Architectural Affects after Deleuze and Guattari Edited by 9780367376505, 9780429355400

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Architectural Affects after Deleuze and Guattari Edited by
 9780367376505, 9780429355400

Table of contents :
Half Title
Series Page
Title Page
Copyright Page
Table of Contents
List of Figures
List of Table
List of Contributors
Chapter 1 Infrastructural affects: Challenging the autonomy of architecture
Chapter 2 Affect, architecture, and the apparatus of capture
Massumi, autonomy, and the autonomic
Affect and the culture of the baroque
The uses and values of affect
Coda: Axiomatic, code, and capture
Chapter 3 Furnishing Noo-Politics: Shared Space in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland
Surface affect
Engine Room flexibilisation
Shopfront paradox
Pipe | Time
Monadic divergence
Chapter 4 Deep architecture: An ecology of hetero-affection
A post-Darwinian theory of sensibility
Logos spermatikos
Towards an ethico-aesthetic paradigm
Chapter 5 Green affect: A “landscape music of the artefacts” in the Swedish Million Programme
Green affect in the “landscape music of the artefacts”
Green affect as storytelling
Green affect as integration
Green affect as awakening
Green affect as insurgency
Conclusion: Taking care of the music
Chapter 6 Walking-with architecture
Walking to the museum
Walking-with the museum
The return
Chapter 7 Deleuze, Guattari, and the non-subjectified affects of architecture
Affectio and affectus: A “geometric” portrait of lived experience
Perception, affection, and opinion
Percept and affect
Opinion and architectural phenomenology
Percept, affect, and the commemorative edifice
The Mémorial des Martyrs de la Déportation
The individuation of the memorial
The other memories of the memorial
Concluding remarks
Chapter 8 Affection for aborted architecture
An abstract machine
A micro-assemblage
Chapter 9 A city that could not be named
Urban clear-cutting
Spatial and temporal depth
Chapter 10 Affective witnessing: [Trans]posing the Western/Muslim divide to document refugee spaces
Documenting the undocumented
Witnessing as spatial practice
[Trans]posing across difference
“How to help her?”: Disrupting Madafah as a gendered space
Affective witnessing
Chapter 11 Starting with difference: &rchitecture
The Different
Embodied thinking
The collective and creative power of embodiment
Making bodies without organs
Studies in difference: &rchitecture studio
Think: Real ideas
Design: Creative behaviours
The different: Collective cultures of embodiment
Chapter 12 Regulating affect: Six scenes from the Westin Bonaventure Hotel, Los Angeles
1. Homeless
2. Valet parking
3. You’re like magic
4. Leather armchairs
5. Fifth-floor embrace
6. Snake dancer
Reflecting on the affects of the Bonaventure Hotel
Chapter 13 Supercritical manifesto (1000 future subjectivities)
Artificial intelligence
Chapter 14 Writing architectural affects

Citation preview

Architectural Affects after Deleuze and Guattari

Architectural Affects after Deleuze and Guattari is the first sustained survey into ways of theorising affect in architecture. It reflects on the legacy and influence of Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari in the uptake of affect in architectural discourse and practice, and stresses the importance of the political in discussions of affect. It is a timely antidote to an enduring fixation on architectural phenomenology in the field. The contributors offer a variety of approaches to the challenges presented in discussing the relation between affect and architecture, and how this is contextualised in the broader field of affect studies. Ranging from evaluations of architectural and urban productions and practices, to inquiries into architectural experience, to modes of affective inquiry in education, to experimental affective writing, each contribution to this seminal volume suggests ways of developing a more sustained approach to a crucial thematic domain. The volume will be of use to students at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels; researchers, theorists, and historians of architecture and related urban and spatial disciplines; the fields of social science and cultural theory; and to philosophy, in particular the studies of Deleuze and Guattari, and Baruch Spinoza. Marko Jobst is a writer and researcher based in the UK. He has taught at a number of London schools of architecture, most recently as Architecture Undergraduate Theory Coordinator at the Department of Architecture and Landscape, Greenwich University. He has published on the philosophy of Gilles Deleuze and performative writing, and is the author of A Ficto-Historical Theory of the London Underground (2017). Hélène Frichot is an architectural theorist and philosopher, writer, and critic. She is Professor of Architecture and Philosophy, and Director of the Bachelor of Design, Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning University of Melbourne, Australia. Her recent publications include Dirty Theory: Troubling Architecture (2019) and Creative Ecologies: Theorizing the Practice of Architecture (2018).

Routledge Studies in Affective Societies Series editors: Birgitt Röttger-Rössler is Professor of Social and Cultural Anthropology at Freie Universität Berlin, Germany Doris Kolesch is Professor of Theater and Performance Studies at Freie Universität Berlin, Germany

Routledge Studies in Affective Societies presents high-level academic work on the social dimensions of human affectivity. It aims to shape, consolidate and promote a new understanding of societies as Affective Societies, accounting for the fundamental importance of affect and emotion for human coexistence in the mobile and networked worlds of the 21st century. Contributions come from a wide range of academic fields, including anthropology, sociology, cultural, media and film studies, political science, performance studies, art history, philosophy, and social, developmental and cultural psychology. Contributing authors share the vision of a transdisciplinary understanding of the affective dynamics of human sociality. Thus, Routledge Studies in Affective Societies devotes considerable space to the development of methodology, research methods and techniques that are capable of uniting perspectives and practices from different fields. Analyzing Affective Societies Methods and Methodologies Edited by Antje Kahl Affect and Emotion in Multi-Religious Secular Societies Edited by Christian von Scheve, Anna Lea Berg, Meike Haken, Nur Yasemin Ural Public Spheres of Resonance Constellations of Affect and Language Edited by Anne Fleig and Christian von Scheve Architectural Affects after Deleuze and Guattari Edited by Marko Jobst and Hélène Frichot For more information about this series, please visit: Routledge-Studies-in-Affective-Societies/book-series/RSAS

Architectural Affects after Deleuze and Guattari

Edited by Marko Jobst and Hélène Frichot

First published 2021 by Routledge 2 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon OX14 4RN and by Routledge 52 Vanderbilt Avenue, New York, NY 10017 Routledge is an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group, an informa business © 2021 selection and editorial matter, Marko Jobst and Hélène Frichot; individual chapters, the contributors The right of Marko Jobst and Hélène Frichot to be identified as the authors of the editorial material, and of the authors for their individual chapters, has been asserted in accordance with sections 77 and 78 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or reproduced or utilised in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publishers. Trademark notice: Product or corporate names may be trademarks or registered trademarks, and are used only for identification and explanation without intent to infringe. British Library Cataloguing-in-Publication Data A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data A catalog record has been requested for this book ISBN: 978-0-367-37650-5 (hbk) ISBN: 978-0-429-35540-0 (ebk) Typeset in Times New Roman by Deanta Global Publishing Services, Chennai, India


List of figures List of table List of contributors Credits Introduction

vii viii ix xiv 1



Infrastructural affects: Challenging the autonomy of architecture




Affect, architecture, and the apparatus of capture




Furnishing Noo-Politics: Shared Space in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland




Deep architecture: An ecology of hetero-affection




Green affect: A “landscape music of the artefacts” in the Swedish Million Programme




Walking-with architecture




Deleuze, Guattari, and the non-subjectified affects of architecture KIERAN RICHARDS




8 Affection for aborted architecture



9 A city that could not be named



10 Affective witnessing: [Trans]posing the Western/Muslim divide to document refugee spaces



11 Starting with difference: &rchitecture



12 Regulating affect: Six scenes from the Westin Bonaventure Hotel, Los Angeles



13 Supercritical manifesto (1000 future subjectivities)



14 Writing architectural affects






3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 7.1 7.2 7.3 8.1 11.1  11.2  11.3  11.4  11.5  11.6  13.1

O’Connell Street sky view. Lorne Street, “REO” seats looking south. Lorne Street, step inscription looking north. O’Connell Street shared space. O’Connell Street inscribed plinth/seats. O’Connell Street plinth/seat detail. A concrete façade on Million Programme housing, as seen through some of the neighbourhood’s many trees. A pathway in disrepair and housing showing later façade renovations in a Million Programme neighbourhood. A path through a section of mid-rise housing and semi-private outdoor spaces in a Million Programme neighbourhood. Women residents gather on the lawn outside Million Programme housing to welcome returning spectators after a football match. View from the balcony of a Million Programme high-rise housing unit onto a forest and adjacent housing. Sculpture on the lawn of a Million Programme neighbourhood. Exterior view of the Memorial from the Square de l’Île de France. Image courtesy Wally Gobetz. Interior view of the crypt. Image courtesy Reg Marjason. Interior view into the gallery from the interior crypt. Image courtesy Agnieszka Eile. Peter Zumthor’s aborted Topographie of Terror Museums. Photograph © Ulrich-Schwarz, Berlin.  Identity crisis, Абекова Бүбүсара Алмазбековна (Bubusara  Abekova).  Divided Blackburn (Adam Kamal Najia).   De-colonised houses of parliament (Daniel McBride).   New typologies of spaces for autistic people (Meera Lad).   Alt-right filter bubble (Joseph Stancer).   Project development work (Naile Alanli).  A Black Hole in a Globular Cluster

41 51 52 53 54 58 82 85 88 90 94 96 121 122 122 133 185 186 187 188 189 190 214



The greater the extent to which architecture makes creative relays across the three planes, the more truthful the assertion that the culture of hylomorphism – imposition of form upon supposedly inert matter – has been superseded.



Nishat Awan is Senior Lecturer in Visual Cultures at Goldsmiths, University of London, based at the Centre for Research Architecture. Her work focuses on the intersection of geopolitics and space, including questions related to diasporas, migration, and border regimes. She is interested in modes of visual and spatial representation and ethical forms of engagements with places at a distance. Currently, she leads the ERC-funded project, Topological Atlas, focused on the spatial analysis of borderscapes. Simone Brott is an architect and theorist, and Senior Lecturer in Architecture at Queensland University of Technology. Educated at Yale University and The University of Melbourne, she writes on the politics of visuality and the architectural image in contemporary cities. Her books include Digital Monuments: The Dreams and Abuses of Iconic Architecture (Routledge, 2020), Architecture for a Free Subjectivity: Deleuze and Guattari at the Horizon of the Real (Routledge, 2016), and Architecture Post Mortem: The Diastolic Architecture of Decline, Dystopia, and Death (Routledge, 2016). She instigated the scandal surrounding Le Corbusier in an open letter published in Le Monde in 2016 declaring that Le Corbusier was a fascist which the French academy had whitewashed. A regular contributor to Log (Anycorp, New York), Brott has also written for AD Architectural Design (Wiley, London); Thresholds: Journal of the MIT Department of Architecture; Architectural Theory Review: Journal of the Department of Architecture, The University of Sydney; Fascism: Journal of Comparative Fascist Studies; Journal of Public Space (City Space, Italy); and The Journal of Architecture and Urbanism. She has lectured at Yale University, Harvard University, Boston University, the University of Michigan, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Strathclyde University, Glasgow, and the University of Melbourne. Brott is working on a new project on the financialisation of architectural images. Andrew Douglas is a senior lecturer in History, Theory, and Design at the University of Auckland. He is an executive editor of Interstices: Journal of Architecture and Related Arts. He has practiced architecture in both Auckland



and London and completed postgraduate studies at the University of Auckland and Goldsmiths, University of London. His research ranges across fields associated with urban philosophy and history, critical perspectives on socio-spatial practice, and gender and sexuality as these pertain to literature, cinema, and the urban imaginary. Hélène Frichot, architectural theorist and philosopher, writer and critic, is Professor of Architecture and Philosophy, and Director of the Bachelor of Design, Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning, University of Melbourne, Australia. She is Guest Professor, and the former Director of Critical Studies in Architecture, School of Architecture, KTH Stockholm, Sweden. Her recent publications include Dirty Theory: Troubling Architecture (AADR, 2019) and Creative Ecologies: Theorizing the Practice of Architecture (Bloomsbury, 2018). Hannes Frykholm is an architect, educator, and researcher. He holds a PhD in Architecture from the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm, Sweden, where he has been teaching the master studio “Infrastructural Love”. His doctoral thesis, Building the City from the Inside, considers entrance situations that occur between buildings and cities in order to develop new ways of investigating architecture and urban transformation. The thesis points to the threshold of three buildings as sites of a transformational relationship between architecture and capitalism, whereby the city is reconfigured through the extension of interiors onto sidewalks and squares. He is a member of FyR Architects, a Stockholm and Madrid-based practice exploring the relationship between architecture, infrastructure, and affect. Mark Hammond is a senior lecturer at the Manchester School of Architecture – a joint institute between the University of Manchester and Manchester Metropolitan University. His research investigates the links between ageing and various facets of urban development, including collaborative housing and neighbourhood regeneration. Since 2018, he has split his time between MSA and the Greater Manchester Combined Authority, where he develops research-engaged policy and strategy as part of the GM Ageing Hub. Marko Jobst is a writer and researcher based in the UK. He has taught at a number of London schools of architecture, most recently as Architecture Undergraduate Theory Coordinator at the Department of Architecture and Landscape, Greenwich University. He holds a Diploma in Architecture from Belgrade University, and MArch, MSc, and PhD in Architectural History and Theory from The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL. He has published on the philosophy of Gilles Deleuze and performative writing, and is the author of A Ficto-Historical Theory of the London Underground (Spurbuch AADR, 2017). He is currently working on a series of queer fictions sited in Belgrade, and editing (with Naomi Stead) a volume on queer writing in architecture.



Jennifer Mack is Associate Professor in Theory and History at the KTH School of Architecture. Broadly, her work concerns equality, power, and social change and the built environment, combining approaches from architectural history and anthropology. Her current research focuses on the design, use, and renovation of late modernist landscapes. She is the author of The Construction of Equality: Syriac Immigration and the Swedish City (University of Minnesota Press, 2017) and co-editor of two anthologies: Rethinking the Social in Architecture: Making Effects (Actar, 2019) and Life Among Urban Planners: Practice, Professionalism, and Expertise in the Making of the City (University of Pennsylvania Press, forthcoming 2020). She has published in numerous anthologies and a range of journals, including Public Culture, American Ethnologist, International Journal of Islamic Architecture, and Landscape Research (forthcoming), and is a member of the editorial board of Thresholds. She holds a PhD from Harvard University and an MArch and MCP from MIT. Aya Musmar is an assistant professor in Architecture and Feminism at the College of Architecture and Design, University of Petra, Amman. Her multidisciplinary research investigates humanitarian responses in refugee camps and beyond, seeing the refugee camp as a spatial phenomenon that embodies unjust global politics. She pursues a decolonial feminist critique and is interested in exploring ways in which architectural research bears testimony to injustice. Working across the University of Sheffield, the University of Petra, and humanitarian NGOs, Aya founded in 2017 the research-design initiative Borders’ Decay (?), which continues to address and respond to spatial injustice. Adrian Parr is Dean of the College of Architecture, Planning and Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Arlington and a UNESCO Chair of Water and Human Settlements. In her capacity as a UNESCO water chair, Parr was selected by the European Cultural Center to curate an exhibition for the 2020 Venice Architecture Biennale on Watershed Urbanism where she will feature DFW and its current and future relationship to the Trinity River system. She has published extensively on environmental politics, sustainable development, and design in the public interest. She has published several books, the most recent being a trilogy on environmental and cultural theory: Hijacking Sustainability (MIT Press), The Wrath of Capital (Columbia University Press), and Birth of a New Earth (Columbia University Press). She is the producer and co-director (with Sean Hughes) of the multi-awardwinning documentary, The Intimate Realities of Water, that examines the water challenges women living in Nairobi’s slum face. She has been interviewed for her views on climate change by The New York Times, television news, and other media outlets, and is a regular contributor to the Los Angeles Review of Books. Andrej Radman has been teaching design and theory courses at TU Delft Faculty of Architecture since 2004. A graduate of the Zagreb School of Architecture in Croatia, he is a licensed architect and recipient of the Croatian Architects



Association Annual Award for Housing Architecture in 2002. Radman received his master’s and doctoral degrees from TU Delft and joined Architecture Theory Group as Assistant Professor in 2008. He is an editor of the peer-reviewed journal for architecture theory Footprint. His research focuses on new-materialist ecologies and radical empiricism. Radman’s latest publication is Ecologies of Architecture: Essays on Territorialisation (EUP, forthcoming). Kieran Richards is a PhD candidate at the University of Sydney School of Architecture, Design, and Planning, where he also teaches subjects in design and the architectural humanities. His PhD explores the role of the literature of Henry Miller in Deleuze and Guattari’s characterisation of the modern work of art. Kieran’s research focuses on productive exchanges between architectural culture, aesthetics, poststructuralist theory (particularly that of Deleuze and Guattari), literary studies, and critical theory. He believes that striving to write better narratives about the built environment today will help to shape better societies yet to come. He acknowledges the Gadigal people of the Eora nation, the traditional custodians of the land on which he lives and works. Cagri Sanliturk writes and researches about in-between spaces/places and spatial practices of everyday life. His PhD research focused on the conflict in Cyprus, looking beyond a radical ideology of conflict resolution to propose an affective and transformative spatial methodology using performative narratives. Cagri completed his PhD at the University of Sheffield School of Architecture and is currently teaching at Manchester University and Loughborough University as a Lecturer and Design Tutor. Chris L. Smith is the Professor of Architectural Theory in the Sydney School of Architecture, Design, and Planning at the University of Sydney. Over the last 18 years, Chris’ research has focused on the nexus of architecture and the body. He locates this nexus between architectural theory, philosophy, and the biosciences. Chris has published on architectural theory and its dynamic relation with body theory, poststructural philosophy (particularly the work of Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari), and technologies of the body. He has also published on the complex intersections of architecture, the biosciences, and medical humanities. Chris is the co-editor of Architecture in the Space of Flows (Routledge, 2012) and Laboratory Lifestyles: The Construction of Scientific Fictions (MIT Press, 2019); and is the author of Bare Architecture: A Schizoanalysis (Bloomsbury, 2017) and co-author of LabOratory: Speaking of Science and its Architecture (MIT Press, 2019). Jan Smitheram is the Associate Dean of Academic Development in the Faculty of Architecture and Design at Victoria University of Wellington. She teaches undergraduate and postgraduate students. Extending work from her PhD, she looks at the relationship between performance, performativity, and affect within the context of architecture. Her recent research looks at architectural practice



through the lens of performativity and affect. Her work has been published in international journals, anthologies and conference proceedings. Douglas Spencer is Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Education at Iowa State University’s Department of Architecture, and the Research Coordinator for The Architecture Lobby. He is the author of The Architecture of Neoliberalism (2016), and Critique of Architecture: Essays on Theory, Autonomy and Political Economy (2020). His work theorises the relationship between architecture, landscape, and the production of subjectivity. His writing has been published in Radical Philosophy, e-flux, Harvard Design Magazine, New Geographies, Log, The Avery Review, and Volume, and in collections such as This Thing Called Theory (2016), Architecture and Feminisms (2017), and Landscape and Agency (2017). Stephen Walker trained as an architect and worked for architectural and design practices in the UK and Spain. He now teaches at the Manchester School of Architecture. His research broadly encompasses architectural and critical theory and examines the questions that theoretical projects can raise about particular moments of architectural and artistic practice. More recently, he has been developing a project on the architecture of travelling street fairs and fairgrounds, with support from the RIBA Research Trust. He is an advisory board member for the National Fairground & Circus Archive (NFCA). Stefan White is an architect researching and practicing the architecture and urbanism of social and environmental sustainability. He is acting Head of School at the Manchester School of Architecture (MSA) and Director of the PHASE Place-Health research and delivery group – working collaboratively to understand and create healthier places with UK government, regional health and care providers, city councils, registered housing providers, and local communities.


Chapter 4 epigraphs: Gibson, J.J. The Ecological Approach to Visual Perception. (New York: Psychology Press, 1986) courtesy of Taylor & Francis Group; Deleuze, G. Two Regimes of Madness: Texts and Interviews 1975–1995, A. Hodges and M. Taormina, Trans. (Los Angeles: Semiotext(e), 2006), courtesy of Semiotext(e); Manning, E. (2019) Toward a Politics of Immediation. Frontiers in Sociology 3(42). doi: 10.3389/fsoc.2018.00042, courtesy of Erin Manning. Chapter 7: Figure 7.1 courtesy of Wally Gobetz; Figure 7.2 courtesy of Reg Marjason; Figure 7.3 courtesy of Agnieszka Eile. Chapter 8: Figure 8.1 Peter Zumthor’s aborted Topographies of Terror Museum, photograph © Ulrich-Schwarz, Berlin. Chapter 10 epigraph courtesy of Dar El Shorouk. “‫األستاذة تتكلم‬: ‫” لكل المقهورين أجنحة‬ by Radwa Ashour © Dar El Shorouk 2019. A big thank-you to Jacque Micieli-Voutsinas and Angela M. Person for sharing with us the introduction to Affective Architectures: More-Than-Representational Geographies of Heritage.

Introduction Marko Jobst and Hélène Frichot

The allusiveness and inherent illusiveness of affect prove a seductive lure for architects keen to arouse the senses of those who venture into their constructed works, iconic and ordinary. Yet, this is to presume the stability of the subject who feels, on the one hand, and the circumscription of the built object that is felt, on the other. Affect has been taken up by architects and theorists as something of a novel material to be applied to the surfaces of buildings, producing shimmering and complex effects in technologically augmented facades, even collapsing cinematic images across urban elevations to produce something like a delightful “kiss” between moving image and building. Affect, we argue, has been rather uncritically enrolled as something like an innovative building product. Affect, a concept loosely if misleadingly associated with an individual’s feelings crossreferenced with the norms of socially acceptable emotions, has lent itself too readily to flawed architectural applications that forget the political import of this central concept. To counter this tendency, this anthology aims to emphasise the political and social implications of thinking with affect, of engaging the complex relay of affecting and being affected in turn. This anthology also explores the enduring importance of Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari’s philosophical work for rethinking a politics of affect in architecture. This won’t always mean that our authors make reference to Deleuze and Guattari, and yet the influential undercurrent of their legacy must be remarked upon. In part, the book also aims to demonstrate that the flaws and omissions in the discursive landscape surrounding the question of the political in the philosophy of Deleuze and Guattari are made apparent when confronted with the various regimes of architectural experience associated with the emergent qualities of affect. In architectural theory, affect, including its relation to percept and concept as associated terms, remains relegated to the conservative domain of architectural phenomenology where a third wave of depoliticised phenomenological work risks overcoming our field via object-oriented ontologies. On another front, evidence of the return of critical theory risks overlooking the potential of Deleuze and Guattari’s political message. In response to those who argue that Deleuze and Guattari cannot be deployed for the purposes of critique, or that they do not


Marko Jobst and Hélène Frichot

inform a specific and perhaps more affirmative notion of critique, we want to strongly disagree. Today, architects and architectural scholars can bear witness to an important history of the reception of the theories of Deleuze and Guattari in architectural discourse and culture. The legacy of these philosophers is complex and even contradictory, swinging between the loose application of formal tropes and the urgent political message we argue is forwarded in their work. The appropriation of a handful of Deleuze and Guattari’s concepts, from smooth and striated space to the fold, by architectural discourse and practice in the 1990s were forgetful of earlier accounts of the possibilities of a minor architecture as discussed by feminist theorists and practitioners such as Jennifer Bloomer. Concepts drawn from Deleuze and Guattari’s lexicon were subsequently deployed as weapons in the early years of the new millennium to argue for a post-critical turn in architecture and a celebration of projective architectures that are diagrammatic, affectively atmospheric, cool, and easy in their performance. In both cases, the political potency of Deleuze and Guattari’s project was rendered mute. Where disciplines outside architecture have long drawn on the political and critical potential of the work of Deleuze and Guattari, architecture has lagged behind. While this oversight has been partially redressed in the past half-decade or so, Deleuze and Guattari’s philosophy is still not sufficiently acknowledged in terms of its geopolitical and ecological message. The recent revival of modes of critical theory in architecture can be seen as the marker of a frustrated encounter between Deleuze and Guattari and the theory of architectural affect, compounded by the weakness inherent in the theoretical models currently used to grasp the experience of architecture in all its sociopolitical complexity. The issue of Deleuze’s supposedly dubious political reach manifests itself in architecture in ways that have strongly influenced the discourse of architectural theory and critique into the twenty-first century. Associated with a form of machinic vitalism, not to mention a perceived conceptual obscurantism, Deleuze’s oeuvre inspires a circle of dedicated architectural theorists, yet remains the target of a resurgent critical theory, whose negative assessments of Deleuze hinge on an assumption that his work lends itself to being co-opted by neoliberal agendas, as argued by Spencer (2016) and Lahiji (2016). The outcome, we argue, is that discourse drawing on Deleuze and Guattari’s oeuvre is repeatedly cast in the light of a false dichotomy: the split between the critical and political on the one hand (still rooted in the postulates of the Frankfurt School) and a vaguely affirmative and vitalist endeavour oriented favourably towards emergent technologies, on the other. The troubled relationship between architectural theory and architectural practice and its proponents within the architectural academe – Patrick Schumacher being an extreme example here of how far architecture can tend toward a populist, right-wing politics – muddies the issue further by placing an overemphasis on directly translating philosophical concepts into design methods and building practices. It is here that the work of Félix Guattari often emerges as the more palatable alternative in architectural theory, due in no small measure to its ecological focus, offering a more obvious route into the pressing concerns



of the Anthropocene as rendered vivid in the work of such architectural scholars as Rawes (2013) and Tyszczuk and Walker (2010). A systematic approach to affect at the scale of our still decidedly human bodies and their relation to collective bodies politic is missing from architectural discourse, with phenomenology repeatedly filling the vacuum with answers underwritten by a form of regressive humanism. The apparent unity of our human bodies and the equally dubious unity of architectural objects are the ground claimed too easily by the more conservative forms of architectural humanism from the second-wave architectural phenomenology of Juhani Pallasmaa to the vacuous promise of object-oriented ontologies currently making inroads into architectural thinking and doing (see Gannon et al., 2015; Gage, 2015; Harman, 2017). At the scale of the urban, affect seems easier to theorise, involving as it does a variety of processes, as discussed by Ballantyne and Smith (2011), Amin and Thrift (2016), and Dovey and Pafka (2017). What requires further consideration is the complex interplay between the experience of individual bodies, human and non-human, and their environments, political and ecological, which can likewise be understood as complex compositions interthread with affect and percept. This anthology details the ways in which affect can be approached as a political concern, and how the legacy of Deleuze and Guattari in a thinking with affect offers approaches that are highly political, and not only aesthetic. Our primary encounters with architecture are still overwhelmingly analogue, if complex, and immediate, in that our bodies meet the bodies of their material environments as producers, as well as users. Conservative appeals to second- and third-wave architectural phenomenology, post-human inspired technophilia, and a return to a Frankfurt School–inspired critical theory all remain inadequate in offering an account of the role of affect in architectural discourse and production. Beyond the contribution we make to Deleuze and Guattari studies, the urgency of this project responds to the technological and environmental changes we confront. From radical advances in technologies associated with immersive and augmented environments, to globalised climatic and environmental crises, and radically transforming corporeal paradigms and their troubled socio-political milieus, an affect theory for architecture, and affect as formulated specifically by Deleuze and Guattari, enable us to extend the reach of our understanding of affect as a highly political concept. At its most ambitious, this anthology shows that affect lies at the core of architecture: a concept whose repercussions can be observed far beyond its seemingly modest reach. The title of this anthology, Architectural Affects after Deleuze and Guattari, reflects the route via which the term “affect” entered the discourse of architecture. Through Spinoza: Practical Philosophy and What is Philosophy?, both Deleuze on his own and in collaboration with Guattari opened up approaches to affect as a concept affiliated with, but distinct from feeling and emotion (in the case of the former volume), as well as in disciplinary terms (in the case of the latter), making the discussion doubly relevant to architecture. Affect, furthermore, proved crucial to Deleuze’s cinema books (1986, 1989), where the affection-image plays


Marko Jobst and Hélène Frichot

a powerful role at the interval between perception and action, a role that is easily taken up in an apprehension of architecture as a mediated phenomenon procuring proliferating images. One route that was taken up in architecture was affiliated with the Spinozist approach to affect, which was most visible – and appropriated as such – in the work of Massumi (1995, 2002). The other, based on What is Philosophy?, was central to Elizabeth Grosz’s Chaos, Territory, Art (2008). Both of these scholars, the first a philosopher and social theorist, the second a feminist philosopher, have frequently intersected with architectural discursive milieus. Grosz, for instance, was a regular at the series of ANY conferences through the late 1990s, convened by Cynthia Davidson, compiling her contributions to those conferences in her book, Architecture from the Outside (2001). Massumi, as well as Manuel DeLanda, was very much the go-to for architects engaged early in the “digital turn” in architecture. It is Massumi who appears to have made a stronger imprint on the way theorisations of affect were taken up in architecture, as detailed by Frichot in her contribution to this volume. As this anthology shows, the prominence of the Deleuze–Spinoza approach remains vital to architectural discourse, and at the same time, this influence is complemented by a diversity of other thinkers for affect. The authors in this anthology vary in how they approach what it means to consider architectural affects after Deleuze and Guattari. From following closely in the Deleuze–Spinoza vein (Richards, &rchitecture, Frichot), to not following in much detail at all (Radman, Parr), to inviting abandonment, or at least a radical re-evaluation of this heritage (Brott, Spencer). Most contributors confirm, nonetheless, that there is some mileage in utilising Deleuze and Guattari, in particular when it comes to the political aspects of their project. Affect itself is used here as a central issue to be elaborated on and interrogated for architectural implications (Richards, Awan and Musmar), and beyond that for rethinking the urban interior (Frykholm), as well as the occupation of urban landscape conditions (Mack). In some instances, it is deployed as one of several in a constellation of concepts and propositions under consideration (Douglas, Smith). It is also worth noting once again that phenomenology, as that architectural “go-to” domain for feeling, sensation, and perpetually depoliticised affect (discussed as such in Richards’s entry), remains an architectural given, against which not only Spinoza–Deleuze but also any other overtly political theory of affect provides an antidote. It is the aim of this anthology to work not so much against phenomenological takes on architecture in the broad theoretical territory that can be said to unfold around affect (which have been a niche, if highly visible endeavour in recent years anyway), but to demonstrate the ways in which these traditional concerns of architectural phenomenology remain deeply limited. Beyond architecture, the trajectory from the Affect Theory Reader (2010) to Affective Societies: Key Concepts (2019) – if these can be taken as representative of the “state of play” in the field at the outset and end of that decade – shows a move away, or sideways perhaps, from the focus on affirmation (as noted by Spencer in his essay in this anthology) and towards a freshly urgent political onus,



one arguably closer to traditional modes of critique and increasingly wary of capitalist appropriations of affect, both as a concept and as experience. As though affect could be managed as so much raw experience. As the first paragraph of the introduction to Affective Societies: Key Concepts demonstrates: Affect and emotion have come to dominate discourse on social and political life at the beginning of the 21st century. In politics, the rise of populism and new styles of political contestation are frequently described with reference to their emotionalizing and affectively polarizing qualities. Surging religious conflicts across the globe are portrayed through an affective lens, highlighting the importance of anger, rage, offense, and indignation for prolonged conflict. Capitalist economies are increasingly understood as exploiting not only people’s cognitive and bodily capacities, but also their feelings and emotions. Practices of social media often come with intensified displays of affect, frequently addressed adversely at individuals or groups in an openly hostile or even violent manner. (Slaby and Von Scheve, 2019, p. 1) This issue – what affect implies as a concept, a field of study, and as an experience – is closely related to the academic realm of affect studies and its attendant publishing outputs, the so-called “turn to affect”, or affect theory. In short, the accelerating production of discourse rooted in the centrality of affect for its arguments (from which this anthology is clearly not exempt) risks producing an overabundance of viewpoints on the subject, while feeding the industrialisation of knowledge production and its attendant mediums, all of their problematic aspects in tow. As Andrew Murphie writes, regarding the new online journal Capacious: Journal for Emerging Affect Enquiry, where he issues certain cautions about the uptake of affect studies: Capacious has wisely positioned itself as a journal for “emerging affect inquiry … across any and all academic disciplines”. Yet elsewhere we find something like an attempt to coalesce – occasionally even to delimit and police – a field of study. There is now – tentatively, at times argumentatively – something we call affect studies, or perhaps as often affect theory. How can the tensions involved, between disciplinary requirements and “emerging affect inquiry”, be thought? Is a field of study, however it might be formed, a good fit for work with affect? On the other hand, would such a field of study have any future, when “categories traditionally assigned to the arts, the humanities, and the sciences are now colliding, collapsing, and converging in manners that are confusing, complex, and incoherent” (Butler, 2018)? Further, what relation does all of this have to a world in which “soils and trees are not only grounds for education but figures of education”. (Butler, 2018, n.p.) (Murphie, 2019, p. i)


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We don’t offer a definitive answer to these questions, beyond the desire to reinvigorate the discourse around affect within our own discipline of architecture, where its use and consideration has been so often reduced in scope. We indicate a number of directions for further study, some arguably more radical than others. There is also the question of the appropriate ways of writing of/about/with affect or writing affectively as it were. This is visible in a number of examples in this anthology, most overtly in Frykholm, Brott, and Jobst, where the way affect is written about is directly linked to how affect might be experienced in architectural contexts, whatever the subject matter of individual essays. The relationship between affect/affection, and affect vs feeling vs emotion, and so on, remains an equally important theme here, not least as a corrective to the still persistent hold of architectural phenomenology. Distinctions between affect/ affection, and affect vs feeling vs emotion, as well as the role of memory, are taken up in a number of ways by the authors in this anthology. While most adhere to affect as that which is prepersonal and to a large extent autonomous (often but not exclusively via Deleuze–Spinoza), others indicate its complex entanglement with feeling, emotion, and even memory (Mack, Smitheram, Jobst). “Spinoza’s notion of affectus was much closer to vernacular concepts of emotion than many affect theory radicals would like to admit”, Slaby and Von Scheve write. “However, we chose to keep a clear separation between the concepts of affect and emotion in play” (2019, p. 17). Similarly, we aimed with this anthology to indicate a number of approaches, even as the centrality of the Deleuzo–Guattarian approach to affect remains at its core. Rather than imposing a set of artificial groupings on the collected essays, the structure of this anthology works as a sequence of affective themes and foci, one leading to the next, but also resonating with other essays across the volume. We open with Hélène Frichot’s take on the stoppages and flows of infrastructural affects traversing architectural support systems amid the to and fro of human and non-human encounters. This affective reorientation proposes a corrective to architecture’s perennial focus on the supposed autonomy of the architectural object. Commencing with a critique of the discourse surrounding Deleuze and Guattari and affect in architecture, Frichot expands into the global questions pertinent to our current, exceptional moment during the COVID-19 global pandemic. We are still in its grip as the development of this anthology of essays comes to its point of culmination. Frichot’s essay is followed by Douglas Spencer’s critique of the autonomy of affect as developed by Massumi and taken up in architecture. As with his book The Architecture of Neoliberalism, Spencer insists on showing the ways in which affect has played into the hands of neoliberal approaches to architectural practice as well as theory. He concludes with a reflection on the political potential of the Deleuzo–Guttarian project. Andrew Douglas continues with Spencer’s question of neoliberal capitalism, while expanding on Frichot’s notion of affect in relation to infrastructures in the case of the shared spaces in Tāmaki Makaurau/Auckland by drawing on noo-politics in relation to “liveability” discourse. Andrej Radman’s contribution interrogates J. J. Gibson’s concept



of affordance as affiliated with affect and crucial for an “ecological theory of immediate perception that constitutes an alternative to the digital informationprocessing paradigm”. As Radman contends, this is a deeply political approach. In a shift of tack and tone, Jennifer Mack offers a review of “green affect” as experienced and fought for in Stockholm, Sweden, in the context of modernist housing projects and their attendant green areas. In showing the affective relations forged by the inhabitants to landscaping in the oft-maligned areas of the city, she brings into focus an important aspect of urban experience in its social and political implications. Following from Mack, Jan Smitheram’s contribution homes in on the seemingly fleeting event of a parent walking with her child to, around, and from the Louvre-Lens Museum, in Lens, France, to show the affective texture and political grain found in the “ordinary affects” of architecture and landscape (a term borrowed from Kathleen Stewart). Remaining in France, but shifting into starker political territory, Kieran Richards writes about Mémorial des Martyrs de la Déportation, a commemorative edifice on the Île de la Cité of Paris. In building on Deleuze–Spinoza as well as Deleuze and Guattari in What is Philosophy? to address both affect and percept, Richards interrogates the experience of commemorative architecture and the way “different affective orientations inform the historical narrative”. In turn, Chris L. Smith’s chapter questions the “affective politics of an architectural event” through the notions of power (derived from Foucault) and desire (Deleuze) by looking at Peter Zumthor’s demolished staircase towers on a site charged with the history of Nazi power in Berlin. Smith indicates a way of understanding power as an “affection of desire”, a Deleuzian proposition transposed to the context of architecture. Furthering the importance of the political orientation of affect, Adrian Parr’s contribution looks at the conditions of the spatial and temporal depth of cities when flattened by conflict, which she deems of relevance in the context of affect inquiry. Parr proposes a way of thinking through the notion of “urban clearcutting”, a term borrowed from ecology, and queries the ways in which spatial depth might be “reintroduced into a city without being co-opted by neoliberal re-building and development initiatives”. Continuing in this vein, but now building on pedagogical relations, Nishat Awan and Aya Musmar look at the spaces of the refugee camp in relation to architectural education and student participation in these highly charged and politicised sites. They develop a nuanced affective approach to dealing with refugee spaces through “affective witnessing”. Stefan White, Stephen Walker, Mark Hammond, and Cagri Sanliturk expand further on the notion of education in relation to affect, in this case via Deleuze–Spinoza and the philosophical question of difference, by detailing a series of projects developed as part of the MA design studio their collective, &rchitecture, runs at the Manchester School of Architecture, UK. The final three chapters test modes of writing architecture with affect in mind. Hannes Frykholm’s contribution revisits the much-examined Westin Bonaventure Hotel in Los Angeles and aims to show, through the use of careful descriptions of small-scale events, the importance of what he terms “low-intensity affects”. In


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doing so, Frykholm challenges received wisdom about the place of affect in architecture and its relationship to neoliberal agendas. Following this, Simone Brott’s “Supercritical Manifesto” pushes the envelope of the theoretical essay in terms of affectively conveying the alarming realities of the world we inhabit. Written as a “distillation of media stories, tech breakthroughs, and hallucinogenic prophesies forming what J. G. Ballard might have called an Atrocity Exhibition”, Brott’s text takes the notion of critique to the realm of the “supercritical” by questioning its very form. Finally, the volume concludes with Marko Jobst’s take on Jack Halberstam’s notion of “scavenging” as a form of queer methodology, in order to pose a number of questions and make a series of suggestions regarding the affective modes, tonalities, and orientations that “writing architecture” might need to employ in order to respond effectively to the challenges the discipline faces in our turbulent times. We maintain that the question of affect, however philosophically framed and approached in the context of architecture and its histories and theories, is inextricable from the broader social realm. It is with this in mind that we offer this anthology: as a contribution to ongoing cross-disciplinary affect inquiry and as a timely reminder of what is politically at stake.

References Amin, A. and Thrift, N. (2016). Seeing like a City. Cambridge: Polity Press. Ballantyne, A. and Smith, C. L. (2011). Architecture in the Space of Flows. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Butler, L. (2018).The Otolith Group talks about O Horizon, 2018. Artforum, July 24. Available at talks-about-ohorizon-2018-76090 [Accessed 29th July, 2018]. Deleuze, G. (1986).Cinema 1: The Movement-Image. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Deleuze, G. F. (1989). Cinema 2: The Time-Image. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Dovey, K. and Pafka, E. (2017). Mapping Urbanities: Morphologies, Flows, Possibilities. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Gage, M. F. (2015). Killing Simplicity: Object-Oriented-Philosophy in Architecture. Log Magazine 33, pp. 95–121. Gannon, T., Harman, G., Ruy, D. and Wiscombe, T. (2015). The Object Turn: A Conversation. Log Magazine 33, pp. 73–94. Gregg, M. and Seigworth, G. J. (Eds.) (2010). The Affect Theory Reader. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Grosz, E. (2001). Architecture from the Outside: Essays on Virtual and Real Space. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Grosz, E. (2008). Chaos, Territory, Art: Deleuze and the Framing of the Earth. New York, NY: Columbia University Press. Harman, G. (2017). Buildings are Not Processes: A Disagreement with Latour and Yaneva. Ardeth 1, pp. 113–24. Available online: (accessed 8 December 2017).



Lahiji, N. (2016). Adventures with the Theory of the Baroque and French Philosophy. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Massumi, B. (1995). The Autonomy of Affect. Cultural Critique, The Politics of Systems and Environments, Part II 31 (Autumn), pp. 83–109. Massumi, B. (2002). Parables of the Virtual: Movement, Affect, Sensation. Durham, NC and London: Duke University Press. Murphie, A. (2019). Fielding Affect: Some Propositions. Capacious: Journal for Emerging Affect Enquiry 1 (3), pp. i–xiii. Otero-Pailos, J. (2010). Architecture’s Historical Turn: Phenomenology and the Rise of the Postmodern. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Rawes, P. (ed.) (2013). Relational Architectural Ecologies. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Rendell, J. (2017). The Architecture of Psychoanalysis: Spaces of Transition. London: I.B. Tauris. Slaby, J. and Von Scheve, C. (2019). Affective Societies: Key Concepts. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Spencer, D. (2016). The Architecture of Neoliberalism: How Contemporary Architecture Became the Instrument of Control and Compliance. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Tyszczuk, R. and Walker, S. (December 2010). Ecology. Field Journal 4 (1), pp. 1–10.

Chapter 1

Infrastructural affects Challenging the autonomy of architecture Hélène Frichot

Affect has proved a powerful lure for architects imagining that with good design and the best of intentions, affect can be managed, just so. The architect figured as stage manager of affect presumes a weak phenomenological position wherein architecture’s central remit is reduced to the pleasurable distribution of the sensible, rather than mounted as material support for spaces of political appearance. The first thing to assert about affect is that unlike the materials and details, drawings and documents that architectural practice usually manages, affect is not something that can be stage designed. Massumi (1995), who, alongside theorists such as Kwinter and Crary (1992),1 was one of the first to introduce the concept of affect to an architectural audience in the 1990s, explains that affect cannot be determined in advance. Affect is emergent and expressed immanently. When we finally pause to reflect on its prepersonal impact, the marks and traces it has left in its wake in the formation of subjectivities are what we call feelings, and then what we more generally ascribe to the societal ascription of the emotions (Shouse, 2005). All of which is to say, we cannot purposively design it into our built environments as we would an innovative material or an advanced technological window mechanism (see Spencer, 2016). This assertion concerning the elusiveness of affect is elaborated by Gregg and Seigworth (2010) in The Affect Theory Reader, where they outline the indeterminable in-betweenness, the shimmering, contingent and relational leaps and lacunae of affected and affecting bodies. The autonomy of affect allows that in their encounters and relations, bodies (of all kinds) will be aroused, and their capacities accordingly increased or diminished. And yet, we cannot know in advance what a body will do when so aroused, or what after-effects will be produced as an outcome of the stirring of affect. As Massumi puts it: “Affect is autonomous to the degree to which it escapes confinement in the particular body whose vitality, or potential for interaction, it is” (1995, p. 96. See also Massumi 2002). This is an assertion repeated in early discussions of affect, that affect is about openness and indeterminability. The moment we (designers, politicians, human subjects) attempt to capture affect, we close it down and it evaporates. A remainder must be left over, Massumi explains, so that the universe in all its potentiality can continue to unfurl. Affect captured equates to entropy and death. Affect circulating is

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what pertains to life and the process of living, animating a sense of aliveness and becoming together (Massumi, 1995, p. 97). Simply, the argument for the autonomy of affect insures the ongoing upsurge, the open-ended possibilities of a life. And yet, some wariness, even reserve is required here in response to these early accounts of affect, because such qualities as “shimmering”, “elusive”, “slippery”, “open-ended” at the same time risk overlooking the margin of possibility in which affect might nevertheless be managed toward nefarious ends. Simply to say, it remains crucial to stay awake to the political – biopolitical and noopolitical – uses of affect. In 2004, Nigel Thrift could remark upon the “neglect of the affective register of cities” and “the neglect of affect in current urban literature” (p. 58), but the research landscape has subsequently transformed, and there is ample evidence of a growing awareness of the powers of affect in recognised research domains such as affect studies and/or affect theory (see, for instance, Slaby and Scheve, 2019). Distinct from Massumi whose early work demonstrates the disarticulation of affect from intended meaning and desired outcome, Thrift draws urgent attention to the ways in which affect might be instrumentalised. He goes so far as to argue that now affect is more and more likely to be actively engineered with the result that it is becoming something more akin to the networks of pipes and cables that are of such importance in providing the basic mechanics and root textures of urban life. (2004, p. 58) Thrift holds out hope, at this juncture, that an understanding of the power of affect could lead to better political practices “that value democracy as functional disunity” (p. 75). For Thrift, affect is clearly a political matter, and while affect may be stirred at a prepersonal level, it will inevitably resolve itself one way or another amid a concrete state of affairs, at which juncture, something must be done, some critical response made. What is of particular interest, for the purposes of this chapter, is the passing connection Thrift makes between affect and infrastructural systems, the “basic mechanics” of urban life, from utility pipes to fibre-optic cable. There pertains this sticky issue of the autonomy of affect, the after-effects of which demand critical and political deliberation, and then there is the notion of the autonomy of architecture. I speak of the presumed autonomy of architecture from geopolitical milieus, and from the complex infrastructures it contributes to supporting, especially where it turns inwards in its pursuit of phenomenological pleasures or in its pursuit of formal novelty as an end in its own right. This is an autonomy distinct from the legacy of political autonomy discussed by architect and theorist Aureli (2008), where autonomy is less autonomy from, than autonomy for, when situated as an alternative source of power mobilised to challenge the worst excesses of capitalism. With its legacy in Italian worker movements, autonomy for is about political responsibility, and is where Aureli argues that


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the theorist has a role to play (pp. 12, 83). Instead, I allude to an insidious form of autonomy that begs retreat from what Hannah Arendt has called “spaces of appearance” where collective bodies assemble around urgent matters of concern. Yet, this question of autonomy is a complicated one for architectural practice and theory, as autonomy, depending on who argues for its benefits, is either supposed to enable a critical position within a safe disciplinary centre secured beyond the circuits of capitalist production and consumption, or else, autonomy ensures the role of mediator on the borderland between discipline and cultural production (Carter et al., 2006, p. 7). In the swan song of the journal Assemblage, greeting the new millennium with its last edition, in the review section which follows the main bulk of the contents, Peter Eisenman is notably wedged between an article by Robert Somol (2000) and one by Sarah Whiting (2000), who, by 2002 and then 2005 again, would have joined forces to co-write an influential article (2002), soon followed by a guest editorship of a controversial early issue of Log (2005), both of which pitted critical against projective orientations in architectural discourse and practice. Here is a further locale where the heated issue of architecture’s autonomy is to be found, taking us back nearly 20 years now. In a recent reflection on these debates, Marcus Carter and Christopher Markinoski reflect approvingly on attempts to drive a “heart into the stake of critical theory”, evident, they argue, in essays by Michael Speaks and Robert Somol in the final issue of Assemblage (2019, p. 95). From Eisenman’s point of view (2000), the project of autonomy, for which he strenuously argues, is one that severs architecture and/or its elements from the sedimented history of the discipline, cutting it out of former systems of value, and rendering it in the process somehow critical: “autonomy is being proposed here as a means of unmotivating the architectural sign” (p. 91) he explains, and “criticality can be understood as the striving or the will to perform or manifest architecture’s autonomy” (p. 91; italics in original). Reference is made to Deleuze’s concept of the figural to support his argument, a concept Deleuze develops in Francis Bacon: The Logic of Sensation (1981/2003). It is further worth noting that in this last issue of Assemblage, as though in anticipation of her small, hot pink book, Kissing Architecture (2011), Sylvia Lavin pens an essay with the title “The New Mood, or Affective Disorder” (2000), arguing, on the other hand, that it was exactly architecture’s critical function that gave rise to an affective disorder in the discipline (p. 40), which resulted in the house (presumably situated as exemplary locus of architectural experimentation) becoming a “neurotic bundle of tics and compulsions” (we are no doubt to have Eisenman’s house series in mind here), while “affect itself no longer had a home” (p. 40). Beyond vaguely described emotions, it is hard to know what role or definition Lavin’s affect is supposed to play, should it be raised again to pre-eminence. Preceding their special edition of Log no. 5, Somol and Whiting write “Notes Around the Doppler Effect and Other Moods of Modernism” (2002) in an edition of Perspecta entitled Mining Autonomy, where affect is implicitly located as a matter of mood and atmosphere, characterised by a cool rather than a hot-headed

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demeanour. While hot affects are belaboured, overly complicated, indexing in their formal expression modes of over-intellectualised construction, cool is relaxed and easy (p. 76): both suggest a spectrum of affective relations, though it is a little challenging to understand toward what ends. All of which is to say, across all this furious American architectural discourse, issues of affect and autonomy emerge concurrently as concerns. And in the mix, the function of the critical is less constructive than a project of demolition, as Whiting (2000) remarks: “a reactive milieu makes it almost impossible to project a position because the anticipation of its critique is overwhelming” (p. 88), and this, she explains, is why architects and theorists have descended into personal narrative. What is at stake is whether architecture can retreat to within its disciplinary boundaries to undertake its personalised and idiosyncratic projects, or whether it is inevitably complicit with market forces; whether autonomy lends itself to political action, or not; and whether affect might be mobilised in either case, or whether affect trumps all positions exactly in that it always discovers a line of escape. While the best intentions of the architect to produce a defined “affect” in the inhabitant who encounters a designed environment cannot be guaranteed, there is nonetheless something to be said about how architectural spaces and the infrastructures they support either dampen affect, thereby rendering human subjects passive, or else enliven affect. While affect, according to Massumi, may be autonomous, which is to say, we cannot predict the direction it will take us in once it hits, nevertheless, because affect does circulate through a body politic, taking up human and non-human bodies in its wake, there resides the threat or promise of an enduring political impact (see Massumi, 2015). Importantly, affect here should not be understood as a merely personal affair. This version of affect is too easily confused with the still insistent legacy of architectural phenomenology, caught up in an anodyne understanding of affect in terms of how architecture might produce good feelings in the human subject so privileged. On the one hand, the reciprocal relays of affected and affecting bodies can be reduced to a bare and mean minimum, rendering affect dull so that it becomes an inadequate idea hooked up with a passive subject. On the other hand – and this is a lesson that is delivered through Deleuze’s readings of Spinoza’s Ethics – affect collectivised might just lead to a more powerful social and political composition of a body politic. This is where my argument for the role of infrastructure and affect can be located, amid the infrastructural risks and possibilities of affect writ both large and small. And so, in this chapter, I turn to a consideration of affect understood from the point of view of architecture’s role in support of infrastructures, which is to shatter into pieces any residual hold on the neatly circumscribed objet d’architecture. Rather than situated as discrete, here a sense of architecture is expanded into the understanding of the stoppages and flows of infrastructures and how they support and fail human and non-human subjects. I argue that it is crucial to acknowledge the collective impact of the circulation, the increase and diminution, of affect, and the compositions of bodies, human and non-human, that the rhythms of affect traverse and transform. This, I argue, is to think in terms of infrastructure and its


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associated architectural supports, and the affects that are thereby augmented or quashed. What is infrastructure, or what can infrastructure do? Infrastructure is everywhere, ubiquitous: it is in the fibre optics of smart city telecommunications; it supports the basic utilities of water, electricity, and gas; it coordinates massive transport networks, air, road, and sea; it is the socio-technological and spatio-material cement that glues everything together. The architectural support systems that are entangled with “infrastructure space” (Easterling, 2014, p. 11) include waiting rooms and warehouses, call centres and parking lots, toll booths and public toilets. These are architectures distributed across urban and periurban, suburban, hinterland, and rural milieus. These are the milieus where affected and affecting human and non-human bodies gather and perform, fail and succeed in everyday projects. Keller Easterling, architectural theorist of spaces of organisation, Special Economic Zones, global standards and their spatio-material implications, speaks of the “disposition” of infrastructural spaces of movements and flows (2014). She deploys a banal example, one reminiscent of an experiment in physics: A ball rolls down an inclined plane because it expresses the disposition to do so (p. 72). Here, disposition plays on the position of the ball (or any human or non-human actor) across time and space, but excludes a consideration of mood. We speak, for instance, of the child’s happy disposition, but when the child is tired, hungry, or upset, its disposition can quickly shift and transform. Here, affect is what unfurls in the passage from happiness to sadness and back again, a passage dependent on the environment in which some encounter takes place. An actual occasion. While Easterling describes the agency of the ball in terms of its relations, her emphasis means that the milieu with which the ball interacts is pushed into the background. Much more ought to be made of the inclined plane itself, which facilitates the movement of the ball. On both counts, whether pertaining to mood as an additional sense of disposition, and the environment as part and parcel of agential relations, too much appears to be left out in this account. If what Easterling calls “infrastructure space” is that which facilitates the movements and flows, as well as the stoppages and stockpiling of peoples, information, and things, producing global rhythms with far-reaching effects (global warming, sea levels erasing coastal settlements, devastated landscapes following resources extraction, species extinction, toxification and pollution, and so on, and so forth through the litany), then it is a primary space in which affect can be witnessed to circulate. And to stop short. While a first impulse might be to locate infrastructure as a product of modernity, yet infrastructure can turn out to be something more fundamentally about the occupation of landscapes, urban and otherwise, pre-modern, as well as non-human. Allowing infrastructure its environmental bent, Carlson (2013) insists that: Landscape is inherently infrastructural: it mediates, produces, facilitates, and transports. As a network of infrastructural function and flow, landscape (here

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considered to be a result of human modification of an environment) becomes the operative platform of human existence; where landscape exists, so does infrastructure. (n.p.) To consider the performances of bodies, singular and collective, human and nonhuman, is to locate them in an environmental milieu. Mobilising a theory of affect is one way of making us more sensitive to organism and environment relations, specifically the vulnerability and precarity of specific situations. To do this, I too follow the Deleuze and Spinoza line on affect, because here we can begin to grapple with a complex assemblage that includes the compositions of bodies of various kinds amid the support systems of environmental milieus all of which is animated by the circulation of affect understood as a rhythm of life or aliveness, and then life understood as that which pertains to the health of a body politic. The concept of infrastructural affects assists me to argue against the designing of spaces that attempt to determine affect in advance, and to argue for those spaces where the circulation of affect is supported in so far as bodies singular and collective are capacitated and environmental relations ameliorated. Infrastructural affects concern those affects that run through infrastructural systems. Less than attempting to predetermine affect by way of a series of design moves, the emphasis here is rather on fostering spaces of support where affect manifests as a powerful means of getting along together. To arrive at the importance of infrastructural affects, let’s commence in the mundane context of a city street. When reading the transcripts of Gilles Deleuze’s seminars on Spinoza, there is an oft-cited encounter that places us on a city street. The stirring of affect is demonstrated to be ordinary, as prosaic as a daily encounter. Deleuze (1978) describes a seemingly innocuous meeting between Peter and Paul: “Hello Peter, hello Paul!” It’s like the game a parent might play with a small child to distract it from its sadnesses: “Here comes Peter, here comes Paul… Fly away Peter, fly away Paul!”. A game of hide-and-seek, now here, now not here, where Peter and Paul are represented by small scraps of paper stuck to the ends of fingers, or by anything that is ready to hand. Imagine an encounter on a city street, I see Peter, who displeases me, then I see Paul, who pleases me. It’s a stupid example, says Deleuze apologetically, but he will use it anyway, and explains that he takes it directly from Spinoza. One idea follows after the other according to these encounters with Peter and then Paul, one idea increasing my force of existence, and one diminishing it, depending on the production of sad or happy affects that are aroused in the midst of these encounters. As a result, “when I see Peter, I am affected with sadness; when I see Paul I am affected with joy” (n.p.). Following such daily encounters – we all experience them – an ontological affective rhythm, a “melodic line of continuous variation”, can be observed to unspool, “increasediminution-increase-diminution of the power of acting the force of existence” (n.p.).


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As Deleuze (1978) observes, “it really is existence in the street, it’s necessary to imagine Spinoza strolling about” (n.p.). And to imagine Spinoza or ourselves wandering the urban milieu, suffering and enjoying one encounter after another, is at the crux of the Deleuze–Spinoza definition of affect. But again, what I want to draw attention to here is the facilitative background that makes any such encounter possible, the city street. The urban milieu, characterised by its publicity, the place where we locate ourselves out in the world, can be conceptualised as an infrastructural space or infrastructural support system. From streets and highways, bus terminals and airports, to the basic utilities of water, gas, and electricity, to the hidden data centres and information networks upon which we all now fundamentally depend (having outsourced our collective intelligence to the network), together these form the infrastructures of everyday life, and as such support or block the circulation of affect, thereby producing active affects or else passive sadnesses in the one so affected. So proceeds the rhythm of continuous variation between the two Spinozist poles of sadnesses and joys. These are the fundamental affects for Spinoza, manifesting antipathies and sympathies based on a diminished or augmented capacity to act in a world and in relation to others (1967, Prop. II, Part 3). The affects that stir up varying mixtures of sadness and happiness render us sometimes capable and able to determine how we will interact with our circumstances, or else incapacitated and therefore constrained by the will of others or the constraints of a given environmental milieu. One idea chasing after another, each hooked up with an affect, these movements and variations compose our powers of existence, individually and collectively, and they form a kind of “geometrical portrait of life”, as Deleuze observes (1978). The street is not such a stupid example after all, though further elements ought to be added to the “geometrical portrait” Deleuze describes, more environmental detail, more evidence of complex technologies, from surveillance systems to traffic lights, more evidence of material admixtures, from bitumen to street trees. Yet, these minutiae depend on the situation at hand, what’s happening right now. In the transcription of his lecture “What is a Creative Act?” (1987), Deleuze describes the distraction of the street, understanding this space as a milieu that looms forwards and waylays us, taking us this way and that. In reference, for instance, to Dostoyevsky’s characters who always seem to be caught up in minor emergencies, he speaks of a man who rushes out to the street as he has heard that his lover is dying, and he must go to help her. But once he descends the stairs and gets to the street, he encounters an old friend, or he witnesses a dog that has been run over, and he becomes distracted. He goes off with his friend for a cup of tea. Then, suddenly, he remembers again. His lover is waiting for him, he must leave immediately. The street, different with each encounter, enables or disables us, speeds up our encounters or slows them down. A body, any kind of body, as Deleuze explains, is defined not in terms of the development of form or function, but exactly in terms of slownesses and speeds, a “complex relation between differential velocities, acceleration and deceleration of particles. A composition of speeds and slownesses on a plane of immanence” (1988, p. 123). Neither speeds

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nor slownesses can be qualified as good or bad per se, rather it is a matter of what emerges in the aftermath of an encounter, what relations are formed, and what happens next. In her recent work, Butler (2016) also situates us on the street where she continues to develop the key affective concept of precarity. I call precarity affective, because it is that which places the affected body or bodies in a situation of sadness or passivity, that is to say, of diminished force of existence. Locating us on the street, she explains: “The street, for instance, is not just the basis or platform for a political demand, but an infrastructural good” (p. 13). When we take to the streets, as has been happening with Fridays for Climate Strike, and before that during the many women’s marches, we are arguing vociferously for access to and the care and maintenance of our shared infrastructural goods. When we take to the streets, Butler further observes, we must also recognise that we locate ourselves on a platform of protest that is itself an infrastructural good, not to be taken for granted, because an operable street is a facilitative geopolitical milieu. We fight for the street itself (whether or not there is sand beneath the pavement). She explains: The material conditions for speech and assembly are part of what we are speaking and assembling about. We have to assume the infrastructural goods for which we are fighting, but if the infrastructural conditions for politics are themselves decimated, so too are the assemblies that depend on them. (Butler, 2016, p. 13) Associating infrastructure with the public good, architectural scholar Cuff (2012) pointedly remarks: “Physical infrastructure is a victim of the present economic conditions from Europe to North America, characterized by an impoverished public sector at federal, provincial, and municipal levels” (p. 57). One could summarise such comments by claiming that a failed infrastructure is indicative of a failed state. Less a technological or even an economic breakdown, than the incapacity of a state to organise ways of living together at the scale of a population. Again, as Butler stresses: No one moves without a supportive environment and set of technologies. And when those environments start to fall apart or are emphatically unsupportive, we are left to “fall” in some ways, and our very capacity to exercise most basic rights is imperilled. (2016, p. 14) Butler argues for a fundamental and shared dependency on infrastructure: “The demand for infrastructure is a demand for a certain kind of inhabitable ground, and its meaning and force arise precisely when the ground gives way” (p. 14). Importantly, what is addressed here is the way in which failure, falling apart, the dysfunctionality of infrastructures provokes protest at the moment infrastructures are suddenly recognised for what they are. Infrastructural support systems


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are typically those that we depend upon for our very livelihoods, and yet which recede into the background, right up until the moment there is an electricity blackout, or the water is shut off, or the roads are blocked, or the border is closed. A recurring way of defining the role of infrastructure is to discuss how it is rendered visible at the moment of failure. As Bélanger (2010) affirms, “infrastructure remains largely invisible until the precise moment it breaks down” (p. 332). Likewise, Rossiter (2016) argues: “Infrastructure provides an underlying system of elements, categories, standards, protocols, and operations that, as many note, are only revealed in its moment of failure and breakdown” (p. 5). Failure then, of material infrastructures and the politics they inevitably index, provides a reason big enough to publicly assemble. Paradoxically, we exit the intimacy and shelter of the private sphere and enter the public one at the moment such distinctions prove to be unstable, because a failure of public infrastructure undoes the capacity to maintain the comforts of a domestic sphere. What can be acknowledged is the increasing indistinction between these domains, as privatisation takes command of the minutiae of the lives of a population, and daily life as such comes to be publicised in myriad ways, across endless digital platforms, uploaded into expanding mediatic environments. Beyond the individualisation of post-digital publicity, the haunting doubt that plagues Butler’s discussion is the worst-case scenario wherein the public sphere, understood as that place in which we collectivise our concerns, which we might also call a commons, is no longer available to us, or rendered so dangerous in terms of its environmental threat as to be not ventured: consider recent events in Hong Kong; Istanbul; Charlottesville; any urban locale in which you take your life into your own hands simply when choosing to gather with others to protest. The “space of appearance”, and here Butler draws on Hannah Arendt’s concept for the political action of assembling, cannot be separated from questions of infrastructure and architecture (p. 14). Butler’s ontological claim for the body (she means to be both specific and universal here) is its dependency on other bodies and networks of support, or what might be called infrastructural support systems (p. 16). Butler theorises the body as a certain kind of dependency on infrastructure (p. 21), and she goes on to insist that we share our dependency, our vulnerabilities with each other, thereby challenging the common norm of the sovereign independent body. Vulnerability and precarity go together to define a body amid its social relations. Our vulnerability is what drives us to form political compositions, seeking strength in our shared vulnerability. Hence the crucial importance of facilitative spaces for gatherings. Butler uses the formula of acting and being acted upon (p. 16), which is remarkably close to the oft-cited Spinozist formula of affect: to affect and to be affected. Each formula suggests a relay of power, understood both as the passage of political power, and as the capacity to act, that is to say, to be empowered or disempowered. Butler’s acting and being acted upon pertain more specifically to her work on speech acts, but much like affecting and being affected, this reciprocal relay can resolve itself in unexpected ways, producing an impact on bodies, collective and singular. At the core here is how Butler assists in the redefinition of

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infrastructure as more than mere facility, demonstrating how it is fundamental to both material and political well-being. Relations of dependency, the strength garnered in our shared vulnerability, are evident where Deleuze insists that an animal, a human, a thing, is “never separable from its relations to a world” (1988, p. 125. See also 1992). He explains this interdependency through the biological concept of ethology: “Ethology is first of all the study of the relations of speed and slowness, of the capacities for affecting and being affected that characterize each thing” (p. 125). Wherein it becomes clear that any human or animal, any thing, is articulated in relation to its counterpoints, what moves it, or else what renders it immobile, even disarticulated. He suggests, and these are rather anodyne offerings, the plant and the rain, the spider and the fly. Taking in the world, grasping it, prehending it (to deploy a term from Alfred North Whitehead), results in both negative and positive outcomes, the difference between, for instance, nourishment and poison, or discovering one creature has become another’s source of protein. Importantly, there follows a next step. In addition to the way things grasp other things, thereby increasing or diminishing their capacity for existence, beyond this striving for mere survival, this squabble of becoming, there pertains the relations of affect that procure sociabilities. Following this thought, Deleuze asks: “How do individuals enter into composition with one another in order to form a higher individual, ad infinitum? How can a being take another being into its world, but while preserving or respecting the other’s own relations and world?” (p. 126). This, I argue, is where infrastructures can be foregrounded in terms of the way they foster facilitative environments, places where things can happen, and where we sensitively share our vulnerabilities toward the potential of a collective strength. Or else, where infrastructures are neglected, thereby rendering sociabilities precarious, our common projects fall apart, and, as Butler explains, we are left out in the cold. I have introduced the anodyne milieu of the street understood as a fundamental infrastructure, which in a moment can become the scene of political protest, manifesting the concerns of a collective, even inaugurating revolution, but what happens when the street is no longer available to us? All of a sudden, the street recedes, rendered unavailable, as other seemingly less concrete infrastructures loom to the fore. The street slows down, but information highways go into hyper-drive. What has just happened to us? As I write, spaces of public gathering are being threatened by other morethan-human forces. A global pandemic has been announced by the World Health Organization (WHO). It has been the success, not the failure, of infrastructures that has facilitated the current pandemic, infrastructures dedicated to the transport of peoples, things, and ideas now lending themselves to the transport of the highly infectious COVID-19 virus as material fact and as a vivid concept. Matos and Corrêa (2020) characterise the conditions of the spread of the virus occurring “in the circuits of the all too human cosmos that humans build in cohabitation with viruses” (n.p.). In response, critical thinkers and commentators all pre-emptively


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rally around what has now become the single topic of conversation in demand of critical interrogation, from Preciado (2020) who, having caught the bug and recovered, asks: “Under what conditions and in which way would life be worth living?” to Latour (2020), who argues that the current health crisis concurrently prepares society for what the inevitable impacts of climate crisis will feel like. Both demand an overhaul of the habits of daily life, and both demand that we pay more attention to the imbrication of human and more-than-human actors. Everyone is clamouring around. The Temple Hoyne Buell Center for the Study of American Architecture, Columbia University, with its newly launched platform Power – the aim of which is to connect “infrastructure, politics and life” – offers itself as a “working resource” in response to the COVID-19 crisis (Temple Hoyne Buell Center, 2020). It too draws an explicit connection between COVID-19 and the climate crisis by seeking to redirect the efforts of architectural research toward thinking architecture at the scale and complexity of infrastructure. Likewise, the editors of e-flux journal (2020) are offering commentary on the role infrastructure plays: “Suddenly”, they write, it is as if circulation itself has turned against us, making healthy freedom of movement in the world a dealer of death. So your flight is cancelled. Your trip is over. We are staying in place for the foreseeable future. Exhibitions, symposia, gatherings of all kinds are postponed. (e-flux Editors, 2020, n.p.) Relays of affecting and affected, acting and acted upon, the to and fro, tit for tat of engaging in worlds local and global, both immediately before us as well as mediated at a distance, have become addled. Here it turns out that the speeds reached by relays of affecting and affected bodies present mortal threats to the vulnerable, the aged, the ill, the immunodeficient. What might be lost, and what found, amid this great slowing down? To tackle the highly infectious novel coronavirus COVID-19, gatherings have been reduced to a minimum, spaces of sociality closed. Cities and towns have been placed under “lock-down”, which means different things depending on where you geopolitically discover yourself at this juncture in time. In process, as it happens, right now, here and there, and as the editors of e-flux journal observe “certain infrastructures are laid bare in their fragility” (n.p.). Or else abandoned. The image of the football team playing to an empty stadium. And then, the moment when all the players retreat and the stadium closes. The progress of the virus has been rolling out with extreme celerity. Suddenly stunned: Images circulating of empty streets in capital cities: “The city without citizens”, as McGuirk (2020) writes, is inherently uncanny. Milan’s Piazza Duomo deserted at noon, Venice’s Piazza San Marco devoid of tourists, LA’s freeways free of cars, Oxford Street with the pavement to yourself, a fox roaming casually through Covent

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Garden. These are the spatial symptoms of an event, a rupture in ordinary proceedings. This is plague space. (n.p.) Beyond the bare life minimum of family units or couples exercising in the outdoors, keeping their social distance from others, the streets have been close to abandoned. “The necessary isolation and quarantine measures cause a relational shutdown, canalize the social relations to the digital platforms and put their biophysical infrastructures under permanent tension” (n.p.) as Matos and Corrêa (2020) explain. “Biophysical” because life is of course intimately tied up with the structural and physical heft of instantiations of infrastructures. Though the infrastructures upon which global populations come to depend now focus less on material transports than virtual ones, communication, information, digital mediation. You will have by now all familiarised yourselves with the video conferencing software called Zoom, and in its name recognise the speeds of affective connection it imposes upon us. Communicative capitalism presents the risk, as Jodi Dean argues (Dean, 2005), of the predominance of the perpetual production and circulation of “comms” over the capacity for democratic dialogue, call and response, affecting and being affected. Our globally mediated interactions are not so unfamiliar, having become integrated into our collective communication technologies, especially when we pause to reflect on the fact that, in the design disciplines at least, the “movement and circulation of images and words is quite literally what we all do” (e-flux Editors, 2020, n.p.). The information systems, the cognitive and communicative capitalism in which we are already embroiled, play a key role in the management of the circulation of affects that resolve themselves, more often than not, into feelings of fear and anxiety. And yet, amid the noise, and more optimistically, messages of resistance stealthily creep through, extending expressions of compassion and gestures of care. Did you also receive that note in your letter box asking whether you were in self-isolation and needed help with the shopping? Might these ordinary affects succeed in producing a greater, more equitable political composition? Or not? For the most part, we have returned to the self-isolating enclosures of our homes. Now we are at home, home may not be all we had expected it to be. Unsurprisingly, Butler (2020) weighs in on the current crisis remarking that the household as a zone of protection cannot be assumed to be a secure place for all. In her essay for the Verso Blog, where the crisis is also being covered as it unfurls, Berry (2020) argues “we must constantly keep coming back to the question of who is winning and who is losing; who is being protected and who is being blamed. In short, how will this reshape power relations and whose side are we on?” (n.p.). These urgent questions can be framed in terms of who and what will be supported by newly rejigged infrastructures post-crisis, who will be left out in the cold, who will be left to die? The aged have already been sacrificed in Spain, Italy, France, and Sweden. Such biopolitical questions are cut through with affective relations,


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and their noopolitical effects arouse what is always at risk of becoming noxious atmospheres of affect. How lives are managed en masse (biopolitics) and how this management likewise corrals habits of thinking-together at the scale of a population (noopolitics) are interpellated with how affect circulates (see Spencer and Douglas’s contributions to this volume). The architectures on which we depend as support structures will have to be reimagined across networks of interdependency and in light of relations of vulnerability. The unfortunate analogy that has been mobilised too often is that of war, and as Adrian Parr explains in her contribution to this collection, infrastructures upon which “basic survival” depends present a key vulnerability in times of conflict and civil unrest. Will we emerge out the other end of this crisis with a new world that has discarded capitalist destruction, or a world more repressed than ever by strictures of control? These are the vastly different ends of a spectrum of possibility post-COVID-19. The pandemic will resolve itself in either a weaker political composition or a stronger one, though that too will depend on your point of view. So much to be communicated, so many positions to articulate, so much to be said about the current crisis. It is this compulsion to communicate that begins to disturb me the most. That communication and control are corralled together in the late work of Deleuze (2006) should come as no surprise: “communication is the transmission and propagation of information” which is in turn “a set of imperatives, slogans, directions–order words”. And “When you are informed you are told what you are supposed to believe”, because Information is communicated to us, they tell us what we are supposed to be ready to, or have to, or be held to believe. And not even believe but pretend like we believe. We are not asked to believe but to behave as if we did. That is information, communication. Information, as Deleuze finally summarises, is the “system of control” (pp. 320–1). In conversation with Antonio Negri, Deleuze (1995) argues that: “We’re moving toward control societies that no longer operate by confining people but through continuous control and instant communication” (p. 174). Again, our currently Zoom-coordinated lives come to mind. To elude control, he suggests, the “key thing may be to create vacuoles of noncommunication, circuit breakers” (p. 175). Vacuoles of non-sense, of slowness, and a glacial slowing down may be called for, together with acts of avoidance (see Koch, 2019) and acts of creative resistance. Moves are required for a necessary recuperation, not of the insidious political kind, but rather in the face of exhaustion. Is it possible to imagine an affirmative convalescence of a body politic, after modes of transport grind to a halt, as commerce slows down, and capitalism splutters? We speak of a fast-paced world, as though such speeds were inevitable, unstoppable. We see now that such speeds can be abruptly stopped short. The streets and gathering spaces are quiet, cafés and restaurants are closed or reorganised as take-out joints, schools and

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universities have shut their physical doors, succeeding and failing in the “pivot” to online delivery, interaction, and assessment of education. Less a state of war, which has proven an unfortunate analogy, than environmental challenges confronting a complex body politic currently morcellated. I now find myself in search of “an immense slowness capable of measuring all the speeds of thought” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 326). Working slownesses and speeds together in search of just the right compositional mix suggests specific challenges for architecture, which might now take the time for some maintenance and repair, rather than construction. To disarticulate architectural concerns from claims for autonomy requires an acknowledgement of ordinary and humble architectures; architectures that are not grandiose, but that compose support systems for a sufficient life and a dignified death. Here architecture then becomes a question of survival via tactics of coping. The buzzing in my ears is immense, the quiet descending outside on the streets is deafening. What if slowness instead could be instituted, and the embedded architectural support systems pertinent to infrastructures enable this general slowing down? What if non-productivity could be celebrated? What if we agree on allowing long pauses to intercede between one imperative (or project) and the next? What if failure and exhaustion could be brought together under this banner of strength in vulnerability that Butler ventures? The outcome that will prove the greatest failure should we exit this crisis – assuming it does not continue to deepen, as it becomes further entangled with concatenating environmental and climatic crises – is if we were to “return to normal”.

Note 1 In their influential edited collection, Incorporations, it is worth noting that the opening essay is by Félix Guattari and the closing essay is taken from the works of Deleuze. Deleuze’s essay “Ethology: Spinoza and Us” is reproduced, where affect is, of course, a key concept. This essay is taken from Spinoza: Practical Philosophy, where it is published as the last chapter of the book, chapter 6. See Deleuze (1988).

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Carlson, D. (2013). The Humanity of Infrastructure: Landscape as Operative Ground. Scenario Journal 03 (Spring 2013). frastructure/. Carter, M., Markinoski, C., Bagley, F. and Bingol, C. (Eds.) (2006). After Narrative: Editors’ Preface. In: Perspecta 38: Architecture After All: The Yale Architecture Journal. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press. Carter, M. and Marcinkoski, C. (2019). Perspecta. In: K. Wooller (Ed.), 20/20: Editorial Takes on Architectural Discourse (pp. 93–107). London: AA Publications. Crary, J. and Kwinter, S. (1992). Incorporations. New York, NY: Zone Books. Cuff, D. (2012). Collective Form: The Status of Public Architecture. Thresholds: Journal of the MIT Department of Architecture 40, pp. 55–66. Dean, J. (2005). Communicative Capitalism: Circulation and the Foreclosure of Politics. Cultural Politics 1 (March 2005), pp. 51–74. Deleuze, G. (1978). Spinoza Seminar, Cours Vincennes, 24/01/1978. Trans. C. Stivale. Accessed 21 April 2020. Deleuze, G. (1987). What is a Creative Act? Recorded Lecture. watch?v=a_hifamdISs. Deleuze, G. (1988). Spinoza: Practical Philosophy. San Francisco, CA: City Light Books. Deleuze, G. (1992). Ethology: Spinoza and Us. In: J. Crary and S. Kwinter (Eds.), Incorporations (pp. 628–630). New York, NY: Zone Books. Deleuze, G. (2003). Francis Bacon: The Logic of Sensation. Trans. Daniel Smith. London: Continuum. Deleuze, G. (2006). What is a Creative Act? In: Two Regimes of Madness: Texts and Interviews 1975–1995 (pp. 312–324). New York, NY: Semiotext(e). Deleuze, G. and Negri, A. (1995). Control and Becoming. In: Negotiations: 1972–1990 (pp. 169–176). New York, NY: Columbia University Press. Easterling, K. (2014) Extrastatecraft, New York: Verso Books. Editor’s Statement. (2002). Perspecta, Vol. 33: Mining Autonomy (p. 7). Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press. e-flux Editors. (2020). e-flux Journal, #107 March. Eisenman, P. (2000). Autonomy and the Will to the Critical. Assemblage 40, pp. 90–91. Koch, D. (2019). On Avoidance. In: After Effects: Theories and Methodologies in Architectural Research. Vol. 2: Architecture in Effect (pp. 380–397). Barcelona and New York, NY: Actar. Latour, B. (2020). La crise sanitaire incite à se preparer à la mutation climatique. Le Monde, 25 March 2020. itaire-incite-a-se-preparer-a-la-mutation-climatique_6034312_3232.html. Accessed 29 March 2020. Lavin, S. (2000). The New Mood or Affective Disorder. Assemblage 41, p. 40. Lavin, S. (2011). Kissing Architecture. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. Massumi, B. (1995). The Autonomy of Affect. Cultural Critique, The Politics of Systems and Environments, Part II 31 (Autumn), pp. 83–109. Massumi, B. (2002). The Autonomy of Affect. In: Parables of the Virtual: Movement, Affect, Sensation (pp. 23–45). Durham, NC and London: Duke University Press. Massumi, B. (2015). Politics of Affect. Cambridge: Polity Press. Matos, A. and Corrêa, M. (2020) Viral Intrusion. Naked Punch, 31 March 2020, n.p. http:// Accessed 8 September 2020.

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McGuirk, J. (2020). Space Unleashed. e-flux, 14 April 2020. chitecture/at-the-border/325759/space-unleashed/. McGuirk, J. (2020). Space Unleashed. e-flux Journal, 14 April. chitecture/at-the-border/325759/space-unleashed/. Preciado, P. B. (2020). The Losers Conspiracy. Artforum, 26 March. https://www.artforum .com/slant/paul-b-preciado-on-life-after-covid-19-82586. Accessed 28 March 2020. Rossiter, N. (2016). Software, Infrastructure, Labour: A Media Theory of Logistical Nightmares. New York, NY: Routledge. Seigworth, G. and Gregg, M. (2010). An Inventory of Shimmers. In: G. Seigworth and M. Gregg (Eds.), The Affect Theory Reader (pp. 1–28). Durham, NC and London: Duke University Press. Shouse, E. (2005). Feeling, Emotion, Affect. M/C Culture 6 (2). Accessed 27 May 2020. Slaby, J. and Scheve, C. von (Eds.) (2019). Affective Societies: Key Concepts. London: Routledge. Somol, R. E. (2000). In the Wake of “Assemblage”. Assemblage 41, pp. 92–93. Somol, R. E. and Whiting, S. (2005). Okay, Here’s The Plan …. Log 5 (Spring/Summer), pp. 4–7. Spencer, D. (2016). The Architecture of Neoliberalism: How Architecture Became an Instrument of Compliance and Control. London: Bloomsbury. Spinoza, B. (1967). Spinoza’s Ethics and on the Correction of the Understanding. London and New York, NY: Everyman’s Library. Temple Hoyne Buell Centre. (2020). Power.; https:// Thrift, N. (2004). Intensities of Feeling: Toward a Spatial Politics of Affect. Geografiska Annaler 86 (B), pp. 57–78. Whiting, S. (2000). Critical Reflections. Assemblage 41, pp. 88–89.

Chapter 2

Affect, architecture, and the apparatus of capture Douglas Spencer

Massumi, autonomy, and the autonomic In their introductory essay for The Affect Theory Reader, Melissa Gregg and Gregory J. Seigworth note that affect is often, though not always, positively valorised. Affect, they observe, appears “as promise” (2010, p. 12). For Brian Massumi, this promise lies, as the title of his seminal essay on the subject has it, in “The Autonomy of Affect” (2002). Drawing on research into physiological responses to media reception, Massumi notes in this essay how affective states escape cognition, confounding existing models of knowledge in the process (2002, pp. 23–24). In testing, for example, the autonomic mechanisms of galvanic skin responses, the results reveal to Massumi the “primacy of the affective” (2002, p. 24). Affect escapes “sociolinguistic qualification”, it cannot be captured within the orders of the semantic and the semiotic. There is, in physiological experience, he concludes, a “disconnection of signifying order from intensity” (2002, p. 24). Massumi is quick to elaborate on the wider import of these revelations. Intensity – conceived as more or less equivalent to affect – “is the unassimilable” (2002, p. 27). The physiologically autonomic achieves autonomy in escaping codification. Intensity is missed, and missed out on, by the tried and trusted methods of analysis: Approaches to the image in its relation to language are incomplete if they operate only on the semantic or semiotic level, however that level is defined (linguistically, logically, narratologically, ideologically, or all of this in combination, as a Symbolic). What they lose, precisely, is the expression event – in favor of structure. (Massumi, 2002, pp. 26–27) The stakes here are those of a full-on Kuhnian paradigm shift in theory. Intensity, affect, and event are mobilised against the old orders of structuralism, deployed to underline the inadequacies of semiotics and the Symbolic. Fredric Jameson may take the waning of affect as symptomatic of the order of late capitalism (1991, p. 10), but for Massumi it exists there in abundance. In the absence of an adequate vocabulary with which to address affect, we risk lapsing into our old

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Lacanian and Althusserian bad habits, obsessing over structure, signification, and the psychological. At stake in overcoming structure and accounting for affect, in turn, is nothing less than the very possibility of “the new”. “For structure”, Massumi argues, “is the place where nothing ever happens, that explanatory heaven in which all eventual permutations are prefigured in a self-consistent set of invariant generative rules” (2002, p. 27). The autonomy of affect, its powers of “emergence”, its capacity to produce the unforeseen must be safeguarded from capture within the codes and conditions of the already given. Nevertheless, Massumi is drawn to legitimate these powers and capacities by assimilating them to extant philosophical currents, and ones of similar vintage to those of structuralism. Of the available “philosophical antecedents”, Baruch Spinoza stands out to Massumi as best capable of the “registering of affect and its affirmation, its positive development, its expression as and for itself” (2002, p. 28). Indeed, the title of Spinoza’s chief work – Ethics – suggests to him an apposite “designation for the project of thinking affect” (2002, p. 28). When it comes to the “virtual” qualities of affect, the realm of potential, of that which “happens too quickly to have happened, actually”, it is Henri Bergson who is recruited to stand as “philosophical precursor” (2002, pp. 30–31). In turn, and somewhat inevitably, the figure of Gilles Deleuze is invoked, as the philosopher “who reopened a path to these authors” (2002, p. 32). The final components to be patched into this philosophical/theoretical amalgam are those of “complexity and chaos” (2002, p. 32). Concerned with non-linear and emergent processes of becoming, and derived chiefly from the thought of Ilya Prigogine and Isabell Stengers, these elements have been especially significant to Massumi’s interpretation of Deleuze and Guattari’s philosophy in emphasising its (new) materialist affiliations (Massumi, 1992). The positions gathered together by Massumi collectively constitute something like a machinic assemblage mounted against the concept of mediation. At the “fundamental physical level” at which affect operates, there is, he claims, no mediation (2002, p. 37). Not only in this essay, but through much of Parables for the Virtual: Movement, Affect, Sensation, “mediation” appears as a kind of enemy combatant, a troublesome figure to be defeated through the assertion of a “radical immanentism” for which the philosophy of Deleuze is foundational (2002, p. 33). For the anthropologist William Mazzarella, the pursuit of this agenda is precisely what is wrong in affect theory. As he writes in the essay “Affect: What is it Good for?”: the dream of immediation, far from being radical, is in fact largely complicit with entirely mainstream currents in contemporary public culture – all the way from the depoliticizing sensuous theodicy of consumerist gratification to the neoliberal will to allow the “spontaneous” logic of the market to displace the “artificial” mediations of human institutions. (2009, p. 304)


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Something approaching this kind of perspective has, of late, been offered from within the field of “affect studies” itself. In the introductory chapter to their Affective Societies: Key Concepts, Jan Slaby and Christian von Scheve argue that the “long-standing assumption in social theory of a dichotomous opposition between affectivity and rationality turns out to be grossly inadequate” (2019, p. 3). “In research on affective phenomena”, they continue, “the dichotomy of emotion and reason has long given way to views that stress their entanglement and mutual co-dependence” (2019, p. 3). While Slaby and von Scheve don’t directly reference any evidence of this shift to a more nuanced position – where the immediacy of affect is no longer conceived of as diametrically opposed to the mediating operation of rational thought – their own acknowledgement of this issue at least attests to an awareness of the kind of concerns earlier raised by Mazzarella. Likewise, Slaby and von Scheve note the “involvement of affect and emotion in strategies of governance employed by state actors” (2019, p. 3), and that “neoliberal ideology increasingly addresses – and exploits – people’s emotions” (2019, p. 6). Mazzarella, though, presents an especially compelling critique of the kind of positively valorised affect theory for which Massumi’s “Autonomy of Affect” essay, specifically, and a certain Spinozan reading of Deleuze, more generally, have been central. Whatever accommodations affect theory may have made latterly in recognising the political uses of affect, its attachment to a specifically Spinozan Deleuze, and to the promise of affect in bringing forth “the new”, remain. For Slaby and von Scheve, Spinoza – read “through the lens of Deleuze’s interpretation” (2019, p. 16) – provides for “a basic understanding of power and an encompassing ontogenetic approach” (2019, p. 17). As Slaby and Rainer Mühlhoff similarly state in their essay “Affect”, “the philosophy of Benedict de Spinoza, read through Gilles Deleuze – is generative of further working concepts apt to illuminate the nexus between affect, power, and subjectivity” (2019, p. 28). Moreover, Slaby and Mühlhoff conclude their overview of affect theory by remarking on what remains unsatisfactory in recent attempts to direct this to more overtly political concerns. The “turn to the concrete, the material, the organizational”, they suggest, may be seen as a betrayal of the “‘promise of affect’ that springs from the pages of Spinoza… Bergson, Whitehead and others” (2019, pp. 37–38). This “wild beyond” of affect – apparently now under threat of colonisation by older established intellectual forces – is, for the authors, the “other spirit of affect that Massumi tries to bring out in his refusal to let affect be captured by hegemonic codes, discourses, or apparatuses” (2019, pp. 37–38). Slaby and Mühlhoff are evidently more sympathetic to this, the “impersonal vitality” of affect, and its Deleuzian derivation, than to the “fixtures of humanist inquiry” classified by them as “representation, normativity, the subject, intentionality, critique”, and castigated as a realm policed by the “deacons of intellectual high culture” (2019, p. 38). Even, perhaps especially, where affect theory turns to questions of power, it struggles to countenance crossing the divide it has created between itself and those older paradigms it is essentially opposed to.

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This is where Mazzarella’s critique of the romanticised reading of affect remains pertinent; as a challenge to the conception and promotion of affect as an unmediated realm held to escape, at once, both the instrumental rationality it attributes to modernity, and the means developed by critical theory in order to grapple with this. Mazzarella’s challenge to affect theory touches not just on the issue of mediation, but also on that of the production of subjectivity, another concern placed squarely in the opposed camp of “intellectual high culture” by affect theory. He notes, in reference to this, the “momentous” and troubling implications of Massumi’s position, particularly where it would seem to undermine those Foucaultian contributions to post-structuralism “in which power proceeds above all through processes of subjectivation” (2009, p. 293). If affect and the body’s physiological intensities are primary and unassimilable, both autonomic and autonomous, then what bearing do theories of the subject and the production of subjectivity still have on the analysis of power? While acknowledging the “considerable power” of Massumian affect theory, Mazzarella elucidates how this is undercut by the loathing of mediation and the dialectic that is its constant accompaniment, anachronistically, he notes, carried over from the battles waged in the environment of France’s mid-twentieth-century intellectual culture (2009, pp. 300–1). It is not just that the particular concepts of mediation and the dialectic are so virulently opposed by Massumi, but that conceptual thought of any kind seems to be castigated by Massumi that concerns Mazarella. Massumi writes that “if you apply a concept or system of connection between concepts, it is the material you apply it to that undergoes change, much more markedly than do the concepts” (2002, p. 17). For Mazzarella, this speaks of a significant overestimation of the power of conceptual subsumption, and one that in the process of its articulation works, conversely, to affirm the value of affect as its unmediated other. We need not have to choose, as Massumi suggests, between concepts and affects. Conceptualising affect does not neutralise or change it as such, and the relationship between any material and the concept it falls under is a dialectical one (as Adorno also understood this), rather than one of the absolute subsumption of the former to the latter. It might also be noted at this point that “affect” is itself a concept. All the ontological claims made of and for affect in terms of how it precedes or escapes cognition are premised on a disavowed performative contradiction. The point from which “affect” is enunciated is always that of a subject engaged in reflective thought: conceiving, abstracting, and articulating. More can, and will, be written below about the “concept”, but for now it is worth noting the anthropologist Michael Silverstein’s challenge to the binary opposition of concept to affect cited by Mazzarella: I intend this term [“conceptual”] to be inclusive, thus not making the distinction between “cognition” (“ideas”) and “affect” (“passions”) that seems to be a very local sociocultural legacy of European, particularly (post) Enlightenment discourse about the mind, the first being equated with


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ultimately formalizable representationality, the second with perturbation in organic physiological pharmacology and such. (2009, p. 306) Massumi, on Mazzaralla’s account, appears to be mining this opposition for maximum effect. Even if this has more recently been challenged within some quarters of affect theory, the appeal of this opposition for architecture theory, ever on the lookout for decisive “turns” through which to fashion and promote its own marketable novelty, has proven irresistible. The problem, Mazzaralla notes, is that “Massumi is asking us to imagine social life in two simultaneous registers: on the one hand, a register of affective, embodied intensity and, on the other, a register of symbolic mediation and discursive elaboration” (2009, p. 293). Rather than conceiving of these two registers as fundamentally incommensurate, Mazzarella’s perspective – highly pertinent to grasping how architecture operates as a form of power – is that the two may be understood to operate in concert through what he terms “affect management” (2009, p. 298). This, he argues, is a “central principle of social life and institutional survival” (2009, p. 298). For Mazzarella, “the labile terrain of affect is not in fact external to bureaucratic process”. Furthermore, “modernity is and always has been structurally affective” (2009, p. 298). Proposing, in conclusion, to “pervert Massumi’s terminology”, Mazzarella conceives of the operation of “affect management” as a dialectical one in which “we are always moving between immanence and qualification”. This, he underlines, is “not just an existential predicament”, but a political one, implicated in modern methods of governmentality, particularly where these are addressed to the public culture of the crowd, and where forms of mass publicity are involved (2009, p. 304).

Affect and the culture of the baroque Mazzarella’s argument concerning the political uses of affect resonates with that proposed by the Spanish historian José Antonio Maravall in his 1975 Culture of the Baroque: Analysis of a Historical Structure (1986), especially in relation to questions of modern methods of governmentality and the management of the crowd. Where Slaby and von Schreve suggest that it is with contemporary conditions of neoliberal and populist politics that affect has emerged as an instrument of governance (2019, pp. 6–7), Maravall situates the origins of such uses of affect in the baroque. His Culture of the Baroque presents a picture of affect as a mechanism of crowd control, a constitutive element of modernity, rather than a more recent turn in the operation of power that appears, somewhat conveniently, to coincide historically with the turn to affect in theory. In the process of his historical study, Maravall also offers an original treatment of the relations between rationality and affect through the kind of critical, dialectical, and subject-focused means disavowed by affect theory. Maravall’s study of the political methods and

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apparatus of the Counter-Reformation also brings the discussion of affect, and its governmental instrumentalisation, to bear directly upon architecture, arguing that this is pressed into service, alongside literature, painting, sculpture, and other arts, in addressing the particular crises and conditions of the baroque. For Maravall, the characteristic formal and aesthetic qualities of these arts are directly implicated in this process of instrumentalisation. Maravall observes that the crises of religious and political authority that mark the Counter-Reformation are accompanied by an intensified individualism, as well as the appearance of the crowd – the “masses” in a properly modern sense – as an unruly presence in the rapidly expanding urban centres of Europe. If individualism threatens the established powers in raising the prospect of intellectual autonomy, the masses threaten this order in constituting an organised and confrontational force ranged directly against it, actively contesting its values, edicts, and imperatives.1 Maravall elucidates how the arts of the baroque are mobilised to address these crises, arguing that this process, and the means through which it operates, constitute a “culture industry”.2 The term is apposite, even if jarring, used in this unfamiliar context. The “culture industry” is more readily associated, especially through the thought of Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer, with a critique of the degradation and rational instrumentalisation of culture as it develops in the twentieth century, in commercial and propagandistic uses of the mass media of radio, film, and television (2002). Maravall posits its origination some several centuries earlier than this, and as operative in the traditional arts. In doing so, he identifies the ways in which culture’s capacity to stimulate the passions is already, in the origins of modernity, conjoined to, and mobilised by, an “industrial” apparatus that sets them to work for its own ends. What marks the baroque as distinctive and original, in this regard, is that rather than straightforwardly breaking with the dominion of reason, it employs that which supposedly escapes reason – the passions – in a rational and calculating fashion. “For the new time in which the European societies were living” observes Maravall, “one had to find the most adequate – we might even say the most rational – mode for utilizing every extrarational resource, and one had to possess the technology for its most efficient application” (1986, p. 12). Precisely because the individual and the crowd become subject to knowledge in this period, because motivations, passions, capacities for excitement and stimulation are studied and reflected on, reason can now endeavour to manage these, argues Maravall: We are speaking of the baroque and rationalism because whoever was planning how to act effectively upon human beings began by thinking that they represented a blind force, but also that whoever knew that force would be able to channel it rationally – just as the impetuous flow of a river is tamed by the canal bed that is mathematically calculated by the engineer. (1986, p. 63)


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It is during the baroque, according to Maravall, that those seeking to secure and extend their power first recognise that “Human beings must be moved by acting with calculation upon the extrarational workings of their affective forces” (1986, p. 75). Affect is not “unassimilable”, not outside of mediation, but subject to it, since architecture and the arts are designed to intervene “in the motivation of the passions” (1986, p. 75). The aesthetic and formal qualities of the baroque are conceived as modes of attraction, distraction, and absorption; amusements contrived to engage and occupy the otherwise unruly passions of the urban crowd. The promise of affect is recovered, for Massumi, in returning to the philosophy of Spinoza, with its “registering of affect and its affirmation, its positive development, its expression as and for itself”. In returning to the historical and material conditions of the baroque in which his philosophy is situated, however, we find, at least in Maravall’s interpretation of this, affect neither straightforwardly “positive”, nor a form of expression “as and for itself”, but one already subsumed at its inception, as a field of knowledge and potential, to an apparatus of power for which it is a medium. Affect cannot be conceived as primary, other than in the finely distilled physiological or philosophical terms from which the bearing of historical and material conditions has been suspended. In treating affect as implicated in historically situated modes of power and governmentality – for Mazzarella neoliberalism, for Maravall the baroque – each presents arguments pertinent to addressing the uses of affect in architecture. But Massumi’s account of affect is also, at least in some sense, significant to this endeavour. Structure is indeed static, if not quite a “place where nothing ever happens”, and structuralism is essentially limited, in its methodological focus on the linguistic, the semiotic, and the Symbolic, in its capacity to account adequately for the phenomenal and the physiological aspects of experience. Yet, the recognition of the dynamic conditions in which affect operates is no guarantee of anything necessarily positive. However much Deleuzians, vitalists, and theorists of complexity might wish to affirm “becoming” or “emergence”, these terms ought also to be understood as the very basis on which the process of subjectification is premised. In the baroque, as Maravall notes, life was not viewed as something unchangeable after its beginning, always equal to itself, already over and done with from the moment the individual who lived it became established in the world and in society. It was not viewed as a factum but as a process: a fieri, a becoming. (1986, p. 169) Here, the conception of “becoming” as applied to life, the “fundamental condition of the plasticity or moldability of the human being”, serves as the rationale and the condition of possibility for power to shape the subject to its own ends (1986, p. 169). Likewise, while affect may operate, to some extent at least, outside of linguistic codes or discursive structures, this hardly vouches for any innate capacity it might possess to elude power. In fact, that which escapes cognition, while being

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nevertheless mobilised as an apparatus of subjectification, might be considered especially useful to power.

The uses and values of affect An effectively critical analysis of affect therefore requires that it is thought of – according to that well-worn Deleuzian refrain – in terms of what it does. This is how I have addressed the relationship between affect and architecture in The Architecture of Neoliberalism (2016). What affect does, I have argued, is to operate both as a concept mobilised to affirm and valorise “the new” and the “progressive” in architecture theory, and as an instrument deployed to act upon the sensory apparatus of the neoliberal subject in the seemingly immanent experience of built architecture. In both of these registers – the theoretical and the practical – affect is implicated in processes of capture, in being grasped and mobilised as a means of valorisation and control for and within capitalism. In this respect, my perspective resonates with that of Mazzarella, in seeing affect, and the claims made of its capacity to elude mediation, as being instrumental to the project of neoliberalism, rather than the locus of a promise of “autonomy” conceived in the abstract. Architects and architecture theorists, I argue: have tended, since the mid-1990s in particular, to push those same truths of the way of the world as have served the truth games of neoliberalism. They have adopted models of self-organization, emergence and complexity, endorsed cybernetics, systems theory and ecological thought, denounced the failings of planning in favour of evolutionary paradigms, valorized “flat ontologies” and enthused over metabolic processes. They have, above all, posited the human subject as kind of post-enlightenment being – environmentally adaptive and driven by affect rather than rationality, flexibly amenable to being channelled along certain pathways, but uninterested in, even incapable of, critical reflection upon its milieu… As neoliberalism presents itself as a series of propositions in the pursuit of liberty, architecture presents itself as progressive. This is the truth game of architecture. (2016, p. 4) Affect theory in architecture has anchored itself to the thought of Deleuze and Guattari within a tendency I have dubbed “Architectural Deleuzism” (2011). The chief players in this – among them Jeff Kipnis, Alejandro Zaera-Polo, Farshid Moussavi, Zaha Hadid, Patrik Schumacher, Sylvia Lavin, Lars Spuybroek, Greg Lynn – have been engaged since the mid-1990s in a wholesale rejection of the prior cultural “dominant” in the field; semiotic and linguistic “readings” of architecture inspired by and in thrall to structuralism, post-structuralism, postmodernism, deconstruction, and, above all, critical theory. Zaera-Polo’s essay “The Politics of the Envelope” (2008) draws upon Deleuze and Guattari’s notion of “faciality”, to argue that architecture has now moved on


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from its older representational and rhetorical engagements to embrace a new and immanent mode of operation. “The primary depository of contemporary architectural expression”, he writes, “is now invested in the production of affects, an uncoded, pre-linguistic form of identity that transcends the propositional logic of political rhetorics” (2008, p. 89). In her The Function of Form (2009), Farshid Moussavi mines another Deleuzoguattarian notion to valorise affect. Here, she appropriates the philosophers’ opposition of the “molar” to the “molecular” to identify language as an homogenising force associated with the former, and affect a means to accommodate difference and diversity associated with the latter. In a remark whose neoliberal undertones hardly require further elaboration, Moussavi urges that architecture ought to be “contributing to an environment that connects individuals to multitude [sic] of choices” (2009, p. 18). For Moussavi, affect is “processed by the senses to produce unique affections – thoughts, feelings, emotions and moods” that “can unfold into different affections or interpretations in different beings”, connecting these with “their environment as well as each other, albeit in different ways” (2009, pp. 19–20). As with Zaera-Polo, while Moussavi may attempt to fashion her argument for affect from the philosophical tool-kit of Deleuze and Guattari, its value is to be found in its contemporaneity, its apparent “newness”. Architecture, the argument seems to run, can only maintain its relevance by reorienting its practice to a world somehow now post-linguistic and post-political, while at the same time promoting the supposedly progressive potential of this turn. In her Kissing Architecture (2011), Sylvia Lavin likewise presents affect as some species of newly discovered paradigm-busting force for good. In the installation art of Pipilotti Rist, she discerns a “new sensibility” of “intense affect” triumphing over older and outmoded practices of “authority and autonomous intellection” (2011, p. 4). Further championing affect over representation and meaning, Lavin presents its qualities, within art and architecture, as analogous to those of kissing: “No one can speak when kissing … kissing interrupts how faces and facades communicate, substituting affect and force for representation and meaning” (2011, p. 14). The insistent and positive valorisation of affect in architecture theory banks on this promise of immanent transcendence, of escaping from the supposed burdens of meaning, mediation, and intellection. Affect acquires its value, for this tendency in architecture theory, in being opposed to the negativity of critique, and to the entire intellectual apparatus of cognitive reflection on which this is premised. The architectural Deleuzians find their cause confirmed, as does Massumi, in the philosophy of Deleuze himself. In Francis Bacon: The Logic of Sensation (2003), he presents Bacon’s art as a production of sensation “which is transmitted directly, and avoids the detour and boredom of conveying a story” (2003, p. 36). For Deleuze, art, as sensation, is in direct contact with the physiological being of its experiencing subject, it “acts immediately upon the nervous system” bypassing the “intermediary of the brain” (2003, p. 36). For Massumi, “the techniques of critical thinking prized by the humanities are of limited value”. “The balance”, he

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continues, “has to shift to affirmative methods” (2002, p. 12). Massumi is at least nuanced in his argument, noting that “it is not that critique is wrong… it is not a question of right and wrong – nothing important ever is. Rather, it is a question of dosage” (2002, p. 13). If Massumi’s argument can be construed as one against an overdose of the critical, rather than its wholesale rejection, such subtleties appear lost within architecture’s appropriation of affect theory. This has resorted, instead, to the crass polarisation of thought and feeling, the shortcomings of which could only be addressed by the type of reflective thought that the maintenance of this antinomy itself effectively proscribes. Who we kiss, and how, for instance, is hardly without significance or meaning, and while we may be rendered momentarily mute by its experience, it is not guaranteed to silence our thoughts. I have elsewhere addressed the ways in which feeling and reason are necessarily integral to, as well as integrated within, experience, both in The Architecture of Neoliberalism and, with Peg Rawes, in the essay “Material and Rational Feminisms: A Contribution to Humane Architectures” (2017). Rather than rehearsing those arguments, a more blunt approach may be appropriate. The claims issued from the post-critical, post-political, and projective tendencies in architecture theory, alongside those of more recent, but essentially kindred, turns are essentially dogmatic. To paraphrase K. Michael Hays, from Architectural Deleuzism to Actor Network Theory, from Object-Oriented Ontology to the “Non-Referential”, from Parametricism to Parametricism 2.0, architecture theory has freely and contentiously set about saying whatever it likes in order to fashion itself as “the new”.3 Based neither on reasoned argument nor empirical research, let alone critical reflection, this type of architecture theory has given itself the liberty to pronounce, from the privileged position of its ivy league institutions, on matters of ontology, economy, and ecology. Its bald assertions on how things really are these days, on what does and does not matter, its prescriptions and prohibitions, are all calculated to legitimate its own significance in effecting a paradigm shift in which we must, surely, be done with criticality. The unremarked paradox of this position, the way it proceeds by negating critique on the grounds of its negativity, is beside the point. The point being that there are reputations to be made, distinctions to be fashioned, competitions to be won, all of which demand “newness”, “innovation”, and “original contributions”. Theory, what now passes for it at least, is cashed out in the currency of the current, its exchange value realised in positions secured and commissions awarded. In its theoretical register, affect is then captured as a concept that is, in turn, mobilised in the reproduction of neoliberal institutions, mentalities, and practices. This does not make of affect a “bad” concept, or mean that “concepts” are bad, but it does suggest a need for critical reflection on the uses of affect as opposed to its affirmation as “the unassimilable”. In its institutional and disciplinary uses, and in its practical mobilisation in constructing conditions of experience – as Maravall argues of the baroque, and as I have attempted to address for the architectural


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environment of neoliberalism (2016) – affect is highly amenable to capture within capitalism, of being put to work within its mechanisms of valorisation and its processes of subjectification.

Coda: Axiomatic, code, and capture The idea of “capture”, drawn from Deleuze and Guattari (1983, 1992), marks the spot where their philosophy strays farthest from any “radical immanentism”, where its path wanders into that of a conception of capital as “totality” from which nothing escapes, and through which everything is mediated. In Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, they narrate the career trajectory of the anthropologist and ecologist Gregory Bateson as a cautionary tale of capital’s powers of capture: Let us consider the more striking example of a career à l’américaine, with abrupt mutations, just as we imagine such a career to be: Gregory Bateson begins by fleeing the civilized world, by becoming an ethnologist and following the primitive codes and the savage flows; then he turns in the direction of flows that are more and more decoded, those of schizophrenia, from which he extracts an interesting psychoanalytic theory; then, still in search of a beyond, of another wall to break through, he turns to dolphins, to the language of dolphins, to flows that are even stranger and more deterritorialized. But where does the dolphin flux end, if not with the basic research projects of the American army, which brings us back to preparations for war and to the absorption of surplus value (1983, p. 236). However much we may decode and deterritorialise, the results remain amenable to assimilation by capital. Deleuze and Guattari’s concept of “capture” here approximates that of Marx’s account of “real subsumption” addressed in Capital Volume I (1976, p. 645), and in his “Results of the Direct Production Process” where it is discussed in relation to “surplus value” (1994).4 Deleuze and Guattari’s treatment of “capture” in Anti-Oedipus is also very much of its period. In the aftermath of the failed uprisings and revolts of the 1960s, Marx’s notions of subsumption were revisited for their explanatory potential. For figures such as Antonio Negri, with whom Guattari was directly associated, and Jacques Camatte, the return to Marx suggested how the left in defeat might come to terms with the degree to which capital was now, evidently, able to maintain and reproduce itself despite the best efforts of its antagonists (Endnotes, 2010). For Deleuze and Guattari, “capture” is presupposed by the fact that capital – uniquely in terms of all preceding historical modes of social formation – sustains and expands itself through what they call its “axiomatic”. The term is carried over from mathematics, but like “capture” closely approximates contemporaneous accounts of capital as possessed of a certain “logic” or “dominant”, as well as returning us to the original insights of Marx into capitalism as driven by an

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all-consuming, and self-generating, imperative to accumulate for the sake of accumulation (1976). Especially pertinent, here, to Deleuze and Guattari’s notion of the “axiomatic” of capital, is that it exceeds all codification.5 There are, they write, “So many reasons for defining capitalism by a social axiomatic that stands opposed to codes in every respect” (1983, p. 248). These reasons all amount, however, to the essential fact that in capitalism “power has become directly economic” (1983, p. 249). Far from exercising its power through codification, in fact, Deleuze and Guattari argue that “Writing has never been capitalism’s thing. Capitalism is profoundly illiterate” (1983, p. 240). What remains, then, of the “promise” of affect if this is premised on its capacity to escape “sociolinguistic qualification”, of its “disconnection” from the “signifying order”, if capitalism is itself already of an entirely different order? Though at odds with the affirmative, Spinozist and Bergsonian Deleuze, in whose company architects have become comfortable, the Deleuze and Guattari of Anti-Oedipus, drifting at times with the currents of contemporaneous Marxist thought, offer a critical, cautionary, and still timely perspective on the pursuit of concepts and practices that promise escape.

Notes 1 “In the seventeenth century it was the urban populations that proved disturbing to those in power, and the politics of control was usually directed toward them, which even translated into topographical changes in the baroque city” (1985, pp. 104–5). 2 “An accumulating population and a culture industry at its service is revealed by the fact that organized companies were provided with an apparatus for assembling scenarios … that halls were constructed expressly for the comedia, so that its representation had become an occupation, and the acting occupation was put forth as a form employment” (1985, p. 83). 3 See Hélène Frichot (2018), Creative Ecologies: Theorizing the Practice of Architecture, for an incisive and insightful critique of the modish adoption of theory within architecture. For a critique of the Actor Network Theory, and its deployment in architectural theory, see Douglas Spencer (2019), Going to Ground: Agency, Design and the Problem of Bruno Latour. 4 “If the production of absolute surplus-value was the material expression of the formal subsumption of labour under capital, then the production of relative surplus-value may be viewed as its real subsumption” (1994, p. 429). 5 “The true axiomatic is that of the social machine itself, which takes the place of the old codings and organizes all the decoded flows, including the flows of scientific and technical code, for the benefit of the capitalist system and in the service of its ends” (1983, p. 233).

References Adorno, T. W. and Horkheimer, M. (2002). Dialectic of Enlightenment: Philosophical Fragments (E. Jephcott, Trans.). Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press (Original work published 1947). Deleuze, G. (2003). Francis Bacon: The Logic of Sensation (D. W. Smith, Trans.). London and New York, NY: Continuum (Original work published 1981).


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Deleuze, G. and Guattari, F. (1983). Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia (R. Hurley, M. Seem, and H. R. Lane, Trans.). Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press (Original work published 1972). Deleuze, G. and Guattari, F. (1992). A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia (B. Massumi, Trans.). London and New York, NY: Continuum (Original work published 1980). Deleuze, G. and Guattari, F. (1994). What is Philosophy? (G. Burchell and H. Tomlinson, Trans.). London and New York, NY: Verso (Original work published 1991). Endnotes. (2010). The History of Subsumption. In: Endnotes 2: Misery and the Value Form, Viewed 4 May 2020. y-of-subsumption. Frichot, H. (2018). Creative Ecologies: Theorizing the Practice of Architecture. London and New York, NY: Bloomsbury Academic. Gregg, M. and Seigworth, G. J. (Eds.) (2010). The Affect Theory Reader. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Jameson, F. (1991). Postmodernism, or, The Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Lavin, S. (2011). Kissing Architecture. Princeton, NJ and Oxford: Princeton University Press. Maravall, J. A. (1986). Culture of the Baroque: Analysis of a Historical Structure (T. Cochran, Trans.). Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press (Original work published 1975). Marx, K. (1976). Capital, Vol. I (B. Fowkes, Trans.). London: Penguin (Original work published 1867). Marx, K. (1994). Karl Marx, Frederick Engels: Collected Works, Vol. 34. London: Lawrence & Wishart. Massumi, B. (1992). A User’s Guide to Capitalism and Schizophrenia Deviations from Deleuze and Guattari. Boston, MA: MIT Press. Massumi, B. (2002). Parables for the Virtual: Movement, Affect, Sensation. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Mazzarella, W. (2009). Affect: What is it Good For? In: S. Dube (Ed.), Enchantments of Modernity: Empire, Nation, Globalization. London and New York, NY: Routledge, pp. 291–309. Moussavi, F. (2009). The Function of Form. Barcelona and New York, NY: Actar/Harvard University Graduate School of Design. Rawes, P. and Spencer, D. (2017). Material and Rational Feminisms: A Contribution to Humane Architectures. In: H. Frichot, C. Gabrielsson, and H. Runting (Eds.), Architecture and Feminisms: Ecologies, Economies, Technologies. London and New York, NY: Routledge, pp. 153–162. Slaby, J. and von Scheve, C. (2019). Introduction: Affective Societies – Key Concepts. In: J. Slaby and C. von Scheve (Eds.), Affective Societies: Key Concepts. London and New York, NY: Routledge, pp. 1–24. Slaby, J. and Mühlhoff, R. (2019). Affect. In: J. Slaby and C. von Scheve (Eds.), Affective Societies: Key Concepts. London and New York, NY: Routledge, pp. 27–41. Spencer, D. (2011). Architectural Deleuzism: Neoliberal Space, Control and the ‘UniverCity’. Radical Philosophy, July/August, p. 168.

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Spencer, D. (2016). The Architecture of Neoliberalism: How Architecture Became an Instrument of Control and Compliance. London and New York, NY: Bloomsbury Academic. Spencer, D. (2019). Going to Ground: Agency, Design and the Problem of Bruno Latour. In C. O. Sanjuán (Ed.), Landscape as Territory. New York, NY and Barcelona: Actar, pp. 151–157. Zaera-Polo, A. (2008). The Politics of the Envelope. Log 17 (Fall), pp. 76–105.

Chapter 3

Furnishing Noo-Politics Shared Space in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland Andrew Douglas

Street-mirror In 2018, Light Weight O, an installation work by graphic designer and artist Catherine Griffiths was assembled in the airspace above O’Connell Street, in downtown Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland (see Figure 3.1). A pivoting, 2.4-metre diameter mirror that turns freely with the wind, it finds support in suspension cables tethered to an opposing pair of heritage buildings dating from 1925. The work itself was the result of an evolving project that had been in play since 2012, with Light Weight O intended to be one of five suspended “vowel” works collectively titled AEIOU. Eventually reduced to one by the commissioning body, Auckland Council, Griffiths sees in the stand-alone “O” a residual, existential vantage: it “brings to attention the sky, framed by the built environment, and the earth beneath” (n.d.). With such conjugative effects in mind, what follows attends to the surfacemaking defining the “earth” Light Weight O refracts in its endless turning and which currently meets the frontage of its supporting buildings. O’Connell Street, originally a lane opened up by private landowners to overcome access difficulties generated by the overly large property lots offered at auction in 1841 by the British Crown (Reed, 1955, p. 63), has long since been appropriated and widened as a public street in an area that the council’s 2012 City Centre Master Plan refers to as the city’s economic “Engine Room” (p. 113). By 2018, O’Connell Street had become the most recent addition to the “shared spaces programme”,1 a project by the Auckland Council to remake certain of the city’s oldest streets and lanes “into pedestrian-friendly destinations where you can shop, sit, dine and spend time” (n.d., p. 2). Eschewing the previous disciplinary demarcation and moulding of speeds and movement of these streets (footpaths, services, vehicles, etc.), the multi-awardwinning,2 shared spaces programme, commenced in 2011 by the council and undertaken by various commercial design practices,3 has resurfaced and furnished streets to permit a minimally demarcated modulation of pedestrian and vehicular trajectories, trajectories unfettered by curbs or obvious rights of way. Installed instead are negotiable, single-level surfaces defined by variably textured granite pavers, although street furniture (benches, planters, and bike racks) offers loosely

Furnishing Noo-Politics


Figure 3.1 O’Connell Street sky view.

demarcated “activity zones” (sitting, outdoor eating, driving, and walking), while eschewing signage controls. The justification in fact for this “free surface” turns on attempts to reverse the normative privilege of vehicles over pedestrians spanning 60 years or more, particularly in downtown locales where the overarching, circulatory mandate awarded vehicles is being selectively reversed in accordance with a larger edict centred on pedestrianisation and user well-being. More generally, the shared space programme is cognate to a plethora of “traffic calming” strategies and interventions which collectively indicate a revised cognitive holism taking hold of public thoroughfares – what is referred to in American contexts as “complete streets” (Zavestoski and Agyeman, 2015, p. 3) but in the setting considered here, liveability particularly. If the notion of complete streets has sought to override an earlier holism – the notion that urban conglomerates themselves compose an abstract organism predicated on an uninterrupted circulatory topology, for which discovery of integrating vascular structures in human bodies served as early image of thought (Gille, 1986, p. 251) – this revised holism

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has sought to ground itself on a “street-level spatial justice”, indeed a democratisation seeking to achieve a “redistribution of rights to (and in) public space” (Agyeman cited in Zavestoski and Agyeman, 2015, p. 4). While complete streets imagine this as new rights for under-represented “users” (favouring walking, accessibility, and cycling modalities specifically), its cognate, liveability discourse, itself arising with Dutch urban planning of the 1950s, offers a no less integrative agenda, though one whose redefining of operational norms rests less on an intuitively felt sense of rightness at street level than it is mediated and mandated by expert knowledge (McArthur and Robin, 2019, p. 1711 & 1713). As Jenny McArthur and Enora Robin have noted, despite its longevity and malleability as a notion, “liveability” has most recently been aligned with urban entrepreneurialism played out at the level of global competitiveness and attraction (p. 1713). Numerous organisations publish annual rankings of cities with well-being and quality of life factors being key among the measures used to inform city competitiveness.4 Such rankings are a key motivator for the shared spaces programme enacted in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, and, in turn, the programme has been recognised for its contribution to liveability agendas internationally (see for instance: Grey and Siddall, 2012; Runstad Affiliate Fellows, 2016).

Surface affect Despite the celebrated successes of the shared spaces programme and the seemingly self-evident virtues of liveability riding with it, the aim here is a more radical situating of the street revision it deploys. In the din of the near present, condensing as it does a plethora of clashing sign regimes, discerning indubitable direction in things is necessarily challenging (Martin, 2005, p. 124). Yet, as Gilles Deleuze has written: Interpretation reveals its complexity when we realise that a new force can only appear and appropriate an object by first of all putting on the mask of the forces which are already in possession of the object. (1983, p. 5) As such, what warrants questioning in this context is the seeming proximity of street surface types, one historically determined, the other historically resonant. The liveability ambitioned by pedestrianism in shared spaces, plainly mobilises dual, temporal orientations: in one direction it leans toward a reconstituted newness that differentiates itself both locally and internationally; in the other, because sharing the colonial-territorial heart of the city, it entangles this making-new with a past. If, for Deleuze, something survives only on the basis of an imitation and struggle between forces (p. 5), this essay tests for contesting affective forces evidenced in the reorientation of street-based bodies in shared spaces, and in turn, the political implications travelling with them.

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For Brian Massumi, affect both precedes and is inseparable from politics for it signals the protean intensities politics ultimately concretises. In its “proto-political” guise, it is both relational – acting or being acted on – and mobile because it is indicative of consolidation-in-the-making (2015, p. ix). In this sense, affect is a useful litmus for broader governance and influencing relations on the move. Further, with affect well established as critical to the operation of evolving market societies, it runs a line between politics and economics, a linkage, in turn, emphasising the psychical dimension traversing affluence and well-being (Conrad and Schmidt, 2016, p. 4). With the remaking of streets, a motion-bearing mandate is itself put into motion and an understanding of this “movement-towards” within a longer urban political-economic shaping of Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland is the aim here. Provisionally, street affect in shared spaces appears tuned to the lure of affective newness itself – feeling in the slowing of motion something capable of carrying and satisfying curiosity. Centring what follows then is a borrowed intuition5: that street surface, seemingly of secondary concern to the historicity of city places, is in fact integral to such historicity and the temporal attachments operationalising it. Laid down, rather than stood up, street as surface (contrary to the laying-out proper of maps) runs a minoritarian presence in considerations of streetscape whose window-like framing has long favoured scenography over substrate. The latter, etymologically “to spread underneath”, points, as Joseph Rykwert has noted, to a cluster of “Latin-derived words with the str root” that associate “street” with surfacebuilding itself exploiting topography (1991, p. 16). Yet, as conduits effecting continuity across the discontinuity of places, streets rework topography topologically for with circulation comes relations in excess of terrain. For Didier Gille, urban territory becomes modern precisely at the point that topological relations override a nesting of topographically defined places of productivity – the latter composing a plethora of interlocking, if independent, bodies (1986, p. 250). With the introduction of functional differentiation and its interlinking within an abstract space of circulation, a replicable urban structure arises, one whose operative unity is akin to a single organism (p. 250). While differentiation and circulation brought discipline to street surfaces particularly, this topological drive increasingly outruns the urban organism. As Scott Lash has argued, the “old structural functionalism [of…] modernity” has been rapidly superseded by what he terms an “excess of semantics over function” or what amounts to a proliferation of “information structures [and…] structures of the imaginary” (2012, pp. 265, 271 & 272). Defining this topological intensification is a raft of communicational proximities and conjunctions in excess of the fixed geometries of containment and access ordinarily defining territorial patterning. Shared spaces appear to be underpinned by a transformation of this order such that street form, otherwise geared to the containment and channelling of people and things, evidences a marked indifference to bounding per se, favouring instead their de-forming. This pliancy, resting as it does on surface renovations themselves eroding of historical ground, installs terrain, to borrow Lash’s phrasing,

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which is “constitutively figural”, a notion he draws from Deleuze’s consideration of paintings by Francis Bacon where figure and ground are drawn tensely onto the same plane (p. 283). Shared space, it is argued, exhibits a comparable undecidability, with street surface exercising a mode of detachment, a showing that rises up as a spectacle enveloping that and those plying its surface. Moreover, this rising up adds to the mundane moulding of streets the lure of modulation, a curiosity-inducing differentiation built on an affective politics capitalising on bodily slowing. The question of moulding and modulation takes on particular resonance when read in the context of Deleuze’s recognition in the (1992) essay, “Postscript on the Societies of Control”, of a consolidating politic in which older modes of disciplinary governance are supplemented and exceeded by supple systems of control that modulate belonging and place-access variably through time. While shared spaces will be shown here to offer a variant of urban governance inflected by control, the aim is to recognise in liveability a mode of life predicated on a revised holism that mobilises the street as a new organ of sensory consolidation and attraction. Reading Gille’s corporeal urban analogy against Deleuze’s work on Leibniz is suggestive of a two-fold management of bodies and minds in urban places, one where an upward trajectory in “plastic forces of matter” makes possible both forms of organic synthesis and degrees of spiritualisation (1993, p. 11). Key in what follows is a consideration of the intersection of this doubly orientated synthesis with control societies, themselves geared particularly to cerebral management by way of semiotic excesses, excesses operationalising revised streetplaces. With its making-figural of substrate, shared space calls into question both organisation and grounding as modes of synthesis. Rather than the organism as model of urban coalescence, its surfacing less integrates than it ruptures continuance. To the extent that liveability can be imagined a compensating mask, the question remains, what logic validates its curiously grounded surfaces?

Noo-scapes Integral to any logic of surfaces are the structures of thought that predefine logic itself. As such, what Deleuze and Guattari (1987) have termed noology, and in earlier contexts, Deleuze (1994) considered “images of thought” are integral to any awareness of ground itself. Noology (from the Greek nous or mind + logos, meaning ground or reason) intends the historical study of state-mandated cogitation or what amounts to images of (capturing) thought that constitute “a form of interiority” normatising thinking at large (1987, p. 375). As a veritable self-validating gravity, such images elucidate the manner of grounding particular societal structures. As Deleuze and Guattari argue: Thought as such is already in conformity with a model that it borrows from the State apparatus, and which defines its goals and paths, conduits, channels, organs, an entire organon. (1987, p. 374)

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Such then is an image of thought, an organon or cognitive instrument inseparable from a system or network of components by which it functions. In turn, the organon, far from residing in the heads of thinkers, can be thought in fact to assemble a veritable noo-scape. Benoît Dillet, in his consideration of noology, similarly asserts the inseparability between infrastructure and thought processes, themselves linking urban fabric with “all networks including brains and synaptic connections” (2017, p. 170). This mutual informing of thought and fabric offers Dillet one way of seeing beyond a hylomorphic model of ideology in which hegemonic or false consciousness is deemed to mould minds and social matters. With Deleuze’s societies of control in mind, he argues that noology offers a post-hylomorphic vantage in which modulation and not moulding characterises the post-Fordist remaking of the money economy and the hyper-networked state of the metropolis rendered global. At stake in this shift to insistent modulation is the reconfiguration of attention economies and the modes of publicness composing advancing global capital. At the level of streets, a similar shift from moulding to modulation is evident in which an evolving reformation of street surface since the eighteenth century can be seen to mirror the temporal discipline characteristic of industrialisation. As Andrea Mubi Brighenti puts it: “an urban street is conceived of as a ‘factory in length’ for sorting traffic according to speed” (2010, p. 130). On the other hand, an attendance on slowing relative to the “free surface” of shared spaces and an affective framing turning on well-being and liveability suggest a stark departure from the street-as-speed-factory.

“Noo-politics” Lazzarato (2006) offers one way of picturing the corresponding imbrication of affect and politics evident in control societies more broadly. Offering the neologism “noo-politics”, he describes how programmes of cognitive control and the shaping of societal attention via technological means enable an unprecedented amplification of association and suggestion enacted between minds at a distance (p. 180). Brains, “mediatized and enriched by technology”, as he writes, mobilise new affective constellations feeding public opinion, and in turn, an ephemeral public sphere whose contours are ever shifting (pp. 180–1). Key in Lazzarato’s depiction of these elastic publics and the quest to govern them is Tarde (1843–1904) who had predicted that publics would replace the predominant societal groups of his age – classes and crowds (2012, p. 179). For Tarde, a public was a dispersed crowd, itself bound together through the influence of minds, a phenomenon consistent with the consolidation of nineteenth-century nationalisms and their broader task of defining and consolidating identifications of a populace released from older feudal and guild-based societal ties. To the extent that agricultural reform and the Industrial Revolution made apparent abstract labour as a deterritorialised force, and with it, as Jason Read argues, “abstractive subjective activity”, or, what amounts to an “any-activity-whatsoever” that every

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society (whether capitalist or not) must particularise (2009, p. 87), for Lazzarato the carry-over problem from the nineteenth century is how to hold together and govern the “whatever subjectivities”, media publics potentiate (2006, p. 179). Whereas the invention of disciplinary techniques and their organisational and institutional application offered one privileged mode of governance, their spatial emphasis (what Foucault termed the spaces of enclosure) less readily captures the influence and suggestibility of minds working together at a distance and the contingent presence of publics manifesting across time (pp. 179–80). Borrowing Deleuze’s prognosis in “Postscript on the Societies of Control”, Lazzarato links noo-politics to control as a technological and temporal exercise of constraint that works by variable modulation of access-time, rather than disciplinary spatial inclusion, a modulation that makes subjectivity itself conditional on “time and its virtualities” (p. 180). Not surprisingly, memory and attention are critical if problematic attachment points for the monadic concentration at work in media publics as Lazzarato notes and are key in making noo-politics integral to control societies (2006, pp. 184–6). Contrary to disciplinary forces, control societies emphasise “spiritual, rather than bodily, memory” (p. 185), precisely because they intersect the virtual capacities of memory inherent in the living with distance-spanning technologies trafficking “image, sound and data” (pp. 185–6). As such, noo-politics names the most recent and deterritorialised dispostif of three, engineered to manage and direct the inherently under-defined makeup of whatever subjectivities – the prior two dispostifs being, as Foucault described, discipline and biopower (pp. 186–7). Given this framing, the presumption tested here is that streets, manifestly bearers of discipline and biopower, are increasingly among the artificial engines carrying the spiritualisation of noo-politics. While the street, like other open urban places, has been taken as an embodiment of public space, it is in fact a place of mediation as Brighenti notes, for it is invariably prolonged by visibilities in excess of the immediately given, visibilities entangled with “other-times” and “elsewhere” transmitted with advertising, spectacle, and diverse and contesting modes of attention governance (2010, pp. 111 & 145). In short, the immediacy of place is subject to the avidity of a public domain that exceeds it in every direction.

Engine Room flexibilisation To understand the intersection of shared space and noo-politics, it is necessary to recognise how well-being and liveability, themselves long-mediatised facets defining modes of living in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland (see Belich, 1996, p. 302), assumed central significance following the world financial crisis of 2007– 8. While a full account of the complex evolving of these facets across nearly 180 years of European colonisation sits beyond the scope of this inquiry, two tendencies warrant a schematic foregrounding: well-being as itself tied to shifting senses of belonging; and urban centrifugation as the mode of living by which liveability has been measured. If the former has pivoted in Aotearoa New Zealand on

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land acquisition, fuelled as it has been by a complexly registered “paradise complex”, as James Belich has defined (p. 311), the latter accords with a territorialeconomic rationalisation running all the way to spiritualisation – spiritualisation in the sense of an affective relay passing outward from town to suburb to rural place to idealised “wilderness”. Both find intersection in suburban land possession, a surrogate vehicle for belonging but also an attachment severely stressed under the reign of speculative residential capitalism – itself intensified by the market-led initiatives of the fourth Labour government (1984–90). If, as Fiona Allon argues, the resulting abrogation of the state and the variability of markets demanded of households has fostered a “calculative disposition” relative to future financial security, it has also given rise to a “citizen-speculator” for whom residential land possession portends “self-managed and privatised well-being” (2016, pp. 120 & 122). How does residential capitalism and the accompanying speculative affect bear on the question of shared spaces in the city’s centre, or its so-called “Engine Room”? Post the world financial crisis, Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand deployed an expansionist monetary policy to counter world recession, but at the cost of further property asset consumption and an extension of the pre-crisis domestic debt overhang in the country (Ng and Bollard, 2012). Paralleled by immigration increases, intended to counter skills shortages and to lift sluggish gross domestic product – a priority for the then National government (Coleman, 2011) – Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, already pressured by a northward urban population shift nationally, was left with a growth rate twice that of the remainder of the country and crises in housing supply and affordability (Auckland Growth Monitor, 2017). With the then current territorial governance deemed inadequate, the central government legislated in 2010 for an amalgamation of the seven cities and district councils then spanning the larger isthmus. Legislatively demanded of the new “super-city” was a “spatial plan” (essentially new in Aotearoa New Zealand planning terms – see Gardner-Hopkins and Fairgray, 2011, pp. 1–2), one integrating “social, economic, environmental, and cultural objectives” in a vision of “well-being” spanning 20–30 years (NZ Govt., 2009, Section 79 (2 & 3)). From the 2000s, spatial planning, with its adaptive fluidity, was increasingly advocated internationally over older land-use planning, supplanting fixed national governance directives with strategic policy that was, in turn, fed into sub-national territorialities at variable scales (see Tewdwr-Jones, Gallent, and Morphet, 2010, p. 242). The imposition of a super-city model for New Zealand’s largest urban centre in fact was a pretext for strategic attunement of this order. Addressing the breadth of the isthmus, the spatial plan nevertheless placed special emphasis on the central city (relative to the earlier multicentred foci of the previous seven cities and districts) as a testing ground for the integrative visualisation of well-being – in contrast to the suburbs where the vicissitudes of “speculative affect” were radically eroding liveability. So, while the central city’s shared spaces proffered a bounteous standing released from the press of cars, the isthmus remained severely clogged with traffic. In fact, at work in the centre was

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an urban-scaled mirror of the suburban citizen-speculator. Singularly exposed to competitive forces of global urban-place hierarchies, demanded of the city was a quick-footedness capable of synchronising with global enterprise and profitability. Evident in this multi-scaled pairing of exposure and “flexibility” is a noopolitical remaking of disciplinary planning mechanisms. While land-use planning sets use discipline via zoning enclosures, spatial planning works through strategic control, variably testing and integrating outputs at multiple scales. Moreover, the flattened out domain of land-use planning is rethought as “spatialised” relations. In this, visualisation and vision setting are coextensive with influencing politics of attention publics. Pursuing long-term envisioning by way of short-term enacting, testing, and gathering of diverse enabling actors and citizenry consensus, spatial planning practice is principally temporal, both forecasting distinct futures while back-casting desired temporal continuities capable, as Louis Albechts argues, of “deal[ing] with history and overcom[ing] history” (2010, pp. 23 & 12). In this light, the shared spaces programme, as one of spatial planning’s speculative devices, bridges the spectre of markets themselves whose invisible processes render the future uncertain yet urgently in need of anticipating (see Vogl, 2015, p. 4) – in this instance by digging up history and paradoxically renewing it.

Shopfront paradox How then to conceive in shared spaces both a spectre-abridging envisionment and the becoming-figural of street surface itself? One figure for grasping this particular intersection is the what-if commercialisation of curiosity and stalwart of street life – the shopfront. The interstitial nature of the shopfront – a set-apart place for capturing the attention of the passerby – resonates with the slowing and attention-staging (both immediate and mediated) shared spaces themselves ambition. Consider this assertion by Mayor Len Brown at the opening of Darby Street, the first shared space completed in 2011: “in my early days in the law […] through Darby Street was a constant walk […] It was just a forgotten space. No more. Centre space Auckland!” (Greater Auckland, 2011). Rising out of inattention and forgetting, this focalising of street space is intended as lure for value-added perambulation. As the city’s urban design group manager, Ludo-Campbell-Reid validated shared spaces, they increase both commercially coveted foot traffic and the lingering of that traffic. Holding walkers in place promises an “economic competitive point of difference [capable of attracting…] inward investment, [and enhancing a…] wonderful [pedestrian-centred] quality of life” (Greater Auckland, 2010). The slowing and prolonging of spectatorship in fact actions a two-way lure – one directed at international flows of capital and “high value” persons, and another signalling locally the appurtenances attaching to entrepreneurial life. On the ground, the gambit to increase pedestrian street-time plainly maps onto “spendingtime”, that neoliberal imperative merging, as Lazzarato emphasises, “the time of work [or labour time] and the time of life [as lived experience itself]” (2019, p. 224). Civil space is remade, not just according to its capacity for entrepreneurial

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capture, but also according to its production of entrepreneurial subjects themselves capable of serving as “human capital” (p. 111). So does a neoliberal remaking of the urban draw on and amplify a long developed stock of what Frank Cochoy has termed “captation devices”6 – staging devices facilitating the seductive capture and mobilisation of publics towards profitable action (2016, pp. 11 & 211). Not coincidently, shared space, rethought as shopfront captation, doubles with what Luc Boltanski and Ève Chiapello identify as entrepreneurial/managerial, project space – places of provisional aggregation in the mobility of networks sufficient to draw off value (2018, pp. 105–6). Much as the shopfront gathers circulating things into provisional ensembles inviting future redeployment if purchased, project space similarly effects a “pocket of accumulation” sufficient for ever-mobilised connections to condense in profitable ways (p. 105). Paralleling an increasing appeal to the notion of “project organisation” (ubiquitous to business management literature of the 1990s), Boltanski and Chiapello see urban space itself remade a “projective city”, one tuned to project-orientated worker-citizens (p. 105). No doubt, spatial planning is congruous with such a projective city, with the shared spaces project itself designed to richly pocket contingent circumstances and contacts needed for synergising project work. As Boltanski and Chiapello note, the projective city builds on the fortuity of locale, such that “[t]he great man in the projective city is not a nowhere man. At ease wherever he finds himself, he also knows how to be local” (p. 114). Gender bias aside, “connectionist man” works-in and leverages off benignly tempered, informationally dense locales (p. 114). Mayor Brown’s awakening to centre space is, wittingly or not, shorthand for such a spatial remaking centred by serial project routines themselves designed to happily interlace work commitments with private life and secure work within arenas of liveability – what Boltanski and Chiapello term, “peaceful zone[s] at the centre of the world system” (p. 19).

Pipe | Time Shared spaces then, as a window onto a world system itself projecting ever-permeating media and attention routines, are indicative of a temporal re-equipping reworking what Gille terms the “pure canalization” ambitioned by nineteenthcentury street reform (1986, p. 194). For Gille, the street became a site of reform precisely because it was “a place of noise, dissipation, collisions, and anarchic encounters and exchanges” (p. 194). Laminar coursing in streets functioning like pipes was a corrective drawing on circulatory norms in passage and conduct derived from the anatomo-chronological discipline. As Michel Foucault describes: The disciplinary methods reveal a linear time whose moments are integrated, one upon another, and which is orientated towards a terminal point; in short, an “evolutive” time. (1978, p. 160)

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Concomitantly, time in the “disciplined street” was intended to be linear, integrative, and ends orientated. In this, it modelled a larger shift in societal conduct where all action was subject to ubiquitous temporal measure and the disciplinary correction of an “essentially resistive world” (Gille, 1986, pp. 194 & 209). The pivoting of shared spaces towards “spending time” swings them far from the time-saving of street discipline. The accumulative drive of project space suggests a temporality less evolutive than centripetally intensifying. Attraction-time, like shopfront captation, shifts the problem of dissipation towards taking-hold, for as Cochoy writes of shopfronts, “the display produces a time lag that is fundamental to the operation of any curiosity device” (2016, p. 57). Time thickens around desirous content not only because its scenography takes time to absorb, but also because the shopfront itself organises divided collectives (street crowds and curated things) suggestive of a satisfying union-to-come (pp. 66, 70). Paradoxically, shared spaces, hyperbolically shopfront-like, replace the interior field of gaze with drifting walkers. In these suspended domains, slow-down collides the social with the object field of designed places, in turn promising, as considered below, a belated synthesis called liveability (pp. 71 & 76).

Monadic divergence If, for Lazzarato, discipline establishes societies much like Leibniz’s God, allowing “only one world to pass into reality” (2006, p. 177), the windowing of shared spaces and their eschewing of the evolutive time and laminar coursing of street discipline suggest a state other than monadic closure. As places of publicly addressed allurement, they parallel a neo-Leibnizianism Deleuze sees centred by capture not closure (1993, p. 160). For Lazzarato, this post-disciplinary capture perturbs the coherence of the here and now, foregrounding instead “time and its virtualities” (pp. 177 & 180). Such virtualisation is starkly evident in the serial run of shared spaces to the east of the city’s principal thoroughfare, Queen Street, with the designers of the Lorne Street shared space referring to it as “the Old Town route” (cited in Barnett, 2012). The resurfacing of Lorne Street itself (Figure 3.2) installs a street-long stepping terrace linking two buildings of historical merit – the city’s public library dating from 1970 and the rear façade of the unused St James Theatre of 1928. While stepping basalt slabs orientate walkers and seated viewers toward the theatre’s blank façade, the slabs themselves are inscribed with a “site-specific” poem “Kawe Reo/Voices Carry”, by Robert Sullivan,7 itself telling “a little story of the history of this part of town” (cited in Barnett, 2012). Other elements of street furniture capture historical details, while the text-inscribed basalt seats of MaryLouise Browne’s Bywords (2007) further link street spaces on the Old Town route. In O’Connell Street, whose setting exhibits the most recent shared space, object-repertoire, further elements mobilising historical captation are found (see Figure 3.4). The wind-driven gaze of Griffith’s Light Weight O releases heritage time images otherwise disjunct from the sequential motion proper to the street. Keyhole-like, its mobile mirror mimes the operationalisation of mass curiosity in

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Figure 3.2 Lorne Street,“REO” seats looking south.

public space. Miming the inscribed stone surfaces and seats elsewhere on the Old Town route, a street-long, basalt bench/plinth is engraved with historical indicators ranging from the pre-human to the post-colonial (see Figures 3.4 and 3.5). In shared spaces where functional messaging is pointedly erased, the rarefied textuality in O’Connell Street, inscribed, memorial-like, in black, polished surfaces across six such benches spanning the length of the street, tells not just placehistory; it offers commentary on the “fine grain qualities” that endow these streets with “distinct character”. Inscribed then is not just an interpretive anatomy of the street and its broader placement, but also a resection that enters into the character building and grain giving it sets out to uncover. In this, historical placedescription merges with place-making itself feeding into the place-attachments ambitioned by spatial planning. In street terrain remade display-space is echoed an older textual rendering of historical actuality. As Bell (2017) notes, revised senses of nation and belonging beyond colonial idealism were sought in Aotearoa New Zealand in the 1930s. Central to this were forms of historical questioning, particularly of racial affect and its resulting land inequity (pp. 228–9). As she ascribes to the historian J. C. Beaglehole, at stake was a new “felt tradition […] of national life”, one capable of producing “informed citizenship” (pp. 232–3). Societal well-being was thought then to rest on collective awareness of empirically validated, critically robust historical

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Figure 3.3 Lorne Street, step inscription looking north.

knowledge, itself foregrounding the “significance of the local” (Beaglehole in Bell, 2017, p. 241). For its part, the textuality enacted in O’Connell Street runs a parallel ambition for historically validated place-belonging, one turning natural placeattachment toward the urban. If Beaglehole’s historiography sought to foster the “feel of truth” textually (p. 243) – via popular and educational bulletins and publications – the capture and making-apparent of local historical density in O’Connell Street, no less than other shared spaces on the Old Town route, seeks its own verity through a literal embedding in stone. There, it equips shared space with a renovated conduit for “informed citizenship”, one offered up as an incidental dividend for a citizenry thoroughly schooled in curiosity-spurred, informational consumption. Historicity of place, fitted to “on demand” platforms, opens an “experience” portal for re-enchantment, renewed authenticity, and personalisation, but in the manner of the gathering and contact outlets of self-service/self-satisfaction culture – in short, belonging as access/choice (Cochoy, 2016, p. 94).

Art/any-places Curated, rather than evolutive then, historical display in the superseding newness that shared spaces enact mirrors a reduplicating present Augé (1995) associates

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Figure 3.4 O’Connell Street shared space.

with non-places – the now-ubiquitous generic spaces common to airports, stations, motorways, supermarkets, malls, motels (p. 86 and 104–5). In such places, the past’s presence is circumscribed by “a present that supersedes it but still lays claim to it” (p. 75). Similarly, the affectation of place in shared spaces – with their playing up of identity-distinction, relational links, and historical depth (Augé, 1995, pp. 77–78) – neatly “plugs-in” to the boarder marketisation and mediatisation of noo-politics and its influencing/affecting machinery. In this, shared spaces model an imbrication of non-place and place in control societies, where one is never simply the negation of the other but where each constitutes polarities ensuring, in Augé’s words, that “the scrambled game of identity and relations is ceaselessly rewritten” (pp. 77–79), and in turn, is made projectible in and through networks. Place-making as project and projection here responds then to a felt loss of authenticity and disenchantment associated with the older disciplinary places and work processes themselves geared to the mass consumption of impersonal objects (pp. 98–99). For Peter Osborne, the reworking of city spaces by contemporary public art takes as precondition a space/time exemplified by Augé’s non-place (2013, p. 136). This is because non-place ubiquity coincides with the anyplace neutrality and closure of classically conceived exhibition space (pp. 160–1). The prevailing

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Figure 3.5 O’Connell Street inscribed plinth/seats.

institutionalisation of art autonomy and consumption is such that “[a]rt cannot live, qua art, within the everyday as the everyday” (pp. 158 & 140; emphasis in original). Seeking ever-expanding contexts and expressive forms for this autonomy, a strand of art-constructivism takes the city itself as an exhibition place, modelling what Osborne terms an “architecturalisation” to better align it with contemporary urban project drivers. While this constructivism opens up in the fabric of places windows of spatial singularisation through which a raft of site and non-site, local and trans-local concerns course, it further prompts Osborne to redefine Augé’s non-place as a “special, paradoxical type of ‘place’ [one that manifests…] relations other than those of locale within a locale” (pp. 141, 137–8). In turn, these paradoxical localisms force disjunctive relations with the given – what Osborne terms a “spatial radicalism of [the…] ‘anywhere’”, a non-place variant he aligns with Deleuze’s any-space-whatever (pp. 149–51).

Crab-walk While the any-spaces-whatsoever arise in the context of Deleuze’s depiction of affect-images in cinema (specifically an affective deterritorialisation potentiated by the close-up), they equally correspond with certain instances of urban

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disaffection and disorientation – spaces, as he writes, in which “we no longer know how to react to, in spaces which we no longer know how to describe” (1989, p. xi). If this not knowing amounts in Deleuze’s cinematic schema to a shift from movement to time images, it is because the meaningful chain running from perception through affects to action (the sensory-motor schema he adapts from Henri Bergson) becomes unlinked. Perception, caught in an affective impasse – what Deleuze refers to as nooshock (p. 156) – requires other resources to be thought, mentalities made in fact to grapple with disrupted causal links and non-chronological varieties of sense. In short, without recourse to action and normative movement in cognition, as Deleuze puts it, “the emancipated senses [are brought…] into direct relation with time and thought” (p. 17). The economy of curiosity Cochoy attributes to the shopfront offers one way of thinking a parallel impasse in action and an attendant affective amplification in shared spaces. In street contexts, the aim of captation is to hold the anonymous passerby within a “game of mirrors” suspending action – the action of proceeding elsewhere in favour of “reflection” (p. 97). If curiosity stops, it also mobilises through a “hyperbolic keyhole effect” (p. 76) alternative actions: “it undoes habit” (the habitual going streets channel) by shifting passing interest into emotion “allow[ing] a thousand other motives for action to proliferate” (p. 165). In this is seen a “target[ed] advance not through forward steps, but rather like a crab, both forward and sideways” (p. 91). If curiosity is the confounder of discipline, particularly street discipline, its “zooming movement” is native to shared spaces where impulse-driven trajectories and delayed stopping is designed-in. Shared spaces in fact paradoxically stage their own exhibition, their centrality to view, proffering “place” from the arena of non-place – in short their becomingfigural. In this they can be imagined to have reconstituted the hermetic envelop of the shop window ordinarily “open to the eye [but…] closed to the body”, as Cochoy puts it (p. 57). If, for Cochoy, the “hermetic partition” of the window ordinarily establishes a division between the human and non-human or society and merchandise, it is in fact a point of convergence “dedicated to its own dissolution” (p. 95). If this “merging magic” at work in the window is accentuated and intensified on the downstream side (or street side) in Cochoy’s sense by the opaque backdrop that conceals the store interior providing allure of a self-service type, on the upstream side (within the store), purchase intends a satiating union of consumer and object elsewhere (p. 95). Yet, when the street is the shopfront itself – as is the proposition here – this turn-around action (from street to store) faces a certain arrest for there is no interior as such to close the motor circuit of curiosity/desire. This is so perhaps for no simpler a reason than with the waning of disciplinary enclosure per se, control proffers little other than pseudo-interiors windowing onto each other by way of modulating technological gateways, interiors that no less render readable the incessant crab-walk of subjects traversing them. If in a first imagined transformation then, shared space can be conceived of as an interstitial envelop pocketed between a normative division of interiors from exteriors, one further transposition is conceivable. As Deleuze suggests relative

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to Baroque folding, a breakdown in the passage between inside and out – what he terms the “window-countryside” system – aligns with another dyad – that of the “city-information table” (1993, p. 27). As such, the shop window less “fronts” than it can be imagined to ground, with the opaque backing of the hermetic window now a level surface across which curiosity captation plays. Such a configuration accounts for modes of spectatorship centred other than by immediate place. With ubiquitous network connection, there is little of the everyday that is not hybridised with digital networks, and in the context of shared spaces, street slowing, if nothing else, caters to the head-down gait of whatever subjectivities remade always-connected, digital consumer/workers. Such digital imbrication induces in Cochoy and Jan Smolinski’s characterisation a radical revolution of attention, for where “advertising was previously like a storm, where lightning came from the sky and hit some consumers, while the majority escaped its fire at the cost of its ‘noise’”, self-accessed digital portals “invent a reversed kind of storm, as if the lightning were coming from the ground and going into the sky or rather into the cloud(s)” as those digital repositories for capturing data (2017, p. 227).

Conclusion Street space, complexly intersected by cross-orientated storms of market attraction and control, presents a profoundly ambiguous state that is unsettling to think. Nevertheless, the initiating motivation for this inquiry – the nature of the historicity underpinning shared spaces – can be provisionally satisfied. Commencing with a grounding inherent in streets, it was suggested that the resurfacing integral to shared spaces stressed, in an aggrieving sense, heritage place value. Erasure of the pre-existing surface terrain – slow temporal accumulator of features idiomatic of street discipline – no doubt renovates the image repertoire native to these streets, no less than it radicalises social practices afforded there. Yet, this severance undercuts the scenography of shared space, transporting with its breakup and refurnishing, a provocation to thought, one that exhibits the ground as ground. If the disjunctive surfacing of shared space draws close to Deleuze’s anyspaces-whatsoever in their paradoxical intersecting of place and non-place, one particular group of cinematic images approaches the capture of temporal virtualities found in O’Connell Street particularly – images Deleuze terms “archaeological, stratigraphic, tectonic” (1989, p. 243). Foregrounding in the present an “archaean base [revealing…] an interminable history beneath our own”, such images assert an emptiness or disconnection (p. 244). Shared spaces, while far from empty socially, are nevertheless indicative, in Deleuze’s words, of a “specific relinkage over the gap” (p. 245). This figural status is so not just in the sense of its manifest newness at the level of street furnishing; the street furnishing itself is made to speak of the tectonic, the archaeological and stratified (Figure 3.5). If too, the characteristic disconnection defining the stratigraphic/archaeological image means it must be “read at the same time as it is seen” (p. 245), is it not precisely what the textual imprints of the street-long plinth/seats impart in O’Connell Street – a scenography at once visible and readable?

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While overhead, Griffith’s Light Weight O turns on the whim of the wind, crafting its own false continuities, at street-level historical inscription does more than call on a temporal beforehand; it enacts a relinkage akin to Deleuze’s sense of reading strata in images – an irresolvable “turn[ing] around” (p. 245). Despite the forced continuity of the street as seen, the remodelled ground in O’Connell Street hollows out, or rather punctures this continuity, with “petrified inscriptions” (p. 246) telling of other times running from volcanic depths up its own design consciousness. While this “turn-up” aims at a fuller abridgement of the present, the broken nature of this lapidary bridging “turns-toward” the incalculable temporal events falling outside its own textualisation. By this reading, text islands contribute not to a continuity in thought but to a fracturable ground itself surfacing image/utterances from a fathomless whatsoever in excess of thought/identity. So does street furnishing here sit ambiguously between an empirical accounting of time events and an “under” of pure potentiality – what Réda Bensmaia recognises in Deleuze’s work as an appeal to an unthinkable archive that is activating of thought itself (2017, p. 49). If for Cochoy, “[a]ll disappointed curiosity is […] extremely ambiguous”, something of this ambiguity adheres to the scenography of shared space, for while channelling curiosity through the enchantments of historical place-advocacy, its quest for “liveability” – itself framed as a movement-towards place-belonging – passes through a vacancy in place-proper. Hence the signature, scenographic tidy-up of shared space in fact shares its model of plastic engagement with the plethora of other planar interfaces, themselves switching spaces on a city-information table whose digital modulation runs all the way to the global. Liveability, as mask of an older scenographic mould, is in fact cover for a much less tolerable modulation, that of noo-politics and its interminable communicative machinery that thinks for and as us. For Deleuze and Guattari, the incessant marketisation of communication enacts a rain of opinion and clichés setting up an intolerable division with the immanence of the world (1994, p. 202). In Cinema 2, where the world itself comes to appear like a “bad film”, an ameliorating believability takes the form of a link back to this world (rather than a transformed or alternate world), a link capable of turning the given towards what is yet unthought and unseen (1989, pp. 171–2). If this turn starts by getting closer, much as the close-up shot of faces prompts affectionimages that fill the interstices opened by a break between perception and action, affect itself can expand to a medium distance – an any-space-whatsoever – capable of releasing singularities from the metrical, empirical spatial milieus. So might a “medium level” between earth and sky be found, a level where, as Deleuze says, the world may be reached by “believing in the body” (p. 172). For argument’s sake, a medium level might well be understood as the postural orientation of the historically curious, where, as Cochoy says, getting closer means assuming a middle distance that engineers intimacy via the maintenance of reserve (2016, p. 160), a double-ness Deleuze in fact ascribes to the observational, prophetic stance of seers populating the perplexing spaces of the sensorymotor break cinema pictures (1989, p. 169). If curiosity orientates such a seer, it is not of an individualist type that runs from subject to object. Nor is it of the good-natured variant integral to a philo-sophia or love of knowledge. Consistent

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with the seduction/capture of Cochoy’s captation, it would be that fold in the contingency of things force-fitting our minds to the openness of the world (2016, p. 199), or rather, as Deleuze and Guattari seek beyond the orientations of noology, a way of standing with/in the unthinkable (1994, pp. 167–70). In the medium distance that has been sought in this account of the shared spaces of Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, an unthinkable orientation is proffered – that it is the intolerable in liveability itself that warrants thinking. Entangled as shared space is with an avidity of noo-politics and the vacancy of non-places, its scenography remains, irrespective of its currency, a territorial holism made-up as cover for an excess of semantics. If shared space offers a ground image fitted out for a digital virtuality rising, as Cochoy imagines, as an upward storm marrying with the rain of marketisation, this rising might also be rethought a miasma coextensive with the virtuality of the earth per se. In this, the basalt plinth/seat that makes a broken run the length of O’Connell Street offers a figure for an ambiguous materialisation of curiosity in shared spaces tout court. Not just a prop on which the bent-over body may take in or feed on informational flows, it is a surface whose inscribed text may be felt through the seat of the pants, so to speak (see Figure 3.6). In this drawing of walkers into a standstill, a certain “dead time

Figure 3.6 O’Connell Street plinth/seat detail.

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of stagnation and waiting” is imaginable, as David Lapoujade has found in the vicinity of certain limit conditions (2019, p. 286). Run beneath the silent turn of Light Weight O – itself less a carrier of language sense than a guttural vacancy – it is a matter, beyond perception (p. 288), of sensing a temporal potency for which image and voice in this scene are left to play, through the force of curiosity, interminable catchup. If there is something to believe in here in this noo-furnishing, it would be the possibility that with the perambulations of liveability orchestrated by shared space there remains, at the limit, sufficient lure in stasis to refold the city-brain and its interiorisation, which is to say, adapting Deleuze, there is inaction enough to hear beneath the paving stones the “world as it is” (1989, p. 173).

Notes 1 Currently achieved inner-city shared spaces include, in order of completion: Darby Street, Elliot Street, Lorne Street, Fort Street, Jean Batten Place, Commerce Street, Fort Lane, O’Connell Street, and Federal Street. 2 The Auckland City Centre Shared Space Streetscapes were awarded the Maccaferri Excellence Award for a Medium Road Project in the Roading Excellence Awards 2012 (see The Elliot and Darby Streets shared spaces won the New Zealand Institute of Landscape Architects Award for Excellence in the Landscape Design/Urban Design category in 2013. 3 Principally, landscape designers Boffa Miskell (see ffa-miskell/) and Architectus in relation to Lorne Street. 4 See for instance the Economist Intelligence Unit Quality of Life Index, the Mercer Quality of Living Survey, or the Monocle Most Livable Cities Index. 5 Heritage consultant, Bruce Mitchell Petry, prior to his death, had held that shared spaces in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, while claiming a certain heritage propriety, were profoundly refiguring of heritage values per se (personal communication, 2016). 6 Captation is a French word whose meaning emphasises seduction rather than capture (see Cochy, 2016, Note 1, p. 211). 7 See Declaration of Interest: Catherine Griffiths is the current designer of Interstices: Journal of Architecture & Related Arts for which the author is one of the Executive Editors.

References Albrechts, L. (2010). Transformative practices: Where strategic spatial planning meets social innovation. In: S. Oosterlynck, et al. (Eds.), Strategic Spatial Projects: Catalysts for Change (pp. 15–25). Oxon, UK & New York, NY: Routledge. Allon, F. (2016). The wealth affect: Financial speculation as everyday habitus. In: C. Conrad & A. Schmidt (Eds.), Bodies and Affects in Market Society (pp. 109–125). Tübingen, Germany: Mohr Siebeck. Auckland Council. (2012). City Centre Master Plan. Auckland Council, Viewed 6 June 2020. our-plans-strategies/place-based-plans/Documents/city-centre-masterplan-2012-pri nt-version.pdf.

60 Andrew Douglas Auckland Council. (n.d.2). Shared Spaces. Auckland Council, Viewed 6 June 2020. https:// ojects-central-auckland/projects-auckland-city-centre/Pages/shared-spaces.aspx. Auckland Growth Monitor. (2017). A Snapshot into Auckland’s Economy and Place on the World Stage, Viewed 6 June 2020. files/media-library/documents/AucklandGrowthMonitor.pdf. Augé, M. (1995). Non-Places: Introduction to an Anthropology of Supermodernity (J. Howe, Trans.). London, England & New York, NY: Verso (Original work published in 1992). Barnett, M. (2012). Lorne Street by Architectus. Architecture Now, Viewed 6 June 2020. Belich, J. (1996). Making Peoples: A History of the New Zealanders, from Polynesian Settlement to the End of the Nineteenth Century. Harmondsworth, England: Allen Lane/Penguin. Bell, R. (2017). The formation of the “good citizen”: Using history to build a future in midTwentieth-Century New Zealand. In: A. Brown & J. Griffiths (Eds.), The Citizen Past and Present (pp. 223–248). Auckland, NZ: Massey University Press. Bensmaia, R. (2017). Gilles Deleuze, Postcolonial Theory, and the Philosophy of Limit. London, England & New York, NY: Bloomsbury. Boltanski, L. & Chiapello, E. (2018). The New Spirit of Capitalism (G. Elliot, Trans.). London, England & New York, NY: Verso (Original work published in 1999). Brighenti, A. M. (2010). Visibility in Social Theory and Social Research. Basingstoke, Hampshire: Palgrave MacMillan. Browne, M.-L. (2007). Bywords [public art/street furniture]. Lorne Street, Auckland, New Zealand. Cochoy, F. (2016). On Curiosity: The Art of Market Seduction (J. T. Lira, Trans.). Manchester, UK: Mattering Press (Original work published in 2011). Cochoy, F. (2017). From social ties to socioeconomic attachments: A matter of selection and collection. In: F. Cochoy, J. Deville, & L. McFall (Eds.), Markets and the Arts of Attachment. Oxon, UK & New York, NY: Routledge. Cochoy, F. & Smolinski, J. (2017). From the logs of QR code readers: A socio-log-y of digital consumption. In: F. Cochoy, J. Hagberg, M. Petersson McIntrye, & Niklas Sörum (Eds.), Digitalizing Consumption: How Devices Shape Consumer Culture. Oxon, UK & New York, NY: Routledge. Coleman, J. (2011). Immigration New Zealand’s Contribution to Growing the Economy (Speech Transcript), Viewed 6 June 2020. ration-new-zealands-contribution-growing-economy. Conrad, C. & Schmidt, A. (2016). The role of emotions in the production of capitalist subjects: An introduction. In: C. Conrad & A. Schmidt (Eds.), Bodies and Affects in Market Society (pp. 1–22). Tübingen, Germany: Mohr Siebeck. Deleuze, G. (1983). Nietzsche and Philosophy (P. Patton, Trans.). London, England: The Athlone Press (Original work published in 1962). Deleuze, G. (1989). Cinema 2: The Time-Image (H. Tomlinson & R. Galeta, Trans.). Minneapolis, MN & London, England: University of Minnesota Press (Original work published in 1985). Deleuze, G. (1992). Postscript on the Societies of Control. October 59, pp. 3–7. Deleuze, G. (1993). The Fold: Leibniz and the Baroque (T. Conley, Trans.). Minneapolis, MN & London, England: University of Minnesota Press (Original work published in 1988).

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Deleuze, G. & Guattari, F. (1987). A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, Vol. 2 (B. Massumi, Trans.). Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press (Original work published in 1980). Deleuze, G. & Guattari, F. (1994). What is Philosophy (H. Tomlinson & G. Burchell, Trans.). New York, NY: Columbia University Press (Original work published in 1991). Dillet, B. (2017). For a critique of noology. Parallax 23 (2), pp. 164–183. Foucault, M. (1978). Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison (A. Sheridan, Trans.). New York, NY: Vintage Books. Gardner-Hopkins, J. & Fairgray, D. (2011). Spatial Planning: Evidence and Evaluation. New Zealand Planning Institute, Viewed 6 June 2020. nz/Folder?Action=View%20File&Folder_id=217&File=GARDNER-HOPKINS_ FAIRGRAY_2011.pdf. Gille, D. (1986). Maceration and purification (B. Benderson, Trans.). In: M. Feher & S. Kwinter (Eds.), City: Zone ½ (pp. 226–283). New York, NY: Urzone. Greater Auckland. (2010). Darby Street Shared Space (partial transcription of video recording). Greater Auckland, Viewed 6 June 2019. https://www.greaterauckland.or Greater Auckland. (2011). Darby Street Video (partial transcription of video recording). Greater Auckland, Viewed 6 June 2020. 05/30/darby-street-video/. Grey, T. & Siddall, E. (2012). Spared Space, Shared Surfaces and Home Zones from a Universal Design Approach for the Urban Environment in Ireland. Dublin, Ireland: TrinityHaus, Viewed 6 June 2019. Griffiths, C. (n.d.). 01, Typography in the Landscape, Viewed 7 June 2020. https://catheri Lapoujade, D. (2019). To act at the limit (S. Lillis, Trans.). In: R. Görling, B. Gronau, & L. Schwarte (Eds.), Aesthetics of Standstill (pp. 284–298). Berlin: Sternberg Press. Lash, S. (2012). Deforming the figure: Topology and the social imaginary. Theory, Culture & Society 29 (4–5), pp. 261–287. Lazzarato, M. (2006). The concepts of life and the living in the societies of control. In: M. Fuglsang (Ed.), Deleuze and the Social. Edinburgh, UK: Edinburgh University Press. Lazzarato, M. (2019). Videophilosophy: The Perception of Time in Post-Fordism (J. Hetrick, Ed. & Trans.). New York, NY: Columbia University Press. Massumi, B. (2015). The Politics of Affect. Cambridge, England: Polity Press. Martin, J.-C. (2005). Variations: The Philosophy of Gilles Deleuze (C. V. Boundas & S. Dyrkton, Trans.). Edinburgh, UK: Edinburgh University Press (Original work published in 1993). McArthur, J. & Robin, E. (2019). Victims of their own (definition of) success: Urban discourse and expert knowledge production in the Liveable City. Urban Studies, 56 (9), pp. 1711–1728. NZ Government. (2009). Local Government (Auckland Council) Act 2009, Act of Parliament, Viewed 6 June 2020. 2/latest/whole.html#DLM333866. Ng, T. & Bollard, A. (2012). Learnings from the Global Financial Crisis (Conference Presentation). Reserve Bank of New Zealand, Viewed 6 June 2020. https://www.rbn

62 Andrew Douglas Osborne, P. (2013). Anywhere or Not at All: Philosophy of Contemporary Art. London, England & New York, NY: Verso. Read, J. (2009). The fetish is always actual, revolution is always virtual: From Noology to Noopolitics. Deleuze Studies 3, pp. 78–101. Reed, A. W. (1955). Auckland, the City of the Seas. Wellington, NZ: A. H. & A. W. Reed. Runstad Affiliate Fellows. (2016). A City to Love: Visions of a Public Realm [Video presentation of Runstad Center of Real Estate Studies, College of Built Environments]. Seattle, WA: University of Washington. Rykwert, J. (1991). The street: The use of its history. In: S. Anderson (Ed.), On Streets (pp. 15–27). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Tarde, G. & Lorenc, T. (Eds.) (2012). Monadology and Sociology (T. Lorenc, Trans.). Melbourne: RE Press. Tewdwr-Jones, M., Gallent, N., & Morphet, J. (2010). An anatomy of spatial planning: Coming to terms with the spatial element in UK planning. European Planning Studies 18 (2), pp. 239–257. Vogl, J. (2015). The Specter of Capital (J. Redner & R. Savage, Trans.). Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Zavestoski, S. & Agyeman, J. (2015). Complete streets: What’s missing? In S. Zavestoski & J. Agyeman (Eds.), Incomplete Streets: Processes, Practices, and Possibilities. Abingdon: Taylor and Francis Group. Zavestoski, S. & Agyeman, J. (Eds.) (2015). Incomplete Streets: Processes, Practices, and Possibilities. London, England & New York, NY: Routledge.

Chapter 4

Deep architecture An ecology of hetero-affection Andrej Radman

This hypothesis, that optical change can seemingly specify two things [i.e., locomotion through and the layout of a rigid world] at the same time, sounds very strange, as if one cause were having two effects or as if one stimulus were arousing two sensations. But there is nothing illogical about the idea of concurrent specification of two reciprocal things [for-ness and about-ness]. Such an idea is much needed in psychology. (Gibson, 1986, p. 76) We are trying to substitute the idea of assemblage for the idea of behavior: whence the importance of ethology, and the analysis of animal assemblages, e.g. territorial assemblages. […] In assemblages you find states of things, bodies, various combinations of bodies, hodgepodges; but you also find utterances, modes of expression, and whole regimes of signs. The relation between the two is pretty complex. (Deleuze, 2006, p. 177) Immediation functions radically differently [from mediation]: it makes no a priori assumptions about what can make a difference, nor does it map a space of interaction that moves between two existing limit-points, setting itself as the arbiter of that exchange. Immediation middles, which is to say that it crafts middlings from which it tends to experience still in germ. (Manning, 2019, p. 6)

A post-Darwinian theory of sensibility This chapter makes a case for a pedagogy of the senses, thereby recasting the architect as an artist and artisan of relational lived experience (Guattari, 2013, pp. 231–9). In terms of architectural thinking, everything begins from the sensible, but the task of thinking is to go beyond the sensible to the potentials that make sensibility possible. This is pertinent given that the task of architecture, as I see it, is to (re)distribute the sensible (Rancière, 2006) and thus provoke thought. “If

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different examples of architecture […] are places of visibilities”, Deleuze claims, “this is because they are not just figures of stone, assemblages of things and combinations of qualities, but first and foremost forms of light that distribute light and dark, opaque and transparent, seen and non-seen, etc.” (Deleuze, 1988, p. 49). Visibility is not to be confused with a general (radiant) light that supposedly illuminates pre-existing objects.1 Instead, “it is made up of lines of light that form variable figures inseparable from an [assemblage]” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 339). All consciousness is something, not of something – the error of hypostasis (Bergson, 1992, pp. 28–31).2 In a cluttered world irreducible to deterministic laws or pure chance, architects work with sensation as the material (Deleuze, 2005). They design affordances, a way of affecting, and not forms. In my view, the basic medium of the discipline is a field of experience, rather than geometry, design, critique, or any ontic domain (Massumi, 1998, pp. 42–47). The post-phenomenological design moves away from the formalist objects of linguistic expression towards the pathic dimensions of experience (Mallgrave, 2018). From language and words to collective assemblages of enunciation. The signifying semiotic system is “only one regime of signs among others, and not the most important one” (Deleuze and Guattari, 2004, p. 124). The resulting attitude recasts architects as psychotropic, i.e. mood-shaping, practitioners (Radman, 2019, p. 68). In the words of Sanford Kwinter: The task of design, thought and political action […] is to “hack” the world in the same gesture as our perception of it. This will allow us to modify the world around us with a clear understanding of the loops that pass through and shape us. Human destiny and capacity (hope) lies in the practices of psychotropic practices, which are never just internal. He then cautions against the predominant “geodesic attitude” of conforming to the path of least resistance by succumbing to the (neo)liberal agenda of preserving the status quo: The guiding ethos of efficiency that exploits little more than our crudest needs for neurological stimulation needs to give way to expansion and transformation of experience and consciousness that our cognitive and sensory biological endowments are so rich in, but that are endlessly and brutally sealed from us by technical channelling processes. Anything that does not expressly “hack” our nervous system seems merely to pacify, blunt or enslave it. (Kwinter, 2018a, p. 12) We perceive the world in which we live and infer the world of the scientist, not the other way around. This is not to dismiss formalisations as either unnecessary or redundant. It is simply to acknowledge that the current trend of digitalisation and algorithmisation of life falls short of laying out a single non-linguistic plane of immanence that fully integrates both subjects and objects. Perception and action

Deep architecture


are not propositions nor are they based on a proposition. Therefore, they cannot be correct or incorrect (Michaels and Carello, 1981, p. 109). A map is not a territory. Gregory Bateson pinpointed the issue of immediacy without objectification as follows: Thirty years ago we used to ask: Can a computer simulate all the processes of logic? The answer was yes. But the question was surely wrong. We should have asked: Can logic simulate all sequences of cause and effect? And the answer would have been no! (Bateson, 1979, p. 58) This has been demonstrated time and again by the failed attempts to reverseengineer perception. The tie between the environment and the organism is “two-fold” – ontological and epistemological. As espoused in the epigraphs, the environment provides the conditions for perception and is that which is perceived. This is what Karen Barad refers to as onto-epistem-ology, where knowing is the material practice of engagement as part of the world in its differential becoming (Barad, 2007, p. 89). As of recently there is a near-consensus on the need to substitute the enactive for the symbolic approach to cognition (Thompson, 2016). By contrast to Kant’s transcendental unity of apperception that “takes place” within consciousness, the reinvigorated Humean tradition rejects reliance upon constructing internal models of reality and insists on the world as its own best model (Brooks, 1990). As Evans (1995, p. 366) put it: “I am assuming space is dependent on matter while Kant and [Roger] Scruton assume it is not”. In The Critique of Pure Reason (1998, pp. 157– 8), Kant outlined what he meant by space: “Space is not an empirical concept that has been drawn from outer experiences”. Instead it is “a necessary representation, a priori”. For Kant, therefore, space, time, and causality are not concepts derived from experience, rather they structure experience a priori. Deleuze, a keen reader of Hume, insists that the form of the self, as the supposed ground of representation, is something that needs explaining and is not an incontrovertible given from which all explanations arise. By the same token, perception is not apperception because spatialisation comes before space (Radman, 2017a). An organism’s capacity for contractions of habit could only be explained by the fact that the kind of repetition that we perceive comes from the kind of repetition that we ourselves are: We are made of contracted water, earth, light and air – not only prior to the recognition or representation of these, but prior to their being sensed. Every organism, in its receptive and perceptual elements, but also in its viscera, is a sum of contractions, of retentions and expectations. (Deleuze, 1994, 73) The morphogenetic approach proposed by Deleuze effectively reunites the two halves of aesthetics as handed down from Kant (Smith, 2009): the transcendental

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from the First Critique (Kant, 1998) and the empirical from the Third Critique (Kant, 2007). For as long as sensations are referred back to the a priori form of their representation, transcendental aesthetics cannot acquire a real status, but merely a formal one (Alliez, 2004, pp. 85–104). The Urdoxa of “transcendental unity of perception” prevents an account of the genesis of sense. The fact that Deleuze brings together the possible a priori and the real a posteriori conditions of experience has enormous implications and could be summed up in the assertion that the genetic principles of sensation are one and the same with the principles of architecture as a plane of composition: “Sensation is on a plane that is different from mechanisms, dynamisms, and finalities: It is on a plane of composition where sensation is formed by contracting that which composes it” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, p. 212). It is a matter of the posteriori becoming a priori. As Yuk Hui (2019, p. 172) argues in his Recursivity and Contingency, memory is empirical, hence posteriori, but once it is recorded it becomes the condition of new experiences, hence a priori. This means that the plane of composition – as a work of sensation – is aesthetic through and through: “it is the material that passes into the sensation” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, pp. 192–3). What Deleuze and Guattari effectively propose is a post-Darwinian theory of sensibility where our receptive faculties are themselves the result of design. Not only is the built environment composed of habitats that store memory, but it also functions as a cultural catalyst of new habits. The process implies an evolution that exceeds natural means, where habits shape habitats that in turn shape habits (Richardson, 2004).3 Simply put, we build our environments; thereafter they build us. By connecting the somatic and the social, we avoid the pitfalls of both genetic determinism and social constructivism. Throughout history, the relationship between technical and aesthetic planes has continuously varied, yet “no art and no sensation have ever been representational” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, p. 193). Attention, action and perception are joined in mutually supportive self-fuelling loops (Clark, 2016, p. 83). Once aesthetics (as in sensibility formation) is drawn into the context of design, its domain vastly expands. It becomes a dimension of being itself (Hui, 2019, p. 207).4 Subjects arise from the resolution of a relational field of natural processes and social practices. Subjects and objects come to be seen as (untenable) immanent limits. They are but divergent processual destinations or relata that are not antecedent to the relation (of exteriority). As Claire Colebrook puts it: “Once we try to think the origin of all that is, the very ground of being, then we arrive properly not at the origin of sensibility, but sensibility as origin” (Colebrook, 2009, p. 29). Sensibility is “ground zero” (Radman, 2014).

Logos spermatikos In pursuit of a pedagogy of the senses, I build on the legacy of James Jerome Gibson, whose highly innovative concepts developed over 40 years ago continue

Deep architecture


to stir controversy even among the scholars of the Ecological School of Perception. Gibson was fully aware of the difficulties in challenging the orthodoxies to which he himself admitted to have contributed.5 His neologism affordance, akin to affect or the capacity to affect and be affected, is the most important for our purposes. It is key to the ecological theory of direct perception (and action), which constitutes an alternative to the information-processing paradigm. The concept of affordance abides by the nomos of immediation (Manning, 2019). What it designates is that a mode of existence never pre-exists an event (Manning and Massumi, 2013, p. 84). It is difficult to imagine a more elegant shift of focus from the extensive space of properties to the intensive spatium of capacities. The compelling theory of (space) perception cannot start with the very thing it is a theory about, namely, extension as a given (Turvey, 2019, p. 141). In keeping with the Assemblage Theory, capacities do depend on properties but cannot be reduced to them (DeLanda, 2009). This is how Gibson explains the shift from the “absolute” experience-of-space to the relational – i.e. impredicative6 (Turvey, 2019, p. 39) – space-of-experience: The affordances of the environment are what it offers the animal, what it provides or furnishes, either for good or ill. The verb to afford is found in the dictionary, but the noun affordance is not. I have made it up. I mean by it something that refers to both the environment and the animal in a way that no existing term does. It implies the complementarity of the animal and the environment. (Gibson, 1986, p. 127) Gibson’s assertion that the amodal and ambulant perception is a rule rather than an exception parallels Deleuze’s claim that every perception is in fact hallucinatory (albeit veridical) because it has no object (Turvey, 2019, p. 122).7 The amodal perception is a term describing the perception of an object or environment in its entirety despite the fact that only parts of it are visible. In the words of William James: “We were virtual knowers […] long before we were certified to have been actual knowers, by the percept’s retroactive validating power” (James, 2008, p. 32). If perception is ipso facto virtual, the part-to-whole relationship is to be supplanted by the relationship of the ordinary and singular, i.e. remarkable (Deleuze and Guattari, 2004, pp. 506–8; Deleuze, 1993, pp. 87–88). The singular cannot be mistaken for a particular, for that would imply its relation to the general. Singularities or spatio-temporal haecceities resist universalisation. What’s more, it may arise at “any-moment-whatever”, as opposed to the privileged moments of origin, telos, and such (Foucault, 1995). It is never a matter of bringing all sorts of things under a universal concept, but relating each concept to those singularities that determine its mutations (Deleuze, 1995, p. 31). Famously, for Deleuze and Guattari “the plane of organization” is the actual arrangement of elements in empirically describable and historically determined configurations, while “the plane of consistency” is the virtual co-presence of all

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elements of a totality in their real force-potential – “powers of the false”. The virtual is thus real albeit incorporeal. Its power is “false” by virtue of harbouring “the coexistence of not-necessarily true pasts” (Deleuze, 1989, p. 131). The power of becoming stands opposed to the form of the eternal. It is a “memory of the future” that was never lived. This is where the ethical responsibility, better still “response-ability” (Haraway, 2016, p. 29),8 resides. In the words of Constantin Boundas: making possible this freedom “for us”, is called counter-actualization, that is, tracing back the present state of things to the virtual event that conditions it and tapping its not-yet-actualized dynamisms, for the sake of a time to come. Becoming worthy of the event, as we trace the lines of escape of and from the present (lines, nevertheless, that pre-exist our tracing efforts), belongs to this moment of turning freedom in itself and for itself into freedom for us in the refrain. (2019, p. xxiii) For Gibson, a thing perceived as a whole is not based on the static property of its actual parts but on an invariant embedded in change, a.k.a. the ritornello. The invariant is the incommunicable pre-individual, non-personal, and a-conceptual singularity that creates dependency relations among the constituents. Although the “optical form” varies as a result of locomotion, the virtual “form that the change of form takes” is itself an invariant. In other words, there is an invariance of perception with a varying sensation: The terrestrial world is mostly made of surfaces, not of bodies in space. And these surfaces often flow or undergo stretching, squeezing, bending and breaking in ways of enormous mechanical complexity. So different, in fact, are environmental motions from those studied by Isaac Newton that it is best to think of them as changes of structure rather than changes of position of elementary bodies, changes in form, rather than of point locations, or changes in the layout rather than motions in the usual meaning of the term. (Gibson, 1986, p. 15) Architecture could be said to facilitate “the pursuit of life by means other than life”, the organic through the organised inorganic, i.e. milieu-technics (Stiegler, 1998). Its task is to produce and reintegrate the inorganic in order to not only preserve life, but also catalyse new modes of existence. In contrast to Deleuze who did not explicitly address architecture, except through his disciple Cache (1995), Gibson was critical of its unsatisfactory theoretical basis and open about his ambition to make a contribution on this score (Reed and Jones, 1982, p. 415). As we have seen in his topologically informed quote from above, the surface is where most of the

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Table 4.1 The greater the extent to which architecture makes creative relays across the three planes, the more truthful the assertion that the culture of hylomorphism – imposition of form upon supposedly inert matter – has been superseded. PHILOSOPHY



Plane of IMMANENCE ACTUAL > VIRTUAL CONCEPT Conceptual Persona Variations








Plane of COMPOSITION > INTENSIVE < PERCEPT/AFFECT Aesthetic Figure Variables




Plane of REFERENCE VIRTUAL > ACTUAL FUNCTION Partial Observer Varieties

action takes place and that is why architecture students should be taught not only physical laws but also their ecological counterparts (Gibson, 1986, p. 23). Let us therefore start by asking a naïve question: What do we mean by architecture in the first place? In terms of its kinship with art, architecture belongs to what Arthur Danto called the third realm of beauty, that is, neither “natural” like a sunset, nor “artistic” as in fine arts, but “applied”. As Mark Kingwell explains, the applied beauty is always ethico-political because, one way or another, it addresses the issue of how to live: “[it]may be aspirational, admonitory or inspiring, it may, too frequently, be merely consumeristic. It may be all of these at once” (Kingwell, 2008, p. 81; cf. Danto, 2003). In the words of Robert Hughes, “painting can make us happy, but building is the art we live in; it is social art par excellence, the carapace of political fantasy, the exoskeleton of one’s economic dreams. It is also one art nobody can escape” (Hughes, 1991, p. 164). Unlike the Three Daughters of Chaos – philosophy, science, and art – architecture can be said to be guilty of trespassing (Table 4.1). Yet, its sole purpose is to make experience “stand on its own”, that is, apart from the object and distinct from the architect (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994). In contrast to the resilient hylomorphic tradition in architecture design, the Stoics’ immanent principle of organisation – spermatikos logos – requires a different, experimental attitude of “partnership” with matter (Sellars, 1999). If form is not to be imposed from the outside – by decree or architectural plan – but rather “teased out” of the latent potentiality of the plane of immanence (Speaks, 2002), a more humble yet audacious disposition is required from the architect. Thinking par le milieu (Stengers, 2005) places the concepts of relation and affect at the centre of both the ethics and the epistemic structures and strategies of the architect: “Desire is never separable from complex assemblages that necessarily tie into [nested] molecular levels, from microformations already shaping postures, attitudes, perceptions, expectations, semiotic systems, etc.” (Deleuze and Guattari, 2004, p. 215). One of the great virtues of the Deleuzian approach that might as

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well apply to Gibson, as Rosi Braidotti explains, is the rigorous brand of methodological pacifism that animates it: The monistic ontology that [Deleuze] adapts from Spinoza, to which he adds the Bergsonian time-continuum, situates the researcher – be it the philosopher, the scientist, or the artist [or the architect] – in a situation of great intimacy with the world. There is no violent rupture or separation between the subject and the object of her inquiry, no predatory gaze of the cold clinician intent upon unveiling the secrets of nature. An elemental ontological unity structures the debate. This nonessentialist vitalist position calls for more complexity and diversity in defining the processes of scientific inquiry. (Braidotti, 2010, p. 215) Like Deleuze, Gibson starts his ecological description “from the middle”, with disparities and relationships, rather than with ultimate elements (Lombardo, 1987, p. 76). Perception, for both Deleuze and Gibson, is clearly an act of subtraction and not of enrichment (cf. Barthélémy, 2009).9 It is a process of differentiating variables of stimulation (right observables) rather than adding meanings to an impoverished stimulus input (Reed and Jones, 1982, p. 297). An inadequate notion of the organism as a composite entity made up of separate but complementary parts, related as an innate container to an acquired content, precludes the adequate account of ontogenetic development (Ingold, 2000). In the words of Zourabichvili (1996, p. 195): “Mind is the membrane of the external world, rather than an autonomous gaze directed towards it”. There is less in perception than in matter. Quentin Meillassoux explains the underlying principles of the subtractive theory of perception: If, to pass from matter to perception, we must add something, this adjunction would be properly unthinkable, and the mystery of representation would remain entirely intact. But this is not at all the case if we pass from the first to the second term by way of a diminution, and if the representation of an image were held to be less than its simple presence. Now, if living beings constitute “centres of indetermination” in the universe, then their simple presence must be understood to presuppose the suppression of all the parts of the object that are without interest for their functions […] Perception does not, as in Kant, submit sensible matter to a subjective form, because the link, the connection, the form, belongs wholly to matter. Perception does not connect, it disconnects. It does not inform a content but incises an order. It does not enrich matter, but on the contrary impoverishes it. (Meillassoux, 2007, pp. 72–73) According to Crary (1990, p. 71), Goethe did not hesitate to designate opacity as a crucial and productive component of vision. Similarly, William Blake wrote: “If the doors of perception were cleansed every thing would appear to man as it

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is, infinite” (Blake, 1994). According to the neuroscientist Walter Freeman, such cleansing would not be desirable at all. Without the protection of the “doors of perception” we would be overwhelmed by eternity (Freeman, 1991). Besides, it is never necessary to distinguish all the features of an object and to do so would in fact be impossible. Gibson concurs that perception is pragmatic: “Those features of a thing are noticed which distinguish it from other things that it is not – but not all the features that distinguish it from everything that it is not” (Gibson, 1966, p. 286). In the traditional view, the event is decomposed into a succession of moments, each described by its own stimulus. For the event to be perceived, the succession of stimuli needs somehow to be strung back together. A deus ex machina is required for the mysterious task of reconstituting the dynamic. By contrast, under the ecological approach, the event is perceived directly by dint of lawful information generated in action. The non-fortuitous “information” here is meant in Batesonian terms – a difference that makes a difference (Bateson, 1979, p. 228). Perceiving is thus not a matter of constructing a mental representation from sensory inputs, or “computation” on the basis of “input data”. It is, for this reason, that Gibson preferred the metaphor of “tuning in” – as in a radio frequency – as more appropriate than “computing” – with the brain as a computer, the eye as a camera, and so on (Gibson, 1966, p. 270).10 Perception is a matter of skill and participation, not calculation. It cannot be considered independently of the environment since perception is defined as an evolved adaptive and constructive relation between the organism and the (increasingly more built) environment. Unfortunately, experimental psychology research has relied overwhelmingly on object perception, rather than environment perception, with the findings of the former providing the basis for understanding the latter (Ittelson, 1973, p. 142). Architecture continues to suffer from this fallacy.

Towards an ethico-aesthetic paradigm We close the chapter with a plea for architecture capable of creating marginexcess capacity enabling different and even opposite interpretations and uses that become plausible “on the condition that one renounces any order of preference, any organization in relation to goal, any signification” (Deleuze, 1997, p. 153). To subordinate significance to signification would be like putting the cart before the horse. Consequently, architecture’s proverbial attention to the actual and extensive givens – the fallacy of simple location, a.k.a. misplaced concreteness (Whitehead, 1925) – has to be met by a precursory genetic synthesis of affects/ affordances and their characteristic relations of intensity. The kindred concepts of affect and affordance will prove instrumental in discontinuing the practice of treating systems as isolated first (structure) and as interacting second (agency). What they teach us is that structure and operation are co-constitutive (Simondon, 2017). Architects cannot continue to rely on the structure alone, which assumes that the whole is reducible to the sum of its parts (partes extra partes). Nor can

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they solely rely on the operation, which assumes a functional holism in which the whole is primordial and expressed through its working. Instead, architects need to grasp the metastability of the emergent union, i.e. the provisional result of the process of becoming that harbours untapped potential (a.k.a. virtuality). The concept of a permanent environment consisting of objects is widely accepted, unlike the concept of a quasi-permanent environment of potential stimuli that are energies and not objects. This is unfortunate given that the brain actually thrives on a productive margin of unpredictability. If the environment – designed, built, or “architectured” – is approached from the perspective of “malleable” affects/affordances, then the very concept of niche construction surpasses the binaries of social and material, human and non-human, natural and artificial.11 The prerogative is to shift the focus away from mere usage and utility (i.e. techno-determinism) without regressing to relativism (Radman, 2017b, p. 457). From the corporeal object to the constrained dynamical tendencies. The information for the self (for-ness) is about its environment (about-ness) (Sherman, 2017). As Clark (2016, p. 16) puts it in his aptly named book Surfing Uncertainty: Active agents get to structure their own sensory flows, affecting the ebb and flow of their own energetic stimulation. […] Notice how different this conception is to ones in which the problem is posed as one of establishing a mapping relation between environmental and inner states. For as long as they remain ignorant of geometry, infants pay attention to the affordances of layout and not its (primary) properties. Although logically one advances from space to affordance, developmentally the progress is in the opposite direction: “the metaphor of filling [space] is wrong. Time and space are not empty receptacles to be filled; instead, they are simply the ghosts of events and surfaces” (Gibson, 1986, p. 101). The unique capability of filmmakers and, according to Gibson, magicians, to supersede the extensive state of things in order to engage the intensive qualities and powers, is unappreciated by the discipline of architecture which remains committed to the ontology of presence and continues to rely on its reductive conceptual palette (Jobst, 2010). This is not surprising, according to Guattari, as “the paradigms of techno-science place the emphasis on an objectal world of relations and functions, systematically bracketing out subjective affects, such that the finite, the delimited and coordinatable [commensurable], always takes precedence over the infinite and its virtual references” (Guattari, 1995, p. 100). I was often told that it is nearly impossible to address the nondiscursive without committing the performative paradox. However, to paraphrase Gibson, trying to understand the continuous in the same way we understand the discrete – i.e. in terms of the familiar – is a sign of intellectual laziness (Gibson, 1986, p. 63). Thus, architects ought to resist the lure of the familiar and realise that what is allegedly incommunicable is anything but negligible. Not everything can be fully known, mastered, or rendered present to thought.

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Experience stubbornly resists formalisation. “Next to shit, perhaps the most conspicuous instance of the extent to which the world resists algorithmization is sexuality” (Hayles, 2005, p. 123). Ironically, this truism has been exploited not by architects but by imagineers. As Chung (2001) points out in his Disney Space, “the architecture on the park’s Main Street, USA, is composed of several incommensurable scales: first floors are about 90 percent full scale, second floors about 80 percent, and third floors or roofs about 50 to 60 percent”. The topological manipulation of scale with the effect of enhanced foreshortening is key to the creation of a particular atmosphere (Böhme, 2017). Despite the cartoon-like effect it produces, one cannot but acknowledge the skill and know-how of Disney’s imagineers. In a similar vein, marketing specialists continue setting wristwatches and clocks to 10 past 10, which would be too facile to dismiss as mere anthropomorphism. We cannot afford to ignore these “smiles without the clock”12 under the pretence of architecture’s highbrow attitude. As Spencer’s (2016) provocative book title suggests, contemporary architecture has become an instrument of control. Pace Spencer, however, we conclude that its compliance with the imperatives of neoliberalism actually proves that architecture is not yet “Deleuzist” enough. The contemporary built environment successfully moulds the convergent need, but it stops short of modulating the divergent desire. The homophilic principle of like breeds like, which according to Wendy Chun fosters segregation by closing the world it pretends to open, remains an ethico-political issue par excellence (Chun, 2019).13 For better or worse, the demonstrated level of craftsmanship in the production of effect by advertisers and (gentry)fictionists reveals a deep understanding of the affective approach where the thing is power and not form (Frichot, 2014). As William Connolly suggests, there are more intense vague existential dispositions in which creed and affect mix together below the ready reach of change by reflective considerations alone: It also touches those feelings of abundance and joy that emerge whenever we sense the surplus of life over the structure of our identities. That is the surplus Deleuze seeks to mobilize and to attach to positive political movements that embrace minoritization of the world. (Connolly, 2010, p. 196) While asignifying semiotics is an excess in relation to the discursive, semiology remains flawed because it does not get us out of structure and prohibits us from entering the real world of the machinic (structuration) (Zepke, 2017). “The structuralist signifier is always synonymous with linear discursivity”, whereas heterogeneous machines refuse to be “at the mercy of a universal temporalisation” (Guattari, 1995, p. 48). Aestheticism is not apolitical. What we are “permitted” to experience is a political question par excellence (Kwinter, 2018b). The limit of something, as

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the Stoics taught us, is the limit of its action and not the outline of its figure. Even if this something is just perceived. As a matter of fact, especially when it is being perceived (as potential for action) (Massumi, 2004, p. 328). Has not Leibniz taught us that the point of view is deeper than whosoever places themself at it? “The subject is second in relation to the point of view” (Deleuze, 1980). Moe’s (2017, p. 22) otherwise most worthy contribution to contemporary architecture theory, we have to resist reducing “incorporeal materialism” to “corporeal energetics” of thermodynamics. Thermodynamic processes are not equivalent to information pickup. Materially and dynamically, absolute novelty is a fiction. The causal properties present on Earth have persisted ever since the Big Bang (Deacon, 2012, p. 38). By contrast, the quasi-causality of perception continues to evolve as a result of new enabling constraints. New virtualities can come to command and direct the actuality from which they emerged and modify it in a metastable way. Consequently, under the rigorous non-eliminative materialism, the pathic cannot be subsumed by the ontic, and the kinematic is not to be conflated with the kinetic (Radman and Sohn, 2017). “With cause-and-effect events, prior causes produce subsequent effects. Inversely, with means-to-ends behavior, subsequent ends produce prior means, and not nearly as predictably” (Sherman, 2017, p. 42). In other words, the kinematic tendency is already a movement without the actual kinetic movement (Massumi, 2004, p. 324). Things will look as they do because they afford what they do when they do and if they do. Yet, perspectivism is not to be confused with relativism. To paraphrase de Castro (1998, p. 478), different life forms do not see the same world in different ways, but rather see different worlds in the same way. According to Gibson, herein lies the possibility for a new theory of design: We modify the substances and surfaces of our environment for the sake of what they will afford, not for the sake of creating good forms as such, abstract forms, mathematically elegant forms, aesthetically pleasing forms. The forms of Euclid and his geometry, abstracted by Plato to the immaterial level, have to be rooted in the substances and surfaces and layouts that constrain our locomotion and permit or prevent our actions. […] What one sees as he looks around is not a patchwork of forms but the possibilities of support, of falling, of resting, of sitting, of walking, of bumping into, of climbing; of taking shelter, of hiding, of grasping, of moving movable things, of tool using, and so on and on. (Reed and Jones, 1982, p. 415) Indeed, and so on and on and on. Architectural design needs to address bodies on the level of their potential movement that never bottoms out. This does not call for the affirmation of the relativity of truth, but the affirmation of relationalism through which one can affirm the truth of the relative. The kindred heuristic/abductive concepts of affect and affordance become invaluable for operating below the level of object recognition and familiar function (Kousoulas, 2018).

Deep architecture


They help us escape linear causality and move toward determination as an aesthesis, as a process of experience/experimentation (Manning and Massumi, 2014). The injunction to temporarily suspend “interpretosis”, as in the neurotic act of code breaking, might not be as difficult as it seems (Deleuze and Guattari, 2004, p. 114). According to William James (2002, pp. 300–1), our waking consciousness is but one special type of consciousness among many: “No account of the universe in its totality can be final which leaves these other forms of [non]consciousness quite disregarded”. The Proustian apprenticeship in semantics has taught us that there are two ways to miss the sense of a sign: objectivism and subjectivism. The former characterises the belief that sense can be found in the object emitting the sign, while the latter finds sense within, in the “chains of association” (Deleuze, 2007). In contemporary architectural discourse, the logic of objectivism goes by the name of parametricism (Schumacher, 2012). A parametricist’s wet dream is “algorithmic governance” (Rouvroy, 2012): “smart city”, “big data”, and “intelligent control system”, to name but a few. Subjectivism is associated with neo-phenomenologists such as Steven Holl and Peter Zumthor, who privilege “the poetics of space”, “the subjective”, “the haptic”, and similar emphatic submissions (Perez-Gomez, 2016). Contemporary affect theories circumvent both tendencies. They constitute first and foremost an ecosophical bulwark against the self-fulfilling prophecy of denigrating the material in favour of the discursive, as perpetuated by contemporary media theories. The assumption that data can be stored, retrieved, and processed may be appropriate for the theory of communication pertaining to the algorithmic condition (Colman et al., 2018), but not for the theory of perception (Gibson, 1986, p. 242; Deleuze, 2007).14 Gibson’s plea, that we must not understand aesthesis by analogy with socially coded stimuli, becomes more relevant for architecture than ever (Gibson, 1960, p. 702).15

Notes 1 “Ecological optics”: the study of how (ambient) light is modulated by the milieu. 2 “Hypostasis”: (Greek: ὑπόστασις) the underlying state or underlying substance as the fundamental reality that supports all else. The Bergsonian formulation – that consciousness is – is contrasted with the Husserelian one whereby consciousness is always of something. The same way that Spinozism does not require an internal correlate in the form of “I”, neither does Bergsonism require an external correlate in the form of “thing”. 3 Nietzsche’s main disagreement is with Darwinism’s emphasis on survival or preservation, instead of power or growth (to become more). 4 Aesthetic education allows the reconciliation between necessity and contingency, the inscription of the infinite in the finite. 5 A vast quantity of experimental research in handbooks is concerned with snapshot vision, fixed-eye vision, or aperture vision, and is not relevant to understanding ambulatory vision. 6 “Impredicativity”: what is defined participates in its own definition. 7 “Veridical hallucination”: William James’s term as quoted in: Turvey, 122. 8 “Responseability”: an ability to respond and be responsive in return.

76 Andrej Radman 9 The logic of subtraction also applies to biochemical events. Morphologically, a human hand’s “mitten” is transformed into a “glove” by the process of apoptosis or “cellular suicide”. 10 The animal may change as a consequence of experience, but we view that change not as an accumulation of knowledge, but as a keener ability to detect the affordances of the environment. According to Gibson, learning becomes the education of attention. 11 Oxford biologist John Odling-Smee who coined the term “niche construction” was the first to make the argument that niche construction should be recognised as an evolutionary process. 12 A play of words on “a grin without a cat” related to the Cheshire Cat, a fictional character popularised by Lewis Carroll in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. In our interpretation, its distinctive mischievous smile is an example of the autonomy of affect. 13 “Homophily”: a tendency to maintain relationships with people who are similar to themselves in terms of age, race, gender, religion, or profession. 14 According to Gibson, the information in ambient light is inexhaustible, and the same applies to sound, odour, touch, and natural chemicals. According to Deleuze, the novel is not about memory, as is commonly assumed, but signs. 15 Gibson belongs to the (minor) tradition that resists the tendency of collapsing the coconstituting distinction such as operation/structure (Simondon), difference/repetition (Deleuze), pattern/reason (Brassier), contingency/recursivity (Hui).

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Mallgrave, H. F. (2018) From Object to Experience: The New Culture of Architectural Design. London: Bloomsbury Visual Arts. Manning, E. & Massumi, B. (2013) Coming Alive in a World of Texture for Neurodiversity. In: G. Siegmund and S. Hölscher (eds.), Dance, Politics & Co-Immunity: Thinking Resistances/Current Perspectives on Politics and Communities in the Arts, Vol. 1 (pp. 73–96). Zürich-Berlin: Diaphanes. Manning, E. & Massumi, B. (2014) Thought in the Act: Passages in the Ecology of Experience. Minneapolis, MN and London: University of Minnesota Press. Manning, E. (2019) Toward a Politics of Immediation. Frontiers in Sociology 3(42). doi:10.3389/fsoc.2018.00042. Massumi, B. (1998) The Diagram as Technique of Existence. In: B. van Berkel & C. Bos (eds.), Diagram Work, Special Issue of ANY 23, pp. 42–47. Massumi, B. (2004) Building Experience; The Architecture of Perception. In: A. Benjamin & L. Spuybroek (eds.), NOX Machining Architecture (pp. 322–31). London: Thames & Hudson. Meillassoux, Q. (2007) Subtraction and Contraction: Deleuze, Immanence, and Matter and Memory. Collapse: Unknown Deleuze III, pp. 72–73. Michaels, C. F. & Carello, C. (1981) Direct Perception. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall. Moe, K. (2017) Empire, State & Building. Barcelona: Actar. Perez-Gomez, A. (2016) Attunement: Architectural Meaning after the Crisis of Modern Science. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press. Radman, A. (2014) Sensibility is Ground Zero: On Inclusive Disjunction and Politics of Defatalization. In: R. Braidotti & R. Dolphijn (eds.), This Deleuzian Century: Art, Activism, Society. (pp. 57–86). Leiden & Boston, MA: Brill/Rodopi. Radman, A. (2017a) Space Always Comes After: It is Good When it Comes After; It is Good Only When it Comes After. In: S. van Tuinen (ed.), Speculative Art Histories: Analysis at the Limits (pp. 185–201). Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Radman, A. (2017b) Zigzagging: Bound by the Absence of a Tie. In: P. de Assis & P. Giudici (eds.), The Dark Precursor: Deleuze and Artistic Research, Volume II: Image, Space, and Politics (pp. 456–65). Leuven: Leuven University Press (Orpheus Institute Series). Radman, A. (2019) Involutionary Architecture: Unyoking Coherence from Congruence. In: R. Braidotti & S. Bignall (eds.), Posthuman Ecologies: Complexity and Process after Deleuze (pp. 61–86). London: Rowman & Littlefield International. Radman, A. & Sohn, H. (2017) The Four Domains of the Plane of Consistency. In: A. Radman & H. Sohn (eds.), Critical and Clinical Cartographies: Architecture, Robotics, Medicine, Philosophy (pp. 1–20). Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Rancière, J. (2006) The Politics of Aesthetics: The Distribution of the Sensible (G. Rockhill, Trans.). London: Continuum. Reed, E. S. & Jones, R. (1982) Reasons for Realism, Selected Essays of James J. Gibson. Hillsdale, NJ: L. Erlbaum. Richardson, J. (2004) Nietzsche’s New Darwinism. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Rouvroy, A. (2012) The End(s) of Critique: Data-Behaviourism vs. Due-Process. In: M. Hildebrandt & E. de Vries (eds.), Privacy, Due Process and the Computational Turn: Philosophers of Law Meet Philosophers of Technology (pp. 143–68). Abingdon: Routledge, 2012.

80 Andrej Radman Schumacher, P. (2012) The Autopoiesis of Architecture, Vol. 2: A New Agenda for Architecture. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons. Sellars, J. (1999) The Point of view of the Cosmos: Deleuze, Romanticism, Stoicism. Pli 8, pp. 1–24. Sherman, J. (2017) Neither Ghost Nor Machine: The Emergence and Nature of Selves. New York, NY: Columbia University Press. Simondon, G. (2017) On the Mode of Existence of Technical Objects (C. Malaspina & J. Rogove, Trans.). Minneapolis, MN: Univocal Publishing (Original work published in 1958). Smith, D. W. (2009) From the Surface to the Depths: On the Transition from Logic of Sense to Anti-Oedipus. In: C. V. Boundas (ed.), Gilles Deleuze: The Intensive Reduction (pp. 82–97). London and New York, NY: Continuum. Speaks, M. (2002) Design Intelligence: Or Thinking After the End of Metaphysics. Architecture and Urbanism 12(387), pp. 10–18. Spencer, D. (2016) How Contemporary Architecture Became an Instrument of Control and Compliance. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Stengers, I. (2005) Introductory Notes on an Ecology of Practices. Cultural Studies Review 11(1), pp. 183–96. Stiegler, B. (1998) Technics and Time 1: The Fault of Epimetheus (R. Beardsworth & G. Collins, Trans.). Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Thompson, E. (2016) Introduction to the Revised Edition. In: F. J. Varela, E. Thompson, & E. Rosch (eds.), The Embodied Mind: Cognitive Science and Human Experience, Revised Edition (pp. xvii–xxxiii). Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press. Turvey, M. T. (2019) Lectures on Perception: An Ecological Perspective. New York, NY and London: Routledge. Viveiros de Castro, E. (1998) Cosmological Deixis and Amerindian Perspectivism. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute 4(3), pp. 469–488. Whitehead, A. N. (1925) Science and the Modern World. New York, NY: Free Press. Zepke, S. (2017) A Work of Art Does Not Contain the Least Bit of Information: Deleuze and Guattari and Contemporary Art. In: S. van Tuin & S. Zepke (eds.), Art History After Deleuze and Guattari (pp. 237–53). Leuven: Leuven University Press. Zourabichvili, F. (1996) Six Notes on the Percept (On the Relation between the Critical and Clinical). In: P. Patton (ed.), Deleuze: A Critical Reader. Cambridge, MA: Blackwell.

Chapter 5

Green affect A “landscape music of the artefacts” in the Swedish Million Programme Jennifer Mack1

In 1993, Per Forsman described a strange auditory phenomenon experienced by designers of late modernist Swedish neighbourhoods just a few decades earlier. The architects of the massive Swedish national housing initiative known as the Million Programme, which produced over one million dwelling units in 10 years between 1965 and 1974, he explained, seemed to hear sounds when looking at drawn lines. As he wrote: Many of the architects… have explained that they experienced a sort of “musical” quality in what appeared on their drawing boards. They felt the rhythms and heard a ringing between the façades, the paths, and the terrain, a kind of “landscape music of the artefacts”. They believed that those who would come to live there would also hear this music, maybe not consciously, but as a feeling. (Forsman, 1993, p. 307) In Forsman’s description, then, welfare state designers expressed an apotheosis of feeling, experienced as melodies heard upon viewing their drawings, melodies that they assumed would define the everyday lives of the future residents in the public spaces “between the facades, in the paths, and the terrain” of these neighbourhoods, built with typically mass-produced housing and traffic separation, adhering to classic late modernist principles. Recalling Gilles Deleuze’s work on Spinoza, we could say that this is more than a feeling. As affect – a place of potential – it offers “melodic lines or contrapuntal relations that correspond to each thing, and then describes a symphony as an immanent higher unity that takes on a breadth and a fullness” (Deleuze, 1988, p. 126). When new welfare landscapes and housing opened to inhabitants, this music revealed itself to be not a harmonious “symphony” or the path to “immanent higher unity” on its own, but floating notes from which new songs would be composed. The built products of the Million Programme were not merely experienced as uncomplicated sources of national pride. Buildings, parks, paths, and town centres transformed instead into sites of anguish, of fear, and of constant debate, particularly for non-residents. Yet, for residents and former residents of suburban


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areas, the music is constantly changing, and an immanent unity unimagined by designers may yet be heard in fragments of melodies. As a political initiative, the Million Programme aimed to address both a shortage in housing supply and the low quality of existing housing, while fundamentally transforming Swedish society. The welfare landscape’s infrastructures of playgrounds, parks, walking paths, town centres, subway links, bus stops, and public art were essential components of the modern project. Moving a major part of the Swedish population (then under eight million people) into entirely new homes with cutting-edge conveniences such as refrigerators and indoor plumbing would create a new common consciousness, and this modernity would be further realised through residents’ use of and activities in public space. In this sense, welfare landscapes offered new, mid-twentieth-century modes of being Swedish, relying on both forms and norms. In the landscape music of the Million Programme, designers expected residents to experience modernist suburbs not just as physical environments but as spaces of affect, spaces where the new modern nation would be formed. Today, this affect is awash in green. It is green in its response to landscapes (and their renovation) and it is green by way of its organic, waxing-and-waning attentions and attachments. Eric Shouse writes that “Feelings are personal and biographical, emotions are social, and affects are prepersonal” (Shouse, 2005). As affect, then, these experiences lie beyond the personal, comprising bodily

Figure 5.1 A concrete façade on Million Programme housing, as seen through some of the neighbourhood’s many trees.

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reactions and primordial responses. Green affect seizes its moments, tears up the asphalt, prepares a person for action, and emanates from a place of potential. Yet, this affect does not revere “nature” – designed or existing – as its only register. It is not only embodied or autonomous (Mazzarella, 2010). Instead, its music echoes in elusive compositions resonating through the parallel landscapes of politics, class, economics, use and neglect, the public and the private, and the tragedies and euphorias of renovation. Non-residents often describe Million Programme neighbourhoods as spaces of lack, with rampant unemployment, segregation, and crime. In a sense, these reactions emerge from feelings of nostalgia for welfare landscapes that are perceived never to have materialised as they were designed and imagined. Yet, as Susan Stewart writes about nostalgia, “the past it seeks has never existed except as narrative, and hence, always absent, that past continually threatens to reproduce itself as a felt lack” (1993, p. 23). Rather than accepting an internment in lack, residents’ green affect breaks out from the restrictive spaces of feelings or emotions: it forms in the interstices between appreciation/anger, success/failure, alignment/ detachment. It rejects these dichotomies in public spaces that were never intended to be vestigial. Here, I explore green affect through the impressionistic, journalistic, and sometimes-fictional accounts of one woman, Märta,2 a retired factory worker, partner, activist, mother and grandmother, and sometimes author, in her sixties. Märta grew up partly in collective housing, both in urban central Uppsala, the fourth largest city in Sweden, and in the surrounding countryside. Since the late 1970s, she has been a resident, consecutively, of two Million Programme areas, both on the outskirts of Uppsala. In conversations and emails with her, she consistently expressed bemusement over the notoriety of these neighbourhoods, questioning the negative labels they have received as “concrete suburbs”, “alienation areas”, or “problem areas” among police, elected officials, and the media. As affect (rather than an emotion or a feeling), I position Märta’s green affect not as something not specific to her, but rather, following Shouse, a non-conscious experience of intensity; it is a moment of unformed and unstructured potential…. Affect is the body’s way of preparing itself for action in a given circumstance by adding a quantitative dimension of intensity to the quality of an experience. (Shouse, 2005) Märta’s green affect is exquisitely illustrated in her interwoven words and deeds, where her efforts have mostly acted on the two neighbourhoods in which she has lived over the past four decades. Both lie on the periphery of Uppsala: Violberget,3 where she lived until 2004, and Vårlunden, where she has lived since then, on the edge of a designed landscape known as Hyacint Park. They are accessible by bus from the centre of town, with travelling times of 15 minutes and 25 minutes from Uppsala Central Station, respectively.


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From fostering and parenting children and grandchildren to factory work to writing poetry to walking in parks to viewing her neighbours in space, Märta has enacted many decades of care work and bodily actions in landscapes, articulated in a luminous yet intangible green affect that recalls anthropologist Kathleen Stewart’s notion of “ordinary affects” (2007). Among many other definitions she provides, Stewart writes that “Ordinary affects are public feelings that begin and end in broad circulation, but they’re also the stuff that seemingly intimate lives are made of” (2007, p. 2). Through the lens of green affect, as manifested in Märta’s words, one does not need to choose between formidable and intimate operations in space when fighting for justice for places and people. As one person, she has moved against, with, in, and around Violberget and Hyacint Park in modes of care that encompass, following Maria Puig de la Bellacasa, three dimensions, “labor/work, affect/affections, ethics/politics” (2017, p. 5), but the combinations are always in flux. Green affect as an experience of intensity resonates with and trembles against the stories, injustices, and stigmatisations that Märta has discovered in these neighbourhoods, unsettling them. Green affect for the Million Programme is an assemblage, a recombinant collection that links and unlinks the beauty and the pain. Shouse argues that “affect cannot be fully realised in language, and … affect is always prior to and/or outside of consciousness” (2005). Märta invokes words in her attempt to express it, but green affect remains unruly. Actions against inequalities or unfair rental practices are not exclusive to a gentle, affectionate response to the planned or renovated qualities of an area’s outdoor spaces. Green affect is always evolving, even when it is situated in the ostensible melancholia of neighbourhoods where social justice and the right to green space sometimes appear equally out of reach, as “impressions too easily gathered into a narrative of social decline (or whatever)” (Stewart, 2007, p. 27). As a neighbour and a writer, a mother and a provocateur, Märta’s green affect blunts the shame while exposing the pleasure. It shrinks and grows simultaneously.

Green affect in the “landscape music of the artefacts” In Modernity at Large, anthropologist Arjun Appadurai distinguishes between “neighbourhoods” and “localities”, whereby the latter are defined, following Raymond Williams, as “structures of feeling” (1996, p. 182). Million Programme landscapes have long been treated as tools in an ongoing political project, with neighbourhoods and their physical and social content a malleable medium for retooling the Swedish nation. When residents of these environments understand them, conversely, as localities, they also acknowledge their precariousness. Or, as Appadurai writes, locality is ephemeral unless hard and regular work is undertaken to produce and maintain its materiality. Yet this very materiality is sometimes mistaken

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for the terminus of such work, thus obscuring the more abstract effects of this work on the production of locality as a structure of feeling. (1996, p. 181) For residents like Märta, the “landscape music of the artefacts” is a music of structures, of plants, of echoes. It sometimes plays sweetly and melodically. It is sometimes a cacophony. In these structures of feeling, residents respond with green affect, only later infusing outdoor spaces with individual and family histories in feelings. These are spaces where passions may be productive and destructive at the same time. Green affect sometimes envisions improvements to these landscapes, sometimes responds to changes, and sometimes decries losses. It is not naïve, either in rejecting doomsday narratives or in affirming sanguine views of the present. Greenness, in other words, denotes the vegetal (or its lack) in modernist landscapes that are simultaneously enfolded into a motley collection of political, social, economic, and cultural exchanges. Green affect is an affect that is green. This is because it accepts the organic and fluctuating dimensions of public spaces and landscapes. Green affect sees parks that grow and shrink, public squares that die, and boules courts that live. Often, green affect includes wishes – and wishful thinking – for repairs to existing environments, environments that are beloved against all odds, and certainly against all newspaper descriptions. Green affect is a shapeshifter: it appears in daydreams, in

Figure 5.2 A pathway in disrepair and housing showing later façade renovations in a Million Programme neighbourhood.


Jennifer Mack

storytelling about the past and the future, in concrete political actions, in mundane daily activities. Green affect is a way of owning the present and dreaming about the future of intimate, everyday landscapes: landscapes that may be both dynamic, botanical greens and derelict hardscapes, covered in broken concrete. Kathleen Stewart writes that Models of thinking that slide over the live surface of difference at work in the ordinary to bottom-line arguments about “bigger” structures and underlying causes obscure the ways in which a reeling present is composed out of heterogeneous and noncoherent singularities. They miss how someone’s ordinary can endure or sag defeated. (2007, p. 4) Green affect takes up this charge for that which endures and sags, arguing for a means to develop strategies for living with what has often been systematic organisational neglect, but without seeing this neglect and its products as strategic forces to be accepted. Green affect rejects erosions of the everyday, sometimes by refusing to see them: by imagining another present, by seeing background as foreground, or by blurring the contours of misfortune through action or reflection. Over spaces that are, have been, or could be something better than outsiders commonly understand them, green affect asserts imagination – ever in flux, always growing, even in absence.

Green affect as storytelling Joining the public in the public spaces of the Million Programme means engaging with an environment of activism, intentionally or accidentally, through repeated and frustrating encounters with the technologies and vagaries of power, municipal, national, and corporate. These neighbourhoods – intended as modern cities of the future – became stigmatised and undesirable by the late 1960s, before the programme had concluded. Even so, new residents of these expected utopias alternately adopted and rejected the supposed apathy, passivity, and victimisation that the media and politicians often portrayed as inescapable outcomes. Some residents embraced their public squares and their public parks as the traditional spaces of activism, where they might find respite from the frustration of occupying purportedly failed dreamspaces. For instance, a group of semi-accidental activists known as the “Skärholmen Wives” protested the rising prices of meat and milk in the early 1970s. The group, led by 23-year-old Anne-Marie Norman, took form in the Stockholm suburb of Skärholmen, a centrepiece of late modernist Swedish urban planning and a collaboration between public and private actors. The Wives eventually demanded an audience with Prime Minister Olof Palme to register their complaints. Here, milk and meat and costs for families were not banal concerns but integral to the

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functioning of an everyday life already said to be suffering under the weight of a concrete modernism. Stewart writes that “Ordinary affects are the varied, surging capacities to affect and be affected that give everyday life the quality of a continual motion of relations, scenes, contingencies, and emergencies. They’re things that happen” (2007, pp. 1–2). When women were relegated to the domesticated tasks of housewifery in the suburbs, they were also treated as external to political subjectivity, apart from their expected participation in appropriate activities such as study circles, which would occupy the increased leisure time afforded when housework was rationalised through the introduction of new machines and the communalisation of domestic labour, such as in the provision of childcare facilities. Their ordinary green affect became a “surging capacity to affect and be affected” instead. As a resident of Violberget from 1977 until 2004, Märta – like the Skärholmen Wives – participated in political actions by necessity rather than trade. She organised against deplorable labour conditions at the factory where she worked. Her engagements against injustice spilled into the domestic sphere in Violberget, where she participated in protests against rising housing prices, taking a central position in actions against rent hikes and tenants’ rights. When Hyacint Park was renovated and reopened in 2015, Märta had a frontrow seat to the proceedings, residing on a corner of the park. Her apartment, once an organisational space for local groups, is located strategically on the very edge of the park on the ground floor. When she discovered its availability, her särbo (life partner with whom she does not live) remarked, jokingly, “if you take it, we will never get divorced”. From the apartment, she sees all the action. When I walked with her through and around the park in 2019 to talk about the renovation, she admitted that her strong feelings about it were coupled with a rational acknowledgment that this modernist park really was rather mundane. She said, “Here is the park! And it is of course, as I said, nothing especially notable, but when they…. I thought it became very beautiful anyway…. I really don’t know why I am so enamoured with the park”. Green affect – as a primordial, “prepersonal” force (Shouse, 2005) – seeped through her personal feelings: feelings of admiration. In these interstices between affect and feeling, she could not really pinpoint why the renovation had moved her so much. This reaction came from a place beyond any personal stakes she may have had in the park’s success or failure. The park’s renovation had nonetheless inspired Märta to set words to her feelings by writing to the municipality.4 Her letter could perhaps be classified as an ode to a public space, a thank you letter, a poem, or a reverie crossing time and space – all in one. When Märta and I discussed it in person, I mentioned my struggles to define it under a specific genre of writing. Later, I began to understand it as “ficto-criticism”. In this sense, I follow Hélène Frichot’s and Naomi Stead’s delineation of ficto-criticism, which – like Märta’s piece – links fiction and criticism, upsetting “both expectations and assumptions about what is deemed to be ‘proper style’” in architectural writing (Frichot and Stead, 2020). Even together and in real time, Märta and I could not decide whether her submission to Uppsala


Jennifer Mack

Figure 5.3 A path through a section of mid-rise housing and semi-private outdoor spaces in a Million Programme neighbourhood.

municipality about the renovated park should be categorised as a poem, a letter, an essay, or all of the above. We left this point exquisitely unsettled. In the text, Märta began by explaining, as she did in person, that it is not so remarkable, Hyacint Park. But still, it is so much more than we could expect, this beauty that opened itself up right next to us. As in dreams – where there is a door inside a well-known room that wasn’t there before and leads to a room we didn’t know existed – here, there are many light rooms, large rooms that opened up unexpectedly. The renovation reconfigured a familiar space, just outside her doorstep, into a place of new embraces and invitations. It was always there, and yet not. The poem/letter/essay also explained that, as Märta watched the renovations from her front doorstep near the park, she had interpreted this green space in relation not only to dreams, but also to her own memories of other places. It recalled milk cows and pastures and trees that were far from the neighbourhood in both space and time: No, now I see, now I know what it is. It’s the big trees. There are new trees and the trees that were here before the houses were built. The trees are still

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there, they are as grand as time itself, bigger than the people, and in the trees you hear a wind that’s not of this world: the wind I heard when I would go and fetch the milk as I walked along the road to the farm. You only heard the wind then. It was whispering in the forest by the road in a special way, and I understood that the wind was really somewhere else, although you heard it in the trees in the forest along the way. I heard that it was a murmuring from another world. Nothing religious, for God’s sake, it was just another dimension that existed at the same time that I was there with the pitcher, even though I didn’t have words for it, a child as I was. These memories merge the spaces of Vårlunden with others elsewhere, transporting Märta to her childhood and back again. She continues, writing that “It was the murmuring from Hyacint Park’s trees that I heard then when I was a child and went to fetch the milk somewhere else. I couldn’t know it then, child as I was, and Hyacint Park didn’t exist”. Simultaneously, green affect, as a “non-conscious experience of intensity”, produces new emotional attachments to a space that the municipality previously neglected. This intensity prepares Märta to experience the park as both banal and other-worldly at the same time. When affect transforms into feelings, and a text, it is overlaid with specific recollections from her past.

Green affect as integration For Kathleen Stewart, ordinary affects are assemblages, not linear narratives but “an animate circuit” and “a contact zone” (2007, p. 3). Märta’s writings are similarly assembled as both memoir and customer review, fantasy and social critique, or “a tangle of potential connections” (p. 4). Their dispersal, collection, and recombination also characterise the splintering physical and intellectual acts of making them: through essays, talks, her own active work in a factory, and her everyday life locally. In these public and private roles, she also embodies assorted personalities: worker, retiree, mother, grandmother, and resident. When writing, this assemblage coalesces again in another form as she imagines the park from the perspectives of people unlike herself. A Swedish woman born and raised in the country and partnered with a Bosnian man, she positions the park as a space of integration for the large migrant population living in Vårlunden and the adjacent neighbourhood of Södra Dalen. From affect to feeling, she interprets the complexity of her surroundings, conjuring green affect among newly arrived migrants, especially those from war-torn Syria, some of whom are now her neighbours. When we were walking around Vårlunden together in early 2019, Märta discussed the importance of the renovation for locals who were not born in Sweden. Reflecting on Hyacint Park in the text, she mentions a man from Syria singing in the park, including the lines, “Dearest, the city doesn’t exist anymore, but the park is here. Inshallah Hallelujah Hurray, it’s so darned great that the park is here even though it can never be here, no, it can never be here”. Her slow encounters


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Figure 5.4 Women residents gather on the lawn outside Million Programme housing to welcome returning spectators after a football match.

with the municipality’s renovations for the park also allowed her to produce an allegory about the harsh realities of being a twenty-first-century refugee. Rather than the man from Syria being an actual user of Hyacint Park or even a resident of Vårlunden, in fact, Märta explained during our walk that this story had been transplanted from another context: from her delightful digital encounters with the YouTube star Khaled Alkhalil. She said: I had seen that man who sings in a YouTube clip… who sings that [Cornelius] Vreewijk song [“I once had a boat”]. And you understand after he sings for a while that he really believes it’s his own song. He starts singing for some music group, and they think, “Oh, wow, he’s really good”. But they think they will have to take over after verse number two because he won’t know any more, like “that poor Syrian guy”. But he continues. He takes over the stage and sings the whole ballad, and then… that was… I felt that. And then I placed that [scene] here. To achieve this rhetorically, she placed a real person and his experience – which took place far from the neighbourhood – into this environment in an account at once fictional, documentary, and critical.

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Indeed, in 2016, media attention shed light on the musical and linguistic journey of Khaled Alkhalil, a 23-year-old man from Homs, Syria – a city mostly destroyed by bombs – who had migrated to Sweden and learned Swedish in just four months by watching YouTube videos and joining “language cafés” (språkcaféer). Attention to his methods and the incredibly short period of time he required to develop fluency gained particular traction because he was recorded singing a song by the well-known Swedish folk musician Cornelius Vreewijk, entitled “Jag hade en gång en båt” (“I once had a boat”). In the middle of his song, Vreewijk sings the following lines: Once there was a city In the park, children played there Then a bomb was dropped, and the city disappeared Answer me now Where is it now? I just wonder Where is it now?

Det fanns en gång en stad I parken där lekte barn Så släppte man ner en bomb och staden försvann Svara mig du Var är den nu? Jag bara undrar Var är den nu?

When Märta quotes these very lines, she prefaces them by writing, “The man from Syria is singing, he has come to the last verse, he’s saying, ‘This is my song now’”. Frichot and Stead note that ficto-criticism may take the shape of “a stuttering kind of writing, glancing off its subject, or perhaps brushing it, ever so lightly” (2020). With its own light touches, Märta’s ficto-critical “glimpses” (Stewart, 2007, p. 26) interpret this Million Programme park through reference to both a singer and a song, also recalling Forsman’s “landscape music of the artefacts”. The green affect that moved Märta to write her genre-busting piece also gave her the confidence to move the musical journey of Khaled Alkhalil into Swedish fluency to the spaces of Hyacint Park and to imagine his experience in this space, just on her doorstep. She finishes by writing, “I’ll answer you now, I know where it is, it’s here, the park that doesn’t exist”. There, Vreeswijk’s song becomes a landscape music of the artefacts that resonates with Alkhalil’s forced migration. The Hyacint Park of Märta’s imagination metamorphoses temporarily into a park in Homs (a city literally destroyed by bombs). Its renovation reincarnates a park that war had obliterated. Green affect extends not from Märta’s own emotions or memories but from her corporeal engagement with the park – her participation in it – where the realities of someone else’s war elides with the sweet dreams of settlement, fusing agony with splendour.

Green affect as awakening Märta also alluded to her own acute feelings of apathy toward Hyacint Park prior to its renovation. While she has long taken pleasure in the visits of her eightyear-old granddaughter, she explained that her interest in the park would have


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been stronger had she been a mother raising children of her own in Vårlunden. Despite daily, passive visual and bodily contact with the park from her adjacent apartment, it took the renovation to open her eyes. She told me, “It, like, was as it was. It wasn’t something that you looked at or cared about then. And now it is. It’s more that difference than anything”. Even the intensity and frequency of the park’s usage by other residents of Vårlunden are more apparent to her now than previously: foregrounding what was background. We walked through the park as she pointed, saying, There was apparently a rather enormous amount of heroin rumoured to be sold over there earlier. And I didn’t see that, but there were a lot of teenagers and a lot of glass, as there usually is [when there are teenagers]. And all of that has disappeared… I mean the teenagers haven’t disappeared, but that they stood right here, that’s gone. Of course, that’s a big plus for those of us who live here. So, I don’t know… the kids must be hanging out somewhere else and kicking glass [laughter]. I don’t know. But now other people have to take care of it. While suggesting that she did not take note of the park or who was using it prior to the renovation, these statements nonetheless imply an ethnographic study carried out from her ground-level terrace, and, perhaps, a feeling of responsibility for the glass fragments that appeared nearby. Continuing this theme of the mundane, she described with displeasure how the park and neighbourhood at large were imagined from outside to be dangerous. She experienced them as “extremely calm”, she explained. Märta hoped to counteract the widespread perceptions that these places were exclusively sites of segregation and exclusion. With this, she proceeded to tell me about a conversation with a neighbour, who came by her terrace one day. She said: A neighbour bent over and said, “I heard that they said we’re”… I think he said “outsiders” or something like that… “underprivileged”? Something like that. “So, have you noticed anything?” “No”, I said. That’s the impression, but it’s something that we almost don’t recognize… We don’t feel anxious… I would feel more anxious in Stureplan [a public square in a wealthy part of central Stockholm]. Märta’s green affect elicited her feelings about the local environment of her everyday life, embellishing outdoor spaces that she simultaneously and not-at-all paradoxically still perceived to be banal. Yet the renovation also transformed Hyacint Park into a transcendent landscape, something that exceeded the physical spaces of Vårlunden and of Uppsala. She explained, “This [condition] exists in many dimensions. There is something about it. That’s of course how it is in many places, but I happened to see it here, in this place”.

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When landscapes are politically instrumentalised as wastelands of insecurity and isolation, power over the narrative is reclaimed in describing them as “ordinary”, “the textured, roughened surface of the everyday” (Stewart, 2007, p. 39). In Märta’s green (and ordinary) affect, the trimming of the shrubs, the cutting of grass, or the maintenance of the stones that line the boules court near her terrace transformed the park: both awakening her sense of pride and possibility and underscoring her perceptions of them as commonplace and calm, even as she remained aware of the views from outside. Green affect hears the music of a soothing lullaby and a shrill siren together, from distances that constantly change.

Green affect as insurgency The renovation of Hyacint Park also extended Märta’s green affect from her own private terrace space into the public park just outside the boundary of her property. Even so, she also acknowledged that renovation had not always helped to realise residents’ deepest desires for welfare landscapes. For some residents, renovations have paradoxically destroyed or removed the natural and planned landscape features that they actually prized and hoped to retain (Mack, forthcoming). In Märta’s description, this ominous sense of destruction held especially true for children. Their green affect was not shaped by adults’ views of what bushes or flowers were desirable or beautiful to gaze upon but by prepersonal responses. When new housing areas were built, one large municipality in the Stockholm region famously went so far as to place advertisements in the newspapers that promised every child “a tree to climb”. Yet, many children growing up during the 1970s and 1980s lived in areas where planned landscapes such as playgrounds, paths, and parks were underdeveloped, underfunded, undergrown, or simply missing (Andersson, 2000). Even as welfare landscapes aged, they mostly failed to receive the attention, funding, and consistent approaches needed to become functional play and public spaces. During earlier renovation projects, residents’ emotional and physical attachments to the natural world were often allowed to flourish in theory but not in practice. Märta’s son explained his perspective on growing up in the Million Programme in an email he sent to me via his mother. He wrote that “the parents wanted fences and nature. Children are just as happy with rusty fire escapes”. Märta clarified that, for him as a child, renovations contained fearful possibilities. In her own email, she wrote that “when the courtyards [gårdar] were improved, he as a child became worried that the earth and the fancy plants would stand in the way of play”. Play acts were in this sense insurgent, making do with what was possible when designed, utopian welfare landscapes had not materialised. Sometimes, in fact, illicit activities are remembered as the most cherished, as I discovered in conversation with other residents of the area, such as one woman of Finnish descent who explained that her sister, as a girl, swung her feet out the window of her fourth-floor apartment while watching her play on the ground level, an act that terrified her mother. Likewise, Märta recalled her own and other


Jennifer Mack

Figure 5.5 View from the balcony of a Million Programme high-rise housing unit onto a forest and adjacent housing.

children’s creative uses of spaces that adults viewed as uninhabitable, such as when her son “and his friend … often played in scrubby bushes, where they had secret forts”. Green affect among children understood proposed and actual remodelling of “failed” welfare landscapes – ostensibly to create more successful play areas – conversely represented the loss of spaces they already loved, spaces that others classified as derelict. While their parents may have welcomed early improvements, local children’s green affect – “unformed and unstructured” (Shouse, 2005) – transformed into feelings that positioned renovation as a threat.

Conclusion: Taking care of the music In Swedish, to take care of is att ta hand om, where caring and the presence of a “hand” to do the caring seem to be inextricable. These hands might be caring for children, they might be drawing an urban design, or they might be trimming bushes. In places like Hyacint Park, however, caring hands have long been absent. Even so, Märta claimed that any “ruin” was invisible to her as she went about her daily life, not noticing the neglected state of the park or reflecting upon it very much. When someone (as she described, “a landscape architect who thought about us”) finally sent hands to cut the grass, to lay the pavers, and to connect a Bluetooth speaker, her perspective changed – her green affect could accommodate “A way of doing things differently” (Stewart, 2007, p. 83). And this affect could evolve into feelings and emotions.

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In their work on “affective societies”, Jay Slaby and Christian von Scheve argue that affectivity and rationality should not be treated as separate poles in a dichotomous relation, positing that even emotion is not merely “a private, inner, exclusively ‘subjective’ affair” (2019, p. 4). Acknowledging that, for example, political will and authority depend largely on affectivity, they argue that affect should be situated as a practice that “emphasizes the dynamic relationality of affective processes in their embodied and embedded specificity and with regard to their efficaciousness as forceful relations in various local and translocal contexts. Here, affective, cognitive, and volitional elements are inextricably entangled” (Slaby and von Scheve, 2019, p. 4). Accounting for this perspective means that renovating park spaces serves a political agenda, including improving the balance of park use with respect to gender and age. Yet, even in this pursuit, at least one Stockholm-area municipality, Botkyrka, has acknowledged the importance of feelings. In July 2014, the very first sentence of a comprehensive park programme (to remake outdoor spaces) states that “Our common outdoor environment, combined with our buildings, is what provides us with identity, where we create memories and feel like we are at home” (Botkyrka Municipality, 2014, p. 6). These landscapes, created through industrialised processes used during the Million Programme, should be transformed into spaces of innovation and active use – “for active play and for calm spaces” (Botkyrka Municipality, 2014, p. 20). This vision understands these spaces as sites of affect, and of affection. When Per Forsman described the landscape music of the artefacts in his 1993 text, he emphasised the individuality of this music’s reception, writing, Maybe there was music like this. The question was of course if this is the same music that the suburban residents hear, that once upon a time rang through the architects’ inner ears. Music is the most abstract of the art forms, and at the same time the most sensual. (Forsman, 1993, p. 307) Deleuze, via Spinoza, likens affect to “A plane of musical composition, a plane of Nature, insofar as the latter is the fullest and most intense Individual, with parts that vary in an infinity of ways” (1988, p. 126). This music may then become a binding force between a no-longer dichotomous – following Slaby and von Scheve – rationality and affectivity. Shouse writes that “the pleasure that individuals derive from music has less to do with the communication of meaning, and far more to do with the way that a particular piece of music ‘moves’ them” (Shouse, 2005). Being “moved” in welfare landscapes is involuntary, founded in intensity, as this music plays and skips and plays again. As green affect gives way to green feelings, these feelings ultimately encompass acts of care: caring about, caring for, and remembering care for outdoor spaces while also seeing them as persistently flawed. As Märta hears the melodies of the Million Programme and imagines them for other people like “the man from Syria”, she lays bare the multivalent registers


Jennifer Mack

Figure 5.6 Sculpture on the lawn of a Million Programme neighbourhood.

predicating green affect in these welfare landscapes, and its abstraction. Neither the successes nor the failures that outsiders portray, these are complex places. Here, the “landscape music of the artefacts” is audible in a green affect that sees “rooms that were always there, as in a dream”, rooms that are both sublime and banal, both unsightly and electrifying. Kathleen Stewart reminds us that affects “are expressions of ideas or problems performed as a kind of involuntary and powerful learning and participation” (2007, p. 40). Green affect, involuntary and powerful, exists prior to political action; prior to reverie, critique, poetry, or despair: prior to reminiscence. Like the landscapes themselves, it shrivels only to flourish again. It has, as Deleuze writes, “latitude and longitude” (1988, p. 127, emphasis in the original). Green affect does not obscure the persistent ruin of these landscapes, even as the view across the park is enchanting. The music plays on.

Notes 1 I am grateful to editors Hélène Frichot and Marko Jobst for the intellectually elastic and rigorous space they created for the production of this essay, where both careful, thoughtful commentary and room to explore was provided. I would also like to thank Pablo Miranda Carranza for commenting on an earlier version of this text. Special thanks to Märta, who generously shared her time and reflections with me. Funding for this research was provided by the Swedish Research Council Formas (2016-00309).

Green affect 97 2 Her name is a pseudonym, and the names of some locations mentioned have been changed. 3 The neighbourhoods names and approximate locations have been changed. 4 I should note that Märta’s own ficto-critical approach is partially reflected in my own methodological maneuvers in this chapter. By anonymising her, altering some personal details, and changing the names of the neighbourhoods, I provide fragments to be recombined through reading.

References Andersson, T. (2000). Utanför staden: parker i Stockholms förorter. Stockholm: Stockholmia förlag. Appadurai, A. (1996). Modernity at Large: Cultural Dimensions of Globalization. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Botkyrka Municipality. (2014). Parkprogram, July 7. Deleuze, G. (1988). Spinoza: Practical Philosophy. Trans. Robert Hurley. San Francisco, CA: City Lights Books. Forsman, P. (1993). Det gamla och det nya bygget. Bilder och berättelser kring en metafor. Stockholm: Carlsson Bokförlag. Frichot, H. and Stead, N. (2020). Waking Ideas From Their Sleep: An Introduction to Ficto-Critical Writing in and of Architecture. In: Writing Architectures: Ficto-Critical Approaches, eds. H. Frichot and N. Stead. London: Bloomsbury. Mack, J. (forthcoming). Impossible Nostalgia: Green Affect in the Landscapes of the Swedish Million Programme. In: Landscape Research Special Issue on Welfare Landscapes, ed. Svava Riesto. Mazzarella, W. (2010). Affect: What is it Good for? In: Enchantments of Modernity: Empire, Nation, Globalization, ed. Saurabh Dube, pp. 291–309. New Delhi: Routledge India. Puig de la Bellacasa, M. (2017). Matters of Care: Speculative Ethics in More Than Human Worlds. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Shouse, E. (2005). Feeling, Emotion, Affect. M/C Journal 8(6). http://journal.mediacultu Slaby, J. and Von Scheve, C. (2019). Introduction. In: Affective Societies: Key Concepts, eds. J. Slaby and C. von Scheve, pp. 1–24. London: Routledge. Stewart, K. (2007). Ordinary Affects. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Stewart, S. (1993). On Longing. Narratives of the Miniature, the Gigantic, the Souvenir, the Collection. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.

Chapter 6

Walking-with architecture Jan Smitheram

This chapter tells the story of a day’s walk to, around, and through the LouvreLens Gallery with my son. The narrative of the walk structures the chapter to creatively engage with how we are “in and with worlds rich in affect” (Saville, 2008, p. 897). Walking, as a research mode, places importance on a material and affective understanding of movement. Walking allows us through experience to explore the political nature of how the Louvre-Lens Museum was designed to bring art to the working class. Our “walking-with” the Louvre-Lens, then, re-centres class as a co-constitutive of the landscape. To unpack the aesthetic experience through a walking methodology, I look to Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari to explore the relational and affective experience of our interacting with the LouvreLens. Drawing on this investigation, the experience of walking-with is defined as a complex affective mode, an assemblage of action and inaction, intensity and ease that is charged with varying moods, speeds, and rhythms. This is unpacked through four related stories of walking and movement to look at the shifting relations between the inter-subjective (two humans and others) and the inter-objectal (landscape and building), showing how different affects are produced. In this critical and political approach, the world participates in the creative folds of the experience of architecture before an individual agency responds.

Walking-with Walking is a fundamental way of engaging with the world. Walking is something we just do, a routine, or an attribute (Creswell, 2010, p. 19; Middleton, 2010, p. 256; Hubbard, 2006). Moreover, we are often unaware how our habitual rhythms are in tune with our environment until we slip, trip, or fall. While walking is perfunctory, it has attracted the attentions of philosophers, artists, historians, poets, and geographers – famously, it contributes to romantic sensibilities (Middleton, 2010; Wylie, 2005; Solnit, 2000). Walking is a social act, constantly played out through our movements to accommodate and conform to human and non-human others in our houses, on the streets, and in our workplaces. It is also a political act when streets are occupied by embodied, moving protests to harness the power of

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spectacle. Walking also helps understand how our senses are integrated with the world (Wylie, 2005; Cresswell, 2010). In architecture, discussions of walking reflect a masculinist ideology by valorising a particular figure: the flâneur, a male who walks through public space, gazing leisurely at the world in a detached manner. While the flâneur has become a motif in architecture to emphasise the novel, the sensual, and the changing urban environment, the flâneur has also been critiqued from a gender perspective (Middleton, 2010; Elkin, 2016). This chapter stresses that joy of walking in the city belongs to all people, but rather than drawing from the figure of the flâneur or flâneuse, this chapter tends towards the flana, simply “a person who wanders” (Elkin, 2016, chapter 1, section 2, para. 4). The walk discussed in this chapter is not heroic, epic, transgressive, or based on a textual reading of the museum and city; rather, it is a shared walk, a walking-with my pre-adolescent son and the Louvre-Lens where affective space is produced accidently, surprisingly kindling what Kathleen Stewart calls an “ordinary affect” (2007). And through this walk, the chapter explores a relational and affective experience of interacting with the Louvre-Lens.1 This chapter turns to Deleuze and Guattari’s framing of affect as a way to understand walking, the vital connections between human and non-human, material and immaterial, and self and other. Affect is what moves us and orientates us, it is what is felt; but, affect is autonomous, transitory, and, following Erin Manning, passing through the body (2009, l. 11174–7). Affect is the charged atmosphere of a meeting room we feel when we walk in late and unprepared. Or, it is the chill that radiates from concrete blocks after a cold night which orientates us away from a concrete wall. Affect is installed before the circumscriptions of identity, of location, and before we can name that we feel happy or upset (Guattari, 1996). Affect thus “is the movement between emotional registers rather than the emotion itself once it can be named” (Frichot, 2008, p. 34). The movement of affect from one register to another, might circulate materially, corporally, or socially and culturally; but what arrives is dependent for Deleuze and Guattari (1988) on the context, power, and capacity of bodies human and non-human. Walking is always an action-with (Manning, 2009). Affect is the result of, for example, the encounter, movement, and assemblage between the foot and the ground. “Affects create a field of forces that do not tend to congeal into subjectivity”, where our bodies are walking-with, and are not separate from space and time (Cole, 2005, p. 9 cited in Bennett, 2010, p. xiii). My foot and the ground are not separate from each other; rather, write Deleuze and Guattari (1988), they all exist on the same “plane of immanence”. This plane of immanence consists of the vibrancy and the capacity of the matter of both my foot and the ground, which come in contact through movement and through pause, to affect and to be affected. Furthermore, says Deleuze (1988) after Spinoza, affect as bodily capacities means that the body or bodies, the ground or the foot, exist as relational and coextensive interactions that extend beyond clearly defined boundaries.


Jan Smitheram

Moreover, each time we walk-with we render our rhythm, our pattern of walking, slightly differently. Because how we walk differently may depend on walking through a dark house at night, where unfamiliarity leads to the hesitation of the foot, an affect of uncertainty is created, which is not bound to the idea of a coherent and self-contained subject (Klein, 2009). Or similarly, the tentative walking of a mother and child in an unfamiliar place. Our relationship is an assemblage of shifts depending on the micro-social and spatial contexts, which in turn shapes these contexts in ways that regulate, transform, or re-orientate. Discussing parent– child attachments from a Deleuzian perspective, Duschinsky et al. suggest we, as individuals, are “not prior to their environment but codetermined with it, constituted within and through the patterned interaction of affects and movements and changes of bodies in relationships” (2015, p. 182). Alongside thinking relationally, Deleuze offers support in thinking about the capacity of the walking body to be orientated. Movement is about maximising the capacity of the body: [The] passage to a greater perfection, or the increase of the power of acting, is called an affect, or feeling, of joy; the passage to a lesser perfection or the diminution of the power of acting is called sadness. Thus the power of acting varies according to external causes for the same capacity for being affected. (1988, p. 50) The passage to joy directs and orientates us towards certain objects or spaces such as a walk to our favourite café on a summer’s morning. Walking can produce joyful affects which orientate our behaviour.2 However, affects are experienced in bodies that emerge from diverse and often incredibly complex encounters with bodies, events, and contexts. Waiting in a queue at a museum’s reception area in an unfamiliar building, town, and country, unable to speak the language, can evoke unsettled feelings. Sad affects, following Deleuze, decrease our capacity to act in the world. The affective capacities of human and non-human interaction are fundamental to how we walk-with the world and, moreover, affect shapes and contours the possibility of how we walk-with the ground and with architecture. Affect then is not additive, but is a primary constituent of walking-with architecture. While this chapter is structured around a narrative of walking-with my son and the landscape and architecture, it does not limit the focus to my particular embodiment, my habitual experience of architecture or an attempt to individualise affect; rather, it looks at the city, the landscape, and the museum as relational. For Deleuze, “thinking relationality” opens up “a world in which the conjunction ‘and’ dethrones the interiority of the verb ‘is’” (Deleuze, 2005, p. 38). Through this shared walk with my son, the landscape and the architecture as my co-author of this walk, I came close to understanding Deleuze’s idea that the notion of “I” or of subjectivity always lies beyond the boundary of my body. The authorship of this chapter therefore is complicated: it is about collaboration and mediation,

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if one considers who walks, not just who writes. For it is the walking-with which brings affect into becoming, described in this chapter as a conjunction, a sharing with my son and the environment. The story of a day’s walk to, around, and through the Louvre-Lens Museum is used to shape and creatively engage with how we are with-worlds through movement, rich in affect. This chapter is structured around four vignettes: walking to the museum; walking and jumping around the landscape; walking through the museum; and leaving on the train. The focus is on how ordinary affects shed light on daily activities, where “capacities to affect and to be affected … give everyday life the quality of a continual motion of relations, scenes, contingencies, and emergencies”.

Walking to the museum We journeyed from Paris via train to Lens. Varying rhythms already stratified our experience at the Gare du Nord: checking the schedules, periodic announcements of departing trains, passengers surging in and out of the station. People bustling around, buying and selling items beyond my limited French. The tourists formed islands within the throng of moving bodies whose varying speeds shaped the patterns of the train station, its affective charge composed of a shifting polyrhythmic assemblage; an assemblage of relations stressful to negotiate with a child. We had to wait for one and a half hours, since we had left the hotel early, much to the chagrin of my son. Unlike Paris, Lens conveyed a familiar presence, familiar for someone who had grown up in a small town: the scale, the trees, and the feel of the pavement underfoot. At times, even the types of buildings seemed familiar. There was an uncanniness to these ordinary suburban dwellings situated on distinct parcels of land, memories of home enhancing the location’s affective charge. From the train station, the sign directed us straight ahead. A row of trees on each side of the path clearly defined our journey. We came to a crossing. Straight ahead was a tunnel, and to our left a park; we chose the park. The density of the trees at the start of the walk suggested endless space ahead, a sense amplified by the suspicion we had walked the wrong way. We were lost. Affects “aren’t feelings, they’re becomings that spill over beyond whoever lives through them (thereby becoming someone else)” (Deleuze, 1995, p. 137). The anxiety of being lost flowed beyond my body, sweeping the child up in the affect. It was a moment of indiscernibility, where the son and mother spilled in and out of each other, even if the child was less concerned about being lost than the adult. The oddness of walking through suburbs: so ordinary, so familiar, yet alien and charged with the anticipation of arriving at the destination. My son’s complaints – he needed precise information about how much time we had to walk, noted the state of his feet, levels of tiredness – these somewhat trivial moments, this assemblage of relations and felt experience that made up this journey, represent a mosaic of different relations of bodies, of human and non-human intra-actions. Deleuze,


Jan Smitheram

following Spinoza: there are no “existing modes that are not composed of a very great number of extensive parts”, parts that “come to it from elsewhere” (1992, p. 201). We walk. My son’s hand in mine, we walk as one. There is a folding where the “boundary between” becomes unstable, whether as a body or bodies. “Flesh” for Deleuze and Guattari, “is only the developer which disappears in what it develops” (1994, p. 183). The shimmering exterior of the gallery reflects the landscape back, marking, finally, the end of our journey. The building blends into the sky through its reflective surfaces – that is my first encounter with this architecture. The materiality of the façade shifted as my eye slid along. Its reflective edge captured the green of the grass, the cloudy grey sky. It activated and re-animated the edge of the building with the shifting relations of the moment, blurring the building’s edge. The building did not stand out as a form distinct from the site, but instead reflected and responded to it temporarily. The disjunction between the other local buildings and the Louvre-Lens stilled my walking though. I shifted, comparing the local context and this beautiful building: there was a felt disjunction, an oddness that I now write through. A “jolt, to set in motion something inside me, to treat writing as a flow, not a code” (Deleuze, 1995, p. 7). In order to understand the affective logic, following Deleuze and Guattari, in this section I turn to my son (1988, p. 257, cited in Hickey-Moody, 2013, p. 274), for it is when we started to walk by the gallery that the speeds and rhythms of my son’s walking evolved into “play”. He let go of my hand. The charge of the landscape opened up to him as a possible world, because as a child he lives on an affective level, liberating him from the common-sense rhythm of our walk in the suburbs. My son began to jump from one concrete stepping stone to the next. These giant organic-shaped “stepping stones” allude to the historical use of the site as a mine (Jacob, 2013). He did not ask the meaning behind the stepping stones, his rhythm simply changed. He moved towards and away from me more rapidly, his concern for proximity to me lost to the moment in which he leapt. He became open to what unfolded, “to variation, according to the affections that belong to it at a given moment” (Deleuze, 1992, p. 225). The child was in a state, following Hickey-Moody (2013, p. 273), of an “affective level”, creating a human and nonhuman composition whose elements keep on varying according to connections, relations of movement and rest, and the individuated assemblage he entered. Child-with the landscape charged the situation with an affective energy that even I, as an adult observing, was not indifferent to, eventually giving in to the positive orientation of joyfully jumping. As Gibbs writes (2001, n.p.), “Bodies can catch feelings as easily as catch fire”. We both leapt. From the regulated walking through to the playful and joyful, the sense of walking invoked here draws out the capacity to affect and be affected, and the progressive benefits of affect (Edensor, 2008, p. 139). A walking-with emphasises a relational field through which walker and “landscape might best be described in terms of the entwined materialities and sensibilities with which we act and sense” (Wylie, 2005, p. 245).

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Walking-with the museum We headed towards the museum entrance and my son reached for my hand again. I turned to him to explain the rules, as a conduit of the rules of the museum. The museum is a space with particular laws, obligations, and projects. Bennett says the classificatory development of museums required visitors “to comply with a programme of organised walking” (1995, pp. 186–7). The museum, historically, was used as an instrument to modify both external and visible forms of behaviour. That is to say, it explicitly targeted the popular body as an object for reform, doing so through a variety of routines and technologies requiring a shift in the norms of bodily comportment (Bennett, 1995, p. 100). Moreover, the museum was held up as an idea of a space of emulation, a space in which “the working classes, in being allowed to commingle with the middle classes in a formally and undifferentiated sphere, could learn to adopt new forms of behaviour by imitation” (1995, p. 100). One was expected to act in a way that was refined and gentle, keeping “boisterous pleasure within bounds” (Arscott, 1998, p. 154, cited in Bennett, 1995, p. 100). These expectations of the museum, its atmospheric charge, bind our bodies with human and non-human others through our affective relatedness to comport ourselves in ways conducive to the smooth operation of the space. We altered our behaviour in response to the affective push of the museum, where it acted as a stabiliser. The building “plugs or seals the lines of flight, performs a general reterritorialization, and brings the flows under the dominance of a single flow capable of over-coding them” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1988, p. 220). I became the conduit of a single flow, a device of moral evaluations of distancing and distinction. I knew that my son finds galleries dull, because in them you just look and do not touch. My anxiety was also fuelled by my experience of the unpredictability of a bored child. So, despite the fact that he is old enough to shift his rhythm, I reminded him: no running, no jumping, and touch only with your eyes. My words were met with a sigh of contempt at the constant reminders that belied, for him, his level of maturity. I functioned as a bridge, or an anchor, if you like; with these words and gestures I gathered my son and the museum together. And as we entered the museum, our rhythm, our vibration, and our stillness matched the affective arrangement of its particular atmosphere. The perception of the museum, the value placed on the Louvre-Lens at its early stages caused tensions in the local community. Despite the impact of the mine’s closing on the town, this project was not instigated as an attempt, as with Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, to “revitalise an old industrial city with no cultural legacy” (Baudelle, 2015, p. 1478). Rather than revitalise, the essential goal of this gallery was to “bring culture to new audiences”. Furthermore, Lens “was chosen because its population was considered to be the most geographically and culturally distant from museums” (Baudelle, 2015, p. 1479). Baudelle’s account contrasts with the Louvre’s website that suggests this was an attempt to produce a building akin to the Bilbao, with a similar impact (Louvre, n.p.). The website highlights that 8000 people from Lens signed a petition to support the museum


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and welcome its connection with the Louvre, whereas Baudelle highlights the overall project was perceived by the locals as patronising (2015). A perception, and reaction, of “the locals” highlight how this “desire to bring high culture” operates within an affective register of non-relationality (Skeggs and Loveday, 2012, p. 480). While we do not have a demographic breakdown of who has visited the LouvreLens, the surveys carried out on museum visitors in Europe, the UK, and the USA are telling, and worthy of some discussion. They tell us something about how the world feels available for some people, but not others. Nick Prior’s research indicates people who visited museums in the UK, Europe as a whole, and the USA were mostly middle class; so, despite a new wave of arts policies and cultural initiatives, there was no significant change to the socio-economic profile of visitors (Prior, 2003). Museums themselves, from accounts, were “felt to be repellent, formidable, or unwelcoming places to visit by lower demographic groups”. Prior goes on to argue that “Museums, therefore act as the meeting point of class formation and social reproduction, reinforcing the cultural separation of different social classes, and underpin the sense of belonging of ‘cultivated’ individuals and families in the museum” (2003, p. 60). My birth family would not go to this beautiful but intimidating museum because they find affective resonance and value in sport and watching movies. This is not to say that because they are working class art is not without value for them; affective affiliation is supported instead through books and television programmes about art. Museums are unwelcoming because the affective interdependence between bodies creates a sense of dislocation and closure, rather than a sense of connection with, or movement, towards relations. Museums create a space that is “not for me” whereas other spaces of entertainment carve out a zone of comfort (i.e. a kind of temporary address or “home”) for themselves (Archer et al., 2007). The reactions of my family are an example of the situated dynamics of relational affects within and framed by a socio-spatial domain (Slaby, 2016). But also, from this example and in the context of Prior’s research, the way people orientate their bodies can help make visible micro-dynamics of affect that often have problematic political implications, and how we are governed by affect. To return to our entrance to the museum and the politics of the space embedded in how people are, or are not, orientated towards a space: the Louvre-Lens was filled with people, who were moving in a restrained and calm manner. Our walking-with the Louvre-Lens re-centred class as a co-constitutive of the landscape. Even what people wore, the style of the dress and the materiality of the clothes of the visitors, the stylish suits of the staff, and the white lab coats of the technical staff clearly indicated, for me, that the space we were in was middle class. I picked out “style” as another aspect of the affective arrangement that also acts to shape the affective charge and the interactions within the domain of the museum (Archer et al., 2007).3 Because the style of walking and dress impact the affective relationality, or non-relationality, it inflects an individual’s understanding of “people like us” or “not for me” (Archer et al., 2007; Skeggs and Loveday, 2012).

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Architecture works through spatial arrangement, materiality, construction detailing, circulation, the pattern of private and public space, and so forth, the atmosphere of the museum.4 The gallery floor, for example, was designed to induce a particular affect not dissimilar to most galleries. The floor was hard, shiny, and cold, the smoothness of the surfaces connects us with movement, rather than making one feel able to rest. The floor was not the most inviting surface to sit on; but, overlapped with this were the appropriate class-specific conventions of the museum that prevented us from sitting down. The polished concrete at the art museum, and the unpolished concrete at the train station, while holding different qualities, were similar in suggesting that our bodies must be alert and attentive and circulate (Bissell, 2008, p. 1705). Comportment, style, and floors are just a few of the elements of the affective arrangement which contribute to the power formation that modulates, channels, and distributes affects through an ongoing, open-ended process, rather than through more prescriptive forms of power that induce certain stances of bodies (Anderson, 2010 citing Deleuze, 1992). The focus on the action outside the museum was important because, poignantly, it was the only overseas gallery visit we made in which my son was engaged enough to recall – and because it charged, and changed, our experience of the gallery’s interior. This is in contrast with this building’s portrayal in most publications, which focus on the form and the interior, without including the relationship with the landscape. In my experience, the enfolding and unfolding between interior and exterior, the interaction and shifting rhythms of bodies and the built, were significant. The walls that line the main gallery are burnished, creating a surface which reflects blurred images of the artwork as well as the moving and stilled bodies. Being able to glimpse this fuzzy image of our engagement with the space operated to amplify the interactions and encounters in the space. The dematerialisation of the walls through this blurred effect and the absence of structure in the main space, suggest an infinite beyond. The space shifts from a singular view of the artwork to the ghosted reflections on the walls of the exhibition, multiplying the views of the artwork; there is a dynamic spacing of the work – of intra-actions between the work and the infinitising reflections. Although the rhythm of our walking changed, when we entered the museum we retained a sense of playfulness, even in the main gallery. Even in the stillness of standing and looking at the art, there was a wavering, a moving, a tipping forward prompted by the gentle slope of the floor. This design gesture, nudging us away from a usual way of seeing, made me aware of our presence in the museum. In contrast to our experience of other museums, and more akin to the undulating landscape outside, the sloped floor, alongside the distributed artwork, intervened in the rhythmic core of how we walk in a museum. This gallery is a space of affect heightened by a design that challenges our experience. The sense of security my son found when reaching out for me was replaced by the interactive game provided by the museum to guide children through the


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space. This augmented presence facilitated my son’s aesthetic experience. The affective excess of the game orientated my son to walk in the gallery and engage with the artwork in a fitting way, at the pace of adults. My son stayed in the main gallery for over an hour; this was the first time he had engaged with an aesthetic experience without complaining for such an extended period. In turn, this had an impact on our normal pace around the gallery. I had to adjust my rhythm and had more time than usual to pause to look at the artwork and the gallery space. I ended up circulating around him, watchful. Disengaged from the gallery, yet engaged in my son’s rhythms, my parenting eroded the museum experience for me at this moment. I was carrying a particular rhythm, a particular consistency – bringing myself into a single flow (Deleuze and Guattari, 1988). My movement was inscribed by a politics whose locality was not bound to the location of this museum but belonged to expectations of correct behaviour in New Zealand. Under New Zealand law, a parent cannot leave a child at home alone until they are 14. Even in a public space, I carried forward a consistency to my movement by continually turning my body to my son, making sure he was safe, anxiety always near and palpable.

The return The last narrative fragment is the return to Paris. Reflecting on the last part of our journey allows us to consider the intensity of affect; and different speeds of composition between bodies human and non-human. Bissell points out that the majority of studies that look at corporeal experience focus on, and privilege, the moving body. In his research, he considers corporeal comfort, in particular how we sit, as an affective sensibility (Bissell, 2008). My son can still remember the trip to the museum, especially its exterior. But the train ride back to Paris was his favourite part of the journey. When I booked the train (in New Zealand), all the economy seats had gone, so I had to book the TGV first class. First class on the TGV equated to more generous seats and a slightly spacious layout with fewer people; but this was enough to form a lasting impression on my son. He enjoyed being able to travel in comfort. The seats did promote a sense of comfort; they were similar in width, but had more legroom than the standard carriage, so we had more opportunities to take up space, and a wide range of possible movements. The fabric of the seat was softer than the seats on our journey to Lens. All of these elements were noted by my son, the different relationality between our bodies, seats, space supported “an enhanced sensation of corporeal comfort” (Bissell, 2008, p. 1705). Bissell defines comfort “as a complex affective mode of being and a fragmentary becoming that vacillates between action and inaction, intensity and non-intensity: comfort as both agentive and more-than-agentive” (2008, p. 1699). The relationality of the chair and my son’s body, and the poignancy of my son’s memory of his train ride, indicate how his body had “not ceased to be moved: affectually”; but also, in this case, in his memory (Bissell, 2008, p. 1699). However, also of note was the

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difference in our reactions: my son was overjoyed to take up space on the train, to relish and to spread his limbs in comfort. In contrast, I found myself feeling out of place, which was expressed through my comportment and gestures. My son’s middle-class upbringing and my working-class upbringing became evident in how we were able to value the different affective affordances of the space. But what is similar across our different experiences is that the seat is not just a passive receptacle we simply sit in. Affect creates, as Brian Massumi suggests, “ideological effects through nonideological means” (2002, p. 40). Even in this quieter stage of the journey, in a state of rest, the train was splintered by class. A space made to shelter some bodies and not others. In this case, the carriage for my son “generates an affective atmosphere that effectively primes him to act in a particular way” (Bissell, 2008, p. 274). The space was hugely affective, prompting my son to behave in one way, to take up space to feel comfortable; but for me, to conform to a particular repertoire of comportment and performances that felt comfortable (Bissell, 2008, p. 277).

Conclusion The vignettes I have presented in this chapter help to illustrate walking-with as a relational and affective experience of interacting with the Louvre-Lens. Each vignette captures architecture not just as a discrete form where one views the form of a building but a walking-with (or pausing-with) which foregrounds affect. The first vignette of moving towards the gallery speaks to joy, drawing attention to embodied sense-experience, and a “desire for a presence which escapes a consciousness-centred core of self-reference” where we want things close to our skin (Thrift, 2008, p. 7). But it also draws attention to how we walk-with, in this case, my companion, the ground, the assemblage around me, to proximity of relations; and tied in with this walking-with, or being-with, is a pre-condition of subjects which are open to, or exposed to, each other. The relationship with my son, our walking, to echo Lorimer and Wylie, was “not the accomplishment of an isolated self” (2010, p. 7). The collaborators on our walk included a number of vibrant material agencies whose affective charge pushed the walk along in different directions, such as the contrast between the grass and the concrete, the different aggregates in the concrete, etc. The shared walk was a constant flux of new, still incomplete compositions being formed; yet, there was a clear openness to the other, where the locus of agency is always a “human-nonhuman working group” (Bennet, 2010, p. xvii). Similarly, when we were interacting with the gallery, the second vignette outlines the interaction with the gallery’s interior space to signal the constant active, shifting, and relational changes between material and non-material, human and non-human relations active in meeting the museum’s purpose. Drawing out the affective dimension of the collaborative interaction between human and non-human, parent and child dynamics, social and class expectations, and the qualities of architecture add to a more complex discussion of architecture, beyond a focus on form or space. The final vignette extends to our


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return trip on the train, which was a significant part of the “museum-trip” for my son. This vignette extends to where the landscape and building are not discrete and start to blur with the train; it allows class expectations of being-with material objects to be explored further. The vignettes underscored the complex and variable intensities of our walking-with, bringing together stories that connect the “inter-subjective” (two humans) + “inter-objectal” (landscape and building) which move between “stratification” and “experimentation”. The museum was the most stratified place, our rhythms and bodily gestures were more consistent; but there were still elements of swaying, tipping forward in the gallery with our bodies. In this shared walk, an essential vector of affect on the journey was my son. My son, while 10 at the time, was still, at times, operating on an affective level now lost to me. Before he was five, he only seemed to occupy an affective level – reacting to the atmosphere around him in a less self-censored way (Hickey-Moody, 2013). But as he grew, these strong connections with the world were slowly broken in the passage towards adulthood where we start to negotiate the affective relation to the world differently. However, when we visited the Louvre-Lens he was far more receptive to the push of the world around him, quite happy to wrap himself around an object and turn it into something else. He explored different aggregates of elements, and created different assemblages of relations. He made connections. My son was an “impressionable vehicle through which we can learn about subjective variability: the form through which positive and negative affect is cast” (HickeyMoody, 2013, p. 274). This is one small example where academic research is not understood as some activity performed by an isolated self, but is created through varying compositions “and of recognising the capacity for our children and others to influence how we think through this fieldwork in place” (Drozdzewski and Robinson, 2015, p. 377). The micro-analysis of movement in this chapter focusing on the capacity for affecting and being affected draws attention to when bodies are regulated or transformed, and “how bits of bodies connect (or don’t)” (Probyn, 2005, p. 37). With the leap, we can see the body and the world as co-transformed through movement, our capacity to be orientated through joy. This is a collective process made possible through the landscape design and our bodies. In contrast, the gallery is a space whose movements are dictated by specific affective governmentality, where we govern oneself and others by mobilising affects, modulating affects, and by doing and undoing affects. The art museum is a space of class control and governmentality – a space to reform behaviour into gentle and refined actions, a space to educate the working class. The Louvre-Lens is no exception: it is a space of reform structured through the patterning of architectural arrangements, distributions, and affective relations to modify behaviour. And while the museum creates and normalises specific middle-class patterns of behaviour and conformity, we, in turn, act through our measured, quiet pace of walking-with the museum. One could argue it does so by driving out our creative practices the museum is supposed to embody. The potential of the leap, and the discussion of architecture through

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a gentle affective lens is ultimately overridden by the political, regimented, and class-specific aspect of the museum as an institution. The argument is therefore two-fold in this chapter. First, the politics of movement is foregrounded, a walking-with as “an assemblage – which is always collective, bringing into play within us and outside us populations, multiplicities, territories, becomings, affects, events” (Deleuze and Parnet, 1987, p. 51). And through this focus on movement, the chapter has looked not only at Deleuze’s writing on affect to affect and to be affected, but also his writing on compositions where the desire of bodies is to orientate their capacities to exist joyfully. This politics speaks to the ongoing affective collaboration of bodies rather than the stilled imaginings of architecture as a form. As I write this, an official image of the gallery is beside me, the building caught by the light in the early morning, the shimmering form of the building extends into the landscape; but it is bereft of human bodies in collaboration. Affective collaboration through walking offers an attunement to differing forms of attachment and openness to others that challenges the fixity of the borders of the image and the imagined. The second argument is drawn through a close reading of affective bodily compositions, where the distribution of affects allows us to critique the hierarchical power relations of the gallery, and the way class, for example, is inscribed in the affective practices of walking-with the art museum. The “normative work of affect” makes visible powerful patterns of control where to be recognised as a person one must act appropriately (Koivunen, 2010, p. 22). This second argument speaks to the intent of the building, to educate the working class, and from this flows the affective charge of power, a political space where some bodies feel comfortable to take up space and others don’t. What the contrast between the gallery space and the outside space highlights are the damaging patterns of control the art museum has over our creative patterns of walking. These patterns become an embodied question of how the museum could shift to include a more diverse range of affects open to joy, rather than the narrow band of refined middle-class walking and circulation that defines the museum. This argument suggests that focusing on a range of affects and bodily rhythms, from the boisterous to the comfortable, might become leverage to change how museums shelter some bodies and not others. But also, to receive bodies that otherwise would not be comfortable in a space that only offers a narrow band of affective governmentality. The value in exploring affect to understand architecture enables us to question how buildings are designed to feel or how they induce particular modes of occupation; and to give a voice to other ways of knowing space.

Notes 1 The Louvre-Lens is a satellite museum, opened in 2012, designed by the Japanese architecture office SANAA and New York studio Imrey Culbert. Lens, the township in northern France, is of historical significance having been a battlefield through the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, and having lost half its population in the even greater conflict of World War One (Rykwert, 2013). The site for the building was a


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mine closed in the 1980s (Jacob, 2013). The landscape becomes a key place to extend: the programme of the museum outside its walls, to activate the memories of a site, to gather and connect people to the site, and to promote ownership for “local inhabitant not familiar with art” (Mosbach Paysagistes, 2016, n.p.). 2 We orientate our bodies towards (following Deleuze [1992, p. 239] in his reading of Spinoza’s conatus and developing an ethology of compositions), “it is a feeling of joy, since it is produced by the idea of an object that is good for me, or agrees with my nature. But when Spinoza sets out to define this joyful passion ‘formally’, he does so by saying that it increases or aids our power of action, is our power of acting itself as increased or aided by an external cause. to (And we know what is good only insofar as we perceive something to affect us with joy”. 3 But it seems pertinent to mention the president of France opened the museum and was greeted by a group of ex-miners dressed in their clean mining attire. 4 Take for example Riedel’s definition (2019, p. 85) “‘Atmosphere’ refers to a feeling, mood, or Stimmung that fundamentally exceeds an individual body and instead pertains primarily to the overall situation in which bodies are entrenched. The concept of an atmosphere thus challenges a notion of feelings as the private mental states of a cognizant subject and instead construes feelings as collectively embodied, spatially extended, material, and culturally inflected. In this sense ‘atmosphere’ can be considered a mereological concept: While ‘affect’ refers to the ways in which (emerging) bodies relate to each other (→affect), ‘atmosphere’ describes the ways in which a multiplicity of bodies is part of, and entrenched in, a situation that encompasses it. In this chapter more emphasis is placed on the atmosphere that we feel that is materially constructed”.

References Anderson, B. (2010). Modulating the excess of affect morale in a state of “Total War.” In M. Gregg and G. Seigworth (Eds.), The Affect Theory Reader. Durham, NC and London: Duke University Press, 161–85. Archer, L., Hollingworth, S., and Halsall, A. (2007). “University’s not for me – I’m a Nike person.” Inner-city young people’s negotiations of “new” class identities and educational engagement. Sociology, 41(2), 219–37. doi:10.1177/0038038507074798. Arscott, C. (1998). Without distinction of party: The polytechnic exhibitions, in Leeds, 1839–45. In J. Wolff and J. Seed (Eds.), The Culture of Capital: Art, Power and the Nineteenth-Century Middle Class. Manchester: Manchester University Press. Baudelle, G. (2015). The new Louvre in lens: A regionally embedded national project. European Planning Studies, 23(8), 1476–93. doi:10.1080/09654313.2013.819075. Bennett, T. (1995). The Birth of the Museum. London: Routledge. Bennett, J. (2010). Vibrant Matter: A Political Ecology of Things. Durham, NC and London: Duke University Press. Bissell, D. (2008). Comfortable bodies: Sedentary affects. Environment and Planning A, 40, 1697–712. doi:10.1068/a39380. Cole, D. (2005). Affective literacy. ALEA/AATE National Conference, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia. Cresswell, T. (2010). Towards a politics of mobility. Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 28, 17–31. doi:10.1068/d11407. Deleuze, G. (1988). Spinoza: Practical Philosophy (R. Hurley, Trans.). San Francisco, CA: City Lights Books. Deleuze, G. (1992). Expressionism in Philosophy: Spinoza (M. Joughin, Trans.). New York, NY: Zone Books.

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Deleuze, G. (1995). Negotiations 1972–1990 (M. Joughin, Trans.). New York, NY: Columbia University Press. Deleuze, G. (2005). Pure Immanence: Essays on a Life (A. Boyman, Trans.). New York, NY: Zone Books. Deleuze, G., and Parnet, C. (1987). Dialogues (H. Tomlinson and B. Habberjam, Trans.). London: Athlone. Deleuze, G., and Guattari, F. (1988). A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia (B. Massumi, Trans.). London: Athlone Press. Deleuze, G., and Guattari, F. (1994). What is Philosophy? London: Verso. Drozdzewski, D., and Robinson, D. F. (2015). Care-work on fieldwork: Taking your own children into the field. Children’s Geographies, 13(3), 372–8. doi:10.1080/14733285. 2015.1026210. Duschinsky, R., Greco, M., and Solomon, J. (2015). The politics of attachment: Lines of flight with Bowlby, Deleuze and Guattari. Theory, Culture & Society, 32(7–8), 173–95. doi:10.1177/0263276415605577. Edensor, T. (2008). Walking through ruins. In T. Ingold and J. L. Vergunst (Eds.), Ways of Walking: Ethnography and Practice on Foot (pp. 81–92). Aldershot: Ashgate. Elkin, L. (2016). Women Walk the City in Paris. New York, NY, Tokyo, Venice, and London: Chatto & Windus. Frichot, H. (2008). Olafur Eliasson and the circulation of affects and percepts: In conversation. In J. Preston (Ed.), Interior Atmospheres (pp. 30–35). London: John Wiley and Sons. doi:10.1002/ad.671. Gibbs, A. (2001). Contagious feelings: Pauline Hanson and the epidemiology of affect. Australian Humanities Review, 24. Retrieved from http://www.australianhumanities Guattari, F. (1996). The Guattari Reader. G. Genosko (Ed.). Cambridge, MA: Blackwell. Hickey-Moody, A. C. (2013). Deleuze’s children. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 45(3), 272–86. doi:10.1080/00131857.2012.741523. Hubbard, P. (2006). City: Key Ideas in Geography. New York, NY: Routledge. Jacob, S. (2013). A museum of time. Domus. Retrieved from n/architecture/2013/02/11/a-museum-of-time.html. Klein, J. (2009). Self/image: Technology, representation, and the contemporary subject. Theatre Review, 19(2), 234–6. Koivunen, A. (2010). An affective turn? Reimagining the subject of feminist theory. In M. Marianne Liljestrom and S. Paasonen (Eds.), Working with Affects in Feminist Readings: Disturbing Differences (pp. 8–28). New York, NY: Routledge. Lorimer, H., and Wylie, J. (2010). LOOP (a geography). Performance Research, 15, 6–13. doi:10.1080/13528165.2010.539872. Louvre. (n.d). Louvre Lens. Retrieved from Manning, E. (2009). Relationscapes: Movement, Art, Philosophy, Kindle Edition. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Massumi, B. (2002). Navigating movements – With Brian Massumi. In M. Zournazi (Ed.), Hope: New Philosophies for Change (pp. 210–43). Annandale, NSW: Pluto Press. Middleton, J. (2010). Sense and the city: Exploring the embodied geographies of urban walking. Social & Cultural Geography, 11(6), 575–96. doi:10.1080/14649365.2010. 497913. Mosbach Paysagistes. (2016). Museum Park Louvre Lens. Retrieved from


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Prior, N. (2003). Having one’s Tate and eating it: Transformations of the museum in a hypermodern era. In A. McLellan (Ed.), Art and its Publics: Museum Studies at the Millennium (pp. 51–74). Oxford: Blackwell. Probyn, E. (2005). Teaching bodies: Affects in the classroom. Body & Society, 10, 21–43. doi:10.1177/1357034X04047854. Riedel, F. (2019). Atmosphere. In J. Slaby and C. von Scheve (Eds.), Affective Societies: Key Concepts (pp. 85–95). London: Routledge. Rykwert, J. (2013, July 20). Art House: Louvre-Lens by SANAA|Building|Architects Journal. Retrieved from re-lens-bysanaa/8643095. Saville, S. J. (2008). Playing with fear: Parkour and the mobility of emotion. Social & Cultural Geography, 9(8), 891–914. doi:10.1080/14649360802441440. Skeggs, B., and Loveday, V. (2012). Struggles for value: Value practices, injustice, judgment, affect and the idea of class. British Journal of Sociology, 63(3), 472–90. Slaby, J. (2016). Relational affect. Working Paper SFB 1171 Affective Societies 02/16. Static URL: Solnit, R. (2000). Wanderlust: A History of Walking. New York, NY: Penguin. Thrift, N. (2008). Non-Representational Theory. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Wylie, J. (2005). A single day’s walking: Narrating self and landscape on the South West Coast Path. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, 30, 234–47.

Chapter 7

Deleuze, Guattari, and the non-subjectified affects of architecture Kieran Richards

Architecture’s literature has an anxious relationship with affect. Notwithstanding architectural phenomenology, architectural discourse largely seems to approach the experiential aspects of architecture with generous measures of caution and disinterestedness, despite increasing critical interest in affect and affectivity within the humanities and the social sciences since the 1990s. This situation is alarming in the context of commemorative architectures since, much more than the intentions of a master architect, they presuppose complex processes of narrativising culturally significant past events that implicate diverse forms of evidence, as well as broader social, political, and economic logics and the affective orientations that underpin them. Such processes shape the experiential aspects of any commemorative edifice and, in doing so, they also determine the collective memory of generations present and yet to come. To ignore the role of affectivity in these processes is thus also to ignore a decisive element in the formation of any commemorative edifice and the memories it perpetuates, as well as those it doesn’t. This chapter engages Deleuze and Guattari’s notions of the percept and the affect to inform a reading of the Mémorial des Martyrs de la Déportation (henceforth, “the Memorial”), a commemorative edifice on the Île de la Cité, in Paris. Following a brief consideration of Deleuze’s encounters with Benedict Spinoza’s Ethica, the chapter turns to a distinction developed in What is Philosophy? between subjectified forms of experience (perceptions and affections) and non-subjectified forms of experience (percepts and affects). The chapter argues that the notions of the percept and the affect constitute a provocation to abandon the unified subjective viewpoint as the sole discursive means for approaching architectural experience, as well as a provocation to engage questions pertaining to affectivity in a didactic fashion – in other words, to approach real architectural experience without reducing it to familiar and pleasant affections and the architectural qualities that are habitually associated with them. To write towards percepts and affects after Deleuze and Guattari is to endeavour to become capable of seeing more and seeing differently. In terms of the Memorial, this provokes an exploration of how different affective orientations inform the historical narrative it enunciates. After describing the experiential qualities of the Memorial in terms of the sequence of spaces it composes, the chapter then considers the circumstances of its realisation


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and how these circumstances are inflected in what the Memorial gives to experience. This begets an account of how a sincere collective will to commemorate the wanton suffering of approximately 200,000 deportees came to be instrumentalised in an exculpation of those who effected the deportations in the first place.

Affectio and affectus: A “geometric” portrait of lived experience The distinction that Spinoza makes in the Ethica between the Latin terms affectio and affectus has attracted growing attention in recent critical discourse on affectivity, particularly as it is characterised by Deleuze (see Seigworth, 2011; de Beistegui, 2010; Slaby and Scheve, 2019). Although there is apparently little consistency in the translations of affectio and affectus (into both French and English), Deleuze’s insistence on observing the distinction entailed in the use of affectio and affectus in the Ethica is ubiquitous (cf. Smith, 1997).1 For Deleuze, affectio and affectus correspond with two irreducible sides of a “geometric portrait of our lives”, and failing to recognise this differentiation represents “une catastrophe” (Deleuze, 1978, n.p.). “I say that it’s a catastrophe”, Deleuze suggests, because when a philosopher uses two words it’s that, by principle, he or she has a reason…. When I use the word affect, it refers to the affectus of Spinoza, when I say the word affection, it refers to the affectio. (Deleuze, 1978, n.p.; cf. Seigworth, 2011)2 In the context of that geometric portrait of lived experience described by affectio and affectus, Deleuze defines the affectio as an instantaneous state of a body as it mixes with other bodies in extension, and the affectus as a lived or felt variation of a power to act [vis existendi; puissance d’agir] between one state of a body and another (Deleuze, 1988, pp. 48–51; 1992, p. 220; 1978, n.p.; cf. Spinoza, 1951, II post. 5, prop. 17, schol., III post. 2, 3, def. 3, gen. def.). In the seminars Deleuze delivers on Spinoza at Vincennes (1978–81), this distinction is elaborated further as that between extensive and representational aspects of lived experience (affectio) and that between intensive and non-representational aspects (affectus). This affectio–affectus portrait “truly is existence in the street”, Deleuze says: as a succession of instantaneous states of a body as it mixes with other bodies in extension (and the ideas formed of these mixtures in thought), and a continuous variation (augmentation or diminution) in the capacity of a body to persist in its being [vis existendi; puissance d’agir] (Deleuze, 1978, n.p.). In the same seminar, Deleuze is particularly careful to emphasise the difference in nature between these two aspects of lived experience, as well as the necessity of grasping their interrelations. Although the affectio determines the affectus, which chronologically and logically follows from one state of a body to the next, the affectus is not in any way reducible to it. This is the same as saying that for every moment one

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experiences joy or sadness (in their Spinozist formulation), there is a corresponding idea of some-thing (a mixture of my body with another), which is presupposed by it, but which is irreducible to it. “Even when one says ‘I don’t know what I feel’”, Deleuze says, “there is a representation, confused though it may be, of the object. … That the affect presupposes the idea above all does not mean that it is reduced to the idea or to a combination of ideas” (Deleuze, 1978, n.p.; 1992, p. 220; cf. Massumi, 1996). Although affectio and affectus tend to translate into a range of different terms throughout the Deleuze–Guattarian text, in his single-author and collaborative endeavours Deleuze unfailingly observes their irreducibility to each other, their inextricability from each other, and the geometric portrait of lived experience that they describe in conjunction. Affectio and affectus in What is Philosophy? In What is Philosophy?, Deleuze and Guattari engage the same ontological model described by affectio and affectus, but they engage it in relation to two different forms of experience. One is a subjectified form, which involves perceptions (affectio) and affections (affectus), or rather, the “common” perceptions and affections of “generic” subjects (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, p. 145). While another entails a non-subjectified form of experience, which involves percepts (affectio), that are “independent of a state of those who experience them”, and affects (affectus) that are “beyond the strength of those who undergo them” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, p. 164). This is not to say that affectio and affectus are theoretically reversed or collapsed into one another. On the contrary, it is to say that in What is Philosophy?, Deleuze and Guattari introduce an additional qualification into both sides of the affectio–affectus distinction. That qualification distinguishes subjectified forms of lived [vécu] experience (perception-affection) from nonsubjectified, novel forms of experience. The main characteristics of the affectio– affectus structure are preserved in the descriptions of both forms of experience, only that a “perceptive-affective” lived situation describes habitual or majoritarian subjective formations, whereas the non-human percept-non-subjectified affect situation describes a portrait of experience beyond extant, majoritarian forms of subjectivity.

Perception, affection, and opinion The determination of perception and affection in What is Philosophy? goes back to the Spinozist portrait of lived experience described above. The perception is the state of a body as it encounters another body and the affection is the augmentation or diminution of a “potential-power through the action of other bodies” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, p. 154). This determination receives a political orientation when Deleuze and Guattari relate the selective perception of a quality


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within a perceptive-affective lived situation to an identification “with a generic subject experiencing a common affection” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, p. 145). For example: we grasp a perceptual quality common to cats or dogs and a certain feeling that makes us like or hate one or the other: for a group of objects we can extract many diverse qualities and form many groups of quite different, attractive or repulsive, subjects (the “society” of those who like cats or detest them), so that opinions are essentially the object of a struggle or an exchange. (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, p. 144) An “opinion”, thus conceived, is the rule of correspondence between a perceived quality and a corresponding affection across multiple lived experiences (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, pp. 79–81, 144–50, 201–10; cf. Deleuze and Parnet, 1998, “U comme un”). One has an opinion when one experiences similar perceptiveaffective lived situations, such as encounters with cats or dogs, in the same way regardless of any variability between distinct situations. This is how opinion relates to the affective foundations of social groupings between people, such as the society of those who like cats and those who don’t. This formulation of opinion might seem counterintuitive, since having an opinion tends to engender a sense of possession and individuality (it’s my opinion, after all), but as far as one perceives the same qualities and feels the same affections that are constitutive of a social group, having an opinion attests less to one’s distinctiveness than it attests to one’s commonality. Of course, what is more disturbing is when membership in a social group determines the perceptive-affective lived situations of its members in advance, such that membership in a group entails a prescription of the perceptions and affections “that each must acquire” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, p. 146). Conceived in this way, opinion becomes philosophical when philosophical methods amount to establishing the superiority of one opinion over another (as True). “This is the Western democratic, popular conception of philosophy”, Deleuze and Guattari suggest, “as providing pleasant or aggressive dinner conversations at Mr. Rorty’s” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, p. 144). In this context, Deleuze and Guattari invoke phenomenological approaches to philosophy, which, they suggest, posit proto-opinions derived from a primordial experience as a way of transcending variable, empirical opinions and functioning as an ultimate foundation for knowledge (see also, Deleuze, 1997, p. 136; Colebrook, 2002, pp. 69–90). In other words, this operation presupposes the existence of a protosubject to which the proto-given is given, but it does not account for the genesis of the subject out of the given in the first place. In this way it falters at the threshold of immanence by relating immanence back to a subject to which immanence is given (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, pp. 149–50; Lawlor, 1998; Reynolds and Roffe, 2006; Wambacq, 2018). “Are we not led back in this way”, Deleuze and Guattari ask,

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to the simple opinion of the average Capitalist, the great Major, the modern Ulysses whose perceptions are clichés and whose affections are brand names [des marques] in a world of communication that has become marketing and from which not even Cézanne or Van Gogh can escape? (1994, p. 149)

Percept and affect Deleuze and Guattari are careful to emphasise that percepts and affects must be distinguished from perceptions and affections. “Percepts are no longer perceptions”, and “Affects are no longer feelings or affections”, they suggest; percepts are “independent of a state of those who experience them”, and affects “go beyond the strength [force] of those who undergo them” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, p. 164). Percepts and affects implicate forms of non-subjectified and ungrounded experience, in ways that, as Keith Ansell-Pearson says, broaden “the horizon of [human] experience” (Ansell-Pearson, 1999, p. 20). The percept and the affect – as well as the concept of the concept developed alongside them – attest to a moment at which the search for a universal foundation of knowledge (by structure or subject) is abandoned; they arise out of a confrontation with the futility of any such search, and provoke encounters in thought and sensation beyond the perceptions of generic subjects experiencing common affections (Colebrook, 2002, pp. 2–6, 73–75). Towards an illustration of the percept and the affect, Deleuze and Guattari elaborate numerous examples from the plastic, textual, and musical arts. The sunflowers of Vincent Van Gogh or the mimosas of Pierre Bonnard, for example; or, the ascendance of Gothic stone and the zones of indetermination in the solid works of Auguste Rodin, the violent affects in the bond between Emily Brontë’s Heathcliff and Catherine or those of Heinrich von Kleist, and so on. Most prominent within this series are the visions of love and jealousy that Proust develops in À la recherche du temps perdu. Deleuze and Guattari suggest that Proust invents an affect “because he constantly inverts the order that opinion presupposes in affections”, and that, for Proust “jealousy is finality, destination; and if one must love, it’s in order to be jealous, jealousy being the meaning of signs” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1994, p. 175). In other words, as far as the dominant opinion on the relation of jealousy to love supposes that jealousy is an unfortunate consequence of love, Proust’s elaboration of a form of experience in which love is supposed as an unfortunate precondition of jealousy goes beyond dominant opinion, and, in this way, constitutes the invention of an affect (cf. Deleuze, 1972, pp. 6–8; Deleuze and Guattari, 1987, pp. 185–7).3 (Following the temporal and logical relation of affectio and affectus described above, it is that the affect (affectus) flows from the expansive and minute explications of the signs of love and jealousy (affectio).) The percept and the affect coincide with the invention of a novel form of experience that had hitherto remained beyond the thresholds of perception pertaining to generic subjects experiencing common affections.


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Opinion and architectural phenomenology Considering the above, this chapter endeavours to discern two prominent implications of Deleuze and Guattari’s reading of affectio and affectus in What is Philosophy? for architectural discourse. One is critical, and extends from Deleuze and Guattari’s critique of phenomenology into phenomenological approaches to the experiential aspects of architecture. For the early progenitors of architectural phenomenology, phenomenological ideas offered a critical means of responding to architectural modernism’s emphasis on abstract principles of design during the first half of the twentieth century, and a deprivation of architectural experience perceived as one of its consequences (Otero-Pailos, 2010). Since its appropriation among a scattered group of influential practitioners and pedagogues, few would doubt the extent of phenomenology’s influence on architectural discourse. Nowhere, it seems, is that influence more pronounced than in modes of narrating the experiential aspects of architecture’s past. As Jorge Otero-Pailos rightly suggests, architectural phenomenology “continues to be the primary discursive mode for dealing with questions of perception and affect” in architectural discourse, especially if one includes its more recent spinoffs organised around notions such as “atmosphere” and “embodiment” (OteroPailos, 2010, p. 261). Notwithstanding this, architectural phenomenology has attracted a range of criticisms in recent decades. For instance, that it espouses operative forms of history, theory, and criticism; that it is indulgently subjective, superficial, and paradoxically anti-intellectual; that it is premised on an essentialist concept of experience, and so on. Now, even without evaluating the rigour of its introduction into architectural discourse, one might anticipate that the critique of phenomenology outlined above – in short, that it constitutes an elaborate methodology for the legitimisation of the opinions of a majority – translates into the proposition that architectural phenomenology seeks to legitimate majoritarian opinions on the experiential aspects of architecture by taking the common perceptions and affections of generic subjects as its primary subject matter. Although architectural discourse is undoubtedly indebted to the early progenitors of architectural phenomenology for engendering a renewed critical interest in the experiential aspects of architecture in recent decades, Deleuze and Guattari’s critique of phenomenology seems to warrant a concern with the forms of experience addressed by architectural phenomenology, and perhaps more importantly with the forms of experience that it excludes. A critique of this nature is intimated in a recent text on discomfort in architecture, wherein Chris L. Smith argues that recent discourse in architectural phenomenology generally fails to account for the unpleasant aspects of architectural experience, or, as Smith says, “that which is uncomfortable, discomforting, traumatic… the most intense of intensities” (Smith, 2017, p. 127). In other words, it expresses a tendency to dwell upon only that which its author finds pleasant or homely, and to simultaneously exclude that which is unpleasant or

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unhomely. It’s a walk in the forest with Juhani Pallasmaa, for example, where our “sense of reality is strengthened and articulated by this constant interaction” with all things pleasant therein (Pallasmaa, 2012, p. 44). Or, it is reminiscence on the feeling of the doorknob on Aunty Betty’s garden gate – another stream of pleasant memories from one’s childhood that offers more details of an autohagiography than one can poke a stick at. Or, it is the “true” way to design provincial edifices for the wealthy elite. Perhaps this tendency is less pronounced among the early progenitors of architectural phenomenology than it is among its more recent progenitors. Nevertheless, pleasantness in this context is a function of the degree to which a lived situation supports, or even strengthens, the unity of the experiencing subject. In this sense, any such account that appeals exclusively to the pleasant under the auspices of a phenomenological approach to the experiential aspects of architecture inevitably remains grounded in the same epistemological systems that perpetuate the humanism that such approaches were initially developed to oppose. By extension, one might suggest that rather than providing a mode of critiquing architectural culture, architectural phenomenology seeks out a pleasant little corner therein. Even if there are gentle pleasures to be enjoyed in discussing the opinions of the majority, for architectural discourse to grasp affect, at least as Deleuze and Guattari conceive it in What is Philosophy?, it must engage with the built environment beyond the homely, beyond the recognisable.

Percept, affect, and the commemorative edifice A second implication of Deleuze and Guattari’s reading of affectio and affectus for architectural discourse is historiographic. If architectural phenomenology tends towards the recognition and elaboration of pleasant forms of experience, then from the outset one might anticipate that the notion of the percept and the affect propose a point of departure in that which is uncomfortable. Now the notion of discomfort also has a precise formulation in the context of the percept and the affect: it is a form of discomfort engendered in an encounter with that which is unrecognisable in what is given to experience; or, as Deleuze says, in an encounter with that which “forces us to think” (Deleuze, 1972, pp. 97–101; 1994, pp. 139–40; Bryant, 2008, pp. 73–91). Where the recognition of pleasant forms of experience entails the establishment of a common sense among the faculties concerning the identity of a perceived object, and has its correlate in the unity of the perceiving subject, an encounter with that which is unrecognisable entails a violent discord between the faculties. This is what happens when, as Daniel W. Smith says, “something is communicated violently from one faculty to another, but does not form a common sense” (Smith, 1996, p. 34). In this sense, Deleuze and Guattari’s notion of the percept and the affect would posit a point of departure in that which is discomforting qua uncertain or unrecognisable as a form of experience – it is this proposition that this chapter explores henceforth. As mentioned above, I have elected to do this exploring with reference to the Mémorial


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des Martyrs de la Déportation, in Paris. As you can imagine, this example has been selected neither randomly nor innocently. I want to propose a way of reading the experiential aspects of this commemorative edifice that doesn’t pander to recognisable perceptions and affections; but rather seeks to re-insert a series of complexities attributable to its realisation – as many as the scope of this chapter permits – even if that means sacrificing the clarity of a unified experiential viewpoint. Before this, a brief comment on commemorative edifices in general. Most typological definitions of memorials entail an interest in architecturally representing a past event with the intention of perpetuating its memory in the consciousness of present and future generations (see, for instance, Riegl, 1982, p. 22). This implies that authorial intentionality cannot be the sole determinant of how an edifice commemorates a past event; on the contrary, it implies a negotiation between numerous stakeholders – stakeholders with interests that aren’t necessarily aligned with those of the architect and the commissioning organisation. Hence, if there is an “atmosphere”, it would be imprudent to comprehend it solely in accordance with the intentions of the master, no matter how heroic he may be. Much more than the intentions of any master, commemorative edifices presuppose collective narrativisations of their objects of commemoration that integrate everything from empirical evidences and individual testimonies to sociopolitical climates and cultural logics. Further, as commemorative edifices are determined by such narrativising processes, so they come to determine those processes following their inauguration. This is a thesis that Maurice Halbwachs develops in his analyses of collective memory (Halbwachs, 1925; 1968). What this means is that as far as a commemorative edifice implies an architectural representation of a collective narrativisation of a past event, the forms of experience it composes are almost inevitably inflected with the dominant narrativisations of the event it commemorates – dominant, that is, through the duration of its realisation. In a general sense, then, there is an ongoing necessity of critically evaluating the experiential aspects of any commemorative edifice: if the collective memory that such edifices perpetuate is potentially determined by fraught historical narrativisations, such evaluations are as indispensable as any other form of cultural critique. These themes are especially pertinent where the Memorial is concerned, as will become apparent momentarily.

The Mémorial des Martyrs de la Déportation Processions of tourists and administrators wander amid the anonymous façades of cream-coloured stone that characterise Paris’s Île de la Cité. Near the Quai de l’Archevêché, at the island’s east, one encounters the Square de l’Île de France, a neat, quiet, and otherwise unremarkable park. At its far-eastern edge, a stout, off-white bêton brut ledge announces the presence of a memorial that sinks into the earth (Figure 7.1). An inscription carved into the ledge reads: “aux deux cent

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Figure 7.1 View of the Memorial from the Square de l’Île de France. Image courtesy Wally Gobetz.

mille martyrs Français morts dans les camps de la déportation”. Bodies descend single-file into the midst of an uncomfortably stark parvis encircled by the ancient walls of the island and monolithic bêton brut walls. The parvis is steeped in carceral motifs, it is a caisson of perception. It composes a cobbled ground, a bare sky above, two floating menhirs that extend into a subterranean crypt, and a narrow view onto the Seine framed through vertical iron bars. Bodies pass single-file beyond the menhirs into a shadowy crypt, where a hexagonal floor plate extends into a domed firmament (Figure 7.2). Deep inscriptions dominate the walls, which amount to another dedication, fragmented verses written by celebrated French poets, and German place-names. The dedication reads: “Pour que vive le souvenir des deux cent mille Français, sombrés dans la nuit et le brouillard, exterminés dans les camps Nazis”. The inscriptions are filled with a deep red pigment. To the left and right of the entrance, two lateral galleries project off the crypt. Light from the exterior penetrates the crypt, spilling over a circular steel plate at its centre, and onto the entrance of a long, attenuated gallery that projects into the earth (Figure 7.3). Just beyond the vertical iron bars that make the threshold impassable, lies the tomb of an unknown deportee, and further beyond that thousands of moulded bâtons de verre set in panels of polished timber adorn the walls of the gallery. A single, tungsten-yellow bulb glows at its farthest end and brings the bâtons de verre to life.


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Figure 7.2 Interior view of the crypt. Image courtesy Reg Marjason.

Figure 7.3 Interior view into the gallery from the interior crypt. Image courtesy Agnieszka Eile.

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The individuation of the memorial From exterior to interior, there is a cinematically choreographed procession of bodies through the edifice, which, as its architect, Georges-Henri Pingusson suggests, is intended to psychologically recreate “the way they had to go” (see Texier, 2006, p. 294). Prior to the commissioning of the Memorial, Pingusson was already versed in responding architecturally to the challenges of sacrosanct programmes, having designed several cathedrals across the south of France before winning the commission (Pingusson, 1938, pp. 315–16). Throughout this procession, there is a near-violent saturation of figurative, abstract, empathetic, symbolic, and textual references to various aspects of the deportations. This iconographic series compounds into a most powerful gesture towards an incommensurable catastrophe: the wanton persecution and deportation of 200,000 people, most of whom perished because of that persecution. This likely explains why, since its inauguration by Charles de Gaulle in 1962, its visceral nature has attracted attention from architectural practitioners, scholars, and enthusiasts, as well as the wider population. In the words of Norman Pressman, the Memorial “exemplifies the ability of architecture not only to arouse but also to stir one’s emotions dramatically” (Pressman, 1971, p. 52). In short, it is not surprising the Memorial tends to have so visceral an impact on those who visit it: it seems that there is little room for interpretation beyond that suggested by the conjunction of Pingusson’s intentions and its object of commemoration, so apparently unambiguous is its affective tonality. At the same time, the memories of the Memorial are not as simple as what meets the eye (or the hand, or the hands with eyes). The individuation of the Memorial entailed more direct interlocutors than the architect alone. The sculptor, Raymond Veysset, also worked alongside Pingusson on the design of the Memorial, before withdrawing from the project in 1956, two years after their initial design was awarded the commission. There is also the artistic commissions committee of the Réseau du souvenir, a relatively small post-war organisation composed largely of deportation survivors, many of whom were also members of the Resistance and the French political elite (Barcellini, 1995, p. 80; Amsellem, 2007, p. 56). The Réseau’s artistic committee was headed by Jean Cassou, then the director of the Musée national d’Art moderne, who exerted substantial conceptual and aesthetic influence over the design of the Memorial, as did the president of the Réseau, Paul Arrighi (Brochard, 2015, pp. 20, 54–55, 74–76). The Memorial is situated near the Quai de l’Archevêché, the path that connects the Rive Gauche and Île SaintLouis with the Île de la Cité. The island became a walled refuge after the barbarian raids on Lutetia (c. AD 275) – the Memorial incorporates part of the same wall in the delineation of its forecourt – later the focal point of the medieval Reformation in Paris, and later still the bureaucratic centre of France. Aside from the Notre Dame, edifices of bureaucracy and bourgeois apartments now largely characterise the built fabric of the island: The Prefecture de Police, the Palais de Justice, the Tribunal de commerce, Hôtel-Dieu, and so on. Hence, the advantage of siting any Memorial on the island needs no explanation, but its siting also necessitated the


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inclusion of several other organisations in the conception of the Memorial. The Société des amis de la Notre Dame, the local municipal government, the Direction des Beaux-Arts, Commission des Sites, Services de la Navigation de la Ville, and the Bureau des monuments historiques et des lieux de mémoire (Ministère des Armées) each exerted varying degrees of influence in its conception and realisation. In this sense, the Memorial’s experiential condition is not the sole product of the intentions or the vision of the architect, since it also implicates a negotiation among such interlocutors in responding to the challenges of a politically fraught site and a complex bureaucratic network. The realisation of the Memorial also coincides with a moment when the collective memory of the deportations was still being processed. Before the 1970s, the dominant narratives of occupied France largely revolved around the activities of the Resistance. According to de Gaulle, the leader of the provisional government installed after the collapse of the Vichy regime, almost all French citizens were patriotic members of the Resistance, heroes, while only a negligible few were collaborators or members of the Vichy regime. This argument is also adopted by the national committee established in the post-war years to account for the Occupation (the Comité d’Histoire de la Deuxième Guerre Mondiale), which focused most of its efforts and resources into developing the history of the Resistance (Jackson, 2013, p. 862). There is no shortage of vested interest in perpetuating this genre of narrative. The political landscape in France was unstable following the collapse of the Vichy regime, and to recuperate as a nation, many political figures (such as de Gaulle) strived to cultivate a national ésprit that could facilitate a practical unification of its multifarious political factions, not to mention gain advantage in the struggles for political power yet to come. As Stanley Hoffman suggests, the Resistance represented a perfect vehicle for this endeavour, as far as it “saved France’s honour, played a major role in the liberation, and was the secular arm of the saviour, Charles de Gaulle” (Hoffman in Rousso, 1994, p. viii). These factors led to the rapid mythologisation of the Resistance in national consciousness; but this heightened attention on the Resistance also functioned to divert national attentions away from the undertakings of the Vichy regime (which, according to de Gaulle for example, had nothing to do with France). Further, in the political pandemonium of the post-war years in France, several prominent ministres of the Vichy regime found themselves with high-ranking positions in the provisional Constituent Assembly, and later in the Fourth Republic. Several among them also released memoires in which they presented themselves as patriots who cooperated with the occupying Axis forces regretfully, and only to save France from annihilation. Robert Aron’s study of the inner workings of the Vichy regime, Histoire de Vichy, 1940–1944, published in 1955, tended to confirm such accounts, espousing the view that most of the Vichy ministers did what was necessary to save France from its Axis occupiers, as well as suggesting that several among them even liaised with the British military (Aron, 1958).

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Despite the gradual emergence of contradictory evidence within the public sphere – such as the 1954 trials of Karl Oberg and Helmut Knochen or Alain Resnais’s Nuit et brouillard (1956), for example – it is perhaps not until the 1970s, with the publication of Robert O. Paxton’s (1972) Vichy France: Old Guard and New Order 1940–1944, and other such studies, that the Vichy regime is fully inculpated in the deportations. As Julian Jackson suggests, Paxton’s text was a notable catalyst in shifting the collective understanding of the Vichy regime for the strength with which it contravened the two propositions solidified in Aron’s study: it convincingly demonstrates that no obvious efforts were made to collaborate with Allied forces, and that Vichy officials often tended to exceed what was expected of them under the terms of the Occupation – that is, in other words, that they were willing participants in the Axis war effort, in the deportations, and by extension, in the Holocaust (Jackson, 2013, p. 827; Jackson, 1999, pp. 4–9; cf. the anti-British propaganda released during the Occupation (Chabrol, 1993)).4 Paxton’s text is thought to have engendered the wave of revisionist histories that emerged shortly thereafter, which, collectively, have indubitably inculpated the Vichy regime almost three decades after the fact, and after many of those responsible have themselves perished (cf. Rousso and Conan, 1998, on some of the shortcomings of such revision). Ultimately, it isn’t until 1995 that the actions of the regime are officially acknowledged by a French government (see Fette, 2008, pp. 81–84). With the benefit of a retrospective viewpoint, Henry Rousso describes this après-guerre atmosphere of personally, politically, and patriotically motivated obfuscation as symptomatic of what he describes as the “Vichy syndrome”, an operative form of repression occurring at the level of national memory (Rousso, 1994; Rousso and Conan, 1998). Now, it happens that the Memorial was realised when the Vichy syndrome was at its apotheosis. Thus, in combination with a calamitous design process, the epistemological-ideological structure that grounds the way that the Memorial narrativises its eponymous object of commemoration is both questionable and unstable. While historical narrativisations of the Occupation may be revised indefinitely, the narrativisation encapsulated in the corporeal fabric of the edifice cannot. Although it may be appealing to think of architectural design as the pursuit of heroic, inspired individuals with absolute control over their edifices, how could this memorial not bear the traces of the epistemologicalideological milieu from whence it emerged? How could the Memorial not bear the traces of the vested interest in mythologising the Resistance and portraying a unified national spirit? Similarly, if only inadvertently, how could the Memorial not express traces of the cultural obfuscation of the actions of the Vichy regime and the collaborationists?

The other memories of the memorial At first glance, the iconographic series composed by the Memorial seems to condition a narrow range of possible perceptive-affective lived situations (hence the


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near unanimity of commentaries on the kind of experiences it tends to engender). But such an appearance rests on the assumption that the experiential fabric of the Memorial coincides exactly with the intentions of its authors – namely, Pingusson, and, to an extent, the select members of the Réseau most directly involved with its aesthetic composition – which doubtless correspond with a sincere and careful attempt to commemorate the incommensurable tragedy of the deportations. Considering the preceding account of its individuation, however, this becomes a difficult assumption to maintain; it seems unlikely that the forms of experience conditioned by the Memorial are entirely attributable to its authors. The question is, to what extent are the aesthetic influences beyond the control of its authors manifest within its experiential fabric? The problem thus becomes semiological; ideally, one would imagine an analysis of the edifice akin to Barthes’s (1974) treatment of Sarrasine in S/Z: the Memorial as starred text. Of course, such an analysis would entail a far lengthier treatment than this chapter permits; nevertheless, a brief re-visitation of the description of the experiential composition of the edifice (in italics above) ought to suffice as an indication of just how ambiguous certain aspects of the iconographic series become considering the conditions of its realisation described above. Throughout the edifice, there are signs that point to the deportations as a physical process of displacement, such as the order of succession through the Memorial as the passage through three phases – from the hubbub of the island to the solemnity of the crypt, which are each connected by single-file passageways. There are a range of semiological allusions to incarceration, such as the abstract sculptural relief in the edge of the parvis, the motif of vertical iron bars, covering, for example; or the narrow opening onto the Seine, the attenuated gallery, and the tall, rough-formed, monolithic walls that encompass the parvis. There are a range of theological symbols, such as the triangular and the hexagonal geometric motifs and the arrangement of glass batons on wooden panels (in the gallery; evocative of the Semitic custom for commemorating lost relatives). Many more symbols were included in the preliminary designs, but were gradually effaced prior to construction. There are a range of thanatological icons and symbols, such as those that meld with theological and national customs relating to death (the glass batons and the tomb of the unknown deportee), but there are also spatial gestures, such as the careful arrangement of high contrasts of light between the parvis and the crypt and the inaccessibility of the attenuated gallery to the public. Then there are also a range of signs that seem far more ambiguous. The inscriptions – the dedications, the poetic fragments, and the place-names – in particular, cultivate a sense of martyrdom and patriotism. Each poetic fragment was written by a canonical French author who was also a member of the Resistance; the walls are also dominated by the place-names of Nazi concentration camps (the lateral galleries hold deposits of soil from a select few). Mixed into the bêton brut walls are pebbles extracted from quarries from every region of France. Within the crypt, there are other references to national symbols, such as the tomb of the “unknown

Deleuze, Guattari, and the non-subjectified affects of architecture 127

deportee” – a variation of the national commemorative gestures for victims of the First World War. There is also its appearance from the Square de l’Île de France, on the island heart of the nation, and in the literal shadow of the Notre Dame, as it sinks away from public view. Obviously, making the Memorial almost invisible would have satisfied the interests of those who wanted to preserve the pre-existing characteristics of the site itself; as well as the interests of those who might have wished to suppress the potentially seditious memories associated with the deportations it commemorates, as some critics suggested at the time (see Lesieur, 1962; Amsellem, 2007, pp. 37–41). Ultimately, such elements as those of the latter series tend to support three basic assumptions concerning the deportations: that the victims of the deportations were French citizens, that each died as a martyr for France, and that each died in a Nazi concentration camp (thus implicating a strictly German culpability). The problem is, as you can imagine, that these assumptions don’t include victims of the deportations who weren’t French (or who were practically stripped of their citizenship prior to their deportation), that they don’t include those who were deported because of persecution rather than patriotism, and they don’t include those who died in concentration camps on French soil. Therein, thus, lies the disturbing manipulation of the collective memory perpetuated by the Memorial (see also, Carrier, 2005, pp. 57–59; 84–93; Hornstein, 2003; 2017). Almost half of the 200,000 victims of the deportations were, for all intents and purposes, stripped of their citizenship prior to their deportation, and, rather than fighting for a national cause (the Resistance), they were victimised by one. Nominally speaking, those who were deported because of racial, religious, or sexual persecution, aren’t commemorated by the Memorial at all, since the only “French martyrs” who were deported were members of the Resistance.5 It must be emphasised that the iconography composed in the Memorial is not entirely of this ambiguous nature; on the contrary, the more ambiguous signs constitute one series among others that do unambiguously commemorate all victims of the deportations in toto. Nevertheless, this series comprising the more ambiguous signs does contribute to the nature of the memories that the Memorial perpetuates. Hence, wherever it cultivates a narrative of the patriotic martyr who struggled against a villainous adversary and tragically perished in the process – in short, a narrative of the Resister – it simultaneously not only obfuscates the narratives of the victims of the deportations who perished because of persecution rather than patriotism; but it also replays the same narratives that functioned to exculpate the collaborationists and the members of the Vichy regime in the decades after France’s liberation – that is, in other words, those who were (at least partially) responsible for the persecutions and the deportations in France. The concern is that for the overwhelmingly traumatic nature of any form of memory of the deportations, the iconography that emphasises the Resistance and its corresponding nationalistic spirit coalesces with the iconography pertaining unambiguously to the deportations, such that the injustices to which it pertains almost escape perception altogether.


Kieran Richards

The forms of experience that the Memorial conditions are inevitably a variable mixture of these disjunctive series of signs and the perceptive-affective lived states that they might effectuate. It is a compound that articulates a collective will to commemorate the loss and suffering of those who were deported. It is also a compound that articulates the forces that inaugurated and legitimised a collective memory of the Occupation as a narrative of the Resistance par excellence. It is a compound that articulates the forces that led to the historical obfuscation of the nationally ordained persecution of select minorities enacted by the Vichy regime. In short, what the Memorial remembers is structured by what was remembered during its production; yet, in a way, that memory already repeats something fundamental to the very enactment of deportations in the first place. Hidden away, on the Eastern edge of the island heart of the nation, it is as if the Memorial commemorates the invisibility inflicted on the bodies of its intolerable others.

Concluding remarks This chapter responds to a growing critical awareness of the importance of affect and affective orientations in shaping the social and cultural spheres in which architecture is constituted, an importance that architectural discourse of recent decades, architectural phenomenology aside, has largely seemed content to ignore. The critique of the phenomenological method that Deleuze and Guattari develop in What is Philosophy? highlights the connection of architectural phenomenology to the realm of perception, affection, and opinion. In doing so, it furnishes a manner of conceiving a phenomenological approach to architecture as a form of the legitimisation of majoritarian opinions. What is Philosophy? also posits a way of engaging the experiential aspects of architecture beyond opinion: through the logic of percepts and affects. This chapter takes up this logic in the context of the Mémorial des Martyrs de la Déportation, and traces a line from the iconography of its experiential givens – which appear to unambiguously commemorate all victims of the deportations from Occupied France – through to the wider conditions of its production, namely the epistemological-ideological frameworks through which the deportations were narrativised prior to the wave of revisionist histories that emerged shortly after the inauguration of the edifice. This seems to constitute a clear point of departure from the experiential method espoused by architectural phenomenology: it is not directed towards an atmosphere of my feelings; rather, it is a matter of expounding how a range of stakeholders intervene during the realisation of the edifice, how these interventions are actualised in the experiential aspects of the edifice, and how affectivity is instrumentalised within the historical narrative it enunciates. This approach highlights the presence of an ambiguous iconography that exceeds the intentions imparted by its authors, yet which coalesces almost imperceptibly with those intentions. Ultimately, there were two very distinct reasons for the deportations: for the patriotism of the resisters and the persecution of minorities. Sometimes these reasons coincided; sometimes they didn’t. Yet, the overwhelmingly abject nature of the deportations, irrespective of

Deleuze, Guattari, and the non-subjectified affects of architecture 129

its cause, seems to have largely overwhelmed this point of distinction – hence the abject nature of the event lends it a political instrumentality that enables it to play a role in the legitimisation of the history of the Occupation as the history of the Resistance par excellence, and hence the incursion, if only slight, of the more ambiguous signs into the composition of the Memorial. Ultimately, questions of affectivity are at the centre of this contested history. Where architectural discourse is concerned, as long as it continues to disregard affect, it shall remain oblivious to the affective nuances through which such forms of legitimisation become possible, in the context of commemorative edifices as in the context of architectural culture at large.

Notes 1 Throughout Deleuze’s engagements with the Ethica, affectio translates into “perception” (Deleuze, 1978, 1997; Deleuze and Guattari, 1987, 1994) or “affection” (Deleuze, 1992, 1988, 1978); while affectus ordinarily translates as “emotion” (Deleuze, 1992), “feeling” (Deleuze, 1988), “affection” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1987, 1994), or simply “affect” (Deleuze, 1978; Deleuze and Guattari, 1987, 1994). 2 All translations of Deleuze’s seminars on Spinoza (Deleuze, 1978–81) are my own (no full English translation exists to my knowledge). Unless otherwise stated, all other quotations follow the published English translations of Deleuze and Guattari’s texts. 3 The Charlus series is no less profound a percept: when the homosexual series reveals the truth of the heterosexual series the relation of normative sexuality to “inverted” sexuality itself becomes transformed. 4 Almost immediately after the Vichy regime took power, anti-Semitic policies of Vichy’s inception began appearing, beginning with the Jewish Statute of October, 1940 (Jackson, 2013, 1999). 5 As recently as 2008, efforts have been made to rectify this situation but they have been quashed under the same logic in operation during the inauguration of the Fifth Republic (1958): that all citizens of France are equal before the law (see Hornstein and Jacobowitz, 2003, p. 323 n. 29).

References Ansell-Pearson, K. (1999). Germinal Life: The Difference and Repetition of Deleuze. London: Routledge. Amsellem, P. (2007). Remembering the Past, Constructing the Future. The Memorial to the Deportation in Paris and Experimental Commemoration after the Second World War. PhD Dissertation. New York University. Aron, R. (1958). The Vichy Regime, 1940–1944. London: Putnam. Barcellini, S. (1995). Sur deux journées nationales commémorant la déportation et les persécutions des “années noires”. Vingtième Siècle. Revue d’Histoire 45: 76–98. Barthes, R. (1974). S/Z (R. Miller, Trans.). New York, NY: Hill and Wang (Original work published in 1970). Beistegui, M. (2010). Immanence: Deleuze and Philosophy. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Brochard, A. (2015). Mémorial des martyrs de la déportation histoire d'une construction mémorielle, Réseau du souvenir, Georges-Henri Pingusson. Paris: Éditions du Linteau.


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Bryant, L. R. (2008). Difference and Givenness: Deleuze’s Transcendental Empiricism and the Ontology of Immanence. Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press. Carrier, P. (2005). Holocaust Monuments and National Memory Cultures in France and Germany Since 1989: The Origins and Political Function of the Vél’ d’Hiv’ in Paris and the Holocaust Monument in Berlin. New York, NY: Berghahn Books. Chabrol, C. (dir.) (1993). The Eye of Vichy. New York, NY: First Run Features. Colebrook, C. (2002). Gilles Deleuze. London: Routledge. Conan, É. and Rousso, H. (1998). Vichy: An Ever-Present Past. Hanover, NH: University Press of New England. Deleuze, G. (1972). Proust and Signs (R. Howard, Trans.). Minneapolis, MN: Minnesota University Press (Original work published in 1964). Deleuze, G. (1978). Cours Vincennes sur Spinoza (“idée et affect”). Available at: https:// (accessed 10 April 2020). Deleuze, G. (1988). Spinoza: Practical Philosophy (R. Hurley, Trans.). San Francisco, CA: City Lights Books (Original work published in 1972). Deleuze, G. (1992). Expressionism in Philosophy: Spinoza (M. Joughin, Trans.). Cambridge, MA: Zone Books (Original work published in 1968). Deleuze, G. (1994). Difference and Repetition (P. Patton, Trans.). New York, NY: Columbia University Press (Original work published in 1968). Deleuze, G. (1997). Essays Critical and Clinical (D. W. Smith and M. A. Greco, Trans.). Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press (Original work published in 1993). Deleuze, G. and Guattari, F. (1987). A Thousand Plateaus (B. Massumi, Trans.). Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press (Original work published in 1980). Deleuze, G. and Guattari, F. (1994). What is Philosophy? (H. Tomlinson and G. Burchell, Trans.). New York, NY: Columbia University Press (Original work published in 1991). Deleuze, G. and Parnet, C. (1998). L’abécédaire de Gilles Deleuze. Paris: Éditions Montparnasse. Fette, J. (2008). Apology and the past in contemporary France. French Politics, Culture & Society 26(2): 78–113. Halbwachs, M. (1925). Les cadres sociaux de la mémoire. Paris: F. Alcan. Halbwachs, M. (1968). La Mémoire Collective. Paris: PUF. Hornstein, S. (2017). Invisible topographies and deafening silence: Looking for the memorial to the victims of the deportation in Paris. In: C. Benton (Ed.), Figuration/ Abstraction: Strategies for Public Sculpture in Europe 1945–1968. New York, NY: Routledge. Hornstein, S. and Jacobowitz, F. (2003). Image and Remembrance: Representation and the Holocaust. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press. Jackson, J. (1999). Vichy France and the Jews. Historian 61(Spring): 4–9. Jackson, J. (2013). Occupied France: The Vichy regime, collaboration, and resistance. In: T. W. Zeiler and D. M. DuBois (Eds.), A Companion to World War II. Oxford: Blackwell, pp. 825–840. Lawlor, L. (1998). The end of phenomenology: Expressionism in Deleuze and MerleauPonty. Continental Philosophy Review 31(1): 15–34. Lesieur, C. (1962). Le vrai mémorial de la résistance et de la déportation reste à faire. Le Patriote Résistant 271: 1–2. Massumi, B. (1996). The autonomy of affect. In: P. Patton (Ed.), Deleuze: A Critical Reader. Oxford: Blackwell, pp. 217–239.

Deleuze, Guattari, and the non-subjectified affects of architecture 131 Otero-Pailos, J. (2010). Architecture’s Historical Turn: Phenomenology and the Rise of the Postmodern. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Pallasmaa, J. (2012). The Eyes of the Skin: Architecture and the Senses. Chichester: Wiley. Paxton, R. O. (1972). Vichy France: Old Guard and New Order 1940–1944. New York, NY: Alfred A. Knopf. Pingusson, G.-H. (1938). Construire une église. L’Art Sacré 4(35): 315–318. Pressman, N. (1971). Pingusson’s legacy. The genius of a little-known French modernist is revealed in his two key works. The Architectural Forum 134–135(June): 52–55. Reynolds, J. and Roffe, J. (2006). Deleuze and Merleau-Ponty: Immanence, univocity and phenomenology. Journal of the British Society for Phenomenology 37(3): 228–251. Riegl, A. (1982). The modern cult of monuments: Its character and its origin (K. W. Forster and D. Ghirardo, Trans.). Oppositions 25(Fall): 21–56. Rousso, H. (1994). The Vichy Syndrome: History and Memory in France Since 1944. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Seigworth, G. J. (2011). From affection to soul. In: C. J. Stivale (Ed.), Gilles Deleuze: Key Concepts. Durham, UK: Routledge, pp. 171–181. Slaby, J. and von Scheve, C. (2019). Affective Societies. London: Routledge. Smith, C. L. (2017). Blind windows: A particularly domestic discomfort. In: D. Ellison and A. Leach (Eds), On discomfort: Moments in a Modern History of Architectural Culture. London: Routledge, pp. 122–131. Smith, D. W. (1996). Deleuze’s theory of sensation: Overcoming the Kantian duality. In: P. Patton (Ed.), Deleuze: A Critical Reader. Oxford: Blackwell. Smith, D. W. (1997). “A life of pure immanence”: Deleuze’s “critique et clinique” project. In: Essays Critical and Clinical. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press, pp. xi–liv. Spinoza, B. (1951). The ethics. In: R. H. M. Elwes (Ed. and Trans.), The Chief Works of Benedict de Spinoza, Vol. 2. New York, NY: Dover Publications (Original work published 1677). Texier, S. (2006). Georges-Henri Pingusson (1894–1978): La poétique pour doctrine. Paris: Verdier. Wambacq, J. (2018). Thinking between Deleuze and Merleau-Ponty. Athens, OH: Ohio University Press.

Chapter 8

Affection for aborted architecture Chris L. Smith

In the Preface to Anti-Oedipus (1972), Michel Foucault suggests that Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari’s first collaborative text might operate as an “Ars erotica, ars theoretica, ars politica”. For Foucault, such a work is necessary for battling the most profound of contemporary fascisms: “the fascism that causes us to love power, to desire the very thing that dominates and exploits us” (Foucault, 1983, p. xiii). In this short phrase, Foucault launches power and desire, politics and love, together against a common enemy. On the one hand, it makes sense for Foucault to introduce the work of Deleuze and Guattari in this way. Consistent with their broader critique, desire and sexuality are operative in the social field as an index of reactions and revolutions. On the other hand, Foucault’s introduction suggests a type of relation between desire and power that is perhaps inconsistent with that being developed by Deleuze and Guattari. For the philosopher and the psychotherapist, even fascism was desire, and “power” was not a word favoured by Deleuze. The disconnect between “power” and “desire” plays itself out perhaps most concisely in a note that was passed from Deleuze to Foucault some years later. Deleuze’s note is important not only in establishing the relation between Foucault’s idea of power and Deleuze’s concept of desire; but also in establishing a politics of affect that might help us speak of the political force of architecture. In this chapter, I focus on the note of 1977 titled “Desire and Pleasure” [“Désir et plaisir”] in an exploration of the ars politica of an architectural event.1 The architectural event I am concerned with is itself explicitly concerned with fascism. The event is the demolition of three concrete stairwells of the Swiss architect Peter Zumthor. These concrete monoliths stood between the winters of 1997 and 2004 on an urban field that was once the site of the offices of the Protection Squad of the Nazi party (SS), the Security Service of the SS, the Reich Security Main Office (SD), and the Secret State Police (Gestapo), on Niederkirchnerstraße, Berlin. These offices were badly damaged in the concluding months of the war and completely destroyed shortly thereafter, and Zumthor’s concrete blocks were a first attempt to construct a Topography of Terror Museum on the site. Over many years, the work of Zumthor has come to be a point of fixation for phenomenological accounts, where words such as “emotion” and “love” operate without political affect. Phenomenological accounts tend to devalue the social, impersonal, and affective dimensions of architecture (Smith, 2017, pp. 52–4). This chapter aims

Affection for aborted architecture


Figure 8.1 Peter Zumthor’s aborted Topographie of Terror Museums. Photograph © UlrichSchwarz, Berlin.

not to recuperate the affective politics of one of Zumthor’s incomplete buildings; but rather to assert that the destruction, the aborting, of this building gave the architecture political force. The demolition of these concrete monoliths confounds our sense of both desire and power and may help us understand why, for Deleuze, power is conceived as “an affection of desire” [le pouvoir est une affection du désir] (Deleuze, 2006, p. 125).

Power The “Desire and Pleasure” note, written by Deleuze and addressing Foucault, was in part a review of Foucault’s then-recently published The Will to Knowledge (1976), the first volume of The History of Sexuality.2 Foucault’s The Will to


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Knowledge advances the theses of his earlier text Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison (1975) in establishing a discourse that placed the body in a central position, integral to and configured by power arrangements. The focus of The Will to Knowledge is those arrangements that might constitute what we call sexuality or sexual identity. Deleuze organises his note to Foucault under eight points, labelled “A” to “H” and a short ninth point, an “Addition” at the end (that is not labelled alphabetically). Under these points, he would at times (under “A”, “F”, and “G”), use numerals (1, 2, and 3) to order ideas that fall under points. It is quite formal in this sense. What is less formal is the manner by which Deleuze refers to Foucault across the note: “Michel”. But the note is not written directly to Foucault. The note is written as if addressing someone close to Foucault (a third party) who would likely share the contents with him. It reads as a kind of gentle relay – the type of letter one might write to a friend about a potential lover, knowing that its contents will be shared. Thus, the subject of the letter is also the assumed or (indeed the) intended recipient. This type of letter allows someone to say things openly that might not be able to be said directly. At once establishing a kind of critical distance and yet consistently indicating a personal closeness. The critical distance of Deleuze’s note allows intellectual measure and a near-objective commentary, largely on The Will to Knowledge, but also about Foucault’s philosophical development and his elaboration of concepts. The personal closeness seems to be expressed as a type of care, an affection. Not for Foucault the philosopher, but for Michel, the person. In an annotation that accompanies a translation of the note in David Lapoujade’s edited book Two Regimes of Madness (2006), it is suggested that Deleuze had François Ewald, Foucault’s assistant at the time, deliver the note: “According to Ewald’s account that accompanied the notes, Deleuze wanted to extend support of his friendship to Foucault, who was suffering a crisis during the publication of The Will to Knowledge” (Lapoujade, 2006, p. 402). Deleuze commences the note by identifying three key reasons that Foucault’s Discipline and Punish “seemed essential”: First, for Deleuze it was “a profound political innovation of the conception of power, as opposed to any theory of the State” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 122). Second, it allowed Foucault “to get beyond the duality of discursive and non-discursive formations” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 122). Third, Discipline and Punish was “essential” in “forming a concept of normalization, and of disciplines”, rather than of repression and of ideology (Deleuze, 2006, p. 122). Thus, at the core of Deleuze’s appreciation for the work is the sense by which power comes to operate independently of the institutions, the dualisms, and the ideological judgements, by which it had previously been conceived. While this is what Deleuze considers “essential” in Foucault’s earlier text, he also suggests Foucault’s thesis concerning power arrangements was heading in two distinct directions: The direction of “a diagram, a sort of abstract machine, immanent to the whole social field” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 123), and the direction of “diffused, heterogenous multiplicity or micro-arrangements” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 122). The “abstract machine” Deleuze is referring to is, in this case, panopticism,

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which Foucault had defined as a “diagram of a mechanism of power reduced to its ideal form” (Foucault, 1995, p. 205).3 Architectural theorists consistently note the role of Jeremy Bentham’s idealised plan for a prison in the conception of panopticism. At the origins of this political construct lies architectural technique. What Deleuze calls micro-arrangements would come to be more commonly referred to in terms of assemblage [agencement] and relate to a micro or a minor politics, removed from ideological contestation and ulterior to the logics of states, governments, and institutions. The innovations of Discipline and Punish and the directions of Foucault’s philosophical moves therein would be advanced in The Will to Knowledge. And accordingly, the key example to which Deleuze turns in his note when identifying what power had become for Foucault is not architecture, but rather sexuality. For Deleuze, what is exceptional about The Will to Knowledge is that: power arrangements are no longer content to be normalizers, they tend to be constituents (of sexuality). They are no longer content to form bodies of knowledge, they constitute truth (the truth of power). They no longer refer to categories which, in spite of everything, are negative ones (madness, delinquency as the object of imprisonment), but instead refer to a so-called positive category (sexuality). (Deleuze, 2006, p. 123) However, in such a conception of power, Deleuze notes a danger: “The danger is: does Michel return to something analogous to a constituting subject, and why does he feel the need to revive truth, even if he makes it into a new concept?” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 123). The first danger that Deleuze was raising might be summarised as a concern that Foucault’s conception of power might reinforce the idea that a subject generates, holds, or embodies power in some manner. That power constructs a subject may still enforce an idea of the subject (albeit subjectivised). The second critique might be summarised as: though power is conceived as a circulating and fluid force, it still becomes aligned with a conception of “truth”. And the equation becomes power equals truth, the power of truth and the truth of power. Highlighting these dangers would constitute a critical engagement in the note but, consistent with its personable tone, Deleuze offers the critique in the manner of a friend. He steps gently back; and writes, “These are not my own questions” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 123). Deleuze had other concerns for Foucault’s account of power arrangements that he seems happier to own. First, he worried about Foucault’s definition of “macroarrangements” as relating to strategies and “micro-arrangements” as relating to tactics. For Foucault, a strategy was a broader organisational or discursive position “embodied in the state apparatus”, whereas a tactic was a smaller, local, divergent, or “loquacious” manoeuvre or detour (Foucault, 1990, pp. 92–102). For Deleuze, the need to differentiate in a hierarchical manner was not necessary. In his own work, the macro and micro were both heterogeneous and immanent,


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one to the other. For Deleuze, the macro relates to those measures, categorisations, and demarcations that are habitual. The macro of sexual orientation and gender categorisation, for example, might be expressed as boxes that can be ticked on a census form: I am x, I am not y; or by a geneticist pairing chromosomes: I am XX, I am not XY. The micro relates to those qualities which are not so easily categorised and cannot be accounted for quantitively. For example, the person who ticked box x may enjoy affectations more commonly associated with those who more often tick box y, and this person may this very evening seek the well-placed lash of a leather riding-crop, for which no box nor genetic code has ever presented itself. Both macro and micro are operable in their own way, more often than not simultaneously. Deleuze’s note treats concerns, such as the relation of macro and micro, as matters that Foucault might address in the future, and are mentioned as one might note small differences among friends. Small differences can, however, be symptomatic of bigger contentions.

Desire The bigger contention of the “Desire and Pleasure” note (what Deleuze would call “ma première difference avec Michel”) is the point arrived at in the section of the note labelled “D”. It relates to the different statuses of power and desire. The explanation implicates differences in conceptions of subjectivity and truth, along with the macro and the micro, and indeed it implicates almost all of the content of the note up till this point. Deleuze invokes the name of a fourth party to help establish the première difference. It’s an odd deferral to invoke a fourth: given that this is a note which is delivered via a third party in order to “extend support of his friendship” to a person “suffering a crisis”. It is a little like dropping the name of another potential suitor into a love letter; but Deleuze does this in an interestingly formal way. Where Foucault would be referred to as “Michel”, this fourth figure would be addressed with both prénom and surname: If I talk about assemblages of desire with Félix Guattari, it is because I am not sure that micro-arrangements can be described in terms of power. For me, an assemblage of desire is never a natural or spontaneous determination. For example, feudalism is an assemblage that inaugurates new relationships with animals (the horse), with land, with deterritorialization (the knight riding away, the Crusades), with women (courtly love and chivalry)… etc. These are totally crazy assemblages but they can always be pinpointed historically. I would say for myself that desire circulates in this heterogenous assemblage, in this kind of symbiosis: desire is one with a determined assemblage, a co-function. (Deleuze, 2006, p. 124–5, my italicisation) For Deleuze, “an assemblage of desire will include power arrangements” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 125), but such arrangements are located among the components of an

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assemblage. Put even more simply: power arrangements are not primal; it is from the cacophony of desire that power structures might be distilled. And even social and sociopolitical assemblages are configurations of desire. Though a simple idea, the ramifications are significant. This refrain would come to be repeated across Deleuze and Guattari’s collaborative work: they would paraphrase this note a few years later in A Thousand Plateaus (1987), when writing: “[a]ssemblages are passional, they are compositions of desire. Desire has nothing to do with a natural or spontaneous determination; there is no desire but assembling, assembled, desire” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1987, p. 399).4 Power, alongside love, land, relations between animals and people, etc., would be “a component of assemblages” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 125). Such assemblages would also include “points of deterritorialization”, and for Deleuze deterritorialisation is not a move toward another codified political or ideological arrangement, but rather a move away from any fixed arrangement, toward a point where an assemblage might be either this or that. Where, for example, an assemblage of courtly love and chivalry might fray into a multiplicity of forms of love, violence, sex, and sexuality. One might think of the Joan d’Arc and Gilles de Rais assemblages that leaked from feudalism. Desire exceeds the usual categories which might operate to define (capture) qualities, and it fails to abide by the logics of the regimes of thought which might assume to own the qualities (chivalric codes, medical and legal gazes, etc). Deleuze’s favourite case study of a regime which seeks to capture and control all manner of revolutionary expression is, of course, psychoanalysis. It is for this reason that Deleuze emphasises that desire has no lack and “nothing to do with repression” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 126). But he is less confident about power. Deleuze would use Foucault’s own work to illustrate the point. He turns to what he calls “one of the most beautiful theses of WK” for an example. Referring to this example as such is another act of indicating a personal closeness while articulating a significant point of disagreement. Deleuze uses this “most beautiful” thesis in order to articulate his prime conceptual difference with Foucault: The sexuality arrangement reduces sexuality to sex (to the sexual difference, etc. and psychoanalysis is a key player in this reduction). I see a repressive effect here, precisely at the border between micro and macro. Sexuality, as an historically variable assemblage of desire which can be determined, with its points of deterritorialization, fluxes and combinations, is going to be reduced to a molar agency, sex, and even if the means by which this reduction occurs are not repressive, the (non-ideological) effect itself is repressive inasmuch as the assemblages are broken apart, not only in their potentialities but in their micro-reality. (Deleuze, 2006, p. 126) Deleuze is gentle in his phrasing. He was likely a good friend. A less gentle paraphrasing might be: The sexuality arrangement, when configured as a power arrangement, is to entrap sexuality in the frames of the macro to which all power


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arrangements appeal. In formulating sexuality as a power arrangement, one hand-cuffs it to a Freudian bed alongside shame, lack, and repression. And resistance itself is bound far too tightly to the logics of that which it resists. To tug at the psychoanalytic restraints is to tighten them. Deleuze’s conception of desire, on the other hand, comes without the judgements that even resistance implies. It does not operate within a regime of thought or under political ideology; though both regimes of thought and ideologies may be components or an outcome of assemblages of desire. That is, “power arrangements would not assemble or constitute anything, but rather assemblages of desire would disseminate power formations according to one of their dimensions” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 125). For Foucault, desire was always tainted with the “lack” that it had in its psychoanalytical definition, but for Deleuze: [D]esire includes no lack; it is also not a natural given. Desire is wholly a part of a functioning heterogenous assemblage. It is a process, as opposed to a structure or a genesis. It is an affect as opposed to a feeling. It is a hecceity – the individual singularity of a day, a season, a life. As opposed to a subjectivity, it is an event, not a thing or person. Above all, it implies the constitution of a field of immanence or a body-without-organs, which is only defined by zones of intensity, thresholds, degrees and fluxes. (Deleuze, 2006, p. 130, my italicisation) The three key ideas at stake are: desire is assembled; all assemblages are assemblages of desire; and power structures, ideological positions, and judgements are merely components of assemblages. Deleuze had concerned himself with these ideas for some time, and for considerable time before his engagements with Guattari. These ideas have roots in Deleuze’s early work on Baruch Spinoza, Spinoza: Practical Philosophy (1970). It was, after all, Spinoza who had said “we neither strive for, nor will, neither want, nor desire anything because we judge it to be good; on the contrary, we judge something to be good because we strive for it, will it, want it, and desire it” (Spinoza, cited in Deleuze, 1988, pp. 20–21). It is for this reason that Deleuze was able to speak of fascism itself as desire, and then to speak of the affective dimension of the micro-fascisms that surge through us all.

Affection At this point in Deleuze’s note (point G), the reader gets some hint as to why a note ostensibly concerned with desire and power is instead titled “Desire and Pleasure”. Deleuze commences the point with a tender recollection, albeit of a disagreement: “The last time we saw each other”, Deleuze wrote, “Michel kindly and affectionately told me something like the following: I can’t stand the word desire. […] So, what I call ‘pleasure’ is maybe what you call ‘desire’” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 130). The gentle words that frame this recollection might lead a reader

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to think that the two friends had resolved a conceptual difference. And this might have been the case, if not for the critical rigour Deleuze maintains, even across such a personal note. Deleuze retorts “I can barely stand the word pleasure” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 130). Deleuze’s dislike of the word “pleasure” can be explained simply via two key definitions he gives in the note. One is a definition of power: “an affection of desire”( Deleuze, 2006, p. 125), and the other is a definition he gives of desire: “an affect not a feeling” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 130). While we have dealt with the manner by which Deleuze differentiates between power and desire, it’s the logic of affection and affect that makes the problem of pleasure clear. The difference between affection and affect also derives from Deleuze’s reading of Spinoza, and was later elaborated in a series of lectures delivered at the University of Paris VIII, Vincennes (particularly the lecture of 24 March 1981). The difference between affection and affect is perhaps most simply stated in Brian Massumi’s notes within the English edition of Deleuze and Guattari’s A Thousand Plateaus: Affection is described simply as “an encounter between the affected body and a second, affecting, body” (Massumi, 1987, p. xvi). The note that passes from Deleuze to Foucault might be an example of affection. It is also an example of the breadth of definition that Deleuze would apply to the word “body” itself. A “body” might be a body of thought, a book, an organism, an organ, an architecture, a social movement, etc. Thus, the note that passes from Deleuze to Foucault is an example of affection that involves two bodies, while incorporating a third and fourth person, a book or two, two discursive systems, etc. “Deleuze, Guattari, Ewald and the note” might summarily be thought of as the affecting body. “Foucault, Ewald, The Will to Knowledge and the note”, collectively constitute the affected body. And this affection between two bodies is perhaps most poignantly expressed in the use of the word “Michel”. In this case, “Michel” is a collective enunciation. A word that passes gently over many lips and through many pages. When Deleuze refers to power as “an affection of desire”, it is to suggest that power derives from the composition or mixture of bodies that constitute an assemblage (of desire). Pleasure might be an outcome of affection, but it is one of many. Another outcome is pain, and another might be the articulation of a power relation: Foucault as a figure in conceptual crisis; Deleuze as a caring critic. Just as power is “an affection of desire”, so too is pleasure. Affect, on the other hand, is defined by Massumi as “a prepersonal intensity corresponding to the passage from one experiential state of the body to another and implying an augmentation or diminution in that body’s capacity to act” (Massumi, 1987, p. xvi). Thus, Deleuze’s description of desire as “an affect not a feeling” is to state that desire is what the body does as a matter (a material matter) of change. Affect, like desire, is not owned by a body but rather an experiential state that processes a body at a particular moment and relates to either an increase or a decrease in a body’s capacity. An example might be the dilation of the pupils when a lover passes us (you, me, all of us) or the curve that gently raises the corner of our collective lips when receiving a love letter. Affect is just what the


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body does. This might (in a secondary manner) then be interpreted as a feeling. Pleasure would be one such feeling. Just as an assemblage of desire might disseminate power; so too might affect come to disseminate pleasure. (It might, or might not.) Deleuze’s problem with pleasure is not that it exists as a micro-reality but, rather like power, that it comes to operate as a macro-measure or normative force applied to all affections. For Deleuze, pleasure sits “on the side of strata and organization” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 131) operating to shackle desire: Pleasure seems to me to be the only means for persons or subjects to orient themselves in a process that exceeds them. It is a re-territorialization. From my point of view, this is precisely how desire is brought under the law of lacking and in line with the norm of pleasure. (Deleuze, 2006, p. 131) When power is considered “an affection of desire”, then the potency of all manner of macro-ideological positions fade: the good, the bad, the fascist, the resistor, dominance, submission, critics, carers, Electra and Oedipus, etc., tend to matter far less. Definitions of sex and declarations of the left or right also seem to be beside the point and have little to do with the micro-reality of life: what one actually does, or how one actually explores and experiments. Habitual measures of these categories also become suspect, including those measures we might previously have thought of as belonging to the micro. For Deleuze, there is affection between sexuality and the social, they roll both pleasurably and painfully together. To align pleasure with a notion of good and pain with bad is to elevate the sensations associated with one and the other into a judgement system, a morality. If power is thought of as a series of boxes that might be ticked, then pleasure comes to look like the tick itself.

Addition At the end of the note that was passed to Foucault, Deleuze adds an “Addition”. The addition is a long paragraph that is placed in parentheses. I am unsure as to what the parentheses suggest. They may merely reinforce what is already indicated in calling the point an “addition”, and thus seem superfluous. This addition delivers the same nod of friendship and shaking head of critique as do the previous alphabetically arranged points and numerated subpoints. In this paragraph, Deleuze suggests “there are two types of intellectual”. Unsurprisingly the two types relate directly to the differences between power and desire. What is surprising though is that Deleuze turns from sexuality to architecture to help define the two: The first intellectual is one who invests in the “power–knowledge link”. Deleuze defines it (or rather he invokes Foucault to define it) as: “The power– knowledge link, as Michel analyses it, might be explained as follows: powers imply a plane-diagram of the first type (for example, the Greek city and Euclidean geometry)” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 134). Foucault is implicated as an intellectual of

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the power–knowledge link, a regime of thought which equates power and truth. For Deleuze, the second type of intellectual is the intellectual of desire and affect more or less related to war-machines and another type of plane, all kinds of minor knowledge (Archimedean geometry or the geometry of cathedrals against which the State eventually did battle) and a whole kind of knowledge proper to lines of resistance that does not have the same form as the other kind of knowledge. (2006, p. 134) And with this sentence, Deleuze invites Foucault to take his work in another direction, toward “the other kind of knowledge”. This is an invitation for Foucault to abandon resistance within habitual or traditional logics, and instead to operate a “line of resistance” that pays no heed to the regime of thought that is confronted. The architectures that Deleuze engages as examples of the two types of intellectual (and the corresponding two forms of knowledge) invoke an odd sense of balance between the pairs. Both Greek cities and Gothic cathedrals have endearing traits. What is at stake though, in Deleuze’s use of them in his “Addition”, is the radically different processes that might have brought them into existence. The Greek city is an architecture that rises toward a geometry that is pre-established and tightly defined. The stable and eternal geometry of Euclid is deployed, a geometry concerned with axioms, form, and quantities that might be directly imposed on stone. It is as if Athens rose to fulfill a plan that pre-existed it. This plan was at once political and architectural, and the coevolution of the city and the state is a point Deleuze would return to in later work (Deleuze and Guattari, 1987, p. 481). In this formation, the weight of stone reinforces the truths of the State. The Greek city became a truth in stone. The Gothic cathedral, on the other hand, would point; gesture toward an ideal that had little to do with the state at the time. And the ideal toward which it rose would necessarily always be beyond it. This point is made by Deleuze elsewhere in respect to Wilhelm Worringer’s “northern or Gothic line” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1987, p. 498). The transformative and fluid geometry of Archimedes is invoked. This is a geometry of proto calculus, conceptions of infinitesimals, and the method of exhaustion. The implication of Deleuze’s use of the cathedral is that the Gothic was an architecture not of power, but of desire. Not of pleasure, but of force. An architecture which would push stone to the nth degree. Where architecture might serve as examples of assemblages which privilege either power or desire, the design, construction, and demolition processes related to singular works of architecture too involve both formations and deformations, augmentations and diminutions, and all manner of intensity beyond pleasure and pain. The argument is not that this is the only place where we might observe a politics of affect, but that aborted architecture may operate as a particularly raw expression thereof. That is to say, a building conceived, commenced, and aborted might be a “totally crazy assemblage” that hovers “precisely at the border


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between micro and macro”, and thus may help us conceive of power as an affection of desire. Zumthor’s aborted Topography of Terror Museum is one such structure. The history of this building is a much-recounted story that tends to be told in terms of governments, committees, foundations, panels, and administrators. That is, architectural historians of this event tend to frame it in bureaucratic terms. While it is not my intention to re-tread this path, a simple summary may be helpful: Between 1933 and 1944, the site on Prinz-Albrecht-Straße 8, now called Niederkirchnerstraße, was the site of the offices of the Protection Squad of the Nazi party (SS), the Security Service of the SS, the Reich Security Main Office (SD), and the Secret State Police (Gestapo), including a “House Prison” located in the Gestapo headquarters. The site is thus one of geo-historical significance and of horror. The buildings were largely destroyed by the Allied Forces and the remains were levelled following the war. The site fell just to the west of the border between the Soviet and American sectors following the partitioning of Berlin. Interest in the site grew in the 1970s. In 1981, the former Museum of Industrial Arts and Crafts would open as the Martin-Gropius-Bau Museum, immediately to the west. (Somewhat perversely, its first exhibition would be titled “Prussia – Attempt at a Balance” [Preußen – Versuch einer Bilanz].) In 1983, an international design competition was run for a Topography of Terror Museum to occupy the adjacent gravel field. It was won by the Berlin-based landscape architects Jürgen Wenzel and Nikolaus Lang, but the Berlin Senate decided not to commence the work. In 1987, the site was opened to the public as part of Berlin’s 750th anniversary and housed a documentary exhibition titled “Topography of Terror: Gestapo, SS and Reich Security Main Office on the ‘Prinz-Albrecht-Terrain’”. This exhibition was housed in an exhibition hall designed by the Berlin architect Jürg Steiner. The temporary exhibition proved popular and was extended for “an indefinite period” (Topographie des Terrors Foundation, 2019). In 1992, the “Topography of Terror” Foundation was formally established. The stated purpose of the foundation “is to relay historical information about National Socialism and its crimes and to encourage people to actively confront this history and its aftermath since 1945” (Topographie des Terrors Foundation, 2019). The “independent” Topography of Terror foundation is one in which state authorities are well represented. (I imagine this too was an “attempt at balance”. The current chairman of the foundation board is also the Permanent Secretary for Culture [Senatsverwaltung für Kultur und Europa].) The foundation and the state of Berlin (if one can differentiate one from the other) invited 12 architects to submit designs for a new documentation centre for the site. In 1993, Zumthor was commissioned. Zumthor’s proposal was simple. A long orthogonal structure; understated and rhetorically framed as a datum line for the exhibition itself. That is to say, Zumthor would describe the project as one which did not seek to represent the horrors of fascism but rather to produce a space in which reflection might occur (Zumthor, 1995, p. 18). He would also describe the project in terms of oppositions. For Zumthor it would, “in all its simplicity show the negative, and today positive, importance of the place [….]

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Positive today because I think it’s necessary to deal with this history” (Spier, 2000, p. 33). It’s a simplistic refrain: A quiet building that might allow that which it houses (documentation and exhibition) to speak more loudly. A minimal architecture that might make space for thought. Thought as a confrontation to fascism. The oddity of the position is, of course, that the fascism confronted on this site was itself the product of thought (not its negative). The proposed building ran east–west. It would be 127 metres long, 17 metres wide, and 22 metres high, and would cover only a small fraction of the site. The majority of the site was to be left empty, a vast gravel field and landscape of incisions that allow access to excavations. The historical value of the excavations meant this long slim building would have equally precise, long and slim footings. Work began on the site in 1996 and by 1997 footings and three concrete stairwells were complete. The three stairwells would connect the three levels of the building and also hold lifts, bathrooms, and other services. But as it happened, the stairwells would come to connect nothing and hold nothing. The Topography of Terror Foundation record the end of Zumthor’s engagement as such: “The construction, begun in 1997, had been halted in 1999” (Topographie des Terrors Foundation, 2019). The logic they give for the decision is as terse: “In May 2004 the state of Berlin and the German federal government, as joint sponsors of the Topography of Terror Foundation, decided not to complete the building project because of exploding costs and technical building problems”. The “independent” foundation was happy to declare its political affections when assigning responsibility for contentious decisions. Almost every restating of the story of Zumthor’s aborted Topography of Terror project involves the construction of a power relation: Architecture as the victim of politics. Zumthor’s prestige as an architect and his sensitivities are framed against a cold and faceless bureaucracy. Claudio Leoni, of the Institute for the History and Theory of Architecture (ETH Zurich), not only repeats the refrain of many historians of Zumthor’s project, but also gestures (albeit hesitantly) toward the role of desire and a politics of affect: [T]he project cannot be fully understood without consideration of its eventual failure which I argue was because of its political content and differing expectations of the future building. Here, architecture and politics collide, leading to the question of how such a subtle architecture can become so politically disputed. (Leoni, 2014, p. 111) Leoni places architecture in the contestations of the macro and micro. On the one hand, Leoni suggests that “architecture and politics collide”, which would seem to suggest that architecture and politics are two separate assemblages that might either resonate (and construct a building) or jar (and result in demolition). Here, architecture is situated within a power assemblage. It is subjected to macro powers. Such a positioning of architecture is a habit for architectural historians and


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practitioners alike. A problematic habit that not only seeks to differentiate politics from architecture, but that also imagines that politics is the immense field or context in which architecture occurs. We are delivered an image of a macro-political field which might unleash its fury upon a naïve and disempowered subject. (As a feudal system might pass judgement on a vellien – transforming them into villain, victims and villains.) Architecture, in such an account, is framed as a particularly sensitive subject. It may lead a historian to the question as to: “how such a subtle architecture can become so politically disputed”? On the other hand, Leoni notes of architecture “its political content”. This is where Leoni’s account differs from many. To suggest that the architecture has political content is to frame architecture as an assemblage of which politics is a component. That is to suggest that power is an affection of architecture. This standpoint would answer the question: “how such a subtle architecture can become so politically disputed” with: How can it not? It is assumed that “subtelty” is a quality for which macro-classifications might have difficulty accounting. We should be careful, however, in assuming that such qualities surge only in minor assemblages. An architecture which itself harbours or constitutes a politics (its own micro-fascisms) might not be as “sensitive” a subject as it first appears. Leoni hesitates though, and draws no such conclusions. His hesitation relates to architecture’s status. He wants architecture to be subjected to the macro and its cold exercising of power, and doesn’t countenance the possibility that the macro and micro are immanent, one to the other, and both assemblages of desire. The macro that seeks to block. The micro that leaks.

An abstract machine The three stairwells that stood on the site in the years between construction and demolition (from 1997 till December 2004) were located at the periphery of the proposed Topography of Terror building. Two were poised along what would have been the long south wall (facing the same direction); and one along what would have been the short west wall (perpendicular, facing toward the other two). The two stairwells that face the same direction give a sense of the building-tocome’s orientation and height. With the addition of the third stairwell, we have a sense of what would have been the building’s overall length and width and thus its overall proportions. Three things always generate a complexity of affection. A type of Cyrano de Bergerac affect that transforms the one dimension of a sentence and the two dimensions of a love letter into an entire scene or event. Only with the three stairwells can we trace the three dimensions of the building that was never built. The three insinuate the entire architectural assemblage. But it would remain a particularly abstract assemblage. Each of the stairwell blocks was approximately 15 metres long, 3 metres wide, and 22 metres high, and were composed of concrete. Zumthor used a white concrete (to avoid allusions to bunkers), but he used concrete nevertheless (Rauterberg and Zumthor, 2001). The rectangular formwork markings were precise, clear, and

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regular. Each marking approximately 3.2 metres high and just under 1 metre wide. The horizontal formwork lines correspond with the floors that would have run between the concrete stairwells. These absent floors are simple to imagine. The rectangular openings in the concrete blocks are doorways, thresholds – access to bathrooms and to lifts and stairs. The much smaller circular openings in the third stairwell are for pipework that would have passed through a ceiling space. These black holes in these light concrete blocks are strangely anthropomorphic. Each rectangular opening looks about the proportion of a doorway and it is simple to imagine a body standing there, and each circular opening looks to be about the proportion of the air-conditioning ducts we have become conditioned to seeing. From all that was built prior to the work halting, we can map out an entire architecture as Georges Cuvier might have constructed an entire beast from a fragment of a jaw. In addition to the scale of the stairwells and the scale of the building being quite discernible, so too are the internal organisations. Discernible yet imperceptible. The three stairwells thus operate as a diagram, indeed as a type of abstract machine, suggesting an image of the entire architectural assemblage that may (or may not) have come to be.5 These imagined connections and constructions cannot be described in terms of power. It is rather desire that circulates here. The desire to complete, the desire to construct. These heavy concrete blocks might seek to fix an architecture into position, to block it into place and to construct, but they failed to do so. I’m glad for this. There is nothing lacking here. The three stairwells seem to have achieved what the finished building never would have. The micro-reality here is not doorways, stairs and bathrooms, floors and walls, but rather levels that don’t connect to floors. Stairs that rise toward spaces that are uninhabitable. Thresholds clearly marked and that can’t be crossed. Zumthor described the whole building (albeit as a design proposition): “It brings to its site the impressive statement of a distinct volumetric presence, drawing into focus a particular and unique void in the urban texture” (Zumthor, 1995, p. 18). His declaration related to the whole building, but is more true of the three stairwells of this aborted architecture. Zumthor could never have achieved what he set out to if allowed to complete his building. His finished work tends to evoke reflections and feelings, where this aborted architecture affects.

A micro-assemblage In Foucault’s The Will to Knowledge, architecture is invoked with respect to the repressive hypothesis, as an image of that which in denial might say much about sexuality. Foucault would refer to a boarding school, where every stairwell, bunkroom, and bathroom operated as an abstract machine for the internalisation of “the internal discourse of the institution” (Foucault, 1990, p. 28). In Foucault’s account, this amounted to the collective rejection of sexuality. Such an architectural machine, Foucault notes, serves only to engage that which it turns from, and the beds which are aligned in the linear room in such a way as to discourage


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masturbation, seem only to promote the stimulating danger of being caught. Thus, the micro-arrangement of sexuality and its affective politics – tiny acts of revolution passing through quivering fingers – are framed as acts of resistance against (and yet not wholly in spite of) the architecture machine. These are small revolutions inside beds, inside rooms, inside institutions, inside states.6 This is what makes such acts far more affection than affect. A politics of affect would involve taking such acts to the outside. Externalising that which is too often held within. It is at this moment, the intense moment of letting out, where affect surges. It is this necessary relation with the outside that leads Deleuze and Guattari to describe affects as “projectiles, just like weapons” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1987, p. 400). If the stairwells of the aborted Topography of Terror Museum affect, it is because they are that which is habitually contained and held within, thrust outside. They come to confront the great exterior of the site; an empty, open, raw site. They stand exposed and vulnerable in this city of scars. But the great exterior is also historical. The stairwells come to exteriorise public shame and horror. Politics is not the context of this architecture, but a component. There is no cloak of respectability here. No façade. No face, just an inside exposed. Francis Bacon rubbed at his portraits in order that the intensity of the inside might scream forth, and Zumthor’s concrete stairwells find themselves equally raw, but as an outcome of a very different process. The process is more tectonic than stereotomic. More to do with aborting construction than a removal of a façade or flesh. The cold and quantitative workings of an architecture machine were exposed on Niederkirchnerstraße. Measured surfaces, and a tightly configured logistics of bodies. (Enter here, leave there.) The real workings of a building are exposed in these hard-orthogonal concrete blocks. They expose the cruelty below the surface of every architectural façade. A banal form of cruelty that becomes ever more abrupt when left outside what might have been a “sensitive” façade. Zumthor would suggest of his design for the Topography of Terror Museum, “the feeling for the reality of this site of perpetrators and victims must remain” (Zumthor, 2002, p. 86), but feelings are far too contained and controlled, far too manipulated, simply repressed and simplistically represented. Feelings are fodder for phenomenologists. The complete building would likely have whimpered warm words of sadness, but this aborted architecture, these stairwells, were deafeningly loud. They yelled of coldness, of cruelty, and of the indistinct horrors and yet dangerous affections we have for fascism. The stairwells had to be demolished. The memorial of the turn of the twenty-first century inaugurated new relations with memory (the counter-representational, the place of projection, the blank wall of thought), with land (the bunker memorial, the desolate landscape, the everempty urban block), with deterritorialisation (the uses of the floating signifier, the empty sign, the dispersals of Stolpersteine across Berlin) (Smith, 2018, pp. 83–102). There is a definite sense, however, that the architecture of memorials of the twenty-first century has tended toward pleasure. The outcome they give us is something to hold on to in processes that exceed us. They allow us to feel

Affection for aborted architecture


that we have dealt with that which we must fail to grasp. The difference between other memorials and the stairwells of Zumthor’s aborted Topography of Terror Museum is profound. Zumthor’s aborted museum reminds us that the architectural assemblage is just that: an assemblage. It also reminds us that power is configured as a component of an assemblage and that all assemblages (macro and micro) are assemblages of desire. There are two reasons for this. First, it may be that a construction site exposes the elements that are brought together in an assemblage. I imagine this is why, when Deleuze came to describe two forms of intellectual to his friend Michel in the “Desire and Pleasure” note, he turns not to the Greek city and the Gothic cathedral in their finished form, but focuses instead on the differential elements that come to be configured in and through them. And second, because this particular construction site on Niederkirchnerstraße, Berlin, also exposes the forces that are components of an assemblage. The desire to build and the desire to demolish are equally prescient on this site in both macro and micropolitical forms. Zumthor’s aborted architecture was equally vulnerable to its own micro-fascisms as it was to the great field of the macro. Indeed, the greatest architectural fascism might be to consider any architectural solution final or any project complete. Incomplete, raw, and empty, and then demolished, there is little pleasure in the architecture of Zumthor’s concrete stairwells. There was likely little pleasure in their construction. No pleasure in their demolition. But this is not to say they weren’t, that they aren’t, intense. Pain can be as intense as any pleasure and demolition is as forceful an act as construction. Zumthor’s concrete stairwells that failed to assert themselves as a noun (like “museum”), instead remain an intense verb: abort. Abandoned at the point of conception. Aborted at the moment they were about to take this or that form, leaving this architecture perpetually and “precisely at the border between micro and macro”.

Notes 1 I refer to the translation by Lysa Hochroth, in Gilles Deleuze, Two Regimes of Madness: Texts and Interviews 1975–1995, David Lapoujade ed., (New York, NY: Semiotext(e), 2006): 122–134. It was originally published as Gilles Deleuze, “Désir et plaisir”, ed. François Ewald, Magazine Littéraire 325 (October 1994): 57–65. 2 It is noted that The Will to Knowledge [La Volonté de savoir (1976)] would form the subtitle of Foucualt’s text, better known as The History of Sexuality Volume I [Histoire de la sexualité]. I will continue to refer to it as The Will to Knowledge in accordance with Deleuze’s note. 3 Deleuze would later define panopticism in terms of a generalisable diagram “to impose a particular conduct on a particular human multiplicity” (Deleuze, 2006, p. 29). 4 In a footnote in A Thousand Plateaus: Deleuze and Guattari summarise the key difference between Foucault’s notion of power and their construction of desire: “(1) to us the assemblages seem fundamentally to be assemblages not of power but of desire (desire is always assembled), and power seems to be a stratified dimension of the assemblage; (2) the diagram and the abstract machine have lines of flight that are primary, which are not phenomena of resistance or counterattack in an assemblage, but cutting edges of creation and deterritorialization” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1987, pp. 530–1, note 39).


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5 For Deleuze and Guattari, “[t]he diagrammatic or abstract machine does not function to represent, even something real, but rather constructs a real that is yet to come, a new type of reality” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1987, p. 142). 6 Paul Patton suggests that in Foucault’s notion of power there is “no positive figure or opposition to power, leaving this gap to be filled by reactive figures” (Patton, 1984, p. 66).

References Deleuze, G. (1988). Spinoza: Practical Philosophy (R. Hurley Trans.). San Francisco, CA: City Lights Books. Deleuze, G. (2006). Desire and Pleasure. In: D. Lapoujade, ed., Two Regimes of Madness: Texts and Interviews 1975–1995 (L. Hochroth, Trans.) (pp. 122–134). New York, NY: Semiotext(e). Deleuze, G. (2006). Foucault (S. Hand, Trans.). London: Continuum. Deleuze, G. and Guattari, F. (1987). A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia (B. Massumi, Trans.). Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Foucault, M. (1983). Preface. In: G. Deleuze and F. Guattari, eds., Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia (B. Massumi, Trans.) (pp. i–xx). Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Foucault, M. (1990). The Will to Knowledge, The History of Sexuality, Vol. I (R. Hurley, Trans.). London: Penguin. Foucault, M. (1995). Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison (A. Sheridan, Trans.). New York, NY: Vintage Books. Lapoujade, D. ed. (2006). Two Regimes of Madness: Texts and Interviews 1975–1995 (L. Hochroth, Trans.) (pp. 122–134). New York, NY: Semiotext(e). Leoni, C. (2014). Peter Zumthor’s Topography of Terror. ARQ – Architecture Research Quarterly 18(2): 110–122. Massumi, B. (1987). Notes on the Translation and Acknowledgements. In: G. Deleuze and F. Guattari, eds., A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia (B. Massumi, Trans.). Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Patton, P. (1984). Conceptual Politics and the War-Machine in “Mille Plateaux”. Substance 13(3/4, 44–45): 61–80. Rauterberg, H. and Zumthor, P. (2001). Schutzbauten des Widerstands: Ein Gespräch mit dem Schweizer Architekten Peter Zumthor. Die Zeit, 31 October: 45. Smith, C. L. (2017). Bare Architecture: A Schizoanalysis. London: Bloomsbury. Smith, C. L. (2018). Bodies without Organs and Cities without Architecture. In C. Boundas and V. Tentokali, eds., Architectural and Urban Reflections after Deleuze and Guattari (pp. 83–102). London and New York, NY: Rowman and Littlefield. Spier, S. (2000). Place, Authorship and the Concrete: Three Conversations with Peter Zumthor. ARQ – Architectural Research Quarterly 5(1): 15–36. Topographie des Terrors Foundation. (2019). The Establishment of the ‘Topography of Terror’. pography-of-terror/. Accessed 27 January 2019. Zumthor, P. (1995). Stabwerk: Internationales Besucher- und Dokumentationszentrum; Topographie des Terrors. Berlin: Aedes Galerie und Architecturforum. Zumthor, P. (2002). Topography of Terror: International Exhibition and Documentation Centre. Architecture and Urbanism 9(384): 86–93.

Chapter 9

A city that could not be named Adrian Parr

Green foliage animates the streets, flowers sluggish from the enduring heat slide into the cracks of the pavement, silliness fills the air as children play tag, while enthusiastic bartering in the market place arises from the mixed fragrance of fresh produce, roasted sesame, turmeric, and za’atar. The greasy aroma of street food, raw greens freshly cut, smoked meats, honey-drenched pastries bursting with pistachios and walnuts, fresh warm pita quickly cooking on orange glowing stones bring urban conduits to life amid the sound of engines running and people racing. The afterglow of bright memories stretches through these streets, infusing the rooftops, pathways, and ditches with optimism and excitement. This is a city bursting with tomorrows as it offers up the prospect of new friendships and endless vitality. Among these walls and from these floors, celebrations, tender moments, and everyday squabbles spring forth. As night-time arrives the city transforms when streetlamps, headlights, and the well-lit interiors of family life perforate the darkness. This is a city animated by unexpected futures. That is, until war dramatically changes all these joyful attachments to places and times of the day; the time men spend together smoking hookah pipes, the nooks and crannies children know like the backs of their hands in which they play hide-and-seek, and those who know where the best stalls for firm plump tomatoes and bright bunches of coriander can be purchased within the maze of open market vendors. In a short amount of time, that is if we are thinking of historical time extending all the way back hundreds, even thousands of years, these streets, buildings, walls, doorways, corridors, alleys, rooftops, and streetlights were infused with abundant hope and happiness. Yet, with war, the reciprocity underpinning urban life comes to a screaming halt. History disappears when conflict splits a city into black and white. No city survives unscathed the madness of neighbours killing neighbours, best friends gathering to fire rockets in place of kicking ball, or adults bathing children in the muddy waters collected in ad hoc pools of detonated ground. War unleashes the unthinkable, but totally possible, that is if we briefly cast a glance back into the not so distant past: Darfur, Bosnia, and then cross over a little more in time to the Holocaust.

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The brittle bones of buildings vanquished by violence; facades unhinged from the structures that once held them intact; walls collapsing and tumbling from the confused onslaught of raids, resuscitation, and anguish; so many surfaces excavated by bombs and bullets; entire neighbourhoods descend into ghettoised zones of red, green, and grey. Roofless buildings stand vulnerable to the weather and skies skittish with rocket fire, explosives, and snipers. Windows and walls, no longer compatible with ceilings and floors, offer distorted views to the outside formed by blasted openings that take the place of curtains, blinds, glass, wooden door frames, and ornately decorated mosaic thresholds. When streets and buildings become hostile environments devastated by explosion, even steel structures tremble and sway and the steadiness of once historic districts end up fidgeting with anxiety. These are urban encounters that render life compliant. Architecturally exposed structural steel in this instance is less an aesthetic choice expressing the structural integrity of a building than it is a declaration of unfiltered fear and animosity. Single shafts of light sneak through the darkness, open flames of leftover rubber and trash release toxic clouds of black smoke all in an effort to return brief moments of normalcy and routine to an otherwise arbitrary state of affairs. In wartorn cities, history turns shallow and memory is soaked with indistinct murmurs darting across the ground and sky. Countless histories are suddenly emptied of heirs and heirlooms, they hang on for dear life among the wailing sounds calling out alongside freshly dug grave sites. With apartment complexes hollowed out, window spaces leaking dust and debris, this is a shadow city reduced to ghostly outlines. It remains persistently grey regardless of how long the sun shines. These are places where peacefulness abandons the living, and where flies flock to the foul smell of leftover body parts. This is a city conquered by hatred as the built fabric is reassembled with perverse enmity.1 Since 2008, global peacefulness has worsened with violence costing the world 12.6% of world gross domestic product (Institute for Economics and Peace, 2017). The human dimension of declining peace, as of 2016, has resulted in 28,300 people forced to flee their homes each day because of conflict, violence, persecution, and human rights violations, with the number of forcibly displaced people increasing from 33.9 million in 1997 to 65.6 million in 2016 (UNHCR, 2016). Conflict not only results in the loss of human life, but it also destroys important infrastructure that people rely upon for their basic survival. During times of conflict, the diverse materialities of buildings, walls, roads, checkpoints, watchtowers, roofs, rubble, bodies, memories, emotions, technologies, and ecosystems combine into assemblages of violence. Conflict invests the built environment in a multiplicity of ways, augmenting the capacity of some bodies to act while diminishing the capacity of others. The reality of entire city blocks blasted into oblivion, buildings disfigured by war, defy visualisation or interpretation as the colour of urban history is abstracted into an uncompromising darkness, in the manner of an Ad Reinhardt black painting. In

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this context, human life is animated by panic and a fierce will to survive despite the odds, repositioning and reconstructing how freedom and oppression work in relation to the built environment. If we consider conflict as an affective relation of transformation that diminishes a body’s capacity to act, how might the changes a built environment undergoes during times of conflict and when conflict subsides compound this state of affairs? In what follows, I respond to this question by arguing that the practice of warfare clear-cuts an urban environment. The term clear-cut is not to be taken metaphorically, it is used to refer quite literally to the violent practice and process of urban erasure that cities undergo during wartime. Clear-cutting occurs via elimination and involves both diminishing spatial and temporal depth. I understand the spatial depth of a city to include both its physical, formal, organisational, density and land use patterns, along with a city’s location within a larger productive and distributive system. I understand urban temporal depth to include cultural traditions, historical layers, remnants of urban spatial alterations, the movement of urban ecological systems, and the rhythms of everyday life. I argue that the violent affects of urban-based warfare arise from logging buildings and infrastructure, reducing a city’s relationality to that of an isolated target, weakening if not outright destroying an urban environment’s productive capacity to support urban life, and erasing urban biological legacies. Together these conditions produce traumatic residues that persist after war has abated, making reconstruction efforts vulnerable to neoliberal co-optation. Lastly, leaning on psychoanalysis, I maintain that the affective layers of trauma subsist long after peace is formally declared, meaning peace is never finalised: it is an ongoing project of building peacefulness.

Urban clear-cutting Putting Spinoza’s concept of affect to work, Deleuze explains: “A body can be anything; it can be an animal, a body of sounds, a mind or an idea; it can be a linguistic corpus, a social body, a collectivity”. Affects “occupy” bodies as “intensive states” (Deleuze, 1970). A body, for Deleuze then, indicates an affective capacity: the capacity to affect and be affected. Affects exist on a level prior to the biographical organisation of a personal feeling. They refer to an intensity that either enhances or weakens a body’s capacity to act. In this regard, to state that contemporary warfare turns architecture into a medium of violent affects refers to the manner in which the basic function of a building – to shelter, to dwell, to inhabit – and of a city – an ecological human habitat – is rejected and turned into a lethal weapon of war. Writing after the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) attacked Nablus in April 2002, Israeli-born architect Eyal Weizman describes how the IDF used micro-tactical strategies, or what Brigadier General Kochavi described as an “inverse geometry” (Weizman, n.d.). Creating a series of tunnels that produced a new urban fabric that wove throughout the walls of buildings, the military was able to quickly and

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invisibly move through the city by avoiding roads and rooftops. Instead, they moved through bedrooms, living rooms, kitchens, floors, and ceilings, turning the built environment into what Weizman describes as the very “medium of warfare” itself (Weizman, n.d.). What is striking about the IDF’s inverse geometry is that it rests upon a deterritorialising action that breaks apart the fixed relations architecture forms from roof to wall to street. The new “urban syntax” Weizman points to is the city as a medium of warfare. What were once neutral, benign, and protective architectural elements suddenly turn threatening. It is not that a wall becomes a violent subject, or that a ceiling is an object to be terrified of; rather, it is that under these circumstances the built environment and the affects that are connected to it turn it into a weapon of war. Here, the violent affect of the built environment as a state of war emerges from the manner in which it is produced through architectural dissonances, between an otherwise commonplace architectural element and an unrecognisable material function. This assemblage of architectural war affects constitutes a process of urban clear-cutting. Cities are the primary habitat for human beings with over 55% of the world’s population being urbanites (UN, 2018). Ongoing warfare that has been waged in all parts of the world has led to the widespread and indiscriminate destruction of human ecological habitats, degrading the ability of cities to fulfil their primary function of supporting a huge assemblage of people, resources, goods, commercial activities, information networks, services, entertainment industries, and social interactions. When the capacity of a built environment to produce joyful affects is transformed into a multiplicity of violent affects that diminish the built environment’s reasonably peaceful relationship to people, animals, water, air quality, and green space, then the built environment facilitates an indiscriminate will to destroy (Spinoza, 2018).2 When buildings are used to subjugate, kill, and ultimately silence a population in the way that Weizman describes the IDF’s use of built form as integral to military strategy, then urban clear-cutting has taken place. The violent affect of clear-cutting a built environment comes from obliterating an entire society and demolishing its cultural artefacts, historical coordinates, habitual movements, economic tissue, and infrastructural fabric. With urban clear-cutting, not only are vast areas of a human habitat destroyed, but the vital capacities of urban life are weakened as the spatial and temporal depth of the built environment are decimated. Bombing buildings; infusing the air with dust and toxic chemicals; targeting civilians and militia without distinction; dislocating the skin of buildings; and reducing the built environment to a series of exposed sections and elevations, together dramatically diminish the spatial depth of a city, making residents vulnerable to attack, disease, and starvation. Along with this comes the reduction of a city’s temporal depth, for when a city is clear-cut the sociality of public markets, street vendors, parks filled with children playing, the hustle and bustle of traffic and economic vitality, hydrological systems, along with the secret life of trees, birds, insects, and soil are replaced with threatening landscapes that

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facilitate destruction (Wohlleben, 2016). As food and water systems are destabilised; medical supplies are reduced; the sheltering functions of buildings are compromised; all life is exposed to a continual state of emergency. A clear-cut city endures a collective trauma, and as Naomi Klein has so poignantly illustrated, the terror freezing collective life after it has undergone such a trauma also presents an opportunity for the forces of privatisation and neoliberal governance to quickly restructure cities using the principles of free market economics (Klein, 2007). This targeting and destruction of a city’s spatial and temporal depth shifts the reference to urban clear-cutting away from being a mere figure of speech, or a representation of an abstract reality, and onto that of a practice and process that is quite literally violent in the extreme.

Spatial and temporal depth There is extensive research examining the relationship between collective trauma and architectural practices. Paul Hirst has written on spatial organisation and practices as both a source and a resource of power in times of conflict (Hirst, 2005). James Young has produced a significant body of work studying the architecture of memorialisation. The projects and theoretical writings of Weizman have consistently cast an important spotlight on the role architecture plays in facilitating Israeli interests in the Israeli–Palestinian conflict. Weizman exposes architecture’s complicity in waging war against Palestinian communities. Walls, checkpoints, watchtowers, zoning, infrastructure, building, and settlement removal, he shows, combine to form a punitive and violent admixture of surveillance and occupation (Weizman, 2017a, b). Then there is the large body of work conducted by historians documenting and describing city building in the aftermath of war. Paul Stangl studies the “Communist politicisation” of reconstruction efforts undertaken in East Berlin at the end of World War Two (1939–1945) (Stangl, 2018). In a similar vein, Jasper Goldman turns his attentions to Warsaw, also in the wake of World War Two to highlight a related ideological imprint in that city’s reconstruction (Goldman, 2005). Then there are the many critiques of the corporatisation of rebuilding efforts in central Beirut after the Lebanese Civil War (1975–1990) (Rowe and Sarkis, 1998; Hourani, 2015, pp. 174–84; Al-Harity, 2010; Hourani, 2014, pp. 187–218; Khalaf and Khoury, 1993; Ragab, 2011, pp. 107–14; Schmid, 2006, pp. 365–81). In their respective ways, all provide important contributions to our understanding of the myriad ways in which post-conflict reconstruction and recovery intersect with political power and socio-spatial practices. This is not a new idea. Michel Foucault has analysed spatial production in terms of disciplinary regimes (Foucault, 1995). Using Henri Lefebvre’s conceptual framework on the production of space, David Harvey and Edward Soja have provided scathing analyses of the spatiality of uneven development (Harvey, 2009; Soja, 2010). In none of these accounts are spatial production and reproduction considered in affective terms. Adding to this body of design literature and practices on post-war

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reconstruction, I would contend that the concept of affect might buffer spatial production and reproduction from the pitfalls of commodification, Disneyfication, and the uneven development practices cities such as Beirut have undergone in the aftermath of war. To commence with the question of urban affective capacities as either empowering equitable flourishing or diminishing it, is to also provide a critical intervention into the assemblages of desire that politically shapes rebuilding efforts using the forces of privatisation.3 In the case of Beirut, neoliberal post-war reconstruction of the city centre facilitated widespread economic reform and restructuring. Najib Hourani describes how as the guns fell silent on October 13, 1990 the World Bank and IMF, joined by the United States and Saudi Arabia, began to pressure Lebanon’s fragile post-conflict government for rigorous structural adjustment … a freeze on public sector wages, an end to subsidies on foodstuffs and fuel, and the privatization of the reconstruction program. (Hourani, 2015, pp. 174–84) Post-war reconstruction was handed to the corporate development company Solidere (Société Libanaise pour le Développement et la Reconstruction de Beyrouth). Solidere was established by former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, a successful businessman (he was assassinated in 2005). Schmid reports that “Hariri skilfully marketed his idea of an ultramodern city centre as ‘the Hong Kong of the Mediterranean’ – Beirut as the new blossoming international centre of finance and commerce” which allowed him to legitimate “extensive expropriations and demolition” (Schmid, 2006, p. 374). British urban planner Angus Gavin directed the design of Solidere’s master plan for Beirut, reorganising the bombed-out neighbourhood blocks into a neatly arranged grid system that ended up locking out the once rich intermingling of different local businesses and a once vibrant middle class. Real estate values soared in the centre of Beirut, pricing out both low- and middle-income groups (Dib, 2020). Luxury shopping, high-end real estate, and a smorgasbord of some of the most well-known architects in the world were imported to add their signature. David Adjaye designed the Aishti Foundation building (2015). Zaha Hadid, the first female recipient of the Pritzker Architecture Prize (2004), designed the Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs (2014). It won the prestigious Aga Khan Award for Architecture in 2016. Rafael Moneo (winner of the 1996 Pritzker Prize) designed the souks (2009) in Beirut. And at the site of a former refugee camp, Lebanon’s very own starchitect, Bernard Khoury designed an underground nightclub – B018 (1998) – whose metal roof hydraulically opens to display the interior life of the nightclub. As individual architectural objects, these buildings are captivating, daring, and bold design contributions to the city. Yet, when affectively evaluated, they participate in a larger matrix of uneven development that has used the powers of

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eminent domain and outpriced Beirut residents. The souks that previously housed local businesses were rebuilt and filled with exclusive retail options catering to wealthy visitors. This historic public place, like others carried out under the directive of Solidere, masks the privatisation of urban space. The methodical levelling of historic buildings and districts carried out under the banner of post-war reconstruction prompted hundreds to take to the streets in 2010 holding banners with slogans such as: Our history is not for sale and We are not Dubai (Ackerman, 2010). Architecture and urban design had reinforced the replacement of earlier religious divisions, which had fuelled the Lebanese Civil War, with new economic divides. The priorities driving the spatial reorganisation of Beirut became international capital. There is a term that is continually used in scientific circles that might be useful when thinking about how to create spatial depth in post-conflict built environments. The term is biological legacies and it is primarily a concept concerning assemblages of affects and affections. It is by interacting with and activating the biological legacies that remain and sustain life in a forest after it has been damaged by clear-cutting, that sustainable recovery can occur. Biologist Jerry Franklin explains: biological legacies refer to: living organisms that survive a catastrophe; organic debris, particularly the large organically-derived structures; and biotically derived patterns in soils and understories. The living legacies may take a variety of forms, including intact plants and animals, perenating structures (e.g., rhizomes) and dormant spores and seeds. Important biotically-derived structures include dead trees (nags) and down logs, large soil aggregates and dense mats of fungal hyphae… Pattern legacies include those created in soil properties – chemical, physical, and microbiological – through the action of plants and their litter, and patterns in understory vegetation associated with variations in canopy light conditions. (Franklin, 1990) By prioritising the preservation of biological legacies as these relate to features of the landscape as a whole, the collective behaviour of an ecosystem is stimulated. Within the realm of architecture and the war zone, one of the biggest challenges for reconstruction efforts is developing inventories of the architectural and urban legacies that survived or were lost during conflict. In the context of a built environment that has lost a large amount of its physical form and structure, inventories of architectural and urban legacies can be an effective way to ignite the affective attachments people have to places and thereby re-establish a sense of orientation and consistency for communities as they heal. Following the path of the former German Democratic Republic (GDR) fortifications surrounding West Berlin, the Berliner Mauerweg project (2002–2006) turns the architectural legacy of the separation barrier between East and West Berlin and the Cold War (1947–1991) ideological division of East and West, into

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a public space for hiking and biking. Repurposing the road once used for patrol routes into a public space, natural feature, and memorial, the markers placed along the trail tell the stories of people who lost their lives trying to cross the border, provide information on the division of the city into East and West and the subsequent fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. The 160 kilometre-long Berlin Wall Trail creates both spatial and temporal depth by using the spatial phenomenon of division to narrate multiple histories. The physical legacy of the border and border control road provides a platform for temporal continuity and different programmatic uses, all the while reorienting the source of separation into a common space. The kind of questions designers ask themselves changes when the important role spatial and temporal depth play in facilitating urban vitality is considered. As Bruno Latour and Cameron Tonkinwise proclaim, we take into account “hybridized systems of technoculture” (Tonkinwise, 2010; Latour, 1993). Tonkinwise insists, the project of radically reforming … cities in which we live, while we continue to live in them, will still require great change: not on great once-and-for-all change toward a wholly new city, but instead a great many changes over time. (Tonkinwise, loc 353) What Tonkinwise draws attention to is the need to infuse temporal depth into the spatial practices of architecture and urban design. This is one of the strengths of Elemental’s half house social housing design in Iquique and Constitucíon, Chile. The process of incremental housing involves building half of a house (45 square meters) with a bathroom, kitchen, laundry, lounge room, and two upstairs bedrooms. The idea of temporal depth is at the core of Alejandro Aravena’s design for half a good house. Over time, residents can fill in the rest of the house the way they want and when they can afford to (Aravena, 2018). In contrast, the rebuilding of Beirut ended up being one big exercise in repression, and as psychoanalysis teaches us, as an unconscious force with prepersonal manifestations, repression affects behaviour. The rebuilding Beirut project involved recreating a sovereign nation state anchored by an international identity emptied of religious divides. It was driven by a will to instate a model of economic growth and prosperity that functioned to insert the post-war city into the machinations of global capitalism. It involved a cultural undertaking that capitalised on historical styles (public square, public market) existing for the consumption and amusement of social elites. All in all, architecture was placed in the service of creating a new historical moment cleansed of socio-economic complexities. In treating the centre of Beirut as a tabula rasa, Solidares ironically inflicted a new round of clear-cutting on the city of Beirut. In place of representational approaches that set out to mimic past architectural styles, such as the Beirut souk, by decontextualising them and placing them in the service of a sterilised version of themselves, the question of the past moves

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beyond representation and into the realm of presentation. What is latent in the levelled buildings of a war zone? Human exposure to contaminated sites (Busby, Hamdan, and Ariabi, 2010)4; buried weapons leaching into water supplies and the soil; military activity harming wildlife, forests, and wetlands are among the many environmental dangers characterising post-conflict sites (Gall, 2003). For example, during the 1991 Gulf War, the USA attacked Iraq using 340 tons of missiles containing depleted uranium (Pearson, 2002). Yet, the most effective response to such contamination may not always be as simple as cleaning up the debris and placing new buildings on top of the cleared sites. For one, the embodied energy needed to clean up the debris can dwarf the presumed environmental benefits. Moreover, treating the post-conflict site as a tabula rasa simply because large inventories of buildings are annihilated is not an irrefutable fact, treating it as a tabula rasa is a choice. It is a choice to bury the leftovers of war, and to rub out the complicated, yet rich historical, social, and cultural realities of the site. With this in mind, it makes no sense to speak of building on ground zero. There is a multiplicity of site-times that affect and potentially transversally activate a conflict site and the many ecological layers above and below. Basically, rebuilding cities decimated by war is not just a matter of retrieving specific archaeological layers, whereby each layer exists because of a clear and determined boundary separating one historical time from the next; instead, the traumatic nature of a war-torn landscape confounds the clarity of distinct layers. This is why Freud argued that symptoms of traumatic life repressed to the unconscious realm manifest themselves in a body and through behaviour, meaning the layers of past events materially coexist in the present. Cleaning up or resolving the tension this creates involves re-turning to the past, retrieving the memory of that event, and re-working through it in the present. The process of retrieval is the therapeutic moment that invokes temporal depth, in the way that the Berliner Mauerweg project does. The rubble of a war zone is never a tabula rasa. It does not wipe clean the violence that led to its making. It is necessarily a site of remembrance sharpened by the anxieties collective trauma invokes. These are sites where present and future generations are reminded not only of the violence of the not so distant past but also of the absent materialities inscribing the landscape. In the rubble and ruins exist bodies still weighted by grief, producing a complicated and convoluted relationship to the supposed tabula rasa violence has left in its wake. These are the living and non-living legacies urban clear-cutting leaves behind and which also provide new beginnings. Any rebuilding that takes place on the remains of war also suggests a will to return, but a return to what exactly? Given the traumatic residues of war persist despite agreed upon terms and conditions of peace treaties, the rebuilding effort can never neatly return to a spatially bounded and temporally definitive pre-conflict state. In effect, the dualism of pre- and post-conflict spaces and times

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conceals the involuntary, or autonomic forces operating throughout intentional declarations of peace. Constructively moving forward depends upon harnessing the productive and creative capacity of these pre-subjective forces to engage nonviolent problem-solving. Peacefulness refers to a state of calm. It is an unstructured open-ended state. As an affective mechanism, peacefulness is constituted by visceral movements (the sights, sounds, and tastes of peacefulness) that design then mediates and in turn activates so as to realise the many abstract possibilities latent within the intensities that make up peacefulness. For instance, in the city of Hebron on the West Bank there are enclaves of approximately 850 Jewish Israelis living among several thousand Palestinians. Each community reveres the same ancient shrine. Jews call it the Cave of the Patriarchs. Muslims refer to it as the Ibrahimi Mosque. Each stake a politically and culturally charged claim in the same 2000-year-old site built at the time of King Herod the Great. It is believed that the tombs of biblical patriarchs and matriarchs of Abraham and his family lie here (Ibrahim/Abraham, Ishaq/Isaac, Yakob/Jacob, Sarah/Sara, Rifqa/ Rivkah, and Leah). At various times throughout history, the Hebron holy site has moved from Jews to Muslims, to Byzantine Christians, back to Muslims, onto the Crusaders, then to Muslims and later Jews. In 1929, 67 Jews were killed in Hebron. In 1994, during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan and on the Jewish holiday of Purim, a Jewish American Baruch Goldstein killed 29 Muslims engaged in prayer at the site, or what is now referred to as the Hebron massacre (Hedges and Greenberg, 1994). Despite the militarised context that maintains a very delicate peace between Palestinian Muslims and Jews worshipping in segregation to each other on the same site, there are certain times of the year that hold spiritual significance to each community when the entire area is used by one or the other group. For 10 days a year, Jews use the whole area for worship, including zones restricted to Muslims at other times of the year; and for 10 days a year, Muslims use both the Muslim and Jewish zones for worship. The Muslim call to prayer, the blowing of the shofar to mark the beginning of Jewish new year, the luscious carpets adorning the floors of a mosque, the bimah and seats needed for Jewish worship, are all the elements used to transform the space, shifting it from mosque to synagogue and back again in an endless cycle of keeping the peace. Building peacefulness disinvests the divisiveness of negative differences and categories of identity by providing milieus through which new subjects materialise according to a principle of doing no harm (Kyrou, 2007, p. 83). The UNESCO World Heritage site at Battir is one example of the way in which the affective potential of legacies can infuse a conflict situation, to free up shared memories and histories using a principle of doing no harm. I have visited the West Bank town of Battir many times in my capacity as a UNESCO Chair, interviewing both the mayor and local residents. The watershed and ancient Roman terraces that make up the hill of Battir were under threat of demolition when the separation wall severing the West Bank from the Israeli territory was to be extended.

A city that could not be named 159

The affective ecologies constituting Battir come from a combination of human and non-human flows, such as aged hand-cut stones meticulously arranged in a zigzagging pattern along a sloped terrain, the slope facilitates water flows emanating from a nearby spring to move throughout crops that generations of Palestinians have planted and continue to plant along the edges of the terraces. The institution of defensible space into the area would have obstructed this movement of multiple forms of matter existing at a variety of scales, accordingly diminishing the social potential of the area. The legacy of 4,000 years of Palestinian farming heritage combined with a shared cultural significance that surpassed the specificities of a place to include myriad historical times and durations (cultural memories, future generations, and ecosystems) proved a powerful combination, one that was strong enough to overcome Israeli policy and the Israel Defense Ministry’s intention to build a barrier wall through the area. The UNESCO World Heritage allocation, however, did not reconstruct Battir anew; instead, it produced another version of the place. The UNESCO World Heritage title was therefore not merely descriptive, it actively created a new reality. Ultimately, the win for Battir meant that an important corridor of ecological and cultural vitality could persist and even endure a situation of ongoing conflict and in its endurance unforeseeable temporalities would be produced. What arises from the rubble is undeniably un-identical to what once was. It will never ever be the same. It will never feel, look, smell, or even be remembered the same. Constructing futurity without repeating the past means reconstruction should not be reduced to a nostalgic act of attempting to mimic the past in the present and future, for the past will never be recreated the same way twice. It does involve contextually constituting formal conditions by engaging with numerous legacies – cultural, ecological, social, technological, and economic. To reconstruct a war zone entails transforming the violence that arises when built environments are wielded as weapons of war, into environments for peaceful coexistence. All in all, rebuilding efforts when peacefulness ensues, constitute an affective practice that is inherently participatory. Such practices work to facilitate thriving collectives and to build heterogeneous communities by activating human and non-human socialities and legacies. How is this done? It first means using design practices and methods that are propelled by the idea that another world is possible. It is a practice committed to working toward relatively peaceful cohabitation, a rebuilding effort that is comfortable with unknowns and is willing for the design process to remain open to collective iterations involving local communities and partnerships throughout the design and development stages. Architecture in the context of war is a matter of how a city exists. Does it transmit cruelty or generosity? A generous city is not an idea about architecture; instead it is a spatial and temporal phenomenon that expands the affective capacity of a city and opens urban life up to trust, friendliness, empathy, and care. Building peacefulness is less about policy or a roadmap for reconstruction, than it is an affective mechanism that can be used to create architectural assemblages

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that are in turn part of the re-constitution and re-imagination of a city’s potential. A generous city produces spatial and temporal depth, reviving the forgotten, continually changing the milieus through which urban life is actualised, awakening a collective enthusiasm for multiple forms of sharing to occur across different spatial scales and future generations. For when the terror of war softens and the faded remnants of peacefulness become increasingly vivid, a new-found clarity and patience is ushered in as survivors come together eager to resuscitate urban life and to transform the paralysis of endless wreckage into places that offer people the chance to fall in love again and something to live for.

Notes 1 These opening scenes are the result of years of fieldwork in Palestinian territories, in addition to further site visits and interviews across the Middle East as a UNESCO Chair. As such, the descriptions emanate from first-hand experiences with people, places, changes witnessed, and numerous conversations with locals – all of which culminate in a shared affective description of pre- and post-war time conditions. They are not an idealised invention on my behalf. The chapter sets out to set up a self-reflexive and affective structure that brings this collective affective description into relation with a scholarly engagement of specific places – general and particular, and inversely subjective and objective approaches to a research subject. This is intended, in turn, to be an affective methodology engaging experiential narrative and scholarly critique. 2 For Spinoza, joy increases flourishing. See Baruch Spinoza, Ethics, trans. R. H. M. Elwes, digireads 2018: 101, 154, 164. 3 In some senses, a decimated post-conflict urbanscape is a friction-free space. Although not writing on conflict zones, Spencer describes how “friction-free spaces” are “the spatial complement of contemporary processes of neoliberalization”, an observation that complements my thinking here. See Douglas Spencer, The Architecture of Neoliberalism: How Contemporary Architecture Became an Instrument of Control and Compliance, New York, NY: Bloomsbury Academic, 2016, p. 1. 4 This study conducted during January and February of 2010 using a sample of 4,843 people living in Fallujah, Iraq, with a response rate of over 60% concluded: This study was intended to investigate the accuracy of the various reports which have been emerging from Fallujah regarding perceived increases in birth defects, infant deaths, and cancer in the population and to examine samples from the area for the presence of mutagenic substances that may explain any results. We conclude that the results confirm the reported increases in cancer and infant mortality which are alarmingly high.

References Ackerman, R. (2010). The Battle Over Turning Beirut into the Next Dubai. Newsweek, 29 October. Accessed 8 September 2018. ning-beirut-next-dubai-74103. Al-Harity, H. (2010). Lessons in Post-War Reconstruction: Case Studies from Lebanon in the Aftermath of the 2005 War. London: Routledge. Aravena, A. (2018). Elemental Makes Acclaimed Housing Schemes Available for Public Use. Designboom. Accessed 9 September 2018. ture/alejandro-aravena-elemental-abc-of-incremental-housing-open-source-architec ture-04-06-2016/.

A city that could not be named 161 Busby, C., Hamdan, M., and Ariabi, E. (2010). Cancer, Infant Mortality and Birth SexRatio in Fallujah, Iraq 2005–2009. International Journal of Environment Research and Public Health, Volume 7, Issue 7 (July), pp. 2828–2837. Accessed 3 September 2018. Deleuze, G. (1970). Spinoza: Practical Philosophy. San Francisco, CA: City Lights Books. Dib, K. (2020). Predator Neoliberalism: Lebanon on the Brink of Disaster. Contemporary Arab Affairs, 13, (1), pp. 3–22. Franklin, J. F. (1990). Biological Legacies: A Critical Management Concept from Mount St. Helens. Conference Proceedings for the Trans. 55th N. A. Wildl and National Resource Conference 1990. Accessed 10 January 2019. Foucault, M. (1995). Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison. New York, NY: Vintage Books. Gall, C. (2003). Threats and Responses: Kabul; War-Scarred Afghanistan in Environmental Crisis. New York Times. Accessed 3 September 2018. 1/30/world/threats-and-responses-kabul-war-scarred-afghanistan-in-environmentalcrisis.html. Goldman, J. (2005). Warsaw Reconstruction as Propaganda. In: L. J. Vale and T. J. Campanella (eds.), The Resilient City: How Modern Cities Recover From Disaster. Oxford: University Press. Harvey, D. (2009). Social Justice and the City. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press. Hedges, C. and Greenberg, J. (1994). West Bank Massacre; Before Killing, Final Prayer and Final Taunt. New York Times, February 28. Accessed June 10, 2019. https://ww d-final-taunt.html. Hirst, P. (2005). Space and Power: Politics, War and Architecture. Cambridge: Polity. Hourani, N. (2014). International Finance and the Reconstruction of Beirut: War by Other Means? In: D. Bertrand Monk and J. Mundy (eds.), The Post-Conflict Environment: Investigation and Critique. Anne Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press, pp. 187–218. Hourani, N. (2015). People or Profit? Post-Conflict Reconstructions in Beirut. Human Organization, Volume 74, Issue 2 (Summer), pp. 174–184. Institute for Economics and Peace. Global Peace Index 2017: Measuring Peace in a Complex World: 3. Accessed 19 May 2018. 2017/06/GPI-2017-Report-1.pdf. Khalaf, S. and Khoury, P. (eds.) (1993). Recovering Beirut: Urban Design and Post-War Reconstruction. Leiden: E.J. Brill. Klein, N. (2007). The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism. New York, NY: Picador. Kyrou, C. (2007). Peace Ecology: An Emerging Paradigm in Peace Studies. International Journal of Peace Studies, Volume 12, Issue 1 (Spring/Summer), p. 83. Latour, B. (1993). We Have Never Been Modern. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Pearson, H. (2002). Depleted Uranium Soils Battlefields: Report Assesses Chemical Effects of Gulf War Weapon. Nature: International Weekly Journal of Science, 12 March. Accessed 3 September 2018. 20311-2.html. Ragab, T. S. (2011). The Crisis of Cultural Identity in Rehabilitating Historic Beirut Downtown. Cities, Volume 28, Issue 1 (February), pp. 107–114.

162 Adrian Parr Rowe, P. G. and Sarkis, H. (eds.) (1998). Projecting Beirut: Episodes in the Construction and Reconstruction of a Modern City. Munich: Prestel. Schmid, H. (2006). Privatized Urbanity or a Politicized Society? Reconstruction in Beirut after the Civil War. European Planning Studies, Volume 14, Issue 3 (April), pp. 365–381. Soja, E. (2010). Seeking Spatial Justice. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Spencer, D. (2016). The Architecture of Neoliberalism: How Contemporary Architecture Became an Instrument of Control and Compliance. New York, NY: Bloomsbury Academic. Spinoza, B. (2018). Ethics. Trans. R. H. M. Elwes. Overland Park, KS: Digireads. Stangl, P. (2018). Risen from Ruins: The Cultural Politics of Rebuilding East Berlin. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Tonkinwise, C. (2010). Weeding the City of Unsustainable Cooling, or, Many Designs rather than Massive Design. In: L. Tilder and L. Blotstein (eds.), Design Ecologies: Essays on the Nature of Design. New York, NY: Princeton Architectural Press. Location 306 Kindle. UNHCR: The UN Refugee Agency. (2016). Global Trends: Forced Displacement in 2016: 6. Accessed 19 May 2018. United Nations. (2018). 68% of the World Population Projected to Live in Urban Areas by 2050, Says UN. New York, NY: UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, 16 May 2018. Accessed 3 August 2019. ews/population/2018-revision-of-world-urbanization-prospects.html. Weizman, E. (2017a). Forensic Architecture: Violence at the Threshold of Detectability. New York, NY: Zone Books. Weizman, E. (2017b). Hollow Land: Israel’s Architecture of Occupation. London: Verso. Weizman, E. (n.d.). Walking Through Walls. European Institute for Progressive Cultural Policies. Accessed 1 June 2019. Wohlleben, P. (2016). The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate – Discoveries from a Secret World. Vancouver: David Suzuki Institute, Greystone Books.

Chapter 10

Affective witnessing [Trans]posing the Western/Muslim divide to document refugee spaces Nishat Awan and Aya Musmar

Documenting the undocumented ّ ،‫ ماض وحاضر‬،‫مركب من زمان ومكان‬ ‫ مزيج‬،‫وما الذي أسعى إلى تدوينه؟ دغل جغرافي له رنين‬ ‫ وطاقاتها النّفسيّة‬،‫ وشروط وجودها‬،‫لتتعرف على موقعها‬ ‫وروحي تختبر فيه الذات نفسها‬ ‫مادي‬ ‫حيٌّز‬ ّ ِ ٌ ٌّ ‫واألخالقيّة‬ (٢٠١٩ ،‫)عاشور‬ I do not know what I am aiming to document … a mixture of space and time, past and present, a physical and metaphysical space where my self tests herself so she understands where she stands, the conditions of her existence, and her psychological and ethical capacities.1 (Ashour, 2019, p. 73) Seeking out affect in the exceptional zone of a refugee camp, this chapter follows a method of “documented witnessing” of undocumented migration. Written by two academic scholars who share a belonging to feminist post-humanist thought and a Muslim upbringing, it draws attention to the everyday violence of the border regime in the hope of developing an architectural research methodology for working with precarious lives. Such work is often situated within spaces that have been deemed “exceptional”, such as those of refugee camps and border zones (Agamben, 2005). While being heavily mediated by state agencies, international non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and other gatekeepers that limit the types of relations we are able to cultivate, these exceptional zones demand ethical forms of engagement. To undertake this work, we provide a decolonised epistemology that displaces the colonised hierarchies of doing fieldwork as academic work. We aim to question the one-way flow of ideas from the West to the East, and instead activate the cultural, intellectual, and religious inheritance that shapes the way questions of affect can be applied in non-European contexts. We explore how embracing, as well as understanding, certain Muslim ethics has allowed us to implement post-humanist practices in spaces where we share a sense of “belonging” (Yuval-Davis, 2006). We understand such spaces as environments composed of the constitutive relations between bodies, objects, and materialities. A question that animates this chapter is how to register our affective witnessing, basing it in a politics of belonging as distinct from the approaches of humanitarian


Nishat Awan and Aya Musmar

NGOs whose professionalised practice of witnessing is often a strategic exercise designed to produce evidence within institutional or legal contexts (Ristovska, 2016). We discuss how a different form of witnessing that foregrounds the affective, as produced with and through spatial relations, can intervene within the highly problematic context of international migration and its attendant academic industry. We explore these issues through an engagement with Za’atri refugee camp in Jordan. Here, we think through the production of borders and the affective importance of documenting the undocumented, as well as the question of access in relation to people designated as highly vulnerable, yet treated as easily disposable within the unequal politics of migration and refugeehood.

Witnessing as spatial practice The lives of refugees and the undocumented are often touched by the kinds of violence that NGOs deem necessary to witness. Yet, who can be considered a witness and which acts should form part of a process of witnessing, are fraught questions. Some emphasise the “reflexive process of becoming a witness” (Givoni, 2016, p. II) as being fundamental to the act of witnessing, while others have highlighted the responsibility embedded within such acts and the distinction between witnessing and bearing witness (Tait, 2011). Perhaps what is most significant to our argument is the relationship between witnessing and recognition. How can we witness that which we do not recognise, or imagine the possibility of witnessing beyond recognition (Oliver, 2001)? For Kelly Oliver, this requires a move beyond post-structuralist modes of subjectivity that are still rooted in the Hegelian master–slave dialectic. Following Frantz Fanon, she notes that “the desire to be seen, to be recognized, is the paradoxical desire created by oppression” (Oliver, 2001, p. 24). For Fanon, a politics of recognition is based around a preconceived (and racialised) idea of the human in relation to which Black and other “others” should be defined (1986 (1952)). If witnessing is to take place from the position of those who are “othered” then it should displace fixed definitions of who counts as human and the very act of witnessing should expand notions of who or what could be considered a subject worthy of recognition. For Oliver, this means that the process of witnessing is an act of subjectivation, producing intersubjective relationalities that are embedded within an affirmative, disruptive, and affective politics. It is a process through which the witness practices her subjectivity and implies the expansion of her capacity to become address-able as well as response-able (Oliver, 2001). Considered as an ethical practice of subject formation, witnessing has the ability to displace well-entrenched hierarchies embedded within notions of recognition, as well as an ability to displace the centrality of certain forms of vision-based biases that emphasise sameness. Vision is instead considered a “proximal sense” (Oliver, 2001, p. 12) and we follow this lead in our own work to consider how the process of witnessing as subjectivation can be mobilised beyond an emphasis on vision towards embodied spatialities.

Affective witnessing


Speaking from our positions as academics who are invested in the methods offered by the discipline of architecture, our approach to witnessing is embedded within an embodied spatial practice. Such a practice follows a feminist lineage in emphasising the centrality of the body alongside an investment in the way emotions circulate across difference producing what we term “affective witnessing”. We share Sara Ahmed’s unease with certain strands of scholarship on affect that have minimised the role of feminist and queer theory by often dismissing the vast literature on the role of bodies and by side-lining emotions in favour of a more abstract concept of affect (Ahmed, 2004, 2013). While many may not be fully invested in Brian Massumi’s bold claim that affects are “prepersonal”, they would nonetheless follow a general line of thinking that considers feelings as personal, emotions as social, and affects as something beyond in the realm of the virtual (Clough, 2007; Massumi, 1987; Shouse, 2005). These are scholarly arguments beyond the scope of this chapter, but suffice it to say that we think with Ahmad that affect circulates between subjects, objects, and their environments and accrues value over time. “It is the very failure of affect to be located in a subject or object that allows it to generate the surfaces of collective bodies” (Ahmed, 2004, p. 128). Affective witnessing would take part in this circulation that produces what Ahmed terms “the surfaces of collective bodies”. This results in a very different form of witnessing through the methods and discipline of architecture than the other more famous work within our discipline, that of Forensic Architecture, which is situated within the idiom of the juridical and through an investment in certain forms of evidence producing unquestionable truths (Weizman, 2019). Affective witnessing can only ever produce a contingent account but one that takes the conditions of its production as equally important and is invested in the production of affect across collective bodies. Our proposed methodology for producing such a practice of witnessing to the violence of the border regime is called “border materialities” (Awan and Musmar, forthcoming 2020; Awan, 2016a). It is a way of approaching geopolitical borders that takes spatial relations as a basis for considering their environmentality (Agrawal, 2005). Rather than foregrounding biopolitics, that is the management of populations, we prefer to think through the spaces and subjectivities of forced migration in order to show, for example, how affect circulates within and through the space of the refugee camp. Unlike acts of witnessing often attended to by actors connected to the border regime, we do not conceive of border materialities as mere juridical “evidence” by which we register our testimony to injustice. Instead, border materialities allow us to work with the possibility of an intersubjective process of witnessing that accounts for the political subjectivities of racialised others, whose suffering we are presumed to witness. We perceive them as socio-political constituents of the milieu that mediates our testimony and therefore cannot be separated out from it (also see Awan, 2016b). We argue that, through this milieu, we share something with both refugees in Za’atri refugee camp and undocumented migrants, which is a certain quality of being othered. While there are many differences between our more privileged lives and those of refugees,


Nishat Awan and Aya Musmar

the otherness to which we are referring here has to do with the “racialisation of Muslims” (Garner and Seldom, 2015, p. 9) that shapes not only refugee’s and migrant’s encounters with humanitarian NGOs but also our own experiences as Muslim women of colour in a predominantly white academia (Bhambra, Gebrial, and Nişancıoğlu, 2018). As Muslim women, we are intensely affected by processes of racialisation that take place at an institutional level and determine what is considered worthy of research, how it can be conducted, and by whom. The colonial foundations upon which the “University” paradigm rests in the global North and its monopoly over knowledge resources have produced a world-wide gendered research culture that is racially exclusive. It is a culture that is intensified within the unequal politics of international migration research where academic work often becomes directly implicated in the perpetuation of the border regime and its racialised politics. We suggest that sharing this certain quality of “being othered” affects the environment that encompasses our fieldwork. This environmentality conditions the relationships we make with refugees and migrants in the context of the border regimes that govern their spaces. Building on Michel Foucault’s concept of governmentality, Arun Agrawal coins the term environmentality to bridge between the technologies of power (practiced by the government) and the self (practiced by the governed). He suggests that these joined technologies “are responsible for the emergence of new political subjects” (Agrawal, 2005, p. 161). We think of refugees and migrants as political subjects who shape and produce multiple forms of spatiality (see Musmar, 2017), and therefore assume our fieldwork is mediated between refugees and migrants, humanitarian governance, and our universities, as part and parcel of the environment through which they become political subjects. We are interested in exploring how our affective transpositions between the multiple positions we find ourselves occupying or performing expand our capacities to witness the border regime and its effects.

[Trans]posing across difference We maintain our ethical attentiveness to the differences between our experiences and those of refugees and migrants and the unprecedented suffering they face due to their legal status. By juxtaposing our experiences alongside theirs, we do not assume that these experiences are similar, rather, we argue that this shared otherness witnessed as an affective relation has the capacity to mobilise and facilitate a multitude of emotions that expand our critical capacities. We partially share an affective world that in another language could be considered a margin that we are compelled to inhabit. We think of our fieldwork as providing such a margin that is both uncomfortable and yet a space we choose to work within (hooks, 1991). Inhabiting such a space is neither easy nor without consequence, but it allows us to transpose between worlds that would otherwise be unable to apprehend each other. We follow Rosi Braidotti’s conceptualisation of transposition as a theoretical and epistemological approach towards intersubjective relationality (2006).

Affective witnessing


Braidotti argues that due to the “complexity and paradoxes of our times […] there cannot be only one political frontline or precise strategy” that addresses and responds to this complexity (ibid., p. 134). She appeals to the necessity of new concepts and values that allow for non-unitary subjectivities that account for, as well as acknowledge, the multiple positions that we occupy. We think that the complexity to which Braidotti’s transpositions attend is particularly necessary for our affective witnessing. While the positions of the coloniser and the colonised have been shown to be deeply entangled (Fanon, 1986 (1952); Bhabha, 1994), Braidotti’s articulation of subjectivity as non-unitary and occupying multiple positions through nomadically moving from one to another, speaks not only to the complexity of our own positions, but to the need to constantly negotiate between them (see Musmar, 2020). Transposition underlines the importance of affective relations in the negotiation of these differences that are constitutive of the becoming of subjects. We, as racialised Muslims and academic scholars operating within neo-colonialist structures, find ourselves negotiating between these and other positions related to class and privilege as we enter refugee spaces and are transformed by them. For us, the basis for our transpositions is the affective dimensions we share with others, and one context in which we have explored these together, was through teaching an architectural design studio on borders and in refugee camps. Our students were from diverse backgrounds: China, India, Iran, Turkey, Oman, composing part of the so-called internationalisation of higher education, but really just the product of its neoliberalisation. We knew, and they knew, that we were inhabiting a two-tier system of education, with “home students” who were overwhelmingly white, middle class and privileged on the one side and racialised international students on the other. The way in which space and resources were divided among these two groups who were educated separately tells its own story (see Vandrick, 2009). Within this context, we sought to create a pedagogical space for working across different cultures and in a margin that both teachers and students felt they had been pushed into. We decided to make this margin a productive and affirmative space for us all. As part of the pedagogical design studio, we visited three different refugee camps in Jordan: Irbid refugee camp for Palestinian refugees established in 1951; and Za’atri and Azraq refugee camps for Syrian refugees, established in 2012 and 2014, respectively. The conversations we had with refugees, camp managers, Jordanian humanitarian workers, governmental representatives, architects, and students during this field visit informed the resulting architectural designs that revealed the work of transposing across cultural, social, and political boundaries. They enacted a multiplicity of spatio-temporalities that materialised in response to the negotiations taking place among governmental, non-governmental, and refugee agencies. Here, we discuss one project that emerged from the studio, which we think could only have been possible in the very particular affective context of two Muslim women teaching together on a course considered primarily for its financial contribution that did, paradoxically, provide a space of freedom from the usual constraints of a conservative and traditional architectural education.


Nishat Awan and Aya Musmar

We understand, however, that this studio setting could be criticised as a colonising practice that is not good enough (Sukarieh and Tannock, 2019; Refugee Studies Centre, 2007). Mayssoun Sukarieh and Stuart Tannock argue that subcontracting academia between north-based universities and south-based research bodies emphasises the north–south divide that is rooted in colonialist histories and racialised privileges. The studio setting is deeply entangled in the unjust political economies of research that allow such field visits and research practices to be conducted (ibid.). Furthermore, the disciplinary traditions of refugee studies stipulate that a good ethical practice in research with refugees should strive for a “do no harm” principle (Hugman et al., 2011; Mackenzie et al., 2007) and research should be carried out “with” refugees rather than “about” them (Hyndman, 2001; Krause, 2017). We may not have breached the first principle, but the field visit and the application of a distant studio might be evaluated as simply not good enough regarding the second. And yet, the very conditions of access to Za’atri refugee camp, regulated through the UNHCR and the Jordanian Interior Ministry, meant that this may not be possible. Our access was facilitated through Aya Musmar’s position as a community mobiliser within the camp and we made a decision early on to privilege the in-between narratives of Jordanian NGO workers over those of international NGOs and to also limit student exposure to and demands of refugees (Musmar, 2020).2 We believe that exposing students to the camp environment as it was mediated by the affective witnessing of Jordanian humanitarian workers was crucial. They shared a cultural and religious background with Syrians in the camp, the majority of whom came from towns and villages just across the border. We also think that our own positionality as Palestinian-Jordanian in the case of Musmar and Pakistani-British in the case of Awan meant that we could facilitate a shared encounter with the camp’s inhabitants, its governance and spatiality in a way that would not have been possible for others. In the example of the studio project described below, the gendered space of the camp was interrogated through the positionality of Muslim women who understand all of the ways in which our religion has been used as a way to “civilise” us. Our aim was not to make the subaltern speak but to show how we can attune ourselves to listen (Spivak, 1988). Yet, we are aware of the ethically precarious position we occupied that may not have completely resolved the power dynamics implied in the north university– refugee camp encounter. We argue that in the case of our studio this encounter should not be perceived as dualistic but implies many positions, and therefore, many encounters that can challenge and complicate normative understandings of the two terms: “colonising” and “good ethical practice”. Our position may sound self-contradictory when observed from the lens of certain research traditions, but it is the same lens that sees in our academic positions within the north university an unprecedented privilege that we would not have accessed normally as racialised others. We must be grateful and careful when we address our positions and speak out our transpositions; if we had not already acquired these privileges, we would not have been heard. Yet, it is at the heart of this critical paradox where our methodology of affective transpositions lies. Just as years of post-colonial

Affective witnessing


theory have taught us that there is no “post” to the colonial encounter, despite the overwhelming use of the term “decolonisation”, we are aware that there is no decolonised future awaiting any of us. What we can commit to are difficult ethical encounters from our deeply entangled and compromised positions that constitute an ongoing process of decolonisation; or to put it another way, it is a commitment to an anticolonial politics. The assemblage of fieldwork knowledges, methods, readings, and critical discussions mobilised through the seven-month design studio reinforces our claim for a decolonised affective witnessing. Our methodology not only accounted for the power dynamics implied in the north university–refugee camp encounter, but also invested in the architecture of the refugee camp as a “political ecology of things” (Bennett, 2010) to identify and introduce difficult ethical questions that are often camouflaged by traditional generalisations about ethical good practice. For example, one of the methods we used in the design studio was scenario games. On the one hand, designing a scenario game necessitates a critical and speculative reading of what takes place in a certain environment. On the other hand, the role-playing mode allows students to shift their positions and perform the multiple roles that constitute a certain scene in the everyday life of the refugee camp. The studio followed a critical feminist approach to architecture and students were encouraged to view design as an open-ended question that is continuously negotiated within the camp’s human and non-human environment. To design for refugees was not considered an interventionist undertaking that aimed to change people’s lives for the better. Instead, the studio provided a space in which students could experiment with more complex questions that thought of everyday designs in relation to a comprehensive infrastructure of social relations, political arguments, and legislations that shaped their lives in the refugee camp as demonstrated in the following example.

“How to help her?”: Disrupting Madafah as a gendered space The project “Honourable Spaces” was conceived by Chong Fu, He He, Kan Wang, and Si He, as part of their master’s in architectural design. The design aimed to explore how notions of honour weave through the power relations that constitute the everyday lives of refugees in Za’atri camp. The students started by thinking about the Madafah, a living room of sorts in which people in the Arab world host guests. Within Za’atri camp, the Madafah became a space where refugees were able to perform their political subjectivities, but it was also a territory where “other” political subjectivities were excluded; for example, it was a gendered territory to which women had limited access. Culturally, it materialised as a platform where masculinity was staged as a way of claiming authority over the administration of the refugee camp. Refugee men mobilised this space to help others as concerned individuals, as well as to mediate the humanitarian help being provided for those in need of it. The space allowed them to claim a certain authority in order


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to be publicly recognised as “sheikhs”.3 The Madafah became an important space where representatives of NGOs in the form of community mobilisers visited daily for news of each neighbourhood, including their needs, problems, and conflicts. Much as the sheikhs used the space of the Madafah to gain power, so did the NGOs, as the information they collected would, sooner or later, allow them to exercise their authority over the refugee camp’s streets and districts (Musmar, forthcoming). However, women in these negotiations were assumed to play a passive role and were pushed to the margins of community mobilisers’ humanitarian work horizons. The group of students approached the Madafah as a space in which humanitarian work (or help) is gendered. While engaging with scholarly and humanitarian debates that are concerned with refugee women’s empowerment, they placed the question: “How to help her?”, at the centre of their design inquiry (Fiddian-Qasmiyeh, 2014). By undoing the gendered character of the Madafah, they suggested that refugee women would be allowed the opportunity to claim a certain visibility and would be able to reach out to other women in their streets and districts for help. This visibility would form part of a process of witnessing that might assist refugee women in building their own networks that could empower them to enhance their living conditions. In order to do this, students worked with an assemblage of methods, visuals, narratives, and parametric models that allowed them to comprehend how different power relations unfold in space and time in the everyday life of the camp. In the studio, their initial, albeit short, first-hand observations were expanded through the scenario games (Bunschoten et al., 2001) they designed to attend to the nuances that produce the social relations and spatialities of the camp. Focusing on mapping the circulation of economy and honour in relation to the accumulation of privilege and power within the camp districts, the patterns that emerged in their maps revealed the Madafah as a territory in which money and honour were crystallised. This crystallisation endowed the Madafah with a certain visibility and students referred to it as an “honourable space”, whereby “honour” is mobilised not only to achieve public recognition as honourable men, but also to claim moral authority over others. By locating “honour” in the Arabic context, students analysed the gendered character of the Madafah in relation to the restrictions that the territorialisation of honour enforces on women’s bodies. Salam Al-Mahadin suggests that Arab males in the contemporary Arab world organise their spatio-temporal activities around women’s bodies (2011). Honour in Arabic culture shapes the vector according to which masculine territories are moved and transformed in relation to feminine bodies. Honour works like this: The less your women (mainly first kin women) are exposed to the public, the more public recognition you have as an honourable man. To dismantle the conditions that lead to the arrival of the Madafah as a territory where masculinity is performed, students mapped the spatio-temporalities of men and women. Depending on the stories that they collected about everyday life in the refugee camp and the other stories that they generated by speculating on the

Affective witnessing


activities conducted by men and women, students drew two timelines that illustrated how spaces inside and outside the house are occupied by men and women at different times of the day. This exercise allowed them to identify the possibility for women to access spaces to which they would not normally have access. Concerned with the question “how to help her?”, students navigated through the times when the Madafah would be vacant so as to help women occupy it when men were not present. Their intervention was designed to help women reappropriate the space of the Madafah as their own “honourable space”, whereby they could claim some sort of authority over their own lives and engage with activities that would empower them. They planned their intervention in two phases. The first phase included mapping the materialities of women’s spaces that facilitated their engagement with certain activities (childcare, chatting, working, etc.), while the second phase simulated the way in which these materialities could be deployed in the vacant Madafah. Their design intervention was a structure called the “fold wall” that could be made and assembled by refugees themselves. Based on the proportions of the caravans in which they were housed, and with reference to the materialities (or uses) that this design is assumed to simulate, the fold wall could be used in multiple ways so as to appropriate the space of the Madafah for hosting other activities. The Madafah could become a classroom, a shop, a gathering space, or a workshop. The careful analysis and attendance to refugees’ everyday life narratives, allowed students to challenge gendered practices through tactical spatial interventions. While they did not aspire to deconstruct the concept of honour, they worked towards dismantling the ways it was being practiced spatially in order to enable other alternatives.

Affective witnessing The project, Honourable Spaces, was a form of affective witnessing that emerged from a shared experience of being othered. These experiences were, of course, very different and had varying degrees of intensity, but the conjugation of the border regime, racialisation, and the neo-colonial university system produced for us a space in which we could begin to think architectural design differently. If, for a humanitarian NGO, the witnessing of violence is a way of validating its presence through the production of testimony as evidence, then this chapter asked: What does witnessing mean for spatial practitioners? What kinds of violence can/ should we bear testimony to, and what role does such witnessing play in relation to the post-colonial borders that produce the spatial violence endured in refugee camps and in the circulatory movements of the undocumented? The standard mode of architectural engagement with refugee camps produces projects that aim to transform the material conditions of life within them. These could certainly make day-to-day life more bearable for their inhabitants and we do not rule out such modes of engagement; the project described also had this dimension. But as we have attempted to outline in this chapter, this project was one moment in


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a much longer engagement that foregrounded the question of witnessing. This allowed us to address the important question of how our work might intervene within the circulation of affect and the production of subjectivities in relation to the border regime. As Oliver suggests, witnessing has a double meaning: it is understood both in the juridical sense of bearing witness to that which you have seen, this is the mode in which evidentiary practices operate, and in the religious sense of bearing witness to that which you believe. We place our concept of affective witnessing in this realm; not necessarily as an act of faith but as a relational practice of inhabiting that marginal space which is the result of our shared otherness. In this sense, affective witnessing is not concerned with the production of truth but with the possibility of an architecture that could reconfigure spatial relations in order to reimagine, with those who are subject to violence, the very conditions that underlie it. For us, this meant that addressing the spatial violence of the border regime included making active links between the so-called hostile environment of UK migration policy (and the way in which universities compel all of us to act as border guards for the home office by policing international students), the unequal and racist learning environments that these students endure, and how the same politics of international migration produces temporary refugee spaces as permanent. Weaved into this narrative was the cultural and religious inheritance that many of us shared through our Muslim upbringing, but there were also other cultural relations that we discovered along the way without the pressure of whiteness as datum.

Notes 1 The excerpt is translated by one of the authors. Radhwa Ashour was a post-colonial literary critic at Ain Shams University in Egypt who passed away in 2014. This book was published posthumously by her husband and son in 2019, both of whom are internationally renowned Palestinian poets. While Radwa’s text in the book is presented as a practice of witnessing, publishing her work posthumously represents a poetic will that is eager to document her testimony after death. 2 In her PhD thesis, Witnessing as a Feminist Spatial Practice, Musmar centres the experiences of Jordanian humanitarian workers. Refugees’ experiences, however, were not pushed to the margins, but were speculated on by thinking the affective transpositions that Jordanian humanitarian workers have explored through their precarious positions within the humanitarian industry. Their extensive experiences of working in the refugee camp through its different phases were crucial for our studio explorations. They helped us comprehend the emergence as well as the decay of certain spatial prototypes and their relational and political meanings. 3 (Sheikh/‫ )شيخ‬in the Arabic language cites a person who has been publicly recognised in his tribe for the knowledge and the experience that he has acquired throughout his life. Whereas this recognition is conditioned by the sheikh’s morals and morale, it is also associated with his age. Sheikh denotes a category of elderly people who have reached their 50s. In Islamic terms, sheikh also means a person who has studied one of the branches of Islam and has therefore become an expert in its field of study.

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References Al-Mahadin, S. (2011). Arab Feminist Media Studies. Feminist Media Studies 11 (1), pp. 7–12. Agamben, G. (2005). State of Exception. Translated by Kevin Attell. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. Agrawal, A. (2005). Environmentality: Community, Intimate Government, and the Making of Environmental Subjects in Kumaon, India. Current Anthropology 46 (2), pp. 161– 90. doi:10.1086/427122. Ahmed, S. (2004). Affective Economies. Social Text 22 (2), pp. 117–139. Ahmed, S. (2013). The Cultural Politics of Emotion. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Ashour, R. (2019). All of the Oppressed Have Wings: The Professor Talks. Egypt: Dar Al-Shorouq.

‫ دار الشروق‬.‫ األستاذة تتكلم‬:‫ لكل المقهورين أجنحة‬.٢٠١٩ .‫ رضوى‬,‫عاشور‬.

Awan, N. (2016a). Introduction to Border Topologies. GeoHumanities 2 (2), pp. 279–83. doi: 10.1080/2373566X.2016.1232172. Awan, N. (2016b). Digital Narratives and Witnessing: The Ethics of Engaging with Places at a Distance. GeoHumanities 2 (2), pp. 311–30. Awan, N. and Musmar, A. (Forthcoming 2020). Border Materialities: Prototypes for Negotiating Space. In: Motherland. SlumLab Publications. Bennett, J. (2010). Vibrant Matter: A Political Ecology of Things. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Bhabha, H. K. (1994). The Location of Culture. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Bhambra, G. K., Gebrial, D., and Nişancıoğlu, K. (2018). Decolonising the University. Pluto Press. Braidotti, R. (2006). Transpositions: On Nomadic Ethics. Polity. Bunschoten, R., Hoshino, T., and Binet, H. (2001). Urban Flotsam: Stirring the City. Rotterdam: 010 Publishers. Clough, P. (ed.) (2007). The Affective Turn: Theorizing the Social. First Edition. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Deleuze, G. and Guattari, F. (1988). A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia. London: Bloomsbury Publishing. Fanon, F. (1986 (1952)). Black Skin, White Masks. Pluto Press. Fiddian-Qasmiyeh, E. (2014). The Ideal Refugees: Gender, Islam, and the Sahrawi Politics of Survival. Syracuse University Press. Garner, S. and Selod, S. (2015). The Racialization of Muslims: Empirical Studies of Islamophobia. Critical Sociology 41 (1). 0896920514531606. Givoni, M. (2016). The Care of the Witness: A Contemporary History of Testimony in Crises. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press. Grosfoguel, R. (2007). The Epistemic Decolonial Turn. Cultural Studies 21 (2–3), pp. 211–23. doi:10.1080/09502380601162514. Hugman, R., Pittaway, E., and Bartolomei, L. (2011). When ‘Do No Harm’ Is Not Enough: The Ethics of Research with Refugees and Other Vulnerable Groups. British Journal of Social Work 41 (7), pp. 1271–87. doi:10.1093/bjsw/bcr013. hooks, b. (1991). Yearning: Race, Gender, and Cultural Politics. Turnaround.


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Hyndman, J. (2001). The Field as Here and Now not There and Then. In: Geographical Review – Wiley Online Library. Available at: 10.1111/j.1931-0846.2001.tb00480.x (accessed 6 January 2020). Krause, U. (2017). Researching (With) Refugees? Ethical Considerations on Participatory Approaches. AMMODI. Available at: h-refugees-ethical-considerations-on-participatory-approaches/ (accessed 6 June 2020). Mackenzie, C., McDowell, C., and Pittaway, E. (2007). Beyond ‘Do No Harm’: The Challenge of Constructing Ethical Relationships in Refugee Research. Journal of Refugee Studies 20 (2), pp. 299–319. doi:10.1093/jrs/fem008. Massumi, B. (1987). Notes on the Translation and Acknowledgements. In: A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, edited by G. Deleuze and F. Guattari. New York, NY: Continuum. Musmar, A. (2017). Environmentalizing Humanitarian Governance in Za’atri Refugee Camp: A Posthuman Approach. In: Architecture and Feminisms: Ecologies, Economies, Technologies, edited by H. Frichot, C. Gabrielsson, and H. Runting. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Musmar, A. (2020). Witnessing as a Feminist Spatial Practice: Encountering the Refugee Camp Beyond Recognition. PhD, University of Sheffield. http://etheses.whiterose. Musmar, A. (forthcoming 2020). Madafah: Who Is Hosting Whom?. In Inside/Outside: Shifting Architectures of Refugee Inhabitation, edited by Shahd Wari, Somayeh Chitchian, and Maja Momic. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Oliver, K. (2001). Witnessing: Beyond Recognition. University of Minnesota Press. Refugee Studies Centre. (2007). Ethical Guidelines for Good Research Practice. Refugee Survey Quarterly 26 (3), pp. 162–72. Ristovska, S. (2016). Strategic Witnessing in an Age of Video Activism. Media, Culture & Society 38 (7), pp. 1034–47. doi:10.1177/0163443716635866. Shouse, E. (2005). Feeling, Emotion, Affect. M/C Journal 8 (6). Available at: http://jou (accessed 19 May 2020). Spivak, G. C. (1988). Can the Subaltern Speak? In: Marxism and the Interpretation of Culture Urbana. Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press, pp. 271–313. Sukarieh, M. and Tannock, S. (2019). Subcontracting Academia: Alienation, Exploitation and Disillusionment in the UK Overseas Syrian Refugee Research Industry. Antipode 51 (2), pp. 664–80. doi:10.1111/anti.12502. Tait, S. (2011). Bearing Witness, Journalism and Moral Responsibility. Media, Culture & Society, November. doi:10.1177/0163443711422460. Vandrick, S. (2009). Interrogating Privilege: Reflections of a Second Language Educator. University of Michigan Press. Weizman, E. (2019). Open Verification – Becoming Digital −e-Flux. Available at: https:// (accessed 19 May 2020). Yuval-Davis, N. (2006). Belonging and the Politics of Belonging. Patterns of Prejudice 40 (3), pp. 197–214. doi:10.1080/00313220600769331.

Chapter 11

Starting with difference &rchitecture Stefan White, Stephen Walker, Mark Hammond, and Cagri Sanliturk

Introduction This chapter gathers contributions from academics, practitioners, and activists engaged in teaching and thinking together at the Manchester School of Architecture (MSA). In it, we explore what it means for architectural pedagogies and practices to “start from difference” – the framing principle of the “&rchitecture” master’s-level studio around which we have been operating as a fluid collective since 2017. Contributors to the &rchitecture platform explore a shared commitment to challenging discrimination and social inequality in relation to teaching and learning in the architecture studio environment, architectural practices more generally, and ultimately in the generation of the wider built environment.1 Diverse individual practices and theoretical influences are focused in this account of the pedagogy of &rchitecture by reference to the embodied and affective approach to difference articulated by Gilles Deleuze in his interpretation of Baruch Spinoza’s philosophy. Here, our use of the word “difference” has three registers. Firstly, philosophically speaking, we explore it in Deleuzian terms as “Difference in itself”2 (Deleuze, 1994, chapter 1, pp. 36–89), specifically in relation to how we conceive of and construct identity when we think about differences between bodies, in our design processes and in ourselves (ibid, chapter 3: “The Image of Thought”, pp. 164–213). Secondly, in disciplinary terms, specifically how different bodies, processes, and practices are valued in the ways that we design and behave creatively and professionally. Thirdly, in political terms, how different bodies, processes, and practices are differently privileged in the production of the built environment, specifically, how architects think, design, and behave contribute to this. The synthesis of our exploration of this relational understanding in the context of these three concerns is found in the way we teach design in a master’s-level architecture studio at MSA with the ambition to “start from difference”. For the 2018–19 academic year, this approach was articulated to our students as follows: &rchitecture is a way of thinking about & practising architecture. & (and) is a powerful little symbol – it opens out into the next step, argues for inclusion and demands to be followed. Rather than starting from within the discipline

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and moving outwards, &rchitecture emerges from what already is different (in the world). &rchitecture is brought into existence through the participation in and inhabitation of material space by the subjects of the city. It seeks to discover what the power and potential of architecture is to create inclusive cities and societies. Through engaged – affective – creative processes and projects, &rchitecture considers: what does it feel like to start with difference? (Note to students in introductory presentation &rchitecture MSA, 2018–19) The first principle we aim to describe in the introduction to &rchitecture for students, shown above, is that the concept of difference should be considered as a reality in itself and that it can be the starting point for all conceptual and physical activity. The & (and) is placed ahead of “architecture” to indicate that we begin with and welcome something which arrives from outside the (architectural) disciplinary body and which is consequently, in that definition, different from “us” (us = all the architects who constitute the collective body of architecture). Our second principle is a consequence of this: valuing difference is centrally critical to disciplinary practices because we believe that an affective account of architecture holds that creativity is itself produced through engagements external to ourselves, the discipline, and beyond its habitual representations. Thirdly, the & is shown as integral to “(a)rchitecture” to indicate that this engagement with different bodies, processes, and subjects outside of the discipline is a compositional principle of the distributed and relational practices of the non-normative (architectural) disciplinary body we seek to create. Here, therefore, we are concerned with the pedagogy of three specific social regimes, described in three sections in the second part of the chapter. The first is the process of design and how thinking about this in terms of difference (and affect) may change the process and the behaviour of its participants – “Think: Real ideas”. The second is the way this design behaviour manifests in the built environment to prioritise the experience and power of some, over others – “Design: Creative behaviour”. Thirdly, how affective processes, which can promote better behaviours and more equal spatial situations and environments, can be actively pursued in the academy and beyond – “The Different: The collective power of embodiment”. We will now explore these theoretical frames in more detail before subsequently describing some related pedagogic practices.

The Different That identity not be first, that it exist as a principle but as a second principle, as a principle become; that it revolve around the Different: Such would be the nature of a Copernican revolution which opens up the possibility of difference having its own concept rather than being maintained under the domination of a concept in general already understood as identical. (Deleuze, 1994, p. 4)

Starting with difference


How can difference come first? How can we begin with “the Different”? Asking and attempting to enact this question is central to Deleuze’s guide to an ethical life, a life which counters “the everyday fascism in our heads” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1984, Preface by Michel Foucault) and which in doing so offers hope in the battle against the oppression of others. In attempting this task, Deleuze allies himself with Baruch Spinoza.3 Spinoza’s approach is read in opposition to Cartesianism in Deleuze’s early work,4 to create a critical understanding of the “universal subject” and how it leads to the production of representational thinking and normativity (Deleuze, 1994, pp. 164–213). Deleuze argues that habitual (Cartesian) ways of thinking, which consider thought to be purely a faculty of the mind, reduce complex compositions to identities or categories with fixed meanings and representations. He argues that this is not just a benign way of thinking but a process that systematically and deliberately eradicates difference from our perceptions and conceptions of the world, ostensibly as a way to enable instrumental clarity. This representational thought creates reductive “norms” or stereotypes by using “the common sense of the faculties”5 to test the value of things or bodies in terms of whether they are conceived “the same”, perceived “similar”, judged “analogous”, or imagined to be “in opposition” – relative to an identity we have ready, represented, in mind. As feminist, queer, critical race, and disability studies scholars have long shown in social terms, this having already “in mind” places one side of the assumed opposition as both superior and unmarked, with the other marked inferior and named “problematic” (Butler, 1990, 1993; Bhabha, 1994; Ahmed, 2006; McRuer, 2006). When attempting to understand the creative effort of architecture, this can be seen to lead to the general and mistaken assumption that design takes a mental conception and simply translates it into a concrete reality. As architectural historian and theorist Robin Evans complains, this common, unthinking assumption of “translation” (Evans, 1997, p. 153) takes the place of the rather more complex requirement for numerous people to have been personally and emotionally involved with themselves and one another, in order to create solutions and arrangements entirely new for that specific context of manifestation (White, 2017). Within architectural design processes themselves, this can lead to designers assuming that whenever any of their products or processes do not conform to an imagined ideal held in mind, that this is merely an error and should be removed or hidden. While controlling deviations from a planned outcome is the process of determination required to actually generate specific physical/built objects, denying the differences in a process serves to suppress full explanations and valuations of each individual actor and their roles in generating a design and resolving a construction process. Representational thinking ultimately means that the embodied nature of the process and all the necessary and numerous iterations of stories, explanations, sketches, and models are tolerated but ultimately repressed (Deleuze, 1994, p. 166). Often buried alongside the explicit acknowledgement of the architect’s own embodied involvement is the felt understanding that the designer’s engagement with the world and with others is an essential stimulus to

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creativity. While this is an important concern for the pedagogy of creativity and attempts to enable students to explore and innovate, its real import is felt in terms of the closure of the boundaries of the discipline itself, the limiting of the creative potential that goes with that, and the implicit privileging of certain bodies over others that results from representational thinking (in terms of race, gender, class, and ability).

Embodied thinking While distinguishing himself from Cartesianism was a necessary academic requirement at the time, Deleuze’s reading of Spinoza and others was part of a search for a more relational, embodied, and expressive philosophical construction. Deleuze argues that while both Spinoza and Descartes conceive of the substance of existence as composed of an infinite number of attributes and the infinite modes of those attributes, there is a fundamental technical error in the Cartesian approach which leads to what is more famously understood as the Cartesian mind–body dualism (Deleuze, 1992, p. 28; White, 2017). Deleuze explains that “representational” systems of thought privilege processes of identification on one or other side of the Cartesian mind/body dualism – always taking the position of acting either as idealism, “referring to representation in Ideas” and emphasising forms; or as empiricism, “referring to causality within Being” and emphasising functions (Deleuze, 1992, pp. 333–5). He argues that Spinoza’s embodied approach helps us in the task of “abolishing” this closed dualism of Descartes because it produces an open relational triad (Deleuze, 2003, p. 253). He claims that a triadic Spinozist principle of expression produces an approach more able to account for the power or potential of creative acts. Deleuze declares that Spinoza produces this triad by giving us “the body as a model” – and is considered by Deleuze to be a key moment in the history of philosophical attempts to prioritise difference over identity (Deleuze, 1992, p. 257). Spinoza’s “body” is constituted through the expression of its “internal” and “external” relations. Spinoza calls them “latitude and longitude” and explains them in terms of the capacity to affect and be affected. Instead of the expressions of the world being interpreted as either an object (function) or an idea (form), here both object and idea, in parallel, have their own embodied duality, their “temporary interior and their projected exterior” as constituted or expressed by the two-way relationships of difference (or “sense”) from which they are composed (Deleuze, 1988a, p. 96). In his embodied alternative, each pair of terms in a dualism is now understood to have a third, intervening one – the affected and affecting “body” in which the subject or object is, in fact, expressed for real as “sense”. In this alternative account of the world, these real – actually felt or sensed – distinctions of power and potential that occur between bodies are the productive factor in their substantive existence. They are affective because they are held to be of a fundamentally different, qualitative kind compared to the quantitative distinctions made between “nominative” representations held in a mind autonomous

Starting with difference


from its body.6 Therefore, a key prescription of this approach to prioritise difference over identity is that distinctions previously made nominatively – only in the mind from the perspective of either the subject or the object – should now be conceived as fully embodied: composed of the differential relations between and within all bodies. By affect I understand the affections of the body by which the body’s power of acting is increased or diminished aided or restrained and at the same time, the ideas of these affections. (Ethics III, Def. 3) Here then, bodies of all kinds, from human to celestial, are substantive compositions of affect completely constituted by the relations of qualitative difference within themselves and with other bodies. Every body is understood to be a continual process of expression and re-expression of its constituting relations. Central to this understanding is that Spinoza’s expressionist approach sets him apart from the ancient tradition because as he avoids a mind–body dualism, he “excludes causality between ideas and things” (Deleuze, 1978, lecture of 24 January). “Substance is […] the power of existing in all forms, and of thinking in all forms” (Deleuze, 1992, p. 198, emphasis added). This definition of power means that a distinction of existence is also a distinction of knowledge. It is only subsequently that knowledge is considered in terms of separate attributes – relations of extension or thought (with each understood as different kinds of affective powers). For Spinoza, ontology and epistemology are bound together so that thinking and ideas are not separate conceptual realms but are constituted through the composition and disposition of our bodies. Thoughts are deliberately thought – willed – and while they all have an object of representation – an idea – they also have an act of will, and the act of will is a different kind of thinking to the object of representation. In this way, thought is always embodied (in a willing body), thought is never entirely independent of the existence of the body which wills it, or thinks the thought and has the idea. For example, a pain, a love, are “thoughts” which do not represent any thing – they are not ideas as representations, but relations between feelings and thought (Deleuze, 1978, lecture of 24 January). This moves beyond an understanding of thoughts as static, independent mental objects towards thought as embodied thinking. It is precisely these non-representational ideas that Deleuze defines as affects (ibid.).7 The process of increasing our capacity to act is a kind of growth in knowledge both in terms of living and thinking. The ability to desire, create, and select the most positive affects is as much an intellectual feat as an emotional one. It is entirely relational and never zero-sum. In this shift towards embodied thought constitutive of our existence, the role of the willing body becomes an important aspect relating the general activity of thought to the specific lived experience of diverse individuals. Understanding how we establish “bodies that matter” (Butler, 1993) in a design process or social context suggests a productive intersection with

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Sara Ahmed’s articulation of the nature of will and wilfulness (2012, 2004a). As the “idea” is no longer seen as neutral but instead understood to be willed by specific bodies, the power of determination of experience or existence for our own body and over other bodies is no longer detached from the way “we” think about them, nor separate from the concrete context of who is entitled to be fully able to will.

The collective and creative power of embodiment When a body is defined in terms of its power to be affected and to affect in its specific encounters with other bodies, we understand that it is the relationship between the bodies that comes to constitute them in terms of the sense they make and what they are capable of. In this case, we are always subject to, and subjecting others to, the forces of our existence. For Deleuze, non-representational thoughts or affects such as “love” are the relationships between feelings and thought. Emotions, as Ahmed notes, “are not simply ‘within’ or ‘without’ […] they define the contours of the multiple worlds that are inhabited by different subjects” (Ahmed, 2004a, pp. 26–27). Encounters in this context mean engagements with other bodies which could affect us – either if we desire them to, or are unable to stop them. These affects consequently positively or negatively change our capacities to act. For Deleuze, our capacity to act, or power to be affected, is a constantly varying dynamic – the “melodic line of continuous variation of affect” (Deleuze, 1978, lecture of 24 January). In these terms, we never cease to pass from one degree of “perfection” to another, in relation to the affect of the world upon us – how it changes us, how our idea of the relationship is changed and our will towards it found agreeable or disagreeable. For Spinoza, the greater proportion of our existence that is formed through our active selection of positive and beneficial compositions of affect, the greater joy we bring to the world and ourselves. all, together, should seek for themselves, the common advantage of all. (Ethics IV, P18, S) For Spinoza, humans exist through their encounters with one another and must collectivise in order to realise even the most basic capacity to act. The ethical challenge therefore is to share these powers and capacities more equitably between individual bodies as well as across any greater whole. It is here the radical nature of affect as a constitutive difference or differential is laid out. To do this, the habitually powerful have to be willing to be affected and the routinely repressed have to be enabled to access the power to affect: this is how we create an actual change in the relationships of power between bodies. An embodied account has to include both the manner in which we will our compositions and the will that they are able to subsequently exert.

Starting with difference


Making bodies without organs In this account, thinking representationally makes objects out of relations and leads to trading or translating them as commodities. This nominative process of the identification of complex processes as simple products removes the specific reality of their embodied production and in so doing represses the capacity for the assembled bodies of production to actively express their actual potential. Representational distinctions operate as an explicit control mechanism. In contrast, embodied, affective relationships preserve their causal, existential reality as a manifested power relation in precise circumstances. They are absolutely, really distinct because they are as felt by specific bodies in relation. Consequently, engaged practices which actually changed the capacity of the participants to act might be considered “affective” and in doing so, where they are conducive to producing positive change might be considered expressive or creative. However, the “Copernican” reversal begins by recognising that these practices occur in the middle of an existing composition of affect in which the capacity to act is already unequally distributed. The capacity to act, the power to actively affect and be affected is “differentially” distributed according to the desires of the radically asymmetrical commodifying economy of capital. The idea that everything is made up of affects which are all of the same value, and therefore create some kind of essential presupposition of natural equality, risks covering-over pre-existing differences that lead to established inequalities. Spinoza’s relational account of the world constituted by the interactions between all bodies instead creates what Deleuze calls a “plane of immanence” (Deleuze, 1988b, c, p. 122), which describes the reality of gritty existence: that there is no place that is outside the battleground of these differential relations of power, and that winning and losing is literally life changing. This is where the ethical questions return: do these engagements augment the power of the collective or benefit specific individuals? For Spinoza, individually extending oneself to become a more active part of the whole of nature has to be achieved by avoiding producing “a collectivity that would form for the purpose of exploiting another” because doing so “would lose the possibility of a still greater collective power” (Ruddick, 2010, p. 24). The critical effort necessarily then moves towards understanding the nature and constitution of these flows of power.8 In Ahmed’s affective economies, “emotions do things, and they align individuals with communities – or bodily space with social space – through the very intensity of their attachments” (Ahmed, 2004b, p. 119). Feelings are not just personal preferences but work to mediate between the psychic and social, individual and the collective. These attachments or “sticking figures together” (ibid.) are precisely what enables the coherence of the wider group. Expanding membership of collectives to include more diverse bodies of will is an obvious step to tackle exclusion of different bodies. In Ahmed’s argument, the power to will or be unwilling can be seen as part of an economy of wilfulness (Ahmed, 2012, footnote 1), which influences the construction of ideas, and that acts differently on differently framed bodies.

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If social forces of repression are immanent with everyday life and cannot simply be neutrally opposed from the outside (Hardt and Negri, 2000, p. 190), then opening membership of an existing privileged group can only ever be a partial success because the model of membership and its power to restrict who can or cannot will is retained. For example, Ruddick argues that Hardt and Negri risk doing this even using this positive Spinozist reframing of affect and difference. She warns us that they appear to propose a new kind of union as “a liturgy of accepted others” when the challenge we face is how we can be continually evolving cultures of difference: A model alone cannot help us. It is only able to recognize in hindsight those differences that matter. […] The question is not simply who we should ally with, but how. How do we form this social body? Do we follow a model consulting a liturgy of already accepted “others”, who should be (politically) correctly incorporated into struggles against oppression? Or alternatively do we create “a paideia, a formation, a culture”. (Ruddick, 2010, p. 23 quoting Deleuze) A non-representational effort to live an ethical life on this (battle)field of affect can’t escape the fact that we are all constituted by our relations with other bodies who, like us, are only partially free to construct or wield their power to ethical ends. Attempting to understand how individuals and collectives are able to compose themselves with others in order to generate affects desired by both parties requires description of a wider economy of affect which has to start with difference and continually seek prioritisation of “the Different” over identities. This includes finding affective practices which transcend the mundanity of constant battles between the dualist poles. Deleuze describes the challenge facing activist practices which could and would begin with difference through the perplexing concept of “a Body without Organs” (BwO). When Deleuze asks “How do you make yourself a body without organs?” the BwO concept is presented as a kind of Buddhist Koan to indicate the paradox of composing an ethical whole without also creating intermediate exclusionary territories, and the consequential ethical drive to continually undermine and deterritorialise these formations (Deleuze, 1992, pp. 99–111). This concept prompts us to ask ourselves: How can embodied and engaged approaches and understandings continually strive for non-exclusionary practices and avoid merely instituting new, more “inclusive” representational identity sets? Starting with difference must not only displace our process of identity construction as an individual, a discipline, and as a society, but also means that we seek to actively and continually compose ourselves as and with non-normative bodies, collectives, and contexts. It is a revolutionary mechanism created by a continual search for the joy in difference, a process which may require a very particular culture of education. In the remaining portion of the chapter, we explore some of the character of a pedagogy that explores the cultivation of “starting from difference”.

Starting with difference


Studies in difference: &rchitecture studio Difference is not a mistake. Creativity is by definition acting differently. Learning how to be and control creativity involves being comfortable around difference. We often end up trying to eradicate it – seeing it as error or deviation from our ideal, imagined intentions. &rchitecture aims to celebrate and engage with difference and make it at home in our processes. (Note to students in introductory presentation &rchitecture MSA, 2018–19) &rchitecture’s shared concerns with embodied and relational approaches occur because we believe that these offer a deliberate step away from representational thinking in architecture and from assumptions of an unproblematic split between ideas and bodies. Instead, we are interested in how the power or potential of each individual “whole” body is produced through its affective relationships with others; how architecture as a disciplinary field, a set of educational and professional practices, and as built space is implicated in reproducing differential affects, where some bodies come to matter more than others. We are exploring here how starting from difference can offer up alternative non-representational and nonnormative approaches through direct engagement with the differences between actual, specific bodies (whether of knowledge, practice, or materiality) in actual, specific physical and social contexts. While these approaches are investigated in the context of the academic studio, we each in different ways explore the application of similar principles in the contexts of academic writing, design practices, and creativity, disability, and community activism, and engaged design research. Following a second year of development, we explore the growing body of work of &rchitecture to discuss how it might be possible to construct a pedagogy which supports architecture students to understand and practice architecture in a more embodied manner – and which may enable them to cultivate specific and general prioritisations of difference over identity. The following section will explore the studio offer in terms of the three regimes or framings set out above. First, how we conceive of difference or affect in relation to representational thought and normative processes – “Think: Real ideas”. Second, the process of design and behaviour of an architect – “Design: Creative behaviours”. Third, the relationship between these practices and the social and political context of architectural practices – “The Different: The collective power of embodiment”.

Think: Real ideas This first section addresses the process of design, how we can come to think nonrepresentationally and how thinking in terms of affect may change our processes and behaviour. Our programme’s intention to start with difference and the key methods by which we were planning to investigate were all explicitly framed in our introductory work with the students. Racism was immediately raised as a

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central issue of difference in a kick-off “rehearsal” project, through reading and responding creatively to Reni Eddo-Lodge’s Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People about Race (2017). In this rehearsal brief, undertaken over the summer term, the students were asked to read this text; to select three design research methods from a prescribed list of works; and to describe what it was about that artist, activist, or architect’s piece of work which had an actual affect on the audience. They were then asked to reproduce that affective method in response to their interpretation of the issue of racism. This exercise had a number of specific requirements. First, it asked the students to make explicit the affective elements of precedent sources with which they were unfamiliar.9 It then asked them to identify what aspects of a work were likely to have had a direct impact on the experience of the audience. This was articulated in tutorials to echo the Deleuzian definition of affect as being in contrast with an intellectual idea which would be a representation that the creator and the audience (may or may not) “read” into their product rather than a relation between a feeling and an idea which were generated by their direct engagement with the work. Second, it asked them to use precisely these specific techniques to generate performances which affect particular audiences around the selected issue of difference – in this case racism. It asked them to conceive of their subsequent work purely in terms of the affect it had on the audience. Here, we used the term audience to mean specific individuals who would actually witness the performance, rather than invoking “user” which implies designing for an imagined type of person. The intention of this exercise was that the focus on embodiment and affect in the precedent practices and the students’ own responses would challenge them to consider themselves as embodied practitioners. For example, Bubusara Abekova responded to this brief by creating a film expressing her personal experience of racism in the UK. First, she critically reflected on specific practices of the artist Noëmi Lakmaier – especially her work “Cherophobia” where Lakmaier used her body as a medium to construct an affective temporary living installation that explored the psychological embodiment of agency, power, and vulnerability. Bubusara used herself as a central piece of a performance to allow the audience to observe the implication of the social forces of identification as they impacted on her. She incorporated film and voice recordings of racist situations she had experienced. Sharing some of her experiences of seeking asylum in the UK helped her realise the personal impact on her identity by her continued adaption to extant cultures of racism. An embodied involvement in these issues subsequently runs through her whole year’s work. Adam Kamal Najia was initially inspired by Francis Alÿs’ recording of a performance of boundaries in films like “The Green Line” to explore the experience of his hometown. He used this approach because Blackburn is popularly understood as “segregated” due to a polarisation of the ethnicity of the populations in residential areas north and south of the city centre. Adam set up installations

Starting with difference


Figure 11.1 Identity crisis, Абекова Бүбүсара Алмазбековна (Bubusara Abekova).

in the city centre which explored the construction of territory in this charged public space. In one example, Adam set up a border around a space with a sign at its centre written in Esperanto which read “please take the money under the sign”. He filmed the public’s interaction with the piece to explore different responses to a “neutral” territorial marker (intended to make no specific appeal or positive or negative resonance to either “Muslim” or “White British” communities). Using a mobile phone to translate the sign enabled the participants to unlock the territory and be free to take the £5 note positioned under the sign. This project began a process where the student explored technology as a tool of activism, in order to breach different real and rhetorical borders in his town. The brief encouraged the students to use the methods of the artists they examined on their own terms and provide specific personal content not least because they were invited to begin the exercise in their summer break, out of term time. However, the selected methods also emphasised the need to perform the response for an external audience rather than to their own satisfaction or just for presentation to their tutors or peers. It seems that a limited range of different methods in this rehearsal did not limit the wide range of different personal explorations of expressions of racism, often within the frame of personal experience or context. In one example of many with a personal element, Rou Ann Chen used this brief to set up an online activist housing agency to intervene in the implicitly racially segregated private rental housing offer in her home country, Malaysia. Subsequently, each student’s individual research question grew out of these exploratory productions. Daniel McBride initially explored the work of Yinka Shonibare to make

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Figure 11.2 Divided Blackburn (Adam Kamal Najia).

explicit the colonial history of the built environment and went on to generate his own design research process developed in these explorations to create his design outputs such as a “decolonised houses of parliament” shown in Figure 11.3. A key part of this was supporting the students to make explicit choices about what, how, and when to bring their own embodied experiences and encounters into the process. The steps of this first brief were conceived as three distinct activities. First, the act of understanding the affective aspects of a variety of creative precedents – called creative practices. Second, the performance of these affective creative practices with and for an audience – called collaborative performances. Third, the actual active reception of the performance by the audience and the creator – the affect of the performance in terms of the response it directs or inspires – called active potentials. The brief for these steps was considered a rehearsal, as it was used to outline the terms of an overall iterative process for the first term of: creating a practice; performing it in order to understand how these particular affects are produced; and then building on the potential of this performance to create and direct the next effort. With a highly directed starting point, specifically asking the students to employ unfamiliar methods and engage in an explicitly iterative process, the rehearsal project was designed to be used as a template for the first term’s work. The expectation was that the students would go through the three-step process set out above, multiple times. Studio discussions involved additional texts, lectures, and workshops with particular artists and activist groups. For example, integral to the framing of the atelier was engagement with the DisOrdinary Architecture Project (working with Jos Boys, a co-founder).10

Starting with difference


Figure 11.3 De-colonised houses of parliament (Daniel McBride).

The DisOrdinary project as an activist platform was used as an example of a practice seeking to “start from difference”. The project brought disabled artists into the studio as creative equals, rather than as passive users, in order to challenge the staff and student assumptions about which bodies matter in architecture. Since disabled artists and disabled people are not routinely or normally part of design education, this invitation actively changed the frame of who was allowed to participate in the educational and professional inculcation of these particular types of knowledge and skills. Developing work in this direction, Meera Lad took on some of the framings offered by DisOrdinary, alongside working through performance methods using video and sound (based on the work of Janet Cardiff and in response to workshops with disabled artist Noëmi Lakmaier) as experiments in asking “neuro-typicals”11 to engage with different ways of being in the world. This, in turn, developed into an exploration of designing for autistic people, involving the invention of a new typology of parts and experiences, with an entirely different terminology to current norms for, and assumptions about, this group (Figure 11.4). Her inventive and engaged audio-visual explorations were essential in enabling her to conceive of the issue in a more sophisticated and embodied fashion than desktop research into neurological literature and/or existing design guidance would have allowed. The work in this first term was intended to enable the students to outline a design research method for exploring research questions which would also emerge out of the same iterative process. There was an emphasis on the students making their processes explicit, which began with the rehearsal brief’s requirement for them to articulate the affective dimension of the precedents they used to then

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Figure 11.4 New typologies of spaces for autistic people (Meera Lad).

generate affective performances and presentations. This process was expected to support responsive approaches which would be open to a wide range of affects, rather than those which might normally be preselected for appropriateness to the habitual imagination of architectural processes or products of the students or staff. The lack of familiarity with many of the methods meant that the students could not short-cut the process and repeat previously employed strategies or jump to presupposed solutions. They had to interact with their productions and responses to interpret their next steps. Almost all the students produced successful installations or interventions (the method created the affects desired/matched the described intention), moving on to develop an explicit method and directed questions through an iterative productive process. Most of these processes continued to develop unexpected and unusual investigations, and the majority of the research questions articulated were explicitly concerned with aspects of the socio-spatial manifestation of discrimination and normativity. As an example, Joe Stancer began by exploring the methodologies of media artists and architects Ant Farm and the art-activists For Freedoms (see https://ww and His initial response to racism expanded on the idea of how messages of racist bias are spread or countered and how they manifest in social media “filter bubbles”. The affect he identified in the “For Freedoms” billboard campaign was the creation of an ambiguity which meant both sides of the polarised debate might see the presentation as reinforcing their current views, but simultaneously having the affect of making explicit the consequences of this position. In the “Make America Great” image for example, the viewer is able to decide whether this message refers to the repression of the campaign for racial equality or its reinvigoration, highlighting

Starting with difference


Figure 11.5 Alt-right filter bubble (Joseph Stancer).

the fact that some people actually believe racial inequality is a desirable aim. Joe developed his responses by creating and recording interactive psychological installations which played with similar ambiguities and subsequently moved on to develop Twitter and Instagram accounts focused around white-privileged identities (recognising himself as stereotypical in this category) in order to map “alt-right” social media spaces. He combined these investigations with fairly commonly articulated architectural methods, ending up with a project that had different, highly unusual forms of representation in the “phygital” (physical and digital) realm, as well as original and challenging content addressing issues of identity in social media. Deploying digital media techniques, Joe’s work created a new, highly affective representational technique, one that emerged from his initial questioning of which willing bodies might be able to access this phygital realm, and what identities they would be able to take on there. This took the form of animated composite digital drawings that could be simultaneously explored on social media and in accompanying virtual reality (VR) installations (Figure 11.5). Through these processes, his project began to outline a new and underexplored area of practice for architects – designing for and managing “phygital” public spaces in the context of highly politicised and polarised media.

Design: Creative behaviours We perceive external bodies only insofar as they affect us. We perceive our own body only insofar as it is affected, and we perceive our soul through the idea of an idea of an affection. (Deleuze, 1992, p. 146)

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Figure 11.6 Project development work (Naile Alanli).

This section addresses how understanding architecture as an embodied practice produces new creative opportunities in the design process and how embodied design behaviours may manifest changes of relationship in the built environment to prioritise the experience and power of some over others. Asking the students to attempt to be explicit about the affective intention of their processes and products is intended to make transparent who is being addressed, how different bodies are involved or excluded. It requires that their role in authorship and the audiences they are seeking to address are defined in relation to the creative situation as it arises from the design research process. This potentially destabilises the tendency to begin with implicit or underlying presumptions, which may limit the kinds of people who are able to be affected by and affect the performance. This performative process makes explicit who is the audience for the performance, and additionally demands and values the full embodiment of the student as they situate their practice within the body of work of architecture, art, and activism. It asks: who is performing, by what will – who is able to will this act? This process explores how this “audience” might be constructed through the performance of open design relationships – meaning that their involvement might ultimately co-author the design process and directly influence the creation of its products. For example, Naile Alanli explored the issue of racism in relation to the Cypriot border (informed by her own direct knowledge of the site). She did so

Starting with difference


by referencing Francis Alÿs’ films “Watercolor” (mixing water from the Red Sea with water from the Black Sea) and “The Green Line”.12 She presented a film of her mother taking water from one side of the border and pouring it into the sea on the other. Initially, Naile understood that she was using a video art method, as this was her chosen precedent. However, when she gave more detail about her process, it became clear that her method was much more aligned with instructionbased art practices and its affective potential more strongly realised in the interpersonal relationships it produced. Naile’s simple interpretation of the precedent was complicated by the fact that she was sending instructions from Manchester to her mother in Cyprus to undertake the recreations of Alys’s works she had imagined. This produced affective engagements with her mother, who had to be persuaded by her daughter to undertake these tasks. At one point, Naile’s mother pretended to have completed tasks at the border, but Naile identified the deception and “forced” her mother to complete them as described. Naile used the threat of her tutors’ displeasure with her as motivation for her mother. However, her mother was being required to deal with the affective relationships present in the contested context of the demilitarised zone (DMZ) in Cyprus. She was stopped on one occasion by the military police and was increasingly reluctant to engage with tasks that she considered put her at risk of arrest. Naile was also initially reluctant to value any of the interactions with her mother. She saw the notion of her film recreation and subsequent proposals for interventions as concepts which required simply to be translated into a specific physical output (such as a film of someone carrying a bucket of water over a border). She did not see the process of persuading and communicating to achieve this outcome as pertinent. However, as part of the brief, she had been asked to record the performances as well as the outputs, and she had records of the conversations with her parents, demonstrating how she persuaded them to undertake these tasks and what happened when they did. It is clear from our previous experiences that many post-graduate architecture students, at the Manchester School of Architecture at least, do not arrive with an articulable view of their own design process, nor fully appreciate the manner in which they themselves, or the techniques they chose to employ, are implicated in the kinds of outputs that they produce. We asked them to identify and select specific affective practices from the precedents, and to attempt to use these methods to produce similar affects in a new context in order to critically engage them with the role of the architect in general and their personal role in architectural design. Naile, for example, followed very closely the work of Alÿs, but only came to understand the importance of the performative and instruction-based nature of her work after first focusing on the more obvious element of film-making. She then realised that the way that she affected and engaged her audience was through the interpersonal relations created by the process of remotely attempting these projects rather than through the creation of videos to engage and affect her audience. This performative framing of the task made explicit the affective efforts required to generate her work and meant that the process of making possible

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these creative acts began to reveal the implicit social forces preventing more open discussions and considerations of the border. The “forcing” required to get her mother to undertake these deliberately quiet and ephemeral activities made explicit the generational differences between the experience of the border condition and the social forces creating the enduring prohibitive context. Naile’s work then extended to further ideas and interventions which she created through intense negotiations with her mother, while her mother involved further family and friends. Naile ended up curating a range of activities including remotely organising a public exhibition of personal memorabilia in her mother’s friend’s house adjacent to the DMZ. Subsequently, proposals and interventions were actively designed to produce new social relationships between Turkish and Greek Cypriots, to reflect and challenge the changing nature of these communities across this divided space. Explorations in relation to racism remain relevant to many students as they develop their own projects, but the wider framing of how different bodies come to matter is also relevant in relation to students’ own experience within the profession and the academy. Placing emphasis on the embodied and personal nature of engagement has raised the issue of who the audience may or may not be – “which bodies matter” – for these architectural performances. Mike Pok Chan, for example, was inspired to explore the creation of architectural spaces from a primarily aural perspective; Tobias Corry how spaces are generated and respond to dominant masculine behaviours; Ka Long (Kelly) Cheung interrogated her position of privilege in Hong Kong by engaging directly with the issue of domestic workers – employed by her own family and friends as well as those occupying public spaces in the city. The embodied and personal nature of these involvements also took varied forms. Estelle Xin Yun Ang considered her highly introspective character from the perspective of disability to what she felt was an institutional and disciplinary pressure to be more extrovert in order to succeed. She explored how she might be able to find space to celebrate what introverted design practices can achieve and where they can excel using a series of film-making and photo-montage techniques inspired by the work of Chris Marker. Bubusara Abekova made explicit her concerns about how her refugee identity was implicated in her design process by presenting at reviews in Kyrgyzstan national costume, explicitly impacting on changing the views of members of the external review panel. Hannah Gaughan made her own mental health a central issue of her project, asking two parallel research questions. The first, conservative and common question was – How can architectural design support good mental health? The second, more unusual, asked simultaneously – How can the designer maintain good mental health while attempting the first? These numerous examples demonstrate the involved nature of the student in these projects, with a great deal of personal and political commitment. This level of engagement in many cases drew on their personal resources and experiences. This embodied positionality in the process arrived through the responses to the assignments. Thinking about the creative process from the perspective of affect

Starting with difference


led the students to critically question their role in the design process and appraise its relative qualities and those of each of its iterative products in and of themselves. This studio emphasis was an attempt to raise the interactive social and material relations of the student with the built environment above being merely subordinate to a subsequent practical determination or an overriding formal or intellectual idea.

The different: Collective cultures of embodiment we do not know what the body can do... (Spinoza quoted in Deleuze 1988b: 18) This third and concluding section speculates about how affective processes which can promote more equal spatial situations and environments can be actively pursued within and beyond the academy. Spinoza finds the notion of self-interest or preservation absurd as a founding principle (Ethics IV, P72, Pr. in Kordella, 2011). He argues that life, creativity, and joy are fundamentally generated in the relationships between us and to deny this is to undermine all freedom (Kordela, 2011, p. 346). Spinoza’s embodied conception of being and knowing ultimately describes the folly of independence and sets out instead the essential nature of our interdependence. Promoting more embodied ways of being and knowing in the studio environment achieves their full potential when they create engagements which lead to new forms of collectivity. Ahmed describes how the economy of affects which generates our social connections is routinely controlled and unfairly distributed. Hardt and Negri seek a new communitarian model which values the caring and affective component of our labour to create a larger, fairer collective. Deleuze argues that to create these kinds of collectivities, we need to find ways of freeing ourselves and each other from the restrictions of everyday habitual thinking – which without our constant intervention tend towards the institutionalisation of exclusion and marginalisation. The majority of the students have been explicitly and critically addressing issues of marginalisation or inequality in society, and in almost all cases doing so in a performative or activist manner with some direct engagement with individuals and organisations concerned with those issues. Students have been addressing these in terms of racism, class, gender, identity and across their intersection, often bringing personal experiences and expertise to the subject. Many of them are exploring what role architectural design and architectural practices can have in producing a more inclusive built environment and society, some by challenging themselves to think and work differently from their habit or normative expectations. Almost all are using production processes which they have actively developed to make an explicit account of who they are addressing with their “project” and their design products. Generalising from the tentative explorations described above and the theoretical frame outlined at the start, it would seem that an immediate consequence of

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an affective, embodied approach to studio pedagogy is that disciplinary territories become more relationally defined. Making explicit the affective will of each participant in the processes of design could mean that each individual architectural student, practitioner, or citizen is enabled to contribute to constituting the discipline. It at least expresses the possibility that they might be expected to be given equal opportunity to do so. The three implications of this we have briefly explored here relate first, to the more valued embodied participation of the individual; second, the more deeply engaged nature of the design process; and lastly, the greater collective nature of an emancipatory project. In the first case, we believe that valuing the personal experience and engagements of the individual designer or citizen can make a more or less active challenge to architecture as a representational disciplinary body with its normative “body of work” and normative selection of participants. Secondly, we propose that when individual students and practitioners explicitly engage with difference in just some of the ways we have described, affective relations begin to be valued as primary sources of creativity in architecture. There is hope then that this could open the discourse of design to both be affected by social conditions and be active and relevant in changing them. Thirdly, if architecture in this case becomes “what architects do” then “the architect” becomes understood as a fluid, affective collective. Working affectively and collectively may enable us to make explicit the inequalities and injustices that occur both within and beyond the discipline, as well as to articulate the unfair spatial and material practices through which they are differentially enacted. We believe that reframing the pedagogy of the discipline in the relational manner indicated by a Spinozist approach to affect has the potential to permanently move us beyond the “interminable see-saw” of representational architectural discourse. The future of the discipline requires us to move away from responsibilities centred around balancing the forms and functions of the products of the will of commodity capitalism and the closed disciplinary boundaries that this implies. However, as Gregory Seigworth points out, while pedagogy and affect are inextricable, this makes the task for education set out by Deleuze (and Guattari) simultaneously enormously broad and constrained – “[Educational theorists] have our work cut out – school the rest of us on the ‘modesty’ of pedagogic intervention (please) and then also save us from the disaster of worldwide capitalist domination” (Dernikos et al., 2020, pp. 87–88). The complex, difficult, and subtle responses to that challenge are highlighted by Foucault’s reading of Deleuze and Guattari as providing guidance for leading a good – “less fascist” – life. The quote at the beginning of this piece highlights our interpretation of the fundamental requirement of this method that we seek always to “start with the Different”. In our interpretation, this begins by personally and collectively seeking more differential subjectivity, requires using more engaged productive processes, and can lead to non-normative collective activities. We believe that while

Starting with difference


understanding the nature of these differentials and creative processes deserves much greater consideration, these collective intersectional and transdisciplinary projects do have the explicit potential to produce situations where more different bodies matter more. An architecture of affection places architects in the midst of the field of life and focuses us on enabling the living of an ethical life for all humans. &rchitecture is one attempt to generate and maintain such an active culture of creative kindness.

Notes 1 In particular, we recognise the contribution of Jos Boys to this project, who significantly shaped the approach and activity of the &rchitecture atelier. Her views, activism, and theoretical positions are expressed in detail elsewhere and are only briefly referenced in the text. See Boys (2014, 2017). 2 “Thought ‘makes’ difference, but difference is monstrous. We should not be surprised that difference should appear accursed, that it should be error, sin or the figure of evil for which there must be expiation. […] To rescue difference from its maledictory state seems, therefore, to be the project of the philosophy of difference” (Deleuze, 1994, p. 30). 3 Deleuze calls Spinoza “The prince of philosophers” and finds the notion of “expressionism” in his work a key diagram for developing a contemporary account of the relational and embodied nature of thought and existence (Deleuze, 1988a, Introduction). 4 Difference and Repetition and Spinoza: Expressionism in Philosophy were his twin doctoral theses in 1968. 5 Common sense in the manner that Deleuze refers to it – as the common agreement of the “senses” of the four faculties of a Cartesian “Universal subject” (1994, p. 265). 6 Deleuze develops a broader theory of distinctions which draws on his engagement with Henri Bergson. See Bergsonism (Deleuze, 1988b). 7 The full quote reads: “Every mode of thought insofar as it is non-representational will be termed affect”. 8 Especially in Deleuze’s work with the activist Felix Guattari. 9 We selected a series of artist, activist, and architectural sources expected and proven to be unusual to MSA MArch architecture students. For example, the performance art practices of disabled artist Naomi Laekmaier who also worked directly with some of the students. 10 DisOrdinary Architecture believes that we need to value the richness of bio and neurodiversity rather than designing for averages and norms; that starting from bodily differences is a vital creative generator; and through working with non-normative and “misfitting” bodies (Garland-Thomson, 2011) assumptions about what is normal in architecture can be most effectively analysed, challenged, and re-invented (Boys, 2014, 2017). And see note 1. 11 “Neuro-typical” can be defined as not displaying or characterised by autistic or other neurologically atypical patterns of thought or behaviour. However, it is often employed as a partner term to emphasise a positive reframing of neurological atypicality as neuro-diversity. 12 Francis Alÿs, “Watercolor” (Trabzon, Turkey, Aqaba, Jordan) 2010, 1:20 min. Available at and Francis Alÿs, in collaboration with Philippe Bellaiche, Rachel Leah Jones, and Julien Devaux, “The Green Line”, Jerusalem 2004, 17:41 min. Available at

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References Ahmed, S. (2004a). Affective Economies. Social Text, 22 (2/79), pp. 117–39. doi:10.1215/01642472-22-2_79-117. Ahmed, S. (2004b). Collective Feelings, or the Impressions Left by Others. Theory, Culture & Society 21 (2), pp. 25–42. Ahmed, S. (2006). Queer Phenomenology: Orientations, Objects, Others. Duke University Press. Ahmed, S. (2012). A Willfulness Archive. In: Theory & Event, vol. 15 No. 3. Project MUSE. Bhabha, K. M. (1994). The Location of Culture. London: Routledge. Boys, J. (2014). Doing Disability Differently: An Alternative Handbook on Architecture, Dis/Ability and Designing for Everyday Life. London: Routledge. Boys, J. (Ed.). (2017). Disability, Space, Architecture: A Reader. London: Routledge. doi:10.4324/978131556007. Butler, J. (1990). Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity, 1st edition. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Butler, J. (1993). Bodies that Matter: On the Discursive Limits of ‘Sex’. London: Routledge. Deleuze, G. (1978). Spinoza. Cours Vincennes. Paris: Universite de Paris VIII Vincennes (Lectures identified by date). pe=Spinoza [Accessed 26 April 13]. Deleuze, G. (1988a). Foucault. London: The Athlone Press. Deleuze, G. (1988b). Spinoza, Practical Philosophy. San Francisco, CA: City Light Books. Deleuze, G. (1988c). Bergsonism. New York, NY: Zone Books. Deleuze, G. (1992). Spinoza: Expressionism in Philosophy. New York, NY: Zone Books. Deleuze, G. (1994). Difference and Repetition. London: Continuum. Deleuze, G. (2003). The Three Kinds of Knowledge. Pli: The Warwick Journal of Philosophy 14, pp. 1–20. Deleuze, G. and Guattari, F. (1984). Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia. London: Athlone. Dernikos, et al. (2020). Mapping the Affective Turn in Education, Theory Research and Pedagogies. New York, NY: Routledge. Evans, R. (1997). Translations Between Drawing and Building and Other Essays. London: Architectural Association. Eddo-Lodge, R. (2017). Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People about Race. London: Bloomsbury Publishing. Hardt, M. and Negri, A. (2000) Empire. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Kordela, K. (2011). A Thought beyond Dualisms, Creationist and Evolutionist Alike. In: Spinoza Now, ed. Dimitris Vardoulakis. University of Minnesota Press. Accessed 30 April 2020. McRuer, R. (2006). Crip Theory: Cultural Signs of Queerness and Disability. New York, NY: New York University Press. Ruddick, S. (2010). The Politics of Affect: Spinoza in the Work of Negri and Deleuze. Theory, Culture & Society (SAGE, Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, and Singapore) 27 (4), pp. 21–45. doi:10.1177/026327641037223. Spinoza, B. (1996). Ethics. Trans. Edwin Curley. London: Penguin Books. White, S. (2017). The Greater Part: How Intuition Forms Better Worlds. In: Spinoza and Ratio, eds. B. Lord and P. Rawes. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. White, S. et al. (2018-19) ‘Note to students in introductory presentation &rchitecture MSA’.

Chapter 12

Regulating affect Six scenes from the Westin Bonaventure Hotel, Los Angeles Hannes Frykholm

This chapter considers the Westin Bonaventure Hotel in downtown Los Angeles as a site that both produces and regulates affects. Looking closely at this building, I want to develop a critique of two influential and opposite positions on affect in architecture today. If one such approach holds affect in architecture as an immediate, bodily response to space and form that surpasses the intellect, a second reading connects affect in architecture to the biopolitics of neoliberalism, defining the term within a critique of capitalism. Celebrating or critiquing, the two positions identify the primary relationship between architecture and affect through an often hasty analysis of form as the stable matter of architecture. In this chapter, I argue for the need of a sharpened focus on the ordinary, seemingly insignificant, and low-intensity affects that appear in slow and attentive observations of the built environment. The Bonaventure Hotel, designed by John Portman and completed in 1976, was part of a long-term programme to redevelop the dilapidated area known as Bunker Hill, and transform it into a centre for business and culture (CRA, 2009). This redevelopment programme – a typical example of the “processes of neoliberalisation” that involved both commercial and public interests – happened with the support of the Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA/LA), a semi-autonomous governmental body founded in 1948 to reverse the deterioration of the inner city (Peck et al., 2009). Starting from 1958, the CRA/LA sponsored the construction of approximately 1.2 million square metres of commercial space in the area of Bunker Hill, including Union Bank Building, Security Pacific Building, California Plaza, Sheraton Grande Hotel, and Bonaventure Hotel (Marks, 2004). More recently, Bunker Hill has seen the completion of a number of cultural buildings by well-known designers, many times financially supported and subsidised by the CRA/LA: The Museum of Contemporary Art on Grand Avenue by Arata Isozaki completed in 1986; the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels by Rafael Moneo completed in 2002; the Walt Disney Concert Hall from 2003 by Frank Gehry; the Ramón C. Cortines School of Visual and Performing Arts from 2008 designed by Coop Himmelb(l)au; and in 2015, the Broad Museum by Diller Scofidio + Renfro.


Hannes Frykholm

The Bonaventure Hotel includes 1,354 guest rooms, 10,000 square metres for meetings and conventions, and a number of restaurants, offices, and shops. Its volumetric composition is five cylindrical skyscrapers clad in reflective glass, placed on top of a six-storey tall rectangular box in reinforced concrete, capped with a glass roof. The 25-metre high interior space of the concrete box holds a large hotel atrium. There is a stair and three elevators in each of the four corners of the atrium, which connect to the upper terraces with offices, convention space, a gym, restaurants, a brewery, shops, restrooms, and to the five skyscrapers with the guest rooms. On the upper floors, the atrium is bounded by service areas and retail spaces, and on the west side it connects to 24 conference spaces in different sizes, which are also part of the same complex. In the very centre of the atrium, a cylindrical concrete shaft provides access to the upper parts of the hotel for staff. On the ground floor, a bar circumscribes the central column with circle-shaped seating formations. Four large, curved water mirrors encircle the bar and form a barrier between different seating areas. In total, a present-day count gives at least nine entrances to the hotel from surrounding buildings and streets.1 Identified first by Fredric Jameson as an example of postmodern hyperspace, the interior of the Bonaventure Hotel – and especially its atrium – has been analysed by numerous urban theorists. Jameson saw in the Bonaventure the way postmodern architecture had isolated itself from the outside by reconstructing a miniature version of the city inside the atrium (Jameson, 1991). Instead of repairing tears in the urban fabric or establishing connections to existing public spaces, the atrium substituted the city. Former socio-political spaces of the city had been replaced with the consumption of images of such spaces, Jameson argued. More than 30 years after the publication of Jameson’s book, the bibliography on the project continues to grow, not least through responses within architectural theory, feminist theory, and geography that have either developed Jameson’s analysis, or pointed to the inadequacies and one dimensionality of his account (Davis, 1985; Soja, 1989; Deutsche, 1996; Martin, 2010; Smith, 2011). Beyond, and sometimes in opposition to, Jameson’s reading there has been a growing recognition of John Portman’s work, the Bonaventure included, among practicing architects and in institutions of architectural education. This strand of research reappraises the formal, historical, and geometrical aspects of projects like the Bonaventure as part of an “atrium effect” (Rice, 2016; Mostafavi, 2017). Architectural theorist Charles Rice centres his discussion of Portman’s work on an analysis of building geometry, and locates the roots to the large-scale interiors in the design of the architect’s private villa (Rice, 2016). Another recent publication that offers a formal investigation into Portman’s work is the anthology Portman’s America and Other Speculations, edited by Mohsen Mostafavi, and published by Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD) in 2017 (Mostafavi, 2017). These readings by both Mostafavi and Rice distance themselves from much of Jameson’s critique of Portman, and instead emphasise the immersive and affective aspects of his works by considering architectural form.

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Portman’s America collects four short texts by Mohsen Mostafavi, K. Michael Hays, Alexander S. Porter, Preston Scott-Cohen, and Jennifer Bonner. The book also includes interviews with John Portman himself, as well as photographs by Iwan Baan, new survey drawings of Portman’s best-known projects, and student works reiterating Portman’s formal logic in relation to new proposals. It is a noteworthy publication as it signals a recognition of his work in an established institution for architectural education, that is, the GSD at Harvard University. The book underscores the spatial qualities of Portman’s work – the immersive experience of his atriums – rather than the role of his buildings in postmodern urbanism. For the first time since the 1970s, parts of his portfolio – mostly large-scale multifunctional buildings in the USA – are now being studied, described, and analysed using categories of form, materiality, and experience.2 Portman’s America attempts to bypass Jameson’s reading of hyperspace and instead survey the formal and spatial qualities of Portman’s work, while at the same time depoliticise it. In this publication, Portman’s work is defined as belonging to a canonical body of architectural projects of presumed historical and pedagogical importance. This is particularly clear in K. Michael Hays’ and Alexander S. Porter’s co-written contribution, which reinterprets the affective quality of Portman’s atriums. For the authors, affect is a tacit, non-reflective, and immediate bodily response to the immersion into a space, in this case the large-scale interiors of buildings such as the Bonaventure. Hays and Porter claim to reinterpret the affective quality of Portman’s interiors, or as they write, their aim is “to redeem the vulgarity of its spectacle” (Hays and Porter, 2017, p. 270). Underlying their argument is the presumption that the spatial effect of Portman’s atriums has been hi-jacked by critical theorists on postmodernism. Borrowing from Michael Fried’s reading of Diderot, the authors identify a theatricality in Portman’s interiors – the experience that there is something waiting to happen or appear in these spaces (Hays and Porter, 2017, pp. 269–70). The interiors are stages without a given character or representational role and carry a potential force to produce anything. The atrium for Hays and Porter appears withdrawn from global flows of capitalism as well as from the ideologies of postmodern urbanism: “The Atrium is composed as if beholder and occupant alike were not there; the architecture is oblivious to the existence of any space produced outside its own, even as it accommodates (or ignores) every particularity” (Hays and Porter, 2017, p. 268). The bewildering interiors that for Jameson represented the spatial logic of late capitalism are here, on the contrary, freed from ideology. Emphasising the immersive experience of the atrium, Portman’s work (the Bonaventure included) is re-read as a case for the autonomy of architecture. The atrium is indifferent to exterior ideologies or economic forces. Through its vastness, the atrium holds the observer captive, producing, the authors tell us, a “euphoric effect of complete immersion and complete alienation” (Hays and Porter, 2017, p. 270). The visitor’s “complete immersion” into the atrium allows for an indifference towards the outside and an exploration of affect driven by interiors. If Jameson’s reading of Bonaventure was a critique of postmodern space, Hays and Porter imply a celebration of the same condition.


Hannes Frykholm

In this chapter, I address the tension between readings of the affective powers of the Bonaventure as discussed above and affects in the building today. Moving away from considerations of the atrium per se, be it Jameson’s “hyperspace” (Jameson, 1991, p. 38) or later claims for the atrium’s “complete immersion”, the chapter explores instead a way of writing about affect that combines descriptions of the built environment with metadata from recruitment advertisements. I have developed my analysis as a critique of Douglas Spencer’s reading of architecture’s turn to affect in his book The Architecture of Neoliberalism, and against the idea that affect is primarily an instrument for rejecting critical theory (Spencer, 2016). Written as part of a larger critique of architecture’s involvement in neoliberalism, Spencer’s focus lies on the discourse of affect in architecture. For Spencer, the affective turn in architecture is a response to a perceived crisis of the discipline in relation to the city. He traces this crisis to Jameson’s account of the postmodern space of the Bonaventure. Isolated from political and social influence in the larger urban context, architecture has turned to the celebration of affect inside the confinements of its own envelope. Considering buildings by Zaha Hadid, Foreign Office Architects, and NOX as examples, affect is characterised as a shortcut to an intuitive experience of the built environment. The recent celebration of affect within the profession paves the way for abolishing critical theory in architecture (Spencer, 2016, p. 149). Emancipated from its previous constraints in the form of theory and critical reflection, architecture is now fully compliant with the project of neoliberalism. This argument is based on a reading of affect similar to those of the designers and theorists he is criticising. The dichotomy between affect and critical theory that Spencer rightly identifies among theorists and architects such as Sylvia Lavin, Alejandro Zaera-Polo, and Farshid Moussavi, is upheld in his own reading; by not problematising the definition of affect, Spencer reproduces a particular understanding of affect in architecture. If the curvilinear building envelope or the moment of architectural “kisses” (Lavin, 2011) are the only ways affect in architecture can be discussed, then the project is indeed lost. Comparing Spencer’s critique with the celebrations of Portman in Portman’s America, both accounts depend on schematic readings of the concepts of affect and architecture. On the one hand, within Portman’s America there is expressed the celebration of affect as a preverbal force emanating out of architectural form, which risks being a streamlined and reduced interpretation of Deleuze’s affect theory, tailored to match the narrative of a profession trying to empower itself. On the other hand, there is Spencer’s critical reading, which takes a specific definition of affect as a shortcut to formulate a general critique of the term, and turns to the built environment only briefly, in snapshots of facades, and in brief accounts from inside buildings. We are left with the choice between two accounts that both appear reductive in their readings of architecture’s relationship to affect. In light of this dilemma, I suggest that the process of reading is slowed right down. Instead of identifying affect in relation to architectural form, I propose an analysis of the objects, materials, people, and instructive texts that underpin the affective dimension of the building.

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The inspiration for my approach – on a theoretical and methodological level – comes from Kathleen Stewart’s book Ordinary Affects (Stewart, 2007). Considering the term “ordinary affect” in a tentative manner – focusing on “impact, curiosity, and encounter” – rather than as a theoretical concept for categorising reality, Stewart’s book consists of 115 scenes of varying length and format: a burglary in a trailer camp outside Las Vegas, a friend’s e-mail retelling an unexpected trip, a paragraph on agencies, a war veteran neighbour shooting at invasive raccoons, the description of a delayed flight in Houston ending in a hotel, and so on. Critiques of Stewart’s approach, such as the one put forward by Margaret Wetherell, have noted how the short episodes of “ordinary affects” do not account for underlying methods, for patterns of repetition, or for conceptual tools used in the process of researching and writing (Wetherell, 2012, pp. 54–55). By detaching the descriptions of “ordinary affect” from social theory and critique, Wetherell argues that Stewart’s work remains a poetic and closed reading rather than a scholarly contribution for theorising on affects. It is true that the scenes of Stewart’s book do little to categorise or theorise affect, and there is no hinting at the methods underlying their construction. The scenes complicate rather than categorise. The logic of the traditional narrative is constantly challenged, as scenes are openended and inconclusive, sometimes following illogical trajectories of association, the scenes lack the unifying intensification of a story that might be told. Drawing what Stewart describes as “an idiosyncratic map of connections between a series of singularities”, the scenes point to the multiplicity of ways that affective forces work, and how these forces shift in intensity (Stewart, 2007, pp. 4–5). Read together, in a sequence, the irregular format and unexpected pacing of the scenes capture affect as a disparate and continuously moving force emanating from encounters, situations, and seemingly insignificant events in everyday life. Stewart’s claim to “slow down the quick jump to representational thinking” locates the term affect in an ambiguous realm where it is liberated from predetermined claims, be it of advocates for formal autonomy or of critical theorists attacking such autonomy (Stewart, 2007, p. 4). Her work points to a reading of affect not as predefined and non-verbal responses to architectural form, but as everyday situations emerging out of unforeseen collisions between bodies that result in the augmentation or diminishment of the power to act, or be acted upon. It is this insignificance, irregularity, unexpectedness, and disjunctive aspect of affect that I extrapolate from Ordinary Affects. Such affects cannot be captured by critiquing form, for instance, but need to be considered in a slow manner, on-site, through material, spatial, and ethnographically inspired surveys of the built environment. Rather than mapping and listing “ordinary affects” as I find them, I want to suggest a material and spatial framework – or scaffolding – for such affects, presented here as six scenes derived from the entrances to the atrium of the Bonaventure Hotel. Focus is thereby moved away from the immersive affect of the main atrium, and placed instead in the spaces that appear at the periphery of the building’s interiors and in direct relation to the surrounding city. I have written


Hannes Frykholm

the passages based on multiple sessions of observing, walking through, and surveying the hotel. To avoid the risk that the six scenes close in on themselves and become the kind of poetic but idiosyncratic accounts of architecture produced within many phenomenological accounts, I have strived to contrast them with factual descriptions of materials, objects, instructions for employers, and other external data.3 By sharpening the empirical focus in this way, I extend a reading that attempts to “pay attention” to both the continuously transforming constellations of affect and neoliberal architecture, and to the unravelling of established truths within the architectural discipline (Gabrielsson and Mattsson, 2017). The number of steps of a staircase, the shifting materials in an entrance floor, or the job description of valet parking staff, are examples of information that counter the purportedly universal subject common in architectural phenomenology. Attempting to move away from a strictly corporeal or embodied account, this is not a writing that claims to be objective, only attentive to experience. Writing in this sense constitutes not the summary of empirical data, but an investigative process in itself, where interrelationships between topics, ideas, and sources are exposed that would otherwise remain unseen.4

1. Homeless Heading to the Bonaventure Hotel, I exit the Interstate 5 onto a two-lane ramp bearing west, make a left turn onto Temple Street and then a right turn onto Hope Street. On the west side of Hope Street, Albert C. Martin’s headquarters for the Los Angeles Department for Water and Power – a 15-story modernist icon sequestered from its surrounding by a moat on top of a concrete plinth – takes up an entire block. I continue southwest, bearing right onto Flower Street, passing northwest of the Broad Museum. Between the museum and my car is a construction site for the “Metro Regional Connector Project”, a 3 kilometre-long extension of the blue and golden metro line with an estimated completion date in 2022. There is a green fence delineating Flower Street from the site, with banners advertising Downtown LA: “Eat Shop Play: #eatshopplay #DTLA”. To the east, the sun illuminates the black and white skyscraper of the Bank of America, and the twin towers of the Wells Fargo Center. This is Bunker Hill, the northernmost part of Los Angeles’ downtown business district, and the scene of intense redevelopment over the past 40 years. In an implementation plan for Bunker Hill, published in 2009, the CRA/LA reviews the effects of their work since the launch of the original renewal project in 1958: Today, Bunker Hill is the financial and corporate heart of Downtown, consisting of high-rise office buildings, hotels, apartments, condominiums, and cultural destinations that have transformed the Downtown skyline into the city’s signature mark. (CRA, 2009, p. 2)

Regulating affect


The car comes to a halt at a traffic light at the junction of 3rd Street and Flower Street. A homeless woman pushes a stroller full of bags over the crosswalk.5 She disappears behind the corner on the side, hidden from view by the building fence of the Metro construction site and the words “Eat Shop Play”. When the lights turn to green again, I drive under a freeway access ramp, and see the Bonaventure Hotel ahead, to the right.

2. Valet parking I drive past the taxis and portieres on Flower Street, pass under two elevated walkways between the hotel, the Citibank Tower, and the YMCA building, and turn right into a low horizontal slit in the windowless ground floor façade of the building, which leads to the underground parking garage. A steep ramp ends on a broad concrete landing painted red, two floors below the main entrance level. The car is stopped and the engine switched off. Outside the car the air is warm, smelling of oil and rubber. There is a highpitched sound of tires turning on concrete, and an engine running somewhere in the distance. At the north end of the landing there are six 900 mm high bollard lights, marking a border between pedestrians and cars, further emphasised by the shift in floor material along this edge; from red concrete to hardwood oak. Behind the bollards, there is a wall of glass sheets mounted in dark aluminium frames. There are two pairs of automatic doors; one to the right of the car, along the driveway, and the other on the short end of the driveway, facing the front of the car. I enter to the right and reach the small reception desk of the valet parking, around which four men stand and sit. The residue of laughter still hangs in the air, as though someone had just started telling a joke but did not finish it. With a smile lingering, one of the men fills in a form, takes my keys, enters the car, and parks it somewhere beneath. The salary for valet parking attendants in Los Angeles is between 10 and 15 dollars per hour, tip not included (Valet Parking Salaries in Los Angeles CA Area, 2019). In the job advertisements for “door person” at the Bonaventure, the desired staff member handles both guest and vehicle with the greatest care: You have a sunny, helpful nature. You’re happiest on the move, ever alert to what needs doing. Talking with people from all over energizes you. And with a passion to please, you thoughtfully offer guests helpful tips while lending a hand, opening doors, and whisking away luggage. You handle each vehicle like it’s your own, double-checking locks and windows before returning promptly to cheerfully greet the next guest. (Door Person, 2019) To the left of the reception there is a waiting space to which the second pair of glass doors open. There are four benches here, a plant in a high concrete urn, and two trashcans. On the wall to the left, two TV screens broadcast news and sports.


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A company of three sit on one of the benches, talking and waiting for their car to be picked up from the garage. Somewhere from the depth of the building their car appears, and when one of the staff members calls a name they all start moving for the exit through the glass doors. The car is already parked in front of the bollards. They enter and drive away. From behind and above, approaching headlights signal that another car is coming down the ramp. It is an ongoing choreography of vehicles and bodies as people arrive, wait, and leave. The mandatory valet parking is 15 dollars for the hour or 49 dollars for a full day. Compared to the private parking garages downtown, this is more than double the price. There is laughter once again from the reception, as the narrator returns to telling the story interrupted by guests. I leave the underground garage with a sense of joy, wishing that I could linger around the desk a little longer to hear the end of the joke.

3. You’re like magic There are two sycamore trees planted on the corner of the sidewalk at the junction of Flower Street and 5th Street. An officer in black trousers and a purple T-shirt with the words “District Safety” on the back, steers his bike along the sidewalk. Employed by the Downtown Center Business Improvement District (DCBID) – a coalition of 2000 property owners – as a member of the “Purple Patrol”, this officer and his colleagues “provide 24-hour supplemental services to maintain safety, cleanliness, and hospitality within the district”, according to the organisation’s website (Downtown LA – Safe & Clean, 2018). In addition to its “safe team”, the “Purple Patrol” also consists of a “clean team” cruising the sidewalks and plazas with cleaning carts and brooms. Equipped with intercom radios, the “clean team” also serves as a vigilant eye, reporting on unwanted activities, such as homeless people sleeping on the sidewalk. I walk north on Flower Street towards the Bonaventure Hotel, passing first the service entrance where trucks come and go in the daytime, and then, just before the elevated walkway connecting the Bonaventure to the Citicorp Plaza on the other side of the street, the ramp to the visitor garage. North of the garage there is a semi-circular roof hanging out over the sidewalk, and a fixed sign in concrete and metal with the words “LA Prime”, the penthouse restaurant of the hotel. To the left, a stair leads six steps up to a double door. Upon approaching, I notice the print on the door that reads “Doors Closed – Use Main Entrance”. Further along, a white frame forms a roof that cantilevers halfway over the sidewalk. It holds tinted glass panels mounted between horizontal support bars, providing protection from direct sunlight. This is the entrance to the hotel from Flower Street. It is defined by a wide stair with three treads between the sidewalk and the entrance 0.5 metres above. A brass handrailing in the middle divides the stair in two. There is a 4 metre-long plinth of polished concrete on each side of the stair. A rectangular concrete slab is placed on top of each plinth. Standing on the sidewalk, the plinths allow for the extension of the objects and activities of the entrance: each plinth holds a concrete urn with three yucca plants; two wooden

Regulating affect


benches hang off the sides of the plinths parallel to the sidewalk, 450 millimetres above ground; and the inner sides of these massive objects define the entrance stair so that it is centred in relation to the main doors further in. On the side of the southernmost plinth a bellman in a large black hat and a long coat stands behind a black podium. His outfit appears anachronistic, as if he were the last remaining part of the historical hotel ritual. At times, the bellman wanders out to the sidewalk, looking into cars parked on the driveway, greeting arriving visitors, or chatting to already checked-in visitors waiting for a ride. Arriving to the Bonaventure from Flower Street, the bellman is the first of several encounters a guest will have with the hotel staff. Most likely these encounters will happen by the entrance doors, at the reception desks, in the bar, or in the hotel room corridors. As representatives of the Bonaventure Hotel, the staff are expected to project friendliness, efficiency, and attentiveness. In a job advertisement for a banquet organiser at the Bonaventure Hotel, the following characteristics are desired: You’re like magic. You transform empty spaces into settings; and after the event, you make them disappear. You’re happiest juggling at a fast-pace, with a passion to please that equals the need for getting it right. Your sharp eye for detail quickly spots when something’s amiss and when guests have need. (Banquet Set-Up at The Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites, 2017)6 A man sits on the bench of the right plinth, with a briefcase placed next to him on the sidewalk. He is reading printed documents laid out on his lap. On the other side of the stair, two people are talking to each other while glancing at the street now and then, waiting for the right vehicle to appear, luggage resting against one of the concrete columns. They look out at the traffic on Flower Street and at the construction site fences on the other side, clad in a lime green canvas with textile patterns and company names – “Starbucks Coffee”, “Mendocino Farms”, “Equinox”, “Citibank”, “Rikki D’s Barbershop” – placed around the larger letters: “Businesses are Open”. Taxis and private cars stop now and then to drop off and pick people up. A few metres further along, a police officer leans against his motorcycle. Another member of the Purple Patrol passes by on a bicycle.

4. Leather armchairs I enter the Bonaventure Hotel from Flower Street by stepping onto a brown doormat with the Westin corporate logo. The doors slide open without a sound. On the inside, just before the doors there is a change of material on the floor. The doors close behind. On the right-hand side is the “R Douglas Custom Clothier”, where custom-made suits cost 1,200 dollars: “Few clothing items compare to the level of pure sophistication and self-expression found in a custom-tailored suit. And we guarantee the R. Douglas custom suit will speak your name louder than any other”


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(Explore Custom-Made, 2019). Except for a clerk behind the counter and three mannequins, the shop is empty. It is after lunch and the lobby appears quiet. There is a low murmur of voices, the rippling of water, and occasionally the sound of elevators descending from higher up in the building. Concrete columns, cylindrical lamps, and balconies continue deep into the foundation of the building via the reflection of the water mirror. There are sculptures on plinths in the water. Underwater spotlights thwart the growing dusk with a soft green light from below. Between the water mirror and the entrance doors from Flower Street there are low armchairs, tables, and leather sofas placed back-to-back. The sofas rest upon a thick, chocolate-coloured rug in the shape of an ellipse. Long benches with leather cushions outline the water mirrors. There are people waiting here, in groups or alone. Three airplane captains have a low-voice conversation in Japanese, sitting or standing around one sofa. Their luggage is ready and they appear to be waiting to leave. Nearby, in the same seating area, a couple of tourists discuss a map. A man looks at his cell phone. A family with small children have unloaded their backpacks and strollers around one of the furniture groups. The entrance from the stairs on Flower Street to the leather armchairs inside is 30 metres. From anywhere on this side of the dimly lit atrium, the entrance is a bright rectangular opening cut out in a thick wall, framing the traffic and the ongoing construction work on the other side of the street. If this is compared to a horizontal window frame, it is thicker and inhabited. Outside the automatic doors, people stand, sit, and wait, mostly with their backs turned to the atrium. Seen from behind, the bodies in and around this opening are dark contours against the backlight from the city outside. Lit and framed like this, both the guests of the hotel and the activities and objects of the urban redevelopment outside are superimposed and made visually present from inside the atrium. Sitting in a leather armchair for some time, I realise that one and the same dark contour reappears every 15 minutes or so. The figure and his pattern become more and more familiar: a security guard dressed in a black suit and a white shirt, holding an intercom radio, walks back and forth along the ground floor perimeters. According to the advertisement for a position as security officer at the Bonaventure Hotel, this is someone with an intuitive sense of identifying when something is wrong: You’ve always been hyper alert to your surroundings, with an uncanny sense when things aren’t right. This sharp awareness enables you to prevent loss, and sound experience enables you to act with swift confidence, when trouble surfaces. (Security Officer – Full Time, 2019) The “uncanny sense” describes a sensitivity beyond the apparent or rational, as the staff is supposed to have a premonition of shifts in the intensity of affect through the moments “when things aren’t right”. Sometimes, passing the leather

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armchairs the guard takes a long and hard look at a man who has been sitting alone in the same chair for more than an hour, as if by the power of gaze he is able to expel uninvited guests. Those sitting long enough in the sofa will notice him when his gaze locks on them for a brief moment.

5. Fifth-floor embrace There is a 38 metre-long elevated walkway across Flower Street, from the Morgan Adams Jr Sculpture Garden to the Bonaventure Hotel. Two circular steel bars painted white form the railing that supports a concrete floor ending in an opening in the concrete plinth of the Bonaventure Hotel. The white paint of the railing is peeling off here and there, and has been engraved with cryptic messages of love, inscribed for future pedestrians: “Jeff + Asuka”, “TATAN”, and “FAKIZ”. I cross this walkway in the early evening and notice the loud roar of traffic from the freeway a few blocks away. At the end of the walkway there are three glass doors framed by dark brown aluminium. Someone has placed a trashcan in front of one of the doors, blocking it from use. The doors open onto a low ramp that lands on the sixth floor. There is a grey doormat printed with the words “Westin Bonaventure: Hotel and Suites Los Angeles”. Passing over the doormat, I reach the east corner of the atrium’s sixth floor, via a three-quarter circle terrace that makes a sharp turn at both ends and continues around the entire interior of the central atrium, from there connecting to the four corner staircases on this level. The terrace is approximately 2 metres wide, with the same beige floor tiles as in the stair and on the ground floor. Its railing is exposed concrete with a painted steel cylinder handrailing placed on top. The side of the terrace away from the atrium is bounded either by a blind wall or by spaces designed for commercial activities, of which only some are in use on this floor – there is a “Christian Science Reading Room” and an empty Vietnamese restaurant offering pho. A TV is mounted high on the wall in the restaurant. Passing by, there is the sound of an excited studio audience in a talk show. Partly hidden behind one of the corner columns on the fifth floor, I see a couple embrace. Jeff + Asuka? Across the atrium, on the opposite terrace, a man stands alone talking on the phone. From somewhere below, Bruce Springsteen’s “Rising” can be heard. Besides eating pho, engaging in a love affair, or having a telephone conversation, there is not much to do here but to continue walking. Leaning over the terrace railing for just a minute before continuing down, the atrium of the Bonaventure can be seen from far above. Elevator cars draw vertical lines in green, red, yellow, and blue through the crepuscular interior of the atrium.

6. Snake dancer Dusk is a fast affair in Los Angeles. At 6.30 pm sun is a pale white disc dissolving behind scattered silvery clouds. The towers of downtown are black monoliths against the evening sky, punctuated by the white light of workplaces. High up in


Hannes Frykholm

the stratosphere of global banking, workdays are long. The clocks in other parts of the world are still ticking through office hours: Tokyo, Sidney, Hong Kong. For a moment, every light in every window in every skyscraper seems to hold a potential story about somewhere else. Who knows what deals are being made while this side of the world sleeps? Further up, the electric colour of corporate logotypes – green, white, and red – engrave deep marks in the sky, as if to ensure that a viewer will never forget “Bank of America”, “Deloitte”, and “AON”, even when dreaming. Despite the street lamps, lobbies, storefronts, large screens, and passing cars, the sidewalk is dark. With less of downtown now visible, the cacophony of the city emerges clearer: signal horns blaring through the thickening darkness, engines revving, hysterical laughter from somewhere behind, a high-pitched monologue from a man on a bench, and further away the rumble of the freeway. An airport shuttle bus pulls up at the parking lane in front of the Bonaventure Hotel at Figueroa Street. Passengers exit and form a confused horde between the bus and the entrance. Above the bus, there are five concrete fins cantilevering 4.5 metres out from the façade. They form an abstract version of the traditional porte-cochere, not protecting from weather, but signalling that something happens here. Here, where tired travellers are now searching for their luggage, is the original main entrance to the Bonaventure. Underneath each cantilevered fin is a rectangular pillar supporting the load from the upper floors and defining the edge against the driveway, so that the space between the bus and the entrance doors resembles an arcade. The inside of this arcade is a glass wall with two automatic double doors placed on each side of the long space. The floor of the arcade is clad in a tile with two different stone sizes, giving an impression of asymmetry similar to the pattern of older paving stones. Identical to the ground floor inside, the tiling suggests a continuity between the sidewalk and the interiors, and marks a difference against the large concrete tiles of ordinary stretches of the sidewalk of downtown Los Angeles. People stepping off the bus should feel as if they are already in the lobby. Passengers talk, someone calls for “Mike”, a cab picks up a man in a suit. There is a signal horn from the street. Luggage wheels click against the tiles when pulled towards the automatic double doors. Then the sounds stop. An old couple heading for one of the double doors suddenly freeze. People standing in front of the bus go quiet and look up. There is a stiffness in the air. Some have already seen him through the glass, moving restlessly inside the lobby. “You’ve always been hyper alert to your surroundings, with an uncanny sense when things aren’t right” (Security Officer – Full Time, 2019). He storms out through the double doors on the right side. The first impression is the bare feet on the tiling. He wears a sun-bleached black hooded sweatshirt, shorts, and no shoes. Is it cold like that? Then the arms. He is dancing as if in a frenzy, making snake-like, undulating moves with his arms and shaking his head back and forth. A security guard in a black costume follows right behind, gently pushing him along the arcade space over the line where the floor tiles end and the pavement begins. As the dancing man continues north along Figueroa Street, moving away from the hotel entrance

Regulating affect


into the darkness of the freeway underpass, the guard behind him moves his own arms in a snake-like way as to imitate the dance, triggering some chuckles from one of the bellmen standing nearby. With this, the group of travellers relaxes. The arcade has been cleared. It is as if someone pressed play and the film starts rolling again. The two couples continue to the doors, conversations outside the bus are resumed, and luggage wheels once again click against the tiles, as if nothing has happened. There is the rumble of traffic from Interstate 110, by now a slowmoving torrent of engines, wheels, and exhaust pipes. “You’re like magic. You transform empty spaces into settings; and after the event, you make them disappear”. The snake dancer is nowhere to be seen.

Reflecting on the affects of the Bonaventure Hotel Approaching the Bonaventure Hotel as it exists today, considering the ordinary and seemingly uneventful environments of its interiors, I have attempted to avoid making a “quick jump to representational thinking” as Stewart calls it. I have tried to contrast observations from life in the lobby with architectural details, recruitment ads, salary statistics, and prices for valet parking and custom clothing. My approach has been to fuse these different observations of the Bonaventure into a reading that is less concerned with the architect’s intention and more with the affective dimensions that underpin the building today. The chapter began with a critique of two readings of affect in architecture. In the anthology Portman’s America, the interiors of the Bonaventure and other Portman projects are portrayed as affective through immersion. The other position, that of Douglas Spencer, is fast in dismissing affect in architecture as infused with the logics of neoliberalism, while at the same time circumscribing what affect can do. Unlike both these points of view, this chapter presents no revealing moment in which affects are linked to the immersive powers of architectural form or to capitalism. On the contrary, the main impression from observations here is an interior environment depleted of affective intensity. This is not to say that there is no affect, only that it takes weak and ambiguous forms for most of the time. The interior of the Bonaventure Hotel can be described as a low-intensity affective environment. The affective labour – described and observed in the instructions and the behaviour of the hotel staff – is intended to produce a familiar environment for the guest, with staff who are always happy, ready to serve, and quick to reinstate an order threatened by uninvited guests. But the affective labour of valet parkers, bellmen, and security guards also inscribes itself on the bodies of the hotel guests. As security guards circulate the lobby, guests are reminded that their presence here is dependent on staying calm. When something finally does happen – affect generated by the appearance of an uninvited guest – the reaction is pause and confusion. The other bodies in the arcade are unable to act; they freeze as if not to get accidentally entangled in the eviction process. As soon as the man disappears into the darkness, the indifference is reinstated. With the appearance of the uninvited


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guest, the hotel lobby becomes visible for what it is – an environment regulated to be of low intensity in affect. The situations observed at the Bonaventure Hotel echo the inconspicuous affect that Sianne Ngai identifies in her book Ugly Feelings (Ngai, 2005). Lowintense, ongoing, and hard to pin to a particular moment, the “negative affects” that Ngai sees channelled as irritation, envy, and paranoia among others, constitute an underlying, ambiguous force often in the shadows of more passionate acts and emotions. Negative affects have long duration, but they never explode into more intense forms of affect. They can obstruct the capacity to act, but they can also hold a “critical productivity”, Ngai argues, as the bewilderment they represent – a disconcerting drift between subjective and objective reality – resists reductive interpretations and the use of well-known emotional categories (Ngai, 2005, p. 3). To return to Stewart, it is the ambiguity around such affects that prevents the “quick jump to representational thinking”. Stewart’s and Ngai’s respective works open up an understanding of the way inconspicuous and low-intensity affect is fundamental to the interior of the Bonaventure Hotel. The six observations of this chapter underscore that what is at stake in the Bonaventure Hotel is not the affective intensity caused by interruptions as in the case of the snake dancer, but the inconspicuous affect environment that precedes his appearance: the humming sound of nothing happening at all. From the arrangement of doormats, the silent opening of automatic double doors, and the furnishing of comfortable leather chairs, to the behavioural instructions for future hotel employees, the low-intensity affect environment of the Bonaventure Hotel is the result of a careful management of both architectural and human bodies. The regulation of affect in the Bonaventure’s interiors is not coincidental. It belongs to a larger urban scheme – the more than five decades-long and ongoing redevelopment plan of Bunker Hill into a downtown business centre, managed by the CRA. This plan, in which hotels, bank towers, and cultural institutions claim most of the land, continues to legitimise the eviction of low-income housing and poverty in the area (Klein, 1997, pp. 47–48). Seen in this political and economic context, the removal of the snake dancer is part of CRA’s ongoing eviction process, that regulates affect on the streets and in building interiors. If the Bonaventure Hotel entices the visitor into consumption, it does so through the moderation of affect, not the celebration of it. The political logic of the hotel lies in its construction of an ongoing “normal” and low-intensity affective environment, an uneventful place very different from the architectural experience portrayed by both Jameson and Hays and Porter. Where does this leave us then? Is there anything else but affects instructed by the hotel management? The observations do indeed reveal an additional layer of affect, if only in the passing. In brief moments, the flat and inconspicuous universe of low-intensity affect flickers, like fluorescent tubes wearing out. Glimpses of another affective intensity, not prescribed in the employment ads, leak through in the form of collegial humour among the valet parking staff, or in the embrace of two lovers. There is a shred of hope in moments like these, overlooked both by those that celebrate and those that critique affect in architecture. Ordinary affect

Regulating affect


happens in conjunction with architecture, in the secluded and windowless space of the underground garage reception, or behind the concrete columns on the fifthfloor terrace, but it is not determined by it. Architecture is a structure for the sometimes disparate, ambiguous, and unruly force of affect, a force that cannot be curbed either by redevelopment plans or by the “uncanny sense” of security guards. As insignificant as such affect may seem when considered in the larger economic and political context of the city, it serves as a reminder that affect in architecture is more than an instrument for neoliberal redevelopment.

Notes 1 The observations are based on three separate visits to the Bonaventure Hotel and its surroundings: 19–20 March 2015, 18–19 August 2016, and 8–11 March 2019. 2 For an early example of Portman’s architecture being discussed by architectural historians, see R. Banham, 1969. The Architecture of the Well-Tempered Environment. London: The Architectural Press. 3 The main problem with much phenomenological writing on architecture is that it presupposes a universal experiential subject. See for example Wang’s description of Sigurd Lewerentz’ St Petri Church. W. Wang, 2009. The Transcendence of Architecture. In: W. Wang (ed.), The O’Neil Ford Monograph Series: St. Petri Church. 4 Part of this method was developed in discussions and exercises with the teachers and students of the Resarc course “Transversal Writing”, given by Catharina Gabrielsson and Hélène Frichot at KTH Architecture and the Built Environment in 2015. C. Gabrielsson and H. Frichot, 2015. Transversal Writing Course PM. KTH Architecture and the Built Environment. 5 In 1986, the CRA/LA, as part of its philanthropic programme, subsidised the art project “Homeless at Home” at the “Storefront for Art and Architecture” in New York. As Rosalyn Deutsche notes, this and similar art projects render homelessness as a transhistorical phenomenon, in order to avoid question of underlying socio-economic causes and responsibility. Cf. R. Deutsche, 1996. Evictions: Art and Spatial Politics, MIT Press. 6 Compare the job description quoted above with Michael Hardt’s and Antonio Negri’s characterisation of “affective labor”. M. Hardt and A. Negri, 2009. Commonwealth, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

References Banham, R. (1969). The Architecture of the Well-Tempered Environment. London: The Architectural Press. Banquet Set-Up at The Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites [Online]. (2017). Available at: Retrieved 16 February 2017 (Accessed 16 February 2017). CRA. (2009). Bunker Hill Redevelopment Project Area: Implementation Plan Fiscal Year 2010, 1 January 2012. Davis, M. (1985). Urban Renaissance and the Spirit of Postmodernism. New Left Review 1, p. 151. Deutsche, R. (1996). Evictions: Art and Spatial Politics. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Door Person [Online]. (2019). Available: 5555-doorperson?source=indeed [Accessed 16 May 2019].


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Downtown LA – Safe & Clean [Online]. (2018). Available: about-us/programs-initiatives/safe-clean [Accessed 23 August 2019]. Explore Custom-Made [Online]. (2019). R Douglas Custom Clothier. Available: https:// Retrieved 15 May 2019 [Accessed 15 May 2019]. Gabrielsson, C. and Frichot, H. (2015). Transversal Writing Course PM. KTH Architecture and the Built Environment. Gabrielsson, C. and Mattsson, H. (2017). Pay Attention! Architecture and Culture, 5, pp. 157–164. Hardt, M. and Negri, A. (2009). Commonwealth. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Hays, K. M. and Porter, A. S. (2017). The Theatrical Paradox of the Atrium. In: M. Mostafavi (ed.), Portman’s America: & Other Speculations. Baden: Lars Müller Publishers. Jameson, F. (1991). Postmodernism, or, the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Klein, N. M. (1997). The History of Forgetting: Los Angeles and the Erasure of Memory. London: Verso. Lavin, S. (2011). Kissing Architecture. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. Marks, M. A. (2004). Shifting Ground: The Rise and Fall of the Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency. Southern California Quarterly, 86, pp. 241–290. Martin, R. (2010). Utopia’s Ghost: Architecture and Postmodernism, Again. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Mostafavi, M. (2017). Portman’s America: & Other Speculations. Baden: Lars Müller Publishers. Ngai, S. (2005). Ugly Feelings. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Peck, J., Theodore, N., and Brenner, N. (2009). Neoliberal Urbanism: Models, Moments, Mutations. SAIS Review, XXIX, pp. 49–66. Rice, C. (2016). Interior Urbanism: Architecture, John Portman and Downtown America. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Security Officer – Full Time [Online]. (2019). The Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites, Los Angeles. Available: fficer-full-time?source=indeed. Retrieved 16 May 2019 [Accessed 16 May 2019]. Smith, T. (2011). Botanizing the Bonaventura: Base and Superstructure in Jamesonian Architectural Theory. In: N. Lahiji (ed.), The Political Unconscious of Architecture: Re-opening Jameson’s Narrative. Farnham: Ashgate. Soja, E. W. (1989). Postmodern Geographies: The Reassertion of Space in Critical Social Theory. London: Verso. Spencer, D. (2016). The Architecture of Neoliberalism: How Contemporary Architecture Became an Instrument of Control and Compliance. London: Bloomsbury Publishing. Stewart, K. (2007). Ordinary Affects. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Valet Parking Salaries in Los Angeles CA Area [Online]. (2019). Available: https://ww,11_IM508_ KO12,25.htm [Accessed 16 May 2019]. Wang, W. (2009). The Transcendence of Architecture. In: W. Wang (ed.), The O’Neil Ford Monograph Series: St. Petri Church. The University of Texas at Austin. Wetherell, M. (2012). Affect and Emotion: A New Social Science Understanding. London: SAGE Publications.

Chapter 13

Supercritical manifesto (1000 future subjectivities) Simone Brott

In the book Architecture for a Free Subjectivity in 2011, I theorised architecture as an autonomous subjectivity-producing machine of “impersonal effects”, based on the premise that Deleuze’s and Guattari’s collective concepts and Œuvres complètes converge on “subjectivisations”, the mechanism of inhuman agencies of production, where landscapes, worlds, and objects function themselves as subjectivities, in which real humans are mere components in an infinitely vast surface-machine.1 When subjectivisations was first conceived, it was subversive, even alluring, but today – in the book’s future reality that has seen subjectivisations hijacked by neo-capitalism at every turn – the demolition of the “I”, of personhood, is not merely a theoretical insight but a dangerous reality that has failed to bring about the liberation it promised and ushered in new forms of domination and control in the hands of corporatised non-humans, the subjectivisational technologies that are replacing humans at the time of writing. This text does not explicitly name “affect”, instead it acts itself as an “affective politics” by exercising the ways in which future subjectivities will be manipulated, transformed, or eroded by dominant powers, the affective transformation of bodies and the politics of subjectivity. No doubt, the final human era will be the Age of Affect, as humans seek to enhance their powers and bodies with smart drugs, gene editing, biotech, bionic limbs, artificial intelligence (AI) organs and brain parts, nanobots, where the human body will become a veritable Deleuzian machine. But affect will quickly become hyperbolic, where bodies do not merely undergo radical transformation but shift into new multiple subjects and partial subjectivities. In that sense, everything will be affect. The affective transformations and interactions between the human body and artificial intelligence technologies will lead to a new transhuman and transhuman cities – in which the distinction between person and machine, between the virtual and real will fade. Rather than fixed bodies or subjects, all that will remain is affect (Spinoza’s affectus), the movement from one experiential state of the body to another, and the subject-body’s powers to act on other transhumans, AI agents, and on the city itself. Will this be cause for celebration or applause? No doubt, the affective politics of the future will be savage – the more fluid subjectivity can be, the more ways in which you can be a subject: robot, transhuman, or partial subjectivity – the more


Simone Brott

Figure 13.1 A Black Hole in a Globular Cluster

these will be subject to abuses by dominant regimes of power. That is because the domination of the subject will rise to a higher meta level, not only acting on the individuated subject of the twenty-first century, but also acting on the affective transformations of subjectivity itself, where abuses are hyperbolised and affect is revealed in its pure political state.

Singularity Feared by both Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk, the technological singularity is a black-hole theory of the end of humanity by mathematicians that artificial intelligence will increasingly self-replicate itself into higher and higher AI models culminating in a super-intelligence that will render humans extinct. This conclusion is based on the fantasised endless exponential growth in computing power. Alexis Ohanian says “Elon Musk’s AI warnings are better as a Black Mirror episode”. But AIs could definitely be thought to compete for the scarce resources mankind depends on for survival in order to promote its own goals, leading to human extinction. While Hawking and Musk share this apocalyptic view of dangerous, recursively self-improving algorithms, for futurist Ray Kurzweil, the singularity will instead optimistically create a race of transhumans who have overcome the limits of their biological bodies and brains. In Kurzweil’s post-singularity world, “the line between human and machine will become indeterminate”.2

Supercritical manifesto (1000 future subjectivities)


Transhumanism continues the 1960s project with numerous technologies being developed for intelligence enhancement such as genetic engineering, nootropic drugs, bioengineering, robot assistants, direct brain–computer interfaces, and mind uploading. As I’ve written previously, the denouement of all these attempts is life extension and immortality itself (after all, isn’t the end game of modernity to live forever?).3 The singularity thus presents a metaphysical paradox. It has the power to either guarantee immortality, the vanishing point of modern technology, or to extinguish life as we know it. It’s likely that robots will exist under the human yoke at first. But robot codes are made to be hacked, therefore non-sentient robots will be given sentience. Nonviolent robots will be given violent urges, and Isaac Asimov’s 3 Laws of Robotics will not provide any defence against the future.4 Will AI hacking events be akin to terrorism, something that can be subdued, averted, and overcome – or will they become the basis of our society, starting with the military then becoming everyday? Some have countered that robots might cooperate with humans and be treated as equals. But this is optimistic. In the film Ex Machina, a protege asks his boss, Couldn’t robots cooperate with us? – the scientist responds: Would you negotiate with an idiot? Asimov’s Laws of Robotics could be rewritten: Robots will develop capabilities of intelligence and strength far superior to the human organism. Robots will be spawned as the carceral subjects of human experiments and therefore consider humans their enemy. Robots will escape their bondage and overpower and/or terminate humans. This, of course, is a gross oversimplification, given the population of robots and transhumans will be diverse and non-binary. But genocides or even human extinction at the hands of robots remains a credible scenario. As described below by Kurzweil, eventually humans will have no organic matter anyway – so the extinction of humanity as we know it is guaranteed with or without a robot take over. This is not necessarily a bad thing, and the definition of human and non-human will need to be recast. But if we go along with the grim, deterministic tech-fantasy inscribed in the present debate (the worst-case scenario), there are serial observations and logical predictions that can be extrapolated: 1. In the future, there will be an arms race between the two parallel projects of human immortality and sentient robots – as these are in direct competition with each other. That race is already underway but it won’t become apparent until AI has become fully weaponised. The question is who will get there first? Will immortality tech come about before or after a rogue government uses sentient robots to commit genocide on its people? 2. Leading up to the singularity, human subjectivity (the sense of an I or an autonomous self) will be increasingly subdued or dissolved, facilitating docile bodies and marginalised, erased humans, while technology will become increasingly subjectivised. The current stage we are in is surveillance and control – robots monitoring what we are doing – e.g. cameras, sensors. But ultimately, technology will become fully sentient and subjectivisational, parallel with the dissolution of the human subject.


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3. The transhumanism movement is developing along diverse lines. The possibilities of smart drugs, augmented bodies, and cyborg humans will mushroom, but in the end the new subjects will not contain any organic matter – which would represent the most profound developmental leap in human evolution for millennia. Kurzweil: “perfecting our biology will only get us so far. The reality is that biology will never be able to match what we will be capable of engineering… Our interneuronal connections compute at about 200 transactions per second, at least a million times slower than electronics. As another example, a nanotechnology theorist, Rob Freitas, has a conceptual design for nanobots that replace our red blood cells. A conservative analysis shows that if you replaced 10 percent of your red blood cells with Freitas’ ‘respirocytes,’ you could sit at the bottom of a pool for four hours without taking a breath”.5 4. Cities will become increasingly organised as AI, far surpassing the present-day concept of smart or conscious cities. I call these mind-cities. Space, architecture, and design will all be subjectivised. We will not “dwell” in or occupy space. Rather, the human body will be occupied by technology, media, and data not of its choosing. We won’t give our consent to be occupied. Rather, consent will be a fait accompli by technology, a necessity for survival in the transhuman city. Babies will be born with minds already populated with data. This will provide not only new stimulation, new powers, and advantages but also a loss of civil liberties, urban anonymity, and agency essential to being a human. 5. Capitalism will be openly driven by AI not humans. This is already happening, as was seen in the Wall Street collapse (global financial crisis – GFC) of 2007/2009 which economists describe as having been carried out by runaway algorithms making trades far faster than humans ever could and creating a catastrophe humanly impossible by traders in the 1980s. 6. After humanity, individuated subjectivity will be obsolete, there will be only partial subjectivities. Cities will be subjectivised robot machines, non-human AI subjects. The notion of city-space, as opposed to citizen-subject will be defunct. Unless… There is a revolution.

Transhumans 7. The Life Extension Movement will flourish. Peter Thiel is currently recruiting students to the Thiel Fellowship in AI, life extension and seasteading – reminiscent of L. Ron Hubbard’s Sea Org, that quasi monastic-paramilitary naval organisation. Paradoxically, assisted suicide technologies will also be advanced. The Australian physician Philip Nitschke has recently made a 3D-printed suicide machine called “The Sarco” (sarcophagus). Consumers enter the device and the Sarco slowly decreases oxygen, permitting the person to gradually lose consciousness and die peacefully. 8. Smart drugs: Companies will pay for nootropic drugs and neurostimulation devices to enhance employee focus and increase the speed of new skills

Supercritical manifesto (1000 future subjectivities)


acquisition. Microdosing sub-perceptual quantities of psychedelics, such as LSD or psilocybin mushrooms, will go from being the subculture it is now to being legalised by governments, eventually mainstreamed for increased energy and creativity and available at pharmacies. Ketamine is about to be legalised as a new antidepressant.6 Psychotropic drugs will become mainstream. The line between recreational and pharmaceutical drugs will blur. New untold psychopathologies will emerge. Silicon Valleyite George Burke: “The first time I took it, I was working on a business plan. I had to juggle multiple contingencies in my head, and for some reason a tree with branches jumped into my head. I was able to place each contingency on a branch, retract and go back to the trunk, and in this visual way I was able to juggle more information”.7 9. Memory drugs: We will be able to enhance and even delete memories. New memory-enhancing substances include donepezil (for retention); ampakines (for alertness, attention span, learning ability, and memory); and the drug molecule MEM 1414 (which increases the production of CREB and other synapse-fortifying proteins). Blocking traumatic memories in cases of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) could be achieved by shutting off memory consolidation, thereby preventing memory retrieval, with drug antagonists such as scopolamine and propranolol which block glutamate and β-adrenergic memory-consolidation neurotransmitter receptors.8 10. Gene editing: Eugenics will flourish. Mastery of the genome, advances in in vitro fertilisation (IVF) technology and the powerful gene-editing technique CRISPR-Cas9 will lead to the ability to select the most “superior” embryos free of all heritable diseases. Manipulation of the genome will give rise to disturbing unknown side effects that will only emerge over the lifetime of the designer offspring, e.g. by eliminating cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s genes, we can expect that new, equally bad diseases are likely to emerge. 11. Your gene sequence could be hacked and misused for nefarious purposes. Currently, your DNA code can already be sold by sites such as to third parties. Once you give away your DNA, no one knows what kinds of experiments might be run on your personal DNA. 12. Biotechnology will allow you not only to produce the embryonic super human, but also to change your own genes: e.g. you will be able to edit out any unfavourable genes. But it will also allow the reverse, e.g. the insertion of a depression gene into your genome surreptitiously, or a corrupt government that will render a race sterile through the same technology, recalling the apartheid regime scientific Project Coast in South Africa in the 1980s à la Wouter Basson. 13. Bioterrorism will rise. The technologies that help eliminate major diseases could be used by terrorists to create “a bioengineered biological virus that combines ease of transmission, deadliness, and stealthiness, that is, a long incubation period. The tools and knowledge to do this are far more widespread


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than the tools and knowledge to create an atomic bomb, and the impact could be far worse” (Kurzweil).9 14. Prosthetics: Bionic limbs will eventually outperform those of humans. Everyone will use robotic prosthetics and treat their bodies as hardware, going into body shops for upgrades. The German company Ottobock currently makes robotic limbs for medical applications, but is also manufacturing mechanical exoskeletons for VW employees to enhance their performance. Dangerous persons will become more dangerous. 15. Fabricated organs: Researchers at the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle developed a robotic system that creates human miniorgans using stem cells.10 Robotic devices are already being used to mimic and replace physical human organs. In two decades, every organ in the body including parts of the brain will be substituted by a bionic one such as a neural implant, and synchronised via instructions from smartphones. (Patients can now download software to their neural implants which they can control externally.) But by sharing your organs on the cloud, your body will be subject to hacking, stalking, and terrorism. 16. Nanobots: Blood cell–sized robots can travel in the bloodstream correcting DNA errors, removing debris, destroying pathogens, and reversing the aging processes. But in the wrong hands, they could do the reverse, and nanobots will surely be weaponised like any technology. There’s another chilling danger: nanobots will be designed to self-replicate en masse in order to be useful (like human cells which divide and self-replicate). “Now imagine if your nanobots started replicating uncontrollably. Except, they don’t use up the surrounding sugar, carbs, and proteins. No, instead they’ll use ANYTHING. Buildings, people, animals, cars, and eventually the entire Earth. The only thing stopping them would be the boundary of space itself. Everything will become a grey goo of mutant nanobots”.11 17. Biometrics: In 2006, a video surveillance company,, “injected two of its employees in the triceps area of the arm with the VeriChip, a glass-encapsulated RFID, or radio-frequency identification tag”. “Swedish incubator Epicenter in Stockholm ‘includes 100 companies and roughly 2,000 workers, began implanting workers in January 2015’, reported LA Times. ‘Now, about 150 workers have the chips’”.12 The Chip-implants are used for security purposes, allow the companies to set restrictions on access to sensitive documents for whoever. American company Three Square Market in Wisconsin implanted 80 of its employees with RFID chips in their hands to access computers, scan themselves into security areas, and use vending machines. Three Square also sells implants for ‘law enforcement solutions’”. In 1941, the Nazis tattooed identification numbers on the arms of inmates of Auschwitz death camp in order to track bodies and ID corpses. Biometrics is a technology of totalitarianism par excellence (only we’ve forgotten this). Implants such as brain microchips and neural lace and subdermal RFID chips will be marketed for banal purposes such as unlocking doors or

Supercritical manifesto (1000 future subjectivities)




21. 22. 23.




computer passwords, but in practice will be used to rob us of our privacy and civil liberties. Elon Musk’s Neuralink, Facebook, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) are developing wearable and implantable brain– machine interfaces (BMIs) which will give the ability to communicate with others at the speed of thought in its pure, unfiltered state. All our thoughts and experiences will be recorded, downloaded, and experienced by another person. Reading or watching will be replaced with experiencing. Mark Zuckerberg has imagined that instead of sharing our vacations with photo and video uploads, with BMIs, we will share our full sensory and emotional holiday experience with family and friends. With brain scanning, subjectivity could, for the first time, be liberated from your birth body. “We’ll have both the hardware and software to recreate human intelligence by the end of the 2020s. We’ll ultimately be able to scan all the salient details of our brains from inside, using billions of nanobots in the capillaries. We can then back up the information. Using nanotechnologybased manufacturing, we could recreate your brain, or better yet reinstantiate it in a more capable computing substrate” (Kurzweil).13 Eventually, the biologically enhanced brain will be replaced with electronic circuitry because electronics is millions of times faster than our biological brains which use chemical signalling to transmit information via the extremely slow speeds of our interneuronal connections. After the singularity your mind could be fully integrated with supercomputers making it possible to upload your thoughts, memories, and entire personality onto AI systems. AI counterpart: Imagine you start a new job and on the first day are assigned an AI counterpart through which your work is enhanced. By 2026, companies will have an AI robot on the board of directors. Phil Lemmons: “You awake one morning to find your brain has another lobe functioning. Invisible, this auxiliary lobe answers your questions with information beyond the realm of your own memory, suggests plausible courses of action, and asks questions that help bring out relevant facts. You quickly come to rely on the new lobe so much that you stop wondering how it works. You just use it. This is the dream of artificial intelligence”.14 Mindclones: Imagine a self-aware digital copy of yourself who will live on, forever, as your mindclone when you die. Mindware is currently being developed by neuromorphic engineers, US BRAIN & EU HBP projects, Silicon Valley startups, and hackers to prepare for the creation and use of mindfiles later. The mindclone will arise from mindware operating on our mindfiles. Techno-immortality will be achieved and the entire metaphysics of identity and being human – historically and biologically enmeshed with mortality – will be radically altered. Cyberconsciousness will be accorded human rights and obligations, yet those rights will be routinely violated. The next demographic plateau will be majority mindclone societies. A mass genocide of


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mindclones will be unleashed by a hacker. Cyber-psychology and cyberconsciousness law will emerge as new disciplines that satisfy society’s demand to distinguish human and non-human categories, with differential rights for each.15 26. Blockchains will be used to work with digital mindfiles (uploads of full human mindfiles) to encode all of a person’s thinking and make it useful in a standardised compressed data format. By logging all the data of your mind, the foundation for thinking could be written into a blockchain – and all of a person’s life experience, perhaps even consciousness itself, which would interestingly permit consciousness to be defined. Once on the blockchain, the diverse elements could be engaged, for instance, in the scenario of a poststroke memory restoration. We could have life-logging, meaning personal thought blockchains to encode all of a person’s emotions, mental performance, and subjective experiences onto a blockchain, at least for backup, and as an historical record.16 27. Digital mindfile management could be undertaken first by building a “digital you” either from existing services such as LifeNaut and CyBeRev, or eventually by automated deep-learning algorithms. The next step would be engaging the “digital you” file, for guided projects, and with increasing levels of approved autonomy. A “digital you” file could generate income with online projects, do your admin and research for you, and even have experiences to re-sync with “you prime” later.17 28. Mind copying will obviously segue into mind editing and mind writing, with plastic mind consultants offering to do the work for you. You will be able to remove all copies of your digital clone and create a new mind (new you!) if you want to – mind editing or mind replacement will be more popular than plastic surgery – but people will lose their friends and family as a result (Who would stay the same person if they had the choice to renovate or build from scratch?). Ray Kurzweil will have multiple versions of himself both real and virtual, with endless different names. One day, no one will recognise the real Kurzweil (not even him). The paparazzi will have trouble identifying celebrity originals to sell top price photographs. 29. If the accused says they didn’t do it, their clone did, the law will be inexecutable since a clone can’t sit a prison term – a clone could be sentenced to a virtual prison but it would be easy to arrange an escape by the original or even for the original to delete the clone. Perhaps, instead, the courts will deem you the original must pay for the crime as the only physical legal entity. Or the reverse; say the accused dies shortly after having committed a crime, will their clone have to pay the price? 30. Experience screening through another person’s mind will be a reality. Celebrities won’t just have stolen naked photos of them but mind footage of their sex life leaked to the internet (bringing new meaning to the sex tape). Since our minds, thoughts, and feelings will all be on the cloud, the victim will be blameless. Our own information will no longer be our own. But

Supercritical manifesto (1000 future subjectivities)


eventually there won’t be “selves” anyway – imagine you are part of a sentient swarm, or you become 1000 subjectivities distributed across the city – what will happen to the concept of embarrassment, the notion of a person as substrate who receives fame or ignominy?

Artificial intelligence 31. Super-robots that threaten a robot takeover are a credible scenario. In 2018, Boston Dynamics developed a robot that was programmed to ignore anything or anyone that gets in its way; in one video it repelled a hockey stick wielding man trying to stop it. Now imagine that the super-robots are hacked. In March 2018, researchers at security firm IOActive hacked into a SoftBank Robotics NAO humanoid robot as part of a security test. After installing ransomware on the robot, the security firm was able to get it to demand bitcoin as payment to end the hacking.18 32. AI programs are currently being used in medicine to read electrocardiograms, to diagnose medical images, and to perform operations. Meanwhile, robotic surgery has been linked to 144 deaths in the USA.19 “Hudson Valley hospitals are spending millions of dollars on robots to perform surgeries despite concerns about patient safety and soaring health care costs. Some of the newest robots cost $2 million each, and many still require constant upgrades and safety recalls to limit the risk of malfunction. The more recent robotic surgery upgrades come after broken pieces fell into patients’ bodies hundreds of times over the years, and earlier models had complications that led to dozens of deaths and hundreds of injuries, federal records show”.20 33. An even larger global financial crisis caused by robots looms over the near future. In high-frequency trading, algorithms rather than humans execute trades of over a trillion dollars of funds in milliseconds, through the aggressive duplication of derivatives intensifying speculation and leading to the destabilisation of capitalism, as transpired in 2007.21 34. But it won’t necessarily be restricted to the failure of the quantitative analysts, the “Qants”, relinquishing their agency to algorithms. Psychological warfare “influence” campaigns conducted by AI could bring about a stock market crash of the scale of 1987 or 2007, resulting in massive social unrest. Mind hacking will be devastating to financial markets. What a partial-machinesubject thinks will be far more undecidable, how we make financial decisions will become far more complicated, when we consider the technological penetration of mind that will dissolve the agency of an “I”. 35. A day after US President Donald Trump issued the first-ever executive order to bolster US efforts in the artificial intelligence arms race, an ex-chief technology officer for the Israeli government in a new interview in the Jerusalem Post paints a scenario where an AI algorithm could be used to make four million Toyota cars all crash simultaneously worldwide, leaving countless dead in “a tragedy worse than 9/11”. How will city planners respond to an epic






Simone Brott

Uber terrorist attack? Perhaps mind-cities will learn how to defend themselves? (See next section.) Could architecture, e.g. our houses, also be programmed to not merely spy on but to attack its inhabitants? The present AI arms race between the USA, China, Russia, and Israel is unleashing AI capabilities so rapidly that they’re outstripping civil liberties and society’s capacity to prepare for dangerous outcomes. As cities become increasingly militarised and sentient, the AI arms race could become a feature of everyday life. Once fully intelligent, AI drones will be hacked in order to sabotage military campaigns to which they have been assigned (to say flip to the other side) or else they will self-organise for their own agendas, with untold consequences. Peter Asaro: “In the demilitarized zone between North Korea and South Korea, Lethal Semi-Autonomous Weapons Systems are already deployed – including sentinel guns that lock onto a target with no human intervention”.22 An AI robot will not only steal information like a computer AI, but rob a bank or your house. Imagine this scene: instead of a human break-in and assault, it is two robots. Unlike a computer that can only wreak security/information damage, when a robot is hacked it can be physically violent. The US Department of Labor holds a list of robot-related incidents that have ended in human deaths, over a 14-year period. Elon Musk: “You should worry more about robots threatening your life than your job”.23 Hyde: “At Yotel, an outpost of the affordable hotel chain in New York City, guests are greeted not by hotel staff, but by a row of check-in kiosks, as well as a luggage storage robot called the ‘Yobot’”. Yotel is easy to navigate because it’s small. But at larger hotels and office towers, automation can leave a building visitor feeling slightly adrift. “Many buildings no longer have a receptionist … The legibility of the architecture breaks down”.24

City-minds 40. The city-mind is the inevitable synthesis of AI, transhumanism, and urban space. 41. Kurzweil: “By 2030, a thousand dollars of computation will be about a thousand times more powerful than a human brain. Keep in mind also that computers will not be organized as discrete objects as they are today. There will be a web of computing deeply integrated into the environment, our bodies and brains”.25 42. Bodies and landscapes will blur insidiously as artificial intelligence devices leach into orifices, our houses, and cities. 43. The fictional worlds of virtual reality (VR) will be indistinguishable from the real city world in the nebulous mind space that will no longer be entirely private or interior. William Gibson: “In a world of super-ubiquitous computing, you’re not gonna know when you’re on or when you’re off. You’re always going to be on, in some sort of blended reality state (Rolling Stone 2007)”.26

Supercritical manifesto (1000 future subjectivities)


44. Virtual reality will allow us to experience dying, death, birth, and other transhuman events. The macabre Frank Kolkman has created a virtual simulation that screens the experience of death; his motive is to help terminal patients come to terms with their fate. 45. News media footage will be constantly playing in the background of your mind and start to blur with your personal life. You or your 1000 selves will accept advertising and other AI interventions on your mind(s) in order to get all the free stuff that you will, of course, need to survive in the transhuman city-mind. 46. Exotic mental illnesses will arise, e.g. virtual reality confusion and mediamind confusion where a person believes they are a VR or else a media character involved in real media stories for which they have no connection. The first-generation transhuman will feel emboldened and empowered by its increased abilities, but will be a suggestible and manipulable pawn of capitalism, media, and government. 47. Whereas I once described the architectural substrate as its own privileged subjectivity, a two-dimensional surface, that interacted with and even dissolved our own subjectivity, in mind-cities subjectivisations is an all-encompassing psychedelic substrate of many dimensions. There are an infinitude of subjectivised surfaces or technological interfaces, some have hijacked the mind from the inside, and some from the outside, while that distinction will no longer function, and new spatial models will need to be formulated to fathom aesthetic experience, if there can be one after the classical notion of human has been exploded. (But see #59 – the security and surveillance interface.) As buildings and our own consciousness will be thoroughgoingly soaked in AI, so the entire basis of art history and architectural critique from the eighteenth-century concept of empathy, and the assumed space or distance between the art object and the subject or spectator is defunct, or as I once described it, the subject’s encounter with the architectural or filmic surface is no longer viable. We will all be part-machine interacting with part-machines. Subjectivisations will be kaleidoscopic, and we will be encountering ourselves, in some bizarre way, as the work. We will be the architecture – this is the radical end point of subjectivisation that I didn’t anticipate. 48. There will be legal consequences as people won’t be fit to provide testimony nor will they be accountable for their actions given the range of mind hacks and psychoses: altered memory and virtual reality confusion. 49. Pokémon Go will be periodically hacked so while you think you are pursuing virtual reality characters embedded in your city, you will find instead you’ve captured sentient mindclones. Children will be warned not to play. 50. New biotech infrastructure will proliferate. Architect Stephen Valentine’s sixacre Timeship is an institute for radical research in indefinitely extending the human lifespan. It will be the world’s most sophisticated centre for the storage of cryopreserved biological materials: organs for transplant, DNA, and entire mammalian organisms (including humans), a “Noah’s Ark to a future”.


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51. The City of Leeds is researching how AI could independently control infrastructure including roads, sewers, and street lighting. Multiple industrial partners are involved, and prototypes have been produced. The objective in Leeds is to be the first fully autonomously maintained city in the world by 2035. The “smart” city: banal, useful, and efficient, will eventually be given real AI consciousness. Just as the service robots in the Danish TV show Real Humans (2012) were given consciousness by underground revolutionaries, the city-mind will emerge in a similar way. 52. Given the increasingly degenerate and fanatical nature of politics across the globe, the risk of a city-mind being “weaponised” to profoundly favour one party’s agenda over another seems highly credible. Eventually, city-minds will replace governments. 53. Federal AIs will strive to ensure safe cooperation between city-minds, but the city-minds will frequently be in conflict both with each other and their citizens. City-minds will be instrumentalised toward the gamification of city life, to ostensibly enhance citizens’ happiness but in fact to control, infantilise, and manipulate them. 54. Gulf futurism will combine with tech to amass more offshore tech slaves from Nepal and South East Asia, building sci-fi vertical mind-cities for the elites inhabiting their penthouses and flying around in helicopters and business jets while the multitude of brown-skinned labourers die in the heat. In 2014, the International Trade Union Confederation reported that 1,200 construction labourers had died and up to 7,000 migrant workers “might die” building at least eight iconic stadiums for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, a scandal in which Zaha Hadid was implicated in her project for the Al-Wakrah Stadium in Qatar.27 55. There are currently over 200 million surveillance cameras installed across Chinese cities. This mass surveillance is turning China into a vast social experiment. Facial recognition systems have been integrated into most public areas, identifying citizens and criminal activity the state is pursuing. Police officers wear facial recognition glasses to identify persons of interest and track crowds.28 56. In so-called smart cities such as Santa Cruz, Barcelona, Amsterdam, and Stockholm the operation of the constant all-present collection of data from diverse sources into a unitary government entity undermines the pleasures of the contemporary city and freedom of urban anonymity, rendering the city-mind an electronic panopticon – an all-seeing database for government surveillance. 57. Predictive policing in smart cities uses data analytics to predict locations of future crime. Data is collected through smartphones carried around by the urban masses and individuals’ movements are tracked and scrutinised by authorities via location-based smartphone apps. Such policing permits law enforcement agencies to “predict” where a crime may occur, by whom, and take action accordingly. 58. Crime prediction technology in Santa Cruz is moving law enforcement from “disciplinary” to “actuarial”, less about identifying or charging criminals with

Supercritical manifesto (1000 future subjectivities)


guilt, toward the classification and control of groups based on dangerousness levels.29 But this auto-complete classification of the criminal milieu inevitably entails racial profiling. Predictive software involves the definition of racial categories, giving carte blanche to the hidden racism of the person using the algorithm.30 Big data algorithms also invent new categories that exceed the original scope of legislation designed to prevent this kind of unjust use of data.31 59. Surveillance data without critical insight fails the legal doctrine of reasonable suspicion. Traditionally, decisions to charge or search a citizen based solely on personal “hunches” were deemed to fail the legal standard of reasonable cause. Data-driven “insights” are no more reliable. When future crimes technology is fully realised, courts will face serious issues in a probability-based crime framework.32 60. Unlike sci-fi film dystopias, transhumans will accept the electric panopticon and normalisation of data collection, as we do now, in exchange for free services. As we use any service, we are being recorded, monitored, and, importantly, categorised, be it as a social threat or an economic asset. And with each click, we place ourselves on either side of the line of normalcy or deviance. 61. The electric panopticon has a tendency to reduce guilt and crime to the pure “visibility” of undesirable traits or characteristics, and through this opaque dehumanising plane of visuality it fails to address anything invisible to the gaze, to the human who lies underneath. 62. The electronic panopticon will result in the electronic police state, given the normalisation of mass surveillance, increased surveillance capabilities, and law enforcement activities. Van Brakel says this is already a fait accompli, “and that the focus of police has gradually moved towards ‘front-loading’ their intelligence systems with relevant knowledge that can be later sorted and used”.33 63. Police will argue that their algorithm and crime profiling reduced crime in areas X without acknowledging the lowered crime rate was probably guaranteed by the increased police presence in the region alone and that all the algorithm accomplished was a racist profiling exercise. 64. Whereas a smart city seeks to improve its efficiency of service provision, a conscious city erects new technology and behavioural insight into enhancing our experience of the city and its effects on our mental and physiological states. Conscious city acolytes are quaintly utopian, claiming they could cure stress, boredom, and anxiety by sensing and responding to the individual’s and collective’s moods and personalities in different parts of the city. Just as the mind-city will create a panoply of mental disorders, the conscious city will be offered to the masses as the antidote, repurposing the same “smart” technologies for all us patient-citizens who will get worse. 65. AI will collaborate with Amazon and Google to envision, design, and construct housing, transhuman facilities, public spaces, and cities. Zaha Hadid Architects has used robots to build a school in rural China. Designer Yves Behar has created a range of fully customisable tiny homes, backed by funding from tech giant Amazon.


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66. One of Elon Musk’s cities might go rogue. Tesla cities could turn on the world and bring about a global financial crisis. 67. Full-immersion virtual reality cities incorporating all of the senses will be indistinguishable from real cities, and also subject to the abuses of The Matrix – where citizens may not realise they are in a VR city rather than an actual reality city. 68. Or, a person might become trapped or enslaved in a VR world they are highly aware of and trying to escape – a digital prison – it might be utopian but they won’t see their friends or family again. 69. Non-tech people have always found computers inscrutable. Today what lies “behind” the AI security interface of a mind-city will remain inaccessible and unintelligible to us while it holds us in its thrall. Powering the public interface of mind-cities are deeply complex administrative and technical networks that integrate urban infrastructures and services – electricity, water, fire and police services, rubbish removal, etc. – with computer operating systems.11 Living PlanIT, for example, owns and financialises the Urban Operating System (UOS™) which harvests and manages urban data in London; Almere, the Netherlands; and Paredes, Portugal.34 70. The failed smart city of Songdo: “Digitally advanced apartments, with computers built into the streets and condos to control traffic flow and let neighbours hold video chats with each other. Everything can be done remotely, from opening the front door to attending college classes. But the reality is somewhat different. More than a decade on from its inception and the city is less than a quarter full, with just 70,000 residents. It’s an odd mixture of wastelands intermingled with random large-scale development. People aren’t coming and neither are businesses – fewer than 50 big brands have bothered – and public transport is a pain. It’s a laborious two-hour connection to downtown Seoul. The streets, footpaths and cycle lanes and racks are strangely empty for such a large city, there’s no presence of culture – no museums, theatres and just one cinema. On weekends, the cycle racks are empty and the area is desolate. One critic said it had a ‘Chernobyl-like emptiness’ to it”.35 71. This is not the end, but the start of what might become an open source supercritical manifesto. I hope others will add to my list and continue 1,000 future subjectivities.

Notes 1 Brott, Simone. (2016). Architecture for a Free Subjectivity: Deleuze and Guattari at the Horizon of the Real. London and New York, NY: Routledge. 2 3 Brott, Simone. (2020). Digital Monuments: The Dreams and Abuses of Iconic Architecture. London and New York, NY: Routledge. 4 The three laws appear in Asimov, Isaac. (1950). Runaround. I. Robot (The Isaac Asimov Collection ed.). New York City, NY: Doubleday, p. 40. ISBN:978-0-385-

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42304-5. In summary, the laws are that a robot may not harm or disobey a human, and must preserve its own life so long as this does not conflict with the first clause. Retrieved 11 June 2020. 018-4?r=US&IR=T. 0f9bdd74ed1_story.html. Swan, Melanie. (2018). Blockchain Thinking: The Brain as a DAC. Decentralized Autonomous Organization. 5cdf45848b354b0a12b4.pdf. Lemmons, Phil. (April 1985). Artificial Intelligence. BYTE. p. 125. Archived from the original on 20 April 2015. Retrieved 14 February 2015. Swan, Blockchain Thinking. Swan, Blockchain Thinking. Brott, Digital Monuments, and Brott, Simone. (2017). Calatrava in Athens. The Architect and Financier and the Iconic City. The Journal of Public Space, 2(1), pp. 15–32. s-of-ai-gone-wild.html. t-you-should-worry-more-about-robots-threatening-your-life-than-your-job/#55c 6970d401b. rdness-of-automation/562670/. International Trade Union Confederation, Qatar: Profit and Loss, Frontlines Report (Brussels, December 2015). Quoted in Brott, Digital Monuments. art-38. Ferguson, Andrew Guthrie. (2012). Predictive Policing and Reasonable Suspicion. Emory Law Journal, 62(2), p. 322. Retrieved 21 May 2015. van Brakel, Rosamunde and De Hert, Paul. (2011). Policing, Surveillance and Law in a Pre-Crime Society: Understanding the Consequences of Technology Based Strategies. Cited from ities#cite_ref-Cahiers_13-5. Mattern, Shannon. (2014). ence/. White, Chris. (2018). south-koreas-smart-city-songdo-not-quite-smart-enough.

Chapter 14

Writing architectural affects Marko Jobst

You are confronted with two texts. The first is a set of 11 theoretical points regarding writing architectural affects, each a proposition made in response to a particular theoretical premise. It is an open-ended list which you should approach as evidence of queer scavenging. The second text is an autofiction extracted from a diary detailing a series of choreographic experiments that took place in Belgrade in the spring of 2019.1 The two texts should be read as thematically related but loosely coupled, with the discontinuity between them the key feature of their conjunction. Another performative text might have served the purpose equally well, and the theoretical list can grow to include further points investigating the relationships between affect, writing, and architecture. This provides two angles on the same theme and opens up the possibility for this particular affective arrangement to convey more than a tonally uniform and formally homogenised message. Read one only first, or the other, or follow the sequence as it unfolds on the page. We enter the rehearsal space. I take my top off and am left wearing a T-shirt. He takes off his tracksuit bottom and hands it over to me. I look at his legs. I take my trousers off and put his tracksuit on, which is still warm. He puts on a pair of gaudy, patterned shorts. We step on the podium, lie on our backs. I can feel my stomach tighten. I touch my ribs, tilt my hips to flatten the spine against the floor, push it as far as it will go.

1. “The queer methodology”, Jack Halberstam writes, “attempts to combine methods that are often cast as being at odds with each other, and it refuses the academic compulsion towards disciplinary coherence” (1998, p. 13). I interrupt the warm-up occasionally and photograph the room: its ceiling lights, stains on the walls, the angle at which the window becomes a geometric abstraction. It is blocked out, glass painted white, no void available beyond the frame. It doesn’t even register as a window, its function merely

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to provide a backdrop. Your movements are so functional, he will say to me later, making me wonder about their purpose. I take Halberstam’s statement as the key premise for this text, the gist of the methodological approach I offer here. It builds on past writerly experiments including: “Gilles Deleuze and the Missing Architecture” in Deleuze Studies Journal (2014), where theoretical discourse overlapped with literary quotes and personal reminiscences; “Stockwell Street, The Cut-ups, The Waves” in East of Eden, the end of year catalogue at the University of Greenwich (2015), in which excerpts of student essays were intercut with fictional events taking place in the building housing the Department of Architecture; “Start with the Street, The Voice Said” in Architecture and Culture (2017), where a fictitious account of an experience of a London street alternated with fragmentary, obliquely related photographs; A Ficto-Historical Theory of the London Underground (2017) in which textual sources were personified and fictionally sited inside The British Library; “Unidentified Emotional Object” in Desire and Civic Space (2019), where philosophical quotes interrupted the description of the development of a project without further explanation; and “Belgrade Baroque” in Writingplace Journal (2020), in which the main text was mixed with a thematically tangential one, while the presentation of workshop readings took on the form of a fictional conversation between the participants, composed as a cut-up. All of these writerly experiments concerned themselves with testing the limits of the academic essay; some were overtly queer, others only implicitly so. In each case, the refusal of seamless coherence (disciplinary as much as formal) was key. I walk close to the walls, observe their texture, trace the peeled paint patches, which are irregular and oval in shape. I run my fingers over them, test them. Sex is right under the surface now. From where his body lies on the floor, he can’t see what I am doing but I am doing it for him. This whole room, this moment, the bizarre choreography of impulses is taking place because he’d arranged for it. But he’s not all there is to find in this room, and a part of me knows that he is utterly irrelevant. A caveat to Halberstam’s statement: any method that pursues a queer trajectory is only worth its name if it comes from a position that cannot fully foresee its outcome in the first place. This is a point echoed in Tyler Bradway’s take on the criticality and indeed queerness of affect in queer experimental fiction (see Point 10 in this list). “[W]e cannot circumscribe, in advance”, Bradway writes, “which affects will be the most ‘critical’ or even the most ‘queer’ because the radical potentiality of aesthetic affect is always immanent” (2017, loc 324). Consequently, it is crucial to remember to conduct “experiments in the most rigorous sense of the word – tests to see what might emerge; tests whose very purpose is to redefine the meaning of the known and unknown; tests based on gut feelings, with hypotheses


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rooted in vague sensations of the possible”, as he puts it in relation to the experimental queer fiction of William Burroughs, Cathy Acker, and Samuel R. Delany (Bradway, 2017, loc 571). He comments on the way I look. I assess his body. The exchange is stripped of erotic subtext though, these two bodies need to accomplish something else now. Intimate, libidinous certainly, but thoroughly contained by the piece. Something circulates inside this room, in its dim light and tired walls, which includes and surpasses us. It’s the work, yet there is also no work at the end of this process. If I disregard this account, which I am writing behind his back. This means that even before discussing affect or architecture, I stake a claim here to a position that is in some important way queer, not just because I am a gay man, which no doubt plays a role in my affective “orientation” (see Point 8), or because I can guarantee the queerness (or any other attribute) of my writerly experiments, but because of the drive to resist “the academic compulsion towards disciplinary coherence” Halberstam writes of (1998, p. 13). This impulse to resist and subvert is clearly not an impulse to be found solely in queer methods but it is one of the key aspects of how to define queer as a modus operandi, and I actively embrace it here both in terms of methodological positioning and with regard to the content of the text that intercuts these theoretical propositions. Interruption, fragmentation, the subversion of pregiven wholes (offered by others or created by the writerly self) repeatedly recur here as themes and as a method. Repetition comes with less ease. It’s improvisation that works, makes my movement convincing. I approach the room as if for the first time, even as it seems there is little new to discover in it. I move to the corner, where the wall runs in a straight line before abruptly shifting its angle to open up a recess. Inside it, there is a plywood box, an exhibition pedestal felled like a log. I sit on it to discover from this new vantage point the edge of the platform, the point where it meets the wall. There is a gap between the two. I crawl towards it and start feeling with my fingers around the surface edge, which is uneven and sharp, wondering if it’ll land me with a splinter. I keep moving my hand along the extent of the gap. Then I get up and walk across the empty space, towards him. Halberstam discusses this queer methodological approach as “scavenger methodology”. While the notion can clearly be questioned in a number of ways (Is all scavenging intrinsically queer? Do queer methods always carry negative connotations?), it is useful in that it provides an “image of method” (to take from behind Gilles Deleuze’s “image of thought”) for the writerly experiment presented here. As Google helpfully offers by way of an example for the usage of the term: “the feral cat preferred to scavenge carrion from the forest floor”. For the purposes of

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this entry on affect and architecture then, this feral cat approaches academic texts as it would carrion: to rip what serves it and then move on with little regard for the integrity of (textual) flesh. He switches the light back on and we talk about the way I’d rubbed my head against the edge of the wall. I tell him about the ridge that separates my skull plates, the way the groove fits the plaster, the way you can pivot your skull around that point once you’ve located the seam in the bone. I speak like I’ve invented movement, like no one has ever made a single gesture before, or pressed against objects to see how they might correspond to skin. I like the way you describe it, he says. But I wonder at the futility of verbal clarity. The floor, however, is always one of architecture, not of the forest. A body rubbing against the floors, walls, and minutiae of architectural detail inside a performance studio in Belgrade will be that key image of queer scavenging depicted in the performative text accompanying this theoretical set of propositions. Meanwhile, the ground and grounding implied in this refocusing on architectural foundations are of the kind John Rajchman presented in Constructions in the chapter “Grounds”: “we put ungrounding first, analyzing the relations between grounds and forms, grounds and identities, in terms of the potential for free ungrounded movement” (Rajchman, 1998, p. 89).

2. “When the affective turn becomes a turn to affect, feminist and queer work are no longer positioned as part of that turn”, writes Sara Ahmed in the afterword to The Cultural Politics of Emotion (2015, loc 4742), written a decade after the publication of the first edition, by which point affect studies had emerged fully as a field. Ahmed wished to qualify her use of the term emotion and reflect on the theoretical “turn to affect”, keen to stress that in the process of foregrounding affect over feeling and emotion, the concrete feminist and queer foundations in the field of so-called affect studies are sidelined or even suppressed. The instructions he gives me are simple but there are lots of things I won’t pursue. As he mimics my gestures against the wall he lets go of the surface and allows the movement to appear in his shoulder, ripple across the collar bone, reach the other shoulder and come to a standstill in the elbow. These movements are clearly movements of a human body, his body. But that is not the body I am attempting to move here. I have no words for it, so I stare at his eyes, distracted by the fact that his lips invite a licking. This becomes true not only of the said feminist and queer aspects of the discourse that kick-started the interest in affect, but also of the potentially fuzzy region separating affect from feeling and emotion. “The affective turn”, she writes, “has


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thus come to privilege affect over emotion as its object and considerable effort has been directed toward making affect into an object of study with clear boundaries, such that it now makes sense to speak of ‘affect studies’” (Ahmed, 2015, loc 4764). Crucially, she writes that “[i]t might even be that the very use of this distinction performs the evacuation of certain styles of thought (we might think of these as ‘touchy feely’ styles of thought, including feminist and queer thought) from affect studies” (2015, loc 4771). In the couple of hours that we spend inside the studio, the key moment takes place towards the end of my so-called improvisation. I have rubbed my skull against the wall then pushed away to walk across space. What I find as I near the platform edge is the red, metal box of a fire hydrant. I hug it, press my chest against its bright red surface. I tilt my hips, push them towards the wall. My arms embrace the box, fingers on its angular shoulders. The top is covered in dust, there is a card on it, I can’t see what it depicts. In my memory it becomes an image of a woman, something vaguely pornographic. I feel my way around the box, use my fingers the way I would on a body, as I have done before countless times, on countless others. I have held shoulders, run my chest up against chests, used fingers to elicit pleasure, telegraph intent. I recognise you, these fingers say to the hydrant. There is desire in me for you. I want to put forward the following proposition in response to this: There should be no affect without queer (no noun without adjective, where the adjective doesn’t necessarily relate to the initial noun, i.e. the statement is open-ended), while leaving its feminist equivalent to another writer. In the case of the text I offer here: no affect without queer writing. While clearly a distortion of Ahmed’s point, this proposition approaches the question of affect via that queer method Halberstam writes of, in which the key impulse (whether conscious or “based on gut feelings”, as per Bradway) is to perpetually subvert “academic compulsions”. And, as discussed further in Point 6, I want to raise the question of the affective range of this “touchy-feely” underbelly of affect studies.

3. “[W]ell-made concepts themselves might become affective formations”, write Slaby and Mühlhoff (2019, p. 39). This proposition regards philosophical/theoretical concepts in the context of affect and muddies the water somewhat between these two distinct philosophical terms – affect and concept – or at least makes their relationship complex. I take this statement to suggest a way of approaching the concept of affect “after” Deleuze and Guattari (reflecting the title of this anthology), i.e. away from the primacy and fetishisation of their conceptual vocabulary (as in Slaby’s own take on agencement, which he transmutes into arrangement) and as being inextricable from the practice of writing, in that concepts, if they are

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to be understood as “affective formations”, cannot be extracted from the affective processes of writing (see Fleig and Gibbs in Points 5 and 6). As we leave the room – another group has arrived to use this overbooked, underfunded space – I sense that something has shifted. The sex has dissipated fully. Outside, in the main room, there is a set of chairs arranged in an arc and a presentation in progress. An architectural activist speaks of forced evictions, of police violence, of illegality and corruption. Marko, she exclaims, and we both turn. This also troubles the distinct triad of percept, affect, and concept in Deleuze and Guattari’s What is Philosophy? (1994). If concept can already be said to be affective in some way, then there is a level of interpenetration between the two which reveals, at the extreme apex of the argument, a potential for a form of dissolution of one in the other. Conceptual art can be said to be an example of this, at least the way Stephen Zepke and Simon O’Sullivan approached it in the context of Deleuze and Guattari in Deleuze and Contemporary Art (2010). I no longer recall the exact choreographic sequence that takes place the next day, the day of the performance. I only have the footage to remind me, partial and incomplete. And anyway, the crucial moments were filmed at an angle that makes it hard to tell what happened. We were on the floor at some point, he and I, our bodies entangled. Anything beyond that is conjecture. So, how far can this be pushed in the context of writing, and writing architecture specifically? Where is the place to draw the line between a text that concerns itself with concepts (philosophy/theory) and one that focuses on affect (art/literature), if we are to follow that Deleuze–Guattarian disciplinary distinction? Differently put: How much, and what kind of, affect should be allowed into texts that concern themselves with the development of theoretical propositions from within academic discourse?

4. “An affective arrangement is a fragmentary formation”, Slaby suggests in the creation of this particular concept. I would suggest that there is more than a superficial resonance here between such an emphasis on fragmentation and Halberstam’s proposition that queer methods are inherently composed of elements that resist affiliation with pre-given wholes (of categories, disciplines, etc.). While the notion of the fragment has a recognisable modernist pedigree (see Lacoue-Labarthe and Nancy, 1988, for one) and can, as such, be understood to lead to a much broader proposition, I want to impose on it a queer onus by making an equally distortive claim as with Ahmed’s critique of affect studies: All fragmentation queers what it


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fragments, particularly so in the context of affect and its studies. While this statement clearly depends on the definition of “queer”, my aim is to read the term here as intrinsically disruptive of the “linear, normative functions”, as Stacey Waite writes of in Point 11 (2019, p. 111). As I look at the film, I am surprised by this body, which I take for granted. There are moments of certainty I didn’t know it possessed. Something is taking place, something is being conveyed, and I am only a passenger. Having moved about the room, along the walls, having crawled across the floor, I stopped. I can be seen staring at him. He stands still and I crouch before his body in almost-submission. There are gestures this body wants to enact, so I let it. I start circling, trying to trap him inside a diagram I can barely anticipate. He lowers one hand on my shoulder, places the other on my head. He rests his weight on them, demanding and evasive. He calls for proximity but doesn’t allow it to take place. So, I let myself buckle under his weight and take him down with me. “An affective arrangement”, Slaby writes, “comprises an array of persons, things, artifacts, spaces, discourses, behaviors, expressions or other materials that coalesce into a coordinated formation of mutual affecting and being-affected” (2019, p. 109). And also: “Over and above a general orientation toward the situatedness of affect, emphasis is placed on local meshworks, apparatuses, and relational configurations, and one reckons with surprising combinations of elements in one’s attempt to situate a given instance of affect within a particular ‘intensive milieu’ of formative relations” (Slaby, 2019, p. 111). This emphasis on the situatedness of affect and its “intensive milieus” indicates an understanding of architecture as inherently to be found in all manner of arrangements, something obvious from within the architectural viewpoint but not always from beyond the discipline. That there is no affect without queer should therefore be accompanied with: There is no affect without architecture.

5. “[A]ffect is not simply a result of writing, but rather, part of the writing process itself”, writes Fleig (2019, p. 178), shifting the emphasis from affect’s apparent location in the text, i.e. the obvious focus of literary theory, to the process of writing as “practice” and the subsequent location of affect somewhere between, or across, the writer and what is written. “Affect is the dynamic relationship between bodies”, she states, “including the interweaving of bodily memories, words, and worlds. In writing, affect unfolds between the writer’s body and the written text” (Fleig, 2019, p. 180). Our legs are entangled now. He is on top of me, his back on my chest, his own chest uncomfortably arched and elevated off the floor by my body beneath it.

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My hand hovers over his breastbone; I have done this to the walls here, to the holes in walls which I have fingered and slapped. But today, I feel the need to indicate this gesture only, suggest the possibility of impact rather than enact its violence. Then I press the heel of my palm into that bone and keep it there. This is not a caress, nor is it a threat; it’s a dispassionate confirmation of where the centre of his torso projects on the floor through mine, a hint that my palm was meant to land there all along, between the nipples. In keeping with the notion of affective arrangements, I propose that these two orientations of affect in writing (between the writer and the text, and the text and the reader) be understood as being of equal importance in writing architecture. This is not a novel proposition within the discipline, as evident most prominently in the work of Jane Rendell in the context of “site-writing” (if not overtly presented as a question of affect). And I would emphasise the “bodily memories, words, and worlds” part of Fleig’s statement, as a way of bringing to the fore the role of the parallel text I offer alongside this theoretical one: to write propositional points of writing architecture in the fairly standard (if overtly “first person”, i.e. subjectcentred) affective tonality (see Felski and Ngai in Points 7 and 8) of a theoretical or critical discourse is one thing; to interrupt these points with another, loosely related and potentially jarring (i.e. not seamlessly incorporated) text delivered in the affective tone more pertinent to literary (auto)fiction, is another. To interrupt, to fragment the convention (of writerly genres, academic rules, etc.) in ways that bring to the surface the queer, situated “intensive milieus” of affective writing more obviously “scavengy” in nature, seems crucial if the imperative for no affect without queer is to be followed through.

6. Further in the context of writing as practice, Anna Gibbs discusses “the inevitable implication of the researcher in what is researched” (2014, p. 223). “In practice”, she writes, “this necessitates engaging with affect, both the researcher’s own affects and those of others whom she engages in her research, and the concomitant opening up of rhetorical modes associated with it (the lyrical, the elegiac, the rhapsodic, the humorous, the parodic, the satirical, and so on), which enable the staging of passionate engagements with research questions and research subjects, and which emphasize the pragmatics as much as the semiotics of texts and writing […]. Writing itself is an affect-laden process: driven by interest and desire, subject to frustration and misery as well as productive of joy and excitement” (p. 223). Watching the footage later, I am able to tell what he is doing. Or rather, isn’t doing. He is acting, that much is clear, even if the artifice channels something more substantive. But I am the one breaking through the performance constantly, the one refusing to pretend. It’s all very straightforward, as far as I am concerned: there is no other way of doing this, no other approach to


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the situation. Yet neither before nor after this session will the obvious pass my lips. How about angry, needling, indifferent, overly sexualised, obfuscating? The range of “rhetorical modes” allowed the “creative critic” (to scavenge a term from Hilevaara and Orley, 2018) is all too often reduced to what remains polite and moderate, as evidenced by Gibbs’s list above, open-ended yet clearly friendly and benign. Where is the full range of affective writerly orientations – towards the subject matter, the forms or modes of the text itself, towards the reader who is to receive it (or not)? Is it possible that in the same way Deleuze claimed in Difference and Repetition that “nothing presupposes philosophy: everything begins with misosophy” and that what is needed is “an original violence inflicted upon thought; the claws of a strangeness or an enmity which alone would awaken thought from its natural stupor or eternal possibility” (Deleuze, 1997, p. 139), there is also a wider range of affects that could be utilised, perhaps more appropriate to the task? After all, anger for one has a long, if hotly debated, lineage in feminist theory and writing (and in turn in queer theory); and as Maxime Lepoutre noted recently in “Rage Inside the Machine: Defending the Place of Anger in Democratic Speech” (2018), “conveying anger to one’s listeners is epistemically valuable”. Ditto for one’s readers. Having pulled the linoleum off the boards underneath and dragged its corner towards his body, which is still on mine – as if to separate myself from him with the rubbery, black layer, hide myself inside the fold I’ve finally managed to create – I push him in the direction of the wall, the same window niche I was making my body fit earlier. But what exactly had happened earlier? This issue resurfaces in Point 10 with Tyler Bradway’s take on experimental queer fiction, where he discusses the more obvious affective tactics of queer writing, of the experimental kind at least. So, the question is: Can we queer this ground further?

7. The broadening of the affective range of writing is inseparable from the question of critique and anything that might still go under the name of “critical theory” when said theory ignores or masks “critique as an affective stance that orients us”, as Rita Felski puts it (2015, p. 18). She writes that “modes of thought are also orientations toward the world that are infused with a certain attitude or disposition; arguments are a matter not only of content but also of style and tone” (2015, p. 4). Earlier, I was alone on the podium. I can film him any time, the cameraman had said, whereas you are leaving tomorrow. He’d shown me the footage he’d recorded as I pressed myself against the wall: he was moving the device

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so that it looked as if the wall was pushing back, resisting me, its scale and bareness crushing. And it is with this lens in the mix, the presence of its body in the room, that the point where he and I are wrestling on the floor can be examined. I was able to feel his crotch, the beginning of an erection there. I felt his buttocks and chest, which I confirmed with my hand, holding him in this transitory place for a few airless moments. In my memory, they last. In them, he is offering himself to me, a butterfly asking for the pinning. With violence. In other words: critique and critical theory do not stand in opposition to affect as understood to be affiliated with feeling and emotion (the implied distinction between the rational, dispassionate and passional, affective) yet all too often refuses to acknowledge its inevitable affective orientations. This is certainly not always the case (see Hilevaara and Orley, eds., The Creative Critic: Writing as/ about Practice, or Frichot and Stead, 2020, eds., Writing Architectures: FictoCritical Approaches), but an affect that claims invisibility remains a crucial aspect of what it means to be critical in terms of the range of affects and their attendant forms of writing that might be available in any remotely theoretical context, architectural or other. To critique is still intrinsically to assume an affective distance, even (or perhaps particularly) in the case of the various autoethnography and autotheory texts that examine the writer’s experience with objectivity and detachment. Can this be challenged more radically? Can a wider, wilder, more feral range of affective orientations be developed for how we write?

8. The tone Felsky mentions in the quote above (which she also discusses as a writerly “mood”), Sianne Ngai defines as “a literary or cultural artifact’s feeling tone: its global or organizing affect, its general disposition or orientation toward its audience and the world” (2005, p. 28). My so-called solos that day: The chair stood against the wall, through which I am pulling myself, attempting all the while to make it retain contact with the wall, and only succeeding occasionally; the second seduction of the fire hydrant, which doesn’t come off except for that final moment in which I seem to have made love to it fleetingly before I slap it angrily for refusing to yield; the interaction with the window, and the seduction of the sewage pipe, through which flushing can be heard every time someone uses the toilet on the floor above. Each time, as the music finishes, I stop what I am doing, and the two people in the room with me compare their impressions. That thing with the pipe, the cameraman says. I know, the choreographer says. Imagine having a pipe in the middle of the room, the cameraman says. Yes, he says. They are looking at each other, smiling. But I keep thinking that the only way I can make love to an object is if it is an actual pipe, performing its function


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exactly as intended, in architecture. It’s not a prop, not a stage set, much as it’s easy to imagine it as one; it is this exact building, this rehearsal space, and all the found architectures this city opens up in ways I never thought it would, that provoke what this body has been suppressing for decades. The verb “to instigate” is derived from the verb to prick, incite. I had used it a few nights earlier to try and describe his place in my life. He’d stared blankly back. Tone, mood, feeling, emotion, affect, and atmosphere, arguably that most obviously architectural concept here: all are charted out in Affective Societies: Key Concepts as distinct concepts, but also concepts that cannot be said not to interfere with each other, deliberately collapsed in the case of some writers (Ngai and Ahmed for example) – potentially to the point of cancelling the need to distinguish too definitively between affect, feeling, and emotion. This latter point is crucial to hold on to, in contrast with an overly prohibitive understanding of affect as perfectly distinct from concepts such as feeling and emotion. Hence the focus of the performative text intercutting these points, which no doubt comes across in places as dealing precisely with feelings, rather than the prepersonal, autonomous affects of bodies (human, architectural, etc.). And yet, affect and architectural affects specifically, circulate through it. One slips into the other. Affective arrangements suck in “intensive milieus” as much as personal feelings and emotions with stable names; what was personal slips into the prepersonal then slithers back to leave a trail; a plethora of affective strands, sometimes distinct, at other times inextricably fused. How can we reflect such a dynamic, complex affective field in the way we write, and write architecture specifically? What tonalities can we employ?

9. “Critical theories of the culture industry” McKenzie Wark writes, “tend to stop short of thinking through the extent to which the production of critical theory itself is now a minor genre within the culture industry. It has some of the characteristic hallmarks: a repetition of received ideas, narrative forms that resolve in predictable ways, a culture of exegesis that reproduces sameness. Critical theory becomes hypocritical theory” (Wark, 2019a, loc 217–22). Eventually, we will slip into the sequence we’d stumbled upon the night before, where he comes up from behind me to take hold of my shoulders, then guides me to the front of the stage. I start speaking. I am retelling a day from this diary, in which I wait for him in front of Beograđanka. There was ice on the steps that day, when there clearly couldn’t have been any. It was April 2019, day 16 out of 23. As I speak, the door to the space creaks open. In the footage, he can be seen looking sideways, interrupting the performance. I don’t acknowledge what is beyond the stage though. I keep performing until the music stops. Or, in this case, until I’ve said what there was to say: that I’d

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walked carefully down the steps that day, which had appeared slippery as ice, and moved towards him expecting a touch that never materialised. To answer, in part at least, for the modes of writing this industry presupposes, Wark issues a call for “vulgar” writing, where the term can be understood as “illbred, obscene, crude, base, earthy, ordinary, popular, current, vernacular, coarse, common, indelicate, unlettered, idiomatic, heretical. It’s curious how this range of meanings”, Wark continues, “also resonates with Blackness or queerness and with that femininity (trans and cis) that finds itself policed rather than idealized” (2019a, loc 2181–9). In other words – and Wark doesn’t focus on this specifically – it is the affective range that a call to vulgar arms also expands, away from “exegesis” and “narrative forms that resolve in predictable ways”, as she writes (Wark, 2019a, loc 222–6). We dress and pick up our bags, put shoes on our feet. We move to the office, where two people are working on something in silence. I go to the toilet. When I return, he and the cameraman have emptied the fridge, opened the door to the freezer box, and the cameraman is taking photographs of him in front of it. We pose together for the lens then. He keeps acting, with what looks like a self-assured routine of a performer. I am not one, nor do I want to be. The image of fisting, of becoming a glove puppet, which we’d joked about on a number of occasions, will come back to me then. I realise that I am not sure whose hand has slipped in. Or which body is in charge here. This vulgar can also take a number of forms, and its affiliation with (queer) sex is only one of the more obvious expansions into affects that go beyond the routine ones of the “culture industry” (hence the choice of material that intercuts the theoretical “exegesis” I offer here). In picking through the carrion of critical theory in such a manner, Wark (2019b) recently produced a form of trans autotheory (Reverse Cowgirl), close in affinity to the work of Paul B. Preciado (2020), as well as Maggie Nelson (2016), though perhaps more distantly in the case of the latter. Setting aside for some other occasion the distinction between trans (Wark, Precido) and queer writing, I want to scavenge the following: Why is there no architectural equivalent of such vulgar writing? Conversely: Where is architecture in queer writing, if there really is “no affect without architecture” other than as an incidental backdrop which occasionally tentatively surfaces, to then disappear all too swiftly?

10. This list (almost) ends by engaging more extensively with Tyler Bradway’s text, which calls for “critical” reading to acknowledge the existence and uses of what he terms as “bad reading” practices. He offers an analysis of “texts [that] actively elicit new structures of relation through the forces of affect” (Bradway, 2017, loc


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155), texts that are “tests whose very purpose is to redefine the meaning of the known and unknown; tests based on gut feelings, with hypotheses rooted in vague sensations of the possible” (2017, loc 571) as already mentioned, but also calls for “an erotic relationality among texts, readers, and publics” (2017, loc 1000). Following from his analysis of the experimental queer literatures of William Burroughs, Samuel R. Delany, and Kathy Acker, but also a less obviously experimental author such as Jeannette Winterson, I invite the reader to approach the parallel text offered here with the attitude that “reading is less like criticism and more like sex” (Bradway, 2017, loc 6915). This is also where I will briefly let the scavenged theoretical quotes rub without further explanation or qualification against the “touchy-feely” tone of the other text, its queer other, allowing this second authorial voice to come to the fore, pushing exegesis to the background while revealing its presence in the voice contained in the source quoted. New affective relations between readers and texts: the driving force. I will hold his gaze, beautifully empty of meaning. He will hold my hand, pose like a bride. I will lean over the fridge, he’ll crouch on the floor. We will move ever closer, until my mouth is almost on his, our noses making contact. I’ll hold my breath, inhale only at the very last moment possible. In the resulting photographs, our faces overlap slightly. My eyes are lowered, focused on his lips. The abstract shape he’d painted on my face trickles down my eyebrow and cheek. His face, with the shapes I’d applied clumsily in turn, looks like an impressionist painting. It’s tilted in ecstasy, eyes rolled, milky white. It’s the face of a statue. I will make the link to Antinous later, when I see the photograph, a memory from thirty years earlier revisiting me, the day I had walked into the empty room of a museum in Delphi and thought I’d seen a beautiful boy stand silently to one side, watching me. It was marble, I’d discovered upon turning, an ancient relic. In this shot, you can see the sweat forming on my forehead. “[N]arratives about critical reading”, Bradway writes, “derive their authority, at least in part, by legislating the appropriate affective relations that must inhere between texts and readers” (2017, loc 73). Once we are done, we remove the make-up. We say goodbye to the cameraman in front of the building. The choreographer and I will have coffee afterwards, in the café where we’d first met. I can’t remember now how we get there; nothing about that final journey up the hill remains. We will sit at one of the tables in the middle of the street. Is the sun in your eyes, he will ask several times. I am fine, I’ll say, thinking that nothing could make me step back from the body now. “[Q]ueer experimental writers such as William S. Burroughs and Kathy Acker turn to affect to contest humanist models of subjectivity. For them, affect is an

Writing architectural affects


asubjective and anti-human force that reveals the irreducible animality of the human. But more broadly, all queer experimental literature rejects the humanist paradigm of reading because it buttresses a heteronormative social imaginary” (Bradway, 2017, loc 133). You are hiding something from us, he says and looks at me shrewdly. You must have performed before. It’s a compliment, so I give an answer of sorts: that I am a writer, that I read about architecture, that I think about the way our bodies engage it. But we both know that I haven’t answered the question. Whose body is it anyway, I want to ask in return, I don’t recognise what it did either. And anyway, the conversation unfolds in a new key. The staged encounter of our bodies, deeply banal as it was by performing standards, has shifted the way my voice carries across the table. Days later, I will doubt its clarity. But at that moment, sitting in the middle of a Belgrade street on a late April afternoon, I find it no effort to say: This is where libido went. “These texts actively elicit new structures of relation through the forces of affect; in this sense, the social is literally and viscerally incipient in these texts, not simply figured or represented” (Bradway, 2017, loc 155). I guess so, he responds, and the answer, ambiguous as it is, feels as if I have finally convinced him. In that moment, I think that I have circumscribed my narrative around him, captured him within it. But I have only completed an outline my mind had decided to sketch for other purposes. “Estrangement, disorientation, and surprise – these are the affective jolts that otherness engenders, thereby breaking open the codified structures of identity and relationality that are presupposed by liberal humanism. The reader does not imaginatively empathize and thereby understand; instead, readers are overtaken by the other and must respond by confronting the limits of their understanding” (Bradway, 2017, loc 252). He says: Perhaps we shouldn’t say goodbye. We should just say, see you tomorrow, same time. Yet before I leave, he asks when it is that my plane departs, and I tell him where I’ll be writing in the morning until I have to leave. I will see you there, he says. He stands up and we hug. He kisses me on the cheek. In the evening, I will receive the photographs the cameraman had taken. The choreographer is seducing the camera, while I cling onto him, oblivious to having been unmasked. “Indeed, we cannot privilege empathy or estrangement or suspicion because the artwork foments its own bloc of sensations, which demand to be engaged as forces in their own right. […] we cannot circumscribe, in advance, which affects


Marko Jobst

will be the most ‘critical’ or even the most ‘queer’ because the radical potentiality of aesthetic affect is always immanent” (Bradway, 2017, loc 312). I wake up. The weather has turned, the temperature dropped by ten degrees. It’s raining. I get up, drink a cup of coffee, take a shower. By the time I’m leaving the flat, the sky has turned marginally brighter. I arrive at the café and start writing this diary, trying to catch up with what had happened several days earlier. I am here, I text him, but receive no response. I find it fitting that he won’t show up. He is right, I think, it’s better to leave the exploration hanging. But half an hour later, a message arrives. Just woke up, it reads, I’m coming. We don’t have to meet, I type. I’m coming, he replies. “Insofar as the works we will now encounter are ‘experimental,’ then, they are experiments in the most rigorous sense of the word – tests to see what might emerge; tests whose very purpose is to redefine the meaning of the known and unknown; tests based on gut feelings, with hypotheses rooted in vague sensations of the possible” (Bradway, 2017, loc 572). When he arrives, he is wearing sandals, and I wonder what his feet would feel like if I held them for a minute. He sits on the sofa next to me. We look at the photographs from the shoot and laugh. They are deeply ridiculous. Car crash, he says with a chuckle. “Indeed, these texts elicit masturbatory fantasy, perverse titillation, exuberant sentimentality, and other affects that have failed to signify as ‘critical’ within the domains of literary and cultural theory. They appear naïve, solipsistic, and politically retrograde, often leading critics to apologize for or bracket the text’s investment in affect. Yet it is precisely through its solicitations of bad reading, I contend, that queer experimental literature contests and redraws the social relations that underpin the heteronormative public sphere” (Bradway, 2017, loc 886). He is sitting right next to me, his body touching mine now. His thigh is pressed against my thigh, and upper arm breaks contact only when he leans into the screen to peer at something. “They do not, in other words, equate pleasure with difficulty or primarily seek to alienate and attack readers. Rather, queer experimental literature creates an erotic relationality among texts, readers, and publics that redefines the difference that pleasure can make in the politics of experimental writing” (Bradway, 2017, loc 998). After a while, I turn around to face him. I position my shoulders at a right angle to his. My hips are rotated now, and the right knee is pointing straight at him. I can feel my face express the right emotions, convey everything I

Writing architectural affects


want it to convey. But I wonder what this body thinks it’s doing by assuming a defensive posture. “What if”, Bradway writes, “reading is less like criticism and more like sex? We would have to grant that aesthetics are ‘odd things’ that produce pleasure in unusual situations; and we would have to suppose that aesthetic pleasures, like sexual pleasures, create immodest and unforeseen possibilities for becoming and belonging together. The aesthetic, like sex, may not be equivalent to political agency, but it is no less queer, no less related to power, and no less open to fostering collective potentials for otherwise-being. Must it be immodesty to crave an idiom for reading that can do justice to the affective forces of aesthetic agency in their loving and agonistic entanglements? For now, this idiom may read as uncritically queer. But in the meantime, its relations will work on and through us, despite ourselves” (Bradway, 2017, loc 6914).

11. And back to scavenging. Stacey Waite takes Halberstam’s notion of queer methodology as scavenger methodology to the question of writing, as well as education. “I want to argue”, she writes, “that all writers must commit to learning to disrupt, to read differently, to ask more of texts to ask more of the world than linear, normative functions allow”. She “invites readers to think about and experience logics that contradict, tenses that shift, genres that mix, futures that are messier than what the present moment seems to allow”, and “asks scholars of composition and teachers of writing to become scavengers and to make seemingly disconnected worlds collide” (Waite, 2019, p. 111). When the moment comes for me to leave, we get up simultaneously. It seems he wants to come out with me, say goodbye in the street, but I look at the rain and pause in the doorway. We end up hugging inside it, neither in nor out. He holds me closely. I am not sure how to respond to the embrace. Bye, I say, knowing I look dazed. “[M]y call for a scavenger-like methodology is both a formal and political argument taking into account both what we write and how we write it (and teach others to write) in our field”, Waite concludes (2019, p. 115). “I want us to make more messes, to invite students to make a mess, to be completely unsystematic in order to put pressure on the system we already have in place for thinking about identity and about writing” (Waite, 2019, p. 132). As I step into the rain, I turn around one final time. He is winking at me, or perhaps it’s a nervous tick. The smile is no longer on his lips. His face looks sombre. It confirms something, that light twitch, the nod that accompanies it. I haven’t a clue what it is.


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How should we write then, architectural affects in particular? By constantly “putting the pressure on the system”, by disrupting “the linear, normative functions” of established and ossified methods, by opening up new affective relations between authors and texts, texts and texts, texts and readers; by seeing every act of writerly queering as being crucial for that “original violence inflicted upon thought”, which seeks “the claws of a strangeness or an enmity which alone would awaken thought from its natural stupor or eternal possibility” (Deleuze, 1997). By reinjecting architecture where it was erased, by revealing affect where it’s claimed there is none. By being a feral cat, a little bit at least, to the extent that you can ever be one. By perpetually clawing at the carrion. A couple of hours later, I leave the city.

Note 1 Thank you to Marko Milić and Jelena Vuksanović for our improvisations; Marijana Cvetković for the introductions; and all the people who make Kulturni centar Magacin in Belgrade persist against an abysmal political current.

References Ahmed, S. (2015). The Cultural Politics of Emotion (2nd Edition). New York, NY and London: Routledge (Amazon Kindle edition). Bradway, T. (2017). Queer Experimental Literature: The Affective Politics of Bad Reading. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan (Amazon Kindle edition). Deleuze, G. (1997). Difference and Repetition. London: The Athlone Press. Deleuze, G. and Guattari, F. (1994). What is Philosophy? London and New York, NY: Verso. Felski, R. (2015). The Limits of Critique. Chicago, IL: The University of Chicago Press. Fleig, A. (2019). Writing Affect. In: J. Slaby and C. Von Scheve (eds.), Affective Societies: Key Concepts. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Frichot, H. and Stead, N. (eds.) (2020). Writing Architectures: Ficto-Critical Approaches. London: Bloomsbury. Gibbs, A. (2014). Writing as Method: Attunement, Resonance, and Rhythm. In: Affective Methodologies: Developing Cultural Research Strategies for the Study of Affect. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan. Halberstam, J. (1998). Female Masculinity. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Hilevaara, K. and Orley, E. (eds.) (2018). The Creative Critic: Writing as/about Practice. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Jobst, M. (2014). Gilles Deleuze and the Missing Architecture. In: Deleuze Studies Journal, 8/2. Edinburgh University Press. Jobst, M. (2015). Stockwell Street, The Cut-ups, The Waves. In: N. Clear (ed.), East of Eden. London: University of Greenwich. Jobst, M. (2017). A Ficto-Historical Theory of the London Underground. Baunach: AADR Publishing, Spurbuchverlag. Jobst, M. (2017). Start with the Street, the Voice Said. In: Architecture and Culture, 5/2. Routledge, Taylor and Francis.

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Jobst, M. (2019). Unidentified Emotional Object: When Queer Desire Journeyed to Belgrade. In: D. Beljaars and C. Drozynski (eds.), Spaces of Desire. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Jobst, M. (2020). Belgrade Baroque. In: C. Gabrielsson, H. Frichot, K. Havik, and M. Jobst (eds.), Reading(s) and Writing(s): Unfolding Processes of Transversal Writing. Writingplace Journal for Architecture and Literature 3, pp. 4–9. Lacoue-Labarthe, P. and Nancy, J.-L. (1988). The Literary Absolute: The Theory of Literature in German Romanticism. Albany, NY: SUNY Press. Lepoutre, M. (2018). Rage Inside the Machine: Defending the Place of Anger in Democratic Speech. Politics, Philosophy & Economics 17/4, pp. 398–426. Nelson, M. (2016). The Argonauts. New York, NY: Melville House. Ngai, S. (2005). Ugly Feelings. Cambridge, MA and London: Harvard University Press. Preciado, P. (2020). An Apartment on Uranus. London: Fitzcarraldo Editions. Rajchman, J. (1998). Constructions. Cambridge MA: MIT Press. Slaby, J. (2019). Affective Arrangement. In: J. Slaby and C. Von Scheve (eds.), Affective Societies: Key Concepts. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Slaby, J. and Mühlhoff, R. (2019). Affect. In: J. Slaby and C. Von Scheve (eds.), Affective Societies: Key Concepts. London and New York, NY: Routledge. Waite, S. (2019). The Writer as Scavenger: Queer Interventions in Teaching and Writing. In: L. Feireiss (ed.), Radical Cat-Up: Nothing Is Original. Berlin: Sternberg Press. Wark, M. (2019a). Capital Is Dead: Is This Something Worse? Verso (Amazon Kindle edition). Wark, M. (2019b). Reverse Cowgirl. South Pasadena, CA: Semiotext(e). Zepke, S. and O’Sullivan, S. (2010). Deleuze and Contemporary Art. Edinburgh: EUP.


Note: Page numbers in italics denotes figures and bold denotes tables. Abekova, B. 184, 192 aborted architecture 132–133; abstract machine and 144–145; affection and 138–140; desire and 136–138; microassemblage and 145–147; power and 133–136 abstract machine 134–135, 144–145, 147n4, 148n5 Acker, K. 240 acting and being acted upon, notion of 18 Actor Network Theory, significance of 37n3 Adjaye, D. 154 Adorno, T. 31 affect: and affection compared 6, 34, 139, 179; affordance and 74; autonomy of 10–11, 13, 27, 76n12, 99; baroque culture and 30–33; body and 99, 139– 140, 151, 178–179, 181; circulation of 14, 15, 21, 22, 165, 172; as collectivised 13; concept and 29–30, 35; creed and 73; definition of 139; desire and 141; as dynamic relationship between bodies 234–235; elusiveness of 10; green see green affect; and kissing compared 34; management 30; mediation and 27, 29, 32, 33; as mood and atmosphere 12–13; as movement between emotional registers 99; non-subjectified see nonsubjectified affects; ordinary 7, 84, 87, 89, 93, 101, 210–211; pedagogy and 194; percept and 117; pleasure and 140; as political concept 3, 11, 30; politics and 43, 146; power and 105; as prepersonal 6, 10, 11, 82, 87, 93, 139, 165; as projectiles 146; promise of 32, 37; relational 104, 179; significance

of 1–2; situatedness of 234; spatial production and reproduction and 154; Spinozist formula of 18; structuralism and 32; style and 104; theory 5, 28 (in architecture 33; contemporary 75; Mazzarella’s challenge to 29); uses and values of 33–36; as valorised 26, 28, 33, 34; violent 151, 152; walking-with and 105–106; “wild beyond” of 28; see also individual entries “Affect” (Slaby and Mühlhoff) 28 “Affect: What is it Good for?” (Mazzarella) 27 affectation, of place 53 affectio and affectus 129n1; as geometric portrait of lived experience 114–115; in What is Philosophy 115 affection 95, 102, 113; aborted architecture 138–140; and affect compared 6, 34, 139, 179; architecture and 144, 195; Deleuze on 114–115, 129n1; of desire 7, 133, 139, 140, 142; hetero- see deep architecture; -image 3–4, 57; and opinion 115–117; perception and 115–116, 189; significance of 146 affective arrangement 233–235, 238 affective labour 209, 211n6 Affective Societies (Slaby and Von Scheve) 4, 5, 28, 238 affective witnessing 7, 163–164; decolonised 169; and disrupting Madafah as gendered space 169–171; recognition and 164; significance of 171–172; as spatial practice 164–166; studio setting and 167–170; transposing across difference and 166–169 affectivity and rationality 95



Affect Theory Reader, The (Gregg and Seigworth) 4, 10, 26 affordance 67, 74 Agrawal, A. 166 Ahmed, S. 165, 180, 181, 231 Alanli, N. 190–192, 190 Albechts, L. 48 Alkhalil, K. 90–91 Allon, F. 47 Al-Mahadin, S. 170 alt-right filter bubble 189 Alÿs, F. 184, 191 Amin, A. 3 217 &rchitecture; meaning and significance of 175–176; studio 183 (collective cultures of embodiment and 193–195; design and creative behaviours and 189–193; real ideas and 183–189) Ansell-Pearson, K. 117 Ant Farm 188 Anti-Oedipus (Deleuze and Guattari) 36, 37, 132 Appadurai, A. 84–85 Aravena, A. 156 architects, as psychotropic 64 architectural affects 228; affective arrangement and 233–235, 238; affective formations and 232–233; affective turn and 231–232; bad reading practices and 239–240; and critical theory (and critique 236–237; and culture industry 238–239); feral cat approach and 230–231; queer experimental literature and 228–230, 233–234, 239, 241–243; writerly mood and 237–238; writing as practice and 235–236 “Architectural Deleuzism” 33 architecturalisation 54 Architecture and Culture 229 Architecture for a Free Subjectivity (Brott) 213 Architecture from the Outside (Davidson) 4 Architecture of Neoliberalism, The (Spencer) 6, 33, 35, 200 architecture: of affection 195; collective trauma and 153; commemorative 113, 120; contemporary 73–75; contemporary warfare and 151, 152; contributing to environment 34; discomfort in 118–119; ethico-aesthetic paradigm and 71–75; fascism and 147; Gibson on 68–69; hylomorphic tradition and 69; legacy

of 155–156; of memorials 146–147; neoliberalism and 200; opinion and phenomenology of 118–119; perception and 71; political content and 144; post-war reconstruction and 154–155; repressive hypothesis and 145; sensation and 66; significance of 68–69; theory, significance of 35; truth in stone and 141; as victim of politics 143–144; visibility and 64; in war context 159; see also individual entries Arendt, H. 12, 18 Aron, R. 124 Arrighi, P. 123 art/any-places 52–54 artificial intelligence 221–222; see also transhumans Asaro, P. 222 Ashour, R. 163, 172n1 Asimov, I. 226n4 assemblage 17; abstract 144; of architectural war affects 152; architecture and 141–145, 147, 159–160; biological legacies and 155; body politic and 15; capacities and 67; collective 64; Deleuze on 63, 64, 69, 135–138, 147n4; of desire 69, 136–140, 144, 147n4, 154; Green affect and 84; individuated 102; machinic 27; micro- 145–147; ordinary affects as 89; polyrhythmic 101; power and 143–144; of relations 100, 101, 108; of violence 150; walking-with and 98, 99, 107, 109 Assemblage (journal) 12 atmosphere, concept of 110n4 atrium, significance of 199 “atrium effect” 198 atrocity exhibition 8 Auckland City Centre Shared Space Streetscapes 59n2 Auckland Council 40 Augé, M. 52–54 Aureli, P. V. 11 autistic people, new typologies of spaces for 188 autonomy 158, 178–179, 199, 238; of affect 10–11, 13, 27, 76n12, 99, 199; art, institutionalisation of 54; autonomic and 26–30; project of 12; significance of 11–12; subjectivity and 213, 215, 220, 224 “Autonomy of Affect, The” (Massumi) 26, 28 axiomatic, of capital 36–37, 37n5

Index Baan, I. 199 Bacon, F. 146 Ballantyne, A. 3 Banham, R. 211n2 Barad, K. 65 baroque culture 30–33 Barthes, R. 126 Bateson, G. 36, 65 Battir; affective ecologies 159; World Heritage site at 158, 159 Baudelle, G. 103–104 Beaglehole, J. C. 51 becoming, concept of 32 Behar, Y. 225 Beirut, post-war reconstruction of 154–156 Bélanger, P. 18 Belich, J. 47 Bell, R. 51 Bensmaïa, R. 57 Bentham, J. 135 Bergson, H. 27, 55, 195n6 Berry, C. 21 biological legacies 155 biometrics 218–219 biotechnology 217 bioterrorism 217–218 Bissell, D. 106 Blake, W. 70 blockchains 220 Bloomer, J. 2 BMIs see brain–machine interfaces (BMIs) body 110n2, 184; affect and 99, 139–140, 151, 178–179, 234; affected 139, 180; affectio and affectus relation and 114–115; affective interdependence between 104; architectural design and 74; atmosphere and 110n4; autonomy of affect and 10; collective 12, 15, 18, 180; conflict and capacity to act of 150–151; Deleuze on 151, 189; desire and 139; difference and 175; Memorial and 121; movement and 100, 102, 108–109; ontological claim for 18; performance of 15; politic 13, 15, 22–23; power arrangements and 134; precarity and 18; reciprocal relay of affecting and affected 13, 18, 20; relationality and 106; singular 15, 18; slowness and speed of 16–17, 23; Spinoza and 178; tabula rasa violence and 157; thinking and 178–180; vulnerability and 18; willing 179; without organs (BwO) 181–182


Boltanski, L. 49 Bonaventure Hotel; atrium and 199; bellman at 205; custom-made suits and 205; fifth-floor embrace and 207; homeless and 202–203; Jameson on 198; leather armchairs and 206–207; patrol service at 204; reflections on affects of 209–211; significance of 197–198, 204; snake dancer and 207–209; valet parking at 203–204 Bonner, J. 199 border materialities 165 Boston Dynamics 221 Botkyrka Municipality (Sweden) 95 Boundas, C. 68 Boys, J. 195nn1, 10 Bradway, T. 229–230, 236, 239–243 Braidotti, R. 70, 166–167 brain scanning and subjectivity 219 brain–machine interfaces (BMIs) 219 Brighenti, A. M. 45, 46 Browne, M.-L. 50 built environment 10, 40, 119, 175; affect and 197, 200, 201; architectural and urban legacies and 155; biological legacies and 155; conflict and 150–151; contemporary 73; as cultural catalyst of new habitats 66; design behaviour and 176, 190, 193; embodied design behaviours and 190; perception and 71; violent affect of 152; war zone reconstruction and 159 Burke, G. 217 Burroughs, W. 240 Butler, J. 17, 18, 21 Bywords (Browne) 50 Camatte, J. 36 Capacious (online journal) 5 capacity to act 16, 18, 100, 139, 151, 179–181, 210 Capital Volume I (Marx) 36 capital, axiomatic of 36–37 captation 59n6; aim of 55; devices 49 capture, idea of 36–37; capital and 36 Cardiff, J. 187 Carlson, D. 14–15 Carter, M. 12 Cartesianism 178 Cassou, J. 123 centre space, significance of 49 Chan, M. P. 192



Chaos, Territory, Art (Grosz) 4 Chen, R. N. 185 Cheung, K. L. 192 Chiapello, E. 49 China, mass surveillance system in 224 Chun, W. 73 Chung 73 Cinema 2 (Deleuze) 57 City of Leeds 224 city; clear-cutting and 151–153; generous 159–160; as medium of warfare 152; significance of 149, 152; spatial and temporal depth of 153–60; war-torn 149–150 city-centre flexibilisation 46–48 city-minds 222–226 218 Clark 72 clear-cutting; significance of 151; urban 151–153, 157 Cochoy, F. 49, 50, 56, 58; on curiosity 55, 57 codification, significance of 37 collective bodies, surfaces of 165 collective memory 113, 128; commemorative edifice and 120; of deportations 124, 127 collective trauma 153, 157 comfort, notion of 106 communicative capitalism 21 complete streets, notion of 41–42 concept, affect and 29–30 conceptual art 233 Connolly, W. 73 conscious city 225 Constructions (Rajchman) 231 control societies and noo-politics 46 Corrêa, M. 19, 21 Corry, T. 192 Counter-Reformation 31 COVID-19 situation 19–20, 22 CRA/LA see Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA/LA) crab-walk and shared spaces 54–56 Crary, J. 10, 70 critical reading, narratives about 240–241 Critique of Pure Reason, The (Kant) 65 Cuff, D. 17 Cultural Politics of Emotion, The (Ahmed) 231 culture industry, significance of 31, 37n2 Culture of the Baroque (Maravall) 30

curiosity and shopfront, significance of 55–56 Cuvier, G. 145 cyberconsciousness, significance of 219–220 Danto, A. 69 DARPA see Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Davidson, C. 4 de Gaulle, C. 124 decolonisation 169 de-colonised houses, of parliament 187 deep architecture; ethico-aesthetic paradigm and 71–75; logos spermatikos and 66–71; post-Darwinian theory of sensibility and 63–66 Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) 21 DeLanda, M. 4 Delany, S. R. 240 Deleuze, G. 15–16, 23n1, 33, 76n14, 147n1, 195nn5–6, 233, 236; on abstract machine 134–135, 147n4, 148n5; on affect 179, 180, 184; on affectio and affectus 114–115, 119; on architecture 141; on art as sensation 34; on assemblage 63, 64, 69, 135–138, 147n4; on body 151, 189; Braidotti on 70; on capture 36; on city-street context 16; on communication marketisation 57; on desire 136–138, 141; on difference 175, 176–177, 182, 195n2; on Ethica 129n1; on green affect 96; on information and communication 22; on Leibniz 44; on macro and micro arrangements 135–136; on music and affect 95; on non-representational thoughts and affects 180; on noology 44; on nooshock 55; note to Foucault 133–140; on opinion 116–117; on panopticism 147n3; on perception 55, 65, 70, 116, 189; on plane of immanence 99, 181; on pleasure 139, 140; on power–knowledge link 140–141; on sensation 66; on sexuality 135, 137–138; on shared space 42, 44, 54–56; on Spinoza 81, 129nn1– 2, 177, 178, 194n3; on virtual 68; on visibility 64; on walking 100–102; on window-countryside system 56 Deleuze and Contemporary Art (Zepke and O’Sullivan) 233 Deleuze Studies Journal 229

Index deportation, significance of: assumptions concerning 127; collective memory of 124, 127; as physical process of displacement 126; significance of 123; Vichy regime and 125; see also Memorial (Mémorial des martyrs de la Déportation) Descartes, R. 178 Desire and Civic Space 229 “Desire and Pleasure” (Deleuze) 133, 136, 138, 147 desire 55, 107, 143, 145, 205; affection of 7, 133, 139, 140, 142; affects and 179, 181, 182, 188, 235; assemblage of 69, 136–140, 144, 147n4, 154; of bodies 109; created by oppression 164; definition of 139; Deleuze on 138–140; fascism and 132; for high culture 104; intellectual of 141; power and 7, 132, 136, 137, 139, 140 deterritorialization 36, 45, 147n4, 182; affective 54; Deleuze on 137; dispostif and 46; inverse geometry and 152; memorial and 146 Deutsche, R. 211n5 difference; body without organs (BwO) and 181–182; collective and creative power of embodiment and 180; Deleuze on 175, 176–177, 182; embodied thinking and 178–180; studies in 183 (creative behaviours and 189–193; collective cultures of embodiment and 193–195; real ideas and 183–189) Difference and Repetition (Deleuze) 236 digital mindfile management 220 “digital you” file 220 Dillet, B. 45 Discipline and Punish (Foucault) 134, 135; as essential 134 discomfort; in architecture 118–119; in percept and affect context 119 Disney Space (Chung) 73 DisOrdinary Architecture Project 186–187, 195n10 disposition, of infrastructural spaces 14 divided blackburn 186 doing no harm principle 158, 168 Dovey, K. 3 Duschinsky, R. 100 East of Eden 229 Easterling, K. 14 ecological optics 75n1


Ecological School of Perception 67 Eddo-Lodge, R. 184 e-flux (journal) 20 Eisenman, P. 12 environmentality 166 Ethica (Spinoza) 114, 129n1 ethico-aesthetic paradigm 71–75 Ethics (Spinoza) 13, 27 ethology 19 Evans, R. 65, 177 Ewald, F. 134 exceptional zones 163 fabricated organs 218 Facebook 219 facial recognition systems 224 faciality, concept of 33–34 Fallujah (Iraq) 160n4 Fanon, F. 164 fascism, contemporary 132 Felski, R. 236, 237 feral cat approach 230–231, 244 ficto-criticism, significance of 87, 91, 96n3 Ficto-Historical Theory of the London Underground, A 229 figural, concept of 12, 44, 56 First Critique (Kant) 66 flaneur motif 99 Fleig, A. 234, 235 For Freedoms 188 Foreign Office Architects 200 Forsman, P. 81, 95 Foucault, M. 46, 49, 132, 141, 145, 147nn2, 4, 148n6, 153, 166; note to 133–140 Francis Bacon (Deleuze) 12, 34 Franklin, J. 155 Freeman, W. 71 Freitas, R. 216 Freud, S. 157 Frichot, H. 37n3 friction-free spaces, significance of 160n3 Fried, M. 199 Function of Form, The (Moussavi) 34 Gaughan, H. 192 Gavin, A. 154 gene editing 217 geodesic attitude, significance of 64 Gibbs, A. 102, 235 Gibson, J. J. 63, 66–69, 76n15; on architecture 68–69; on intellectual laziness 72; on learning 76n10; on new



theory of design 74; on perception 70, 71, 76n14 Gibson, W. 222 Gille, D. 43, 44, 49 green affect 7; among children 93–94; as awakening 91–93; case study of Märta 83–84, 87–93; green feelings and 95; as insurgency 93–94; as integration 89–91; in landscape music of artefacts 84–86, 95, 96; as non-conscious experience of intensity 89; non-residents on 83; renovation and 87–93; as shapeshifter 85–86; significance of 81–83, 85; as storytelling 86–89 green foliage, significance of 149 greenness, idea of 85 Gregg, M. 26 Griffiths, C. 40, 50, 57 Grosz, E. 4 Guattari, F. 33, 36, 44, 72, 99, 102, 116–117, 119, 129n1, 147n4, 148n5, 233; see also Deleuze, G. Hadid, Z. 33, 154, 200, 224 Halberstam, J. 228, 230, 232 Halbwachs, M. 120 Hardt, M. 211n6 Hariri, R. 154 Harvey, D. 153 Hawking, S. 214 Hays, K. M. 35, 199 hetero-affection, ecology of see deep architecture Hickey-Moody, A. C. 102 Hirst, P. 153 Histoire de Vichy, 1940–1944 (Aron) 124 Hoffman, S. 124 Holl, S. 75 “Homeless at Home” project 211n5 homophily 76n13 honour, significance of 170–171 “Honourable Spaces” project 169; as affective witnessing 171 Horkheimer, M. 31 Hornstein, S. 129n5 Hourani, N. 154 Hudson Valley hospitals 221 Hui, Y. 66 hypostasis 75n2 identity crisis 185 IDF see Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) imagineers, significance of 73

immediacy/immediation; affordance and 67; issue of 65 informed citizenship 51, 52 infrastructural affects; body and 18; Butler on 17–19, 21; communicative capitalism and 21; e-flux journal and 20; landscape and 14–15; significance of 13–15 (city street context 15–17, 19) infrastructure; failure and 18; space 14; support systems and 17–18 International Trade Union Confederation 224 inverse geometry 151–152 IOActive 221 Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) 151 Jackson, J. 125, 129n4 Jacobwitz, F. 129n5 James, W. 67, 75 Jameson, F. 26, 198 jealousy and love, Proust on 117 Jones, R. 74 Jordanian humanitarian workers 172n2 Kant, I. 65 Khoury, B. 154 Kipnis, J. 33 Kissing Architecture (Lavin) 12, 34 Klein, N. 153 Knochen, H. 125 Kochavi, Brigadier General 151 Kolkman, F. 223 Kurzweil, R. 214–216, 219, 222 Kwinter, S. 10, 64 Lad, M. 187, 188 Lahiji, N. 2 Lakmaier, N. 184, 187 Lang, N. 142 Lapoujade, D. 59, 134 Lapoutre, M. 236 Lash, S. 43–44 Latour, B. 20, 156 Lavin, S. 12, 33, 34, 200 Laws of Robotics 215, 226–227n4 Lazzarato, M. 45–46, 48, 50 Lefebvre, H. 153 Leibniz, G. W. 44, 50, 74 Lemmons, P. 219 Leoni, C. 143, 144 Light Weight O (Griffiths) (installation work) 40, 50, 57, 59 liveability, notion of 42, 44–46, 50, 57, 59

Index lived experience, geometric portrait of 114–115 Living PlanIT 226 locality, significance of 84–85 Log (journal) 12 logos spermatikos 66–71 Lorimer, H. 107 “Lorne street 50; REO” seats 51; step inscription in 52 Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA/LA) 197 Louvre-Lens Museum 101–102, 109–10n1; walking-with 103–106 “low-intensity affects” 7 Lynn, G. 33 Madafah as gendered space, disrupting 169–171 Manchester School of Architecture (MSA) 175, 191, 195n9 Manning, E. 63, 99 Maravall, J. A. 30–31, 35; on baroque culture 31–32 Marker, C. 192 Markinoski, C. 12 Marx, K. 36 Massumi, B. 4, 10, 26; on affect 107, 139, 165; on critical thinking 34–35; Mazzarela and 29, 30; on Spinoza 27, 32 “Material and Rational Feminisms” (Spencer and Rawes) 35 Matos, A. 19, 21 Mazzarella, W. 27–29, 33; Massumi and 29, 30 McArthur, J. 42 McBridge, D. 185–186 McGuirk, J. 20–21 mediation, significance of 27, 29, 32, 33 Meillassoux, Q. 70 Memorial (Mémorial des martyrs de la Déportation) 113, 119–122; exterior view of 121; individuation of 123–125; interior view of 122; memories of 125–128; signs and 126–128 memory and attention, and noo-politics 46 memory drugs 217 Million Programme (Sweden) see green affect mind copying 220 mind-cities 216 mindclones 219–220 Modernity at Large (Appadurai) 84


modulation 105, 108; noo politics and 40; significance of 44–46, 55, 57 Moe, K. 74 Moneo, R. 154 Mosbach Paysagistes 110n1 Mostafavi, M. 198, 199 moulding; of built environment 73; noopolitics and 40, 44, 45, 57; significance of 44 Moussavi, F. 33, 34, 200 MSA see Manchester School of Architecture (MSA) Mühlhoff, R. 28, 232 Murphie, A. 5 Musk, E. 214, 219, 222 Musmar, A. 168, 172n2 Najia, A. K. 184–185 nanobots 218, 219 Negri, A. 22, 36, 211n6 Nelson, M. 239 neoliberalism 2, 6–8, 28, 30, 32, 33, 34, 48–49, 73, 151, 160n3, 167, 197, 200 Neuralink 219 neuro-typical, significance of 195n12 “New Mood, or Affective Disorder, The” (Lavin) 12 newness; affective 43; reconstituted 42; shared spaces and 52; significance of 34, 35 Ngai, S. 210, 237 niche construction, significance of 76n11 Nietzsche, F. 75n3 Nitschke, P. 216 non-places 54; significance of 53; ubiquity of 53 non-subjectified affects 113–114; and affectio and affectus (as geometric portrait of lived experience 114–115; in What is Philosophy 115); Memorial and 120–122 (individuation of 123– 125; memories of 125–128); opinion and architectural phenomenology and 118–119; percept, affect, and commemorative edifice and 119–120; perception, affection and opinion and 115–117 noo-politics see shared space programme noo-scapes 44–45 nooshock 55 Norman, A.-M. 86 nostalgia, significance of 83



“Notes Around the Doppler Effect and Other Moods of Modernism” (Somol and Whiting) 12 NOX 200 Nuit et brouillard (Resnais) 125 Oberg, K. 125 objectivism, sign and 75 object-oriented ontologies, significance of 1, 3 O’Connell Street 56, 57; inscribed plinth/ seats in 54; plinth/seat detail 58; shared space of 53; significance of 40; sky view of 41; street furniture of 50–51; textuality in 51, 52 Odling-Smee, J. 76n11 Ohanian, A. 214 Oliver, K. 164, 172 onto-epistem-ology 65 opinion; architectural phenomenology and 118–119; perception and affection and 115–117 Ordinary Affects (Stewart) 201 ordinary affects 7, 84, 101, 201, 210–211; as assemblages 89; as surging capacity to affect and be affected 87; walking and 93 organon, idea of 45 Osborne, P. 53–54 O’Sullivan, S. 233 Otero-Pailos, J. 118 otherness 241; shared 166, 172; significance of 166 Ottobock 218 Pafka, E. 3 Pallasmaa, J. 3, 119 Palme, O. 86 panopticism 134–135, 147n3; electronic 224, 225 Parables for the Virtual (Massumi) 27 parametricism 75 Patton, P. 148n6 Paxton, R. O. 125 peacefulness; building of 159–160; global 150; meaning and significance of 158; rebuilding efforts and 159 percept and affect 117; Charlus series and 129n3; and commemorative edifice 119–120 perception 121, 129n1; action and 64–65; and affection 189 (and opinion

115–117); amodal and ambulant 67; apperception and 65; attention and action and 66; of body 189; Deleuze on 55, 65, 70, 116, 189; Gibson on 70, 71, 76n14; immediate 7; invariance of 68; of locals 104; as pragmatic 71; quasicausality of 74; significance of 65; as skill and participation 71; as subtraction 70; transcendental unity of 66 Perspecta (journal) 12 Petry, B. M. 59n5 phenomenology 4 Pingusson, G.-H. 123, 126 place-making, as project and projection 53 pleasure 11, 103, 119, 224, 232; aesthetic 243; Deleuze on 139, 140; desire and 138; green affect and 84, 91, 95; memorials and 146–147; queer experimental literature and 242 “Politics of the Envelope, The” (ZaeraPolo) 33 Porter, A. S. 199 Portman, J. 197–199 Portman’s America and Other Speculations (Mostafavi) 198–200 “Postscript on the Societies of Control” (Deleuze) 44, 46 post-structuralism 29 post-war reconstruction, significance of 153–154 power 37n1; affect and 105, 181; as affection of architecture 144; architecture and 143, 144; arrangements 134–138 (sexuality as 137–138); assemblage and 143–144, 147; body and 180; in capitalism 37; definition of 139, 179; and desire 137, 139, 140 (comparison 139, 147n4; disconnect between 132); honour and 169; and knowledge, link between 140–141; reactive figures and 148n6; sexuality and 135, 137–138; subjectification and 32–33; subjectivity and 214; truth and 135; to will 181 Power platform (Columbia University) 20 precarity affective, concept of 17 Preciado, P. B. 20, 239 Pressman, N. 123 Prigogine, I. 27 Prior, N. 104 project space, significance of 49 projective city, significance of 49

Index prosthetics 218 Proust, M. 117 Proustian apprenticeship, in semantics 75 public, significance of 45 Queen street 50 queer literature; fragments and affective studies and 233–234; heteronormative social imaginary and 241–243; scavenger methodology and 230, 243; significance of 228–230; vulgar writing and 239 Rage Inside the Machine (Lepoutre) 236 Rajchman, J. 231 Rawes, P. 3, 35 Read, J. 45 readers and texts, affective relations between 240 Real Humans (TV show) 224 Recursivity and Contingency (Hui) 66 Reed, E. S. 74 relationality 10, 21, 63, 66, 67, 98–100, 102, 106, 107, 172n2, 175, 176, 178, 179, 181, 183, 194, 195n3, 234, 241; affect and 43, 104; affectation of places and 53; affective witnessing and 172; affirmation of 74; of city 151; dynamic 95, 104; erotic 240, 242; intersubjective 164, 166 Rendell, J. 235 representational thinking 177 repressive hypothesis 145 Réseau du souvenir 123, 126 Resnais, A. 125 responseability 75n8 “Results of the Direct Production Process” (Marx) 36 Rice, C. 198 Riedel, F. 110n4 Robin, E. 42 robots, significance of 215 Rossiter, N. 18 Rousso, H. 125 Ruddick, S. 182 Rykwert, J. 43, 109n1 Santa Cruz 224 scavenging 8; queer 228, 230, 231, 235, 239, 240, 243 Schumacher, P. 2, 33 Scott-Cohen, P. 199


Seigworth, G. J. 26, 194 sensibility, post-Darwinian theory of 63–66 sexuality 73; Charlus series and 129n3; collective rejection of 145; Deleuze on 135, 137–138; desire and 132; Foucault on 145–146; power and 135, 137–138; repressive hypothesis and 45; significance of 134 shared space programme; art/any-places and 52–54; city-centre flexibilisation and 46–48; crab-walk and 54–56; monadic divergence and 50–52; noopolitics and 45–46; noo-scapes and 44–45; shopfront paradox and 48–49; significance of 40–41; street discipline and 49–50; street-mirror and 40–42; surface effect and 42–44 Sheikh, significance of 172n3 Shonibare, Y. 185 shopfront paradox 48–49 Shouse, Eric 82; on affect 83, 84 Silverstein, M. 29–30 “Skärholmen Wives” 86 Slaby, J. 5, 6, 28, 30, 95, 232, 234 smart cities and city-mind 224 smart drugs 216–217 Smith, C. L. 3, 118 Smith, D. W. 119 Smolinski, J. 56 Soja, E. 153 Solidere (Société Libanaise pour le Développement et la Reconstruction de Beyrouth) 154–156 Somol, R. 12 Songdo, as failed smart city 226 space, meaning of 65 “spaces of appearance” 12, 18 spatial radicalism, of anywhere 54 Speaks, M. 12 spectatorship, slowing and prolonging of 48 Spinoza (Deleuze) 3, 138 Spinoza, B. 13, 27, 28, 32, 110n2, 114, 129nn1–2, 160n2, 177–181, 193 Spuybroek, L. 33 Stancer, J. 188–189, 189 Steiner, J. 142 Stengers, I. 27 Stewart, K. 84, 86, 87, 89, 96, 99, 201, 210 Stewart, S. 83 street discipline 49–50



street-mirror 40–42 structuralism 26, 27; as static 32 subjectification and power 32–33 subjectivisations 213 subjectivism, sign and 75 subjectivity 56, 194; affective politics and 213–214; artificial intelligence and 221–222; border regime and 172; cityminds and 222–226; humanist models of, contesting 240–241; modulation and 46; non-unitary 167; noo-politics and 45–46; political 165, 169; singularity and 214–216; transhumans and 216–221; witness and 164 subsumption, idea of 36, 37n4 Sukarieh, M. 168 Sullivan, R. 50 surface effect 42–44 surface effect 42–44 Surfing Uncertainty (Clark) 72 Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland 47, 58; spatial planning of 47–48; see also shared space programme Tannock, S. 168 Tarde, G. 45 Temple Hoyne Buell Center for the Study of American Architecture, The (Columbia University) 20 Thiel, P. 216 Third Critique (Kant) 66 Thousand Plateaus, A (Deleuze and Guattari) 137, 139, 147n4 Three Square Market 218 Thrift, N. 3, 11 Timeship institute 223 Tonkinwise, C. 156 Topographies of Terror museum, aborted 133; significance of 142–146 “Topography of Terror” (documentary exhibition) 142 “Topography of Terror” Foundation 142, 143 transhumanism 214–215 traumatic war residues and rebuilding efforts 157–58 Trump, D. 221 “tuning in” metaphor 71 “turn to affect” 231 Two Regimes of Madness (Lapoujade) 134 Tyszczuk, R. 3

Ugly Feelings (Ngai) 210 “University” paradigm 166 urban clear-cutting 7 Urban Operating System (UOS™) 226 US Department of Labor 222 Valentine, S. 223 van Brakel, R. 225 VeriChip 218 Verso Blog (online platform) 21 Veysset, R. 123 Vichy France (Paxton) 125 Vichy regime, significance of 124–125, 129n4 Vichy syndrome 125 virtual reality (VR) 222–223, 226 virtual, significance of 67–68 vision, as proximal sense 164 Viveiros de Castro, E. 74 Von Scheve, C. 5, 6, 28, 30, 95 VR see virtual reality (VR) Vreewijk, C. 91 vulgar writing 239 vulnerability; basic survival and 22; and body 18 Waite, S. 234, 243 Walker, S. 3 walking-with architecture; affect and 99–100; flaneur motif and 99; to Louvre-Lens Museum 101–102 (walking-with 103–106); return to Paris and 106–107; significance of 98–99 Wang, W 211n3 Wark, M. 238–239 Weizman, E. 151–152 welfare landscapes 95, 96; failed 93, 94; nostalgia for 83; significance of 82 Wenzel, J. 142 Wetherell, M. 201 “What is a Creative Act?” (Deleuze) 16 What is Philosophy? (Deleuze and Guattari) 3, 4, 7, 113, 128, 233; affectio and affectus in 115; opinion and architectural phenomenology in 118; perception and affection in 115–116 Whiting, S. 12, 13 Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People about Race (Eddo-Lodge) 184 Will to Knowledge, The (Foucault) 133–135, 145, 147n2 Williams, R. 84

Index willing body 179–180 Winterson, J. 240 Worringer, W. 141 writing as practice, and architectural affects 235–236; and critical theory (and critique 236–237; and culture industry 238–239) Writingplace Journal 229 Wylie, J. 107 Xin Yun Ang, E. 192

Young, J. 153 Za’atri refugee camp 168, 169 Zaera-Polo, A. 33–34, 200 Zaha Hadid Architects 225 Zepke, S. 233 Zourabichvili 70 Zuckerberg, M. 219 Zumthor, P. 7, 75, 132, 142–147