Welcome to Bookmarker!

This is a personal project by @dellsystem. I built this to help me retain information from the books I'm reading. Currently can only be used by a single user (myself), but I plan to extend it to support multiple users eventually.

Source code on GitHub (MIT license).

x

[...] although Marx comes after Spinoza, it is Spinoza who can now help us fill the gaps in Marx. For identifying the structures of the capitalist mobilisation of employees does not tell us what these structures ‘run on’; that is to say, it does not tell us what, concretely, makes them effective – not the ghost but the engine in the machine. The Spinozist answer is affects.

—p.x Foreword (ix) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago

[...] although Marx comes after Spinoza, it is Spinoza who can now help us fill the gaps in Marx. For identifying the structures of the capitalist mobilisation of employees does not tell us what these structures ‘run on’; that is to say, it does not tell us what, concretely, makes them effective – not the ghost but the engine in the machine. The Spinozist answer is affects.

—p.x Foreword (ix) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago
xii

[...] making the dominated happy so that they forget their domination is one of the oldest and most effective ruses of the art of ruling. [...]

—p.xii Foreword (ix) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago

[...] making the dominated happy so that they forget their domination is one of the oldest and most effective ruses of the art of ruling. [...]

—p.xii Foreword (ix) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago
2

[...] Free enterprise, in the most general sense of the freedom to undertake – that is, in the sense of the conatus – is consequently nothing other than the freedom to desire and to set out in pursuit of one’s desire. That is why, outside the restrictions a society deems it appropriate to stipulate, free enterprise enjoys a kind of a priori obviousness. Noting the legitimacy of the production of material goods, the entrepreneurial lament – this time using the specifically capitalist meaning of the expression – repeatedly draws on this source in order to challenge any imposition of limits on ‘free enterprise’: ‘I have a desire that conforms to the division of labour and I am prevented from pursuing it.’ [...]

—p.2 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago

[...] Free enterprise, in the most general sense of the freedom to undertake – that is, in the sense of the conatus – is consequently nothing other than the freedom to desire and to set out in pursuit of one’s desire. That is why, outside the restrictions a society deems it appropriate to stipulate, free enterprise enjoys a kind of a priori obviousness. Noting the legitimacy of the production of material goods, the entrepreneurial lament – this time using the specifically capitalist meaning of the expression – repeatedly draws on this source in order to challenge any imposition of limits on ‘free enterprise’: ‘I have a desire that conforms to the division of labour and I am prevented from pursuing it.’ [...]

—p.2 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago
7

[...] Marx and Polanyi among others have amply shown how the conditions for proletarianisation emerged, notably through the enclosure of the commons. In the wake of that act of the most complete, organised immiseration, people were left with only one option, the sale of their undifferentiated labour-power.

It is tedious to have to repeat such trivial and obvious facts, yet necessary inasmuch as contemporary fictions, built on ‘work enrichment’, ‘participative management’, ‘employee empowerment’ and other programmes of ‘self-realisation’ are successfully erasing the memory of that original truth about the employment relation: that it is a relation of dependence, a relation between agents in which one holds the conditions for the material reproduction of the other, and that this is the permanent backdrop and the immoveable foundation for anything that unfolds on top of it. [...] all the incentives that the capitalist employment relation successively put on stage in order to enrich its scenery and elicit more refined interests in the workplace – interests such as advancement, socialising, ‘fulfilment’ – can collapse at any moment, leaving only the indestructible foundation of material dependence, a stark backdrop of menace hanging over life newly made bare.

that closing line is quite poetic

—p.7 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago

[...] Marx and Polanyi among others have amply shown how the conditions for proletarianisation emerged, notably through the enclosure of the commons. In the wake of that act of the most complete, organised immiseration, people were left with only one option, the sale of their undifferentiated labour-power.

It is tedious to have to repeat such trivial and obvious facts, yet necessary inasmuch as contemporary fictions, built on ‘work enrichment’, ‘participative management’, ‘employee empowerment’ and other programmes of ‘self-realisation’ are successfully erasing the memory of that original truth about the employment relation: that it is a relation of dependence, a relation between agents in which one holds the conditions for the material reproduction of the other, and that this is the permanent backdrop and the immoveable foundation for anything that unfolds on top of it. [...] all the incentives that the capitalist employment relation successively put on stage in order to enrich its scenery and elicit more refined interests in the workplace – interests such as advancement, socialising, ‘fulfilment’ – can collapse at any moment, leaving only the indestructible foundation of material dependence, a stark backdrop of menace hanging over life newly made bare.

that closing line is quite poetic

—p.7 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago
9

[...] money, as the almost exclusive mediation of material strategies, ‘the digest of everything’, became the object of meta-desire – the obligatory gateway through which all other (market) desires must pass.

—p.9 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago

[...] money, as the almost exclusive mediation of material strategies, ‘the digest of everything’, became the object of meta-desire – the obligatory gateway through which all other (market) desires must pass.

—p.9 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago
9

[...] currency the name of a certain social relation, and money the name of the desire to which this relation gives birth.

Michel Aglietta and André Orléan made the decisive contribution of refuting the substantial (intrinsic value) and the functional (convenient means of exchange) approaches to understanding currency, seeing it rather as a social relation, buttressed in institutions, and as complex as the social relation of capital. Currency is thus not a value in itself but the operator of value. Above all, it is fundamentally the effect of a collective belief in its efficacy as a means of repayment, since everyone justifies accepting the monetary sign by the fact that everyone else is equally and reciprocally willing to accept it. The production of this common acceptance of a sign, which is ultimately perfectly arbitrary since it lacks any intrinsic value, is the monetary question par excellence. This essentially fiduciary nature of currency, long occluded by the illusions of metallic fetishism, must be brought to light if one is to grasp that it has no substantial character and is fundamentally interpersonal – in other words, that at the scale of the whole society it is a social relation. Monetary institutions have no other function than to produce and reproduce that social relation of shared recognition and trust which, attached to some sign, establish it as a universally accepted means of payment. [...]

money for the anthropologists, currency for the economists (acc. to Pepita Ould-Ahmed, 2008)

—p.9 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago

[...] currency the name of a certain social relation, and money the name of the desire to which this relation gives birth.

Michel Aglietta and André Orléan made the decisive contribution of refuting the substantial (intrinsic value) and the functional (convenient means of exchange) approaches to understanding currency, seeing it rather as a social relation, buttressed in institutions, and as complex as the social relation of capital. Currency is thus not a value in itself but the operator of value. Above all, it is fundamentally the effect of a collective belief in its efficacy as a means of repayment, since everyone justifies accepting the monetary sign by the fact that everyone else is equally and reciprocally willing to accept it. The production of this common acceptance of a sign, which is ultimately perfectly arbitrary since it lacks any intrinsic value, is the monetary question par excellence. This essentially fiduciary nature of currency, long occluded by the illusions of metallic fetishism, must be brought to light if one is to grasp that it has no substantial character and is fundamentally interpersonal – in other words, that at the scale of the whole society it is a social relation. Monetary institutions have no other function than to produce and reproduce that social relation of shared recognition and trust which, attached to some sign, establish it as a universally accepted means of payment. [...]

money for the anthropologists, currency for the economists (acc. to Pepita Ould-Ahmed, 2008)

—p.9 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago
14

[...] It is the social structures, in the case of employment, those of the capitalist relations of production, that configure desires and predetermine the strategies for attaining them. Within the structures of radical material heteronomy, the desire for persevering biologically-materially is narrowed down [déterminé] to the desire for money, which is in turn narrowed down to the desire to be employed.

—p.14 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago

[...] It is the social structures, in the case of employment, those of the capitalist relations of production, that configure desires and predetermine the strategies for attaining them. Within the structures of radical material heteronomy, the desire for persevering biologically-materially is narrowed down [déterminé] to the desire for money, which is in turn narrowed down to the desire to be employed.

—p.14 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago
17

[...] Spinoza proposes an altogether different mechanism of alienation: the real chains are those of our affects and desires. There is no such thing as voluntary servitude. There is only passionate servitude. That, however, is universal.

—p.17 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago

[...] Spinoza proposes an altogether different mechanism of alienation: the real chains are those of our affects and desires. There is no such thing as voluntary servitude. There is only passionate servitude. That, however, is universal.

—p.17 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago
19

[...] If we understand by ‘finance’ the full set of mechanisms that allow agents to (temporarily) spend more than they earn, it is the ability to access money in the non-wage form of finance that identifies the potential capitalist. The fundamental difference is that money as wages is accessed in the form of flow, namely, in quantities that allow for the short-term reproduction of labour-power but do not allow a glimpse beyond this limited horizon, whereas money as financing is accessed in the form of stock, namely, with the hope of crossing the critical threshold of the process of accumulation by self-sustaining valorisation (in which capital grows by itself, thanks to its capacity to extract surplus-value). Thus the capitalist has privileged access to money-capital, rather than simply to money.

—p.19 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago

[...] If we understand by ‘finance’ the full set of mechanisms that allow agents to (temporarily) spend more than they earn, it is the ability to access money in the non-wage form of finance that identifies the potential capitalist. The fundamental difference is that money as wages is accessed in the form of flow, namely, in quantities that allow for the short-term reproduction of labour-power but do not allow a glimpse beyond this limited horizon, whereas money as financing is accessed in the form of stock, namely, with the hope of crossing the critical threshold of the process of accumulation by self-sustaining valorisation (in which capital grows by itself, thanks to its capacity to extract surplus-value). Thus the capitalist has privileged access to money-capital, rather than simply to money.

—p.19 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago
20

[...] to use a ballistic metaphor, one needs a launcher to ‘launch’ a business. One needs an initial amount (of energy/start-up capital) in order to be propelled past the critical threshold – the capitalist equivalent of escape velocity. From this follows a fundamental inequality with respect to the social capacity of individuals to pursue a capitalist desire to do something. Only those who hold the monetary initiative in the form of a stock of money can devote themselves to a career that combines their material reproduction with doing what they want, sometimes even with the constitution of a fortune. The rest are held down by the gravitational pull of their mere reproduction, confined to the horizon of the basal desire, a desire that conditions everything but counts for nothing, because it is only the prerequisite for the pursuit of other desires deemed worthier of attainment. It is as if the true order of desire (from the point of view of individuals) only begins past the satisfaction of this basal desire, for which the only solution society offers is to be enlisted through employment.

good metaphor

—p.20 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago

[...] to use a ballistic metaphor, one needs a launcher to ‘launch’ a business. One needs an initial amount (of energy/start-up capital) in order to be propelled past the critical threshold – the capitalist equivalent of escape velocity. From this follows a fundamental inequality with respect to the social capacity of individuals to pursue a capitalist desire to do something. Only those who hold the monetary initiative in the form of a stock of money can devote themselves to a career that combines their material reproduction with doing what they want, sometimes even with the constitution of a fortune. The rest are held down by the gravitational pull of their mere reproduction, confined to the horizon of the basal desire, a desire that conditions everything but counts for nothing, because it is only the prerequisite for the pursuit of other desires deemed worthier of attainment. It is as if the true order of desire (from the point of view of individuals) only begins past the satisfaction of this basal desire, for which the only solution society offers is to be enlisted through employment.

good metaphor

—p.20 Making Others Do Something (1) by Frédéric Lordon 1 year, 3 months ago