[Marxism] Joy and the labour of the negative | Richard Seymour on Patreon
lnp3 at panix.com
Fri May 10 06:57:25 MDT 2019
The answer, from the perspective of 'radical happiness', is to reanimate
lost histories of collective, communal ecstasy. Barbara Ehrenreich gives
us the religious and Dyonisian roots of carnival, rock and dance. Segal
connects utopias, alternative ways of living, from early socialists and
feminists, Surrealists, soixant-huitards and Indignados, to moments of
collective joy in which the utopia is briefly, autopoietically animated.
The Acid Corbynites reprise Sixties counterculture, acid and the rave
scene, in which consciousness was altered, bent out of its habitual
grooves, and "raised".
These moments, in which flare up ancient ecstasies and future utopias,
are moments of self-forgetting elation. It is not so much that
participants in festivals, protests, carnivals and churches are happy,
though they might be, so much as that they stop worrying about whether
they are happy or not. St John of the Cross, a practitioner of what
Coventry Patmore called the 'science of ultimates', speaks of his
consciousness-raising ravishment thus: "All ceased, and I was not,/
Leaving my cares and shame/ Among the lilies, and forgetting them."
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