesters to cast doubt on the authenticity of the movement.” Soros has donated at least US$3.5-million to an organization called the Tides Center in recent years, earmarking the funds for specific purposes. Tides has given grants to Adbusters, an anti-capitalist group in Canada whose inventive marketing campaign sparked the first demonstrations last month. Vachon said Open Society specified what its donations could be used for. He said they were not general purpose funds to be used at the discretion of Tides — for example for grants to Adbusters. “Our grants to Tides were for other purposes.”--- Read More: image: Chelsea Klein

…According to Haver, it is to assume there is an ‘outside of violence or terror, that we ourselves occupy that outside, and that outside is self-evidently the side of Good.’ Haver stated that ‘this revolutionary violence is not merely instrumental, not merely destructive, not merely negative, not merely secondary, but also creative, positive, in fact the very possibility of being at all.’

Genet, argued Haver, was absolutely passionate about the injustice that had been done to the Palestinians. He pointed out that Genet called himself a partisan of the Palestinian revolution because he loved the Palestinians. However, Haver added, Genet wondered if he would have loved the Palestinians had they not suffered. Read More:

---Eventually, on a smaller scale, but more insidiously, the capital available to NGOs plays the same role in alternative politics as the speculative capital that flows in and out of the economies of poor countries. It begins to dictate the agenda. It turns confrontation into negotiation. It depoliticises resistance. It interferes with local peoples’ movements that have traditionally been self-reliant. NGOs have funds to employ local people who could be activists in resistance movements, but instead feel they are doing some immediate, creative good while earning a living. Real political resistance offers no such short cuts.--- Read More: image:

Genet plays with this theme throughout the play, ultimately tricking the reader into falling in and out of states of reality and illusion. This theme partially stems from Genet’s personal feelings on the outcome of the Spanish Civil War (the fascists defeating the Republican government) and the idea that illusion and reality had swapped places in Spain. As he stated in a 1957 interview in Arts magazine, “My point of departure was situated in Spain, Franco’s Spain, and the revolutionary who castrates himself was all those Republicans when they had admitted their defeat.” Read More:


Clearly, violence is positive for Genet only insofar as it is non-instrumental or para-instrumental. Revolt is not revolution. Violence is positive only insofar as ends and means are identical in existence. For Genet, the Panthers and the Palestinians have no possibility for existence outside of their violence; they cannot »choose« whatever might count as non-violence, because their very existence in the world is violence. Concomitantly, the violence of existence in its positivity is never to be conflated with institutionalized brutality: should the Palestinians or the Panthers ever have a territory or state, Genet will no longer be there. In a short essay that first appeared in Le Monde in 1977, and which occasioned a major furor in the press, Genet supported the actions of the RAF precisely as a creative violence that sought the destruction of state brutality . Not unlike Georges Sorel, Frantz Fanon, and others before him, Genet saw the positivity of violence to belong to the practical constitution of being, in the affirmation that is potentia rather than the affirmation of potestas; that is, in existence as the actualization of a possibility that did not exist before its actualization, and which does not survive the happening of that actualization, rather than in the brutality of institutionalized power. For Genet, the affirmation of violence as the actualized potential of existence depends not only upon its non- or para-instrumentality, but upon what one might call its »immediate finitude,« that fact that survival, continuity, institution, conservation, preservation, and salvation are quite beside the point. Genet wrote:

You have to understand that the people you call terrorists know without needing to be told that they, their persons and their ideas, will only be brief flashes against a world wrapped up in its own smartness. Saint-Just was dazzling, and knew his own brightness. The Black Panthers knew their own brilliance, and that they would disappear. Baader and his friends heralded the death of the Shah of Iran. And the fedayeen, too, are tracer bullets, knowing their traces vanish in the twinkling of an eye. Read More:

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