Saturday, 28 July 2012

On Organising Events

In what terms do we spacialise social praxis, in our conceptualising the transformations we wish to bring about?

We may attempt to effect the contours of the social field, to redefine the edges of what we conceive as socially possible, the shape of our communal horizons. We may encourage a particular trajectory, a progressive development or movement of a community's praxis from one set of co-ordinates to another, following a horizon whose continual receding we affect in order to shift the centre of communal activity in a direction designated as 'forward'. We may seek to redefine the social landscape of a community, the options and recognised activities which present themselves as habitual opportunities for engagement, through which collective life organises or orients itself. Or we may seek to transform the texture of social experience, the modalities of everyday life that lay below whatever threshold of 'event' or proper 'practice' pertains at a given moment.

The way in which the 'event' situates itself in relation to the social life into which it is an intervention will take on a different character in relation to these various models. To the extent that it seeks to extend the contours of the possible, it will seek an elusive jouissance, a moment of experience exceeding our ability to socially articulate it. To the extent that it aims toward a trajectory, it will cultivate a particular kind of inadequacy, a spur toward desire that will point its participants toward something beyond itself. In seeking to affect the social landscape, it will concern itself with a characteristic pleasure, and be attentive for possibilities of growth-in-repetition, for the capacity of this pleasure to act as a vehicle of both grounding and growth. To the extent that it seeks to affect the texture of social life, it will concern itself with the percolation of its effects 'down' into the communal soil, the integration of its activities into the semi-conscious of the community, where a circumscribed 'event' will no longer be necessary in order to perpetuate the practices or awarenesses that it fosters.

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