Many thanks to Brother G for drawing my attention to this. I'm no slacker when it comes to reading impenetrable philosophy. For instance, I've been able to read Louis Althusser *and* understand the points he's been arguing (though I do have memories of spending about an hour trying to understand two particularly dense pages in his Reading Capital). But everyone's favourite Marxist wannabe submariner has nothing on the bizarre works of Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari.
I know these guys are important fellas in the history of 20th century philosophy. Both of their works ran with a number of post-structuralist themes around decentering the subject, the problem of how we 'do' thought, how things constantly shift and metamorphose into other things, deterritorialisation/reterritorialisation, and a host of other issues. I've had no problem thinking through these sorts of issues in graduate essays past with recourse to good, solid materialist dialectics. But, as Martin Heidegger once noted, legibility is suicide for philosophy.
And so it is for our deceased pomo friends. With that in mind, what the hell are we supposed to make of this from their A Thousand Plateaus?
'For in the end the anus also expresses an intensity, in this case the approach to zero of a distance that cannot be decomposed without its elements changing in nature. A field of anuses, just like a pack of wolves. Does not the child, on the periphery, hold onto the wolves by his anus? The jaw descends to the anus. Hold onto those wolves by your jaw and your anus. The jaw is not a wolf jaw, it's not that simple; jaw and wolf form a multiplicity that is transformed into eye and wolf, anus and wolf, as a function of other distances, at other speeds, with other multiplicities between thresholds.' (p.36)Answers preferably not on a 700 page tome. And please, no jokes about this blog becoming arse.