Machinic Unconcious is here! And a plea: now somone, please translate Simondon!

I can’t say how happy I am to finally have a copy of Taylor Adkins’ new translation of Felix Guattari’s The Machinic Unconscious in my hands. I remember contacting Taylor when he was still working on this, and he sent me a draft, and I read most of it then. Unfortunately, I lost the marked up manuscript pages in my files somewhere (which is why I like books soooo much better). But now I can reread it, which is great.While the second half is mostly on Proust, the entire first half is some of Guattari’s most developed and systematic thought. Really great stuff. While it’s nothing particularly new beyond what’s presented in A Thousand Plateaus, it really fills the model out, applies it to new turf, draws out new implications. I think its an important work.

When I read this text in Taylor’s draft,  my french wasn’t good enough to go for the original, but since then, I’ve managed to be able to read theory in French, albeit. Which is great. BUT, there’s one major author that was the main reason why I kept pushing myself, because most of his work is untranslated: Gilbert Simondon.

Having read most of his masterwork Individuation in French, I can’t say how much this work has influenced me. It’s a work that’s really ahead of its time. So much of the root and spirit of the Deleuzian revolution is in here. And yet it goes further in some ways. It’s a massive, extremely important work. Why is it not translated? Will someone PLEASE translate it? Granted, I’ve read most of it already, but that’s not the point. I still want it in English. And I want the rest of the English theoryscape to have it. It’s way too important for it not to exist.

The fact that his book on technology is also largely non-translated is also a complete shame. I mean, I know that there’s an old translation of the first section, and Stiegler does a nice summation of Simondon’s texts in his recent work, but we really need this essential thinker in translation. I think his work is the most important theory untranslated today.



~ by chris on December 31, 2010.

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