Alec Nevala-Lee

Thoughts on art, creativity, and the writing life.

Posts Tagged ‘Jean-François Lyotard

Quote of the Day

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Jean-François Lyotard

To think, at the very least, you have to breathe, eat, etc. You are still under an obligation to “earn a living.” The body might be considered the hardware of the complex technical device that is human thought. If this body is not properly functioning, the ever so complex operations…of which you philosophers are so fond are impossible.

Jean-François Lyotard, The Inhuman: Reflections on Time

Written by nevalalee

January 13, 2017 at 7:30 am

The rules of what will have been done

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Jean-François Lyotard

[Postmodernism] denies itself the solace of good forms…A postmodern artist or writer is in the position of a philosopher: the text he writes, the work he produces are not in principle governed by preestablished rules, and they cannot be judged according to a determining judgment, by applying familiar categories to the text or to the work. Those rules and categories are what the work of art itself is looking for. The artist and the writer, then, are working without rules in order to formulate the rules of what will have been done.

Jean-François Lyotard

Written by nevalalee

September 27, 2015 at 7:30 am

“This soliciting of emptiness, this evacuation…”

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Jean-François Lyotard

[A] sort of emptiness…has to be obtained from mind and body by a Japanese warrior-artist when doing calligraphy, by an actor when acting: the kind of suspension of ordinary intentions of mind associated with habitus, or arrangements of the body. It’s at this cost…that a brush encounters the “right” shapes, that a voice and a theatrical gesture are endowed with the “right” tone and look. This soliciting of emptiness, this evacuation—very much the opposite of overweening, selective, identificatory activity—doesn’t take place without some suffering…The body and mind have to be free of burdens for grace to touch us. This doesn’t happen without suffering. An enjoyment of what we possessed is now lost…

In what we call thinking the mind isn’t “directed” but suspended. You don’t give it rules. You teach it to receive. You don’t clear the ground to build unobstructed: you make a little clearing where the penumbra of an almost-given will be able to enter and modify its contour.

Jean-François Lyotard

Written by nevalalee

September 15, 2013 at 9:50 am

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