Robin Hood is a New Concept

Akseli Virtanen


A story tells that when once in São Paulo, Félix Guattari was politely asked if he could temper down his little bit cliquey use of language, for example by avoiding too frequent resorting to neologisms. Otherwise his audience might mistake him for a member of some small sect, was the explanation. Guattari’s response was calm: Inventing concepts was an adventure. And the concepts he had invented, his “little machines”, were his personal adventure. They were not some kind of means of communication or tools of marketing. He added that the paths of independent life, as his own, were often lonely, accompanied perhaps sometimes only by an echo or a few friends. Then, after a moment of silence, he suddenly asked: what would life be, if we could not invent new words and concepts?

In his wonderful book Qu’ est-ce que la philosophie written together with Gilles Deleuze, he says it even clearer: the task of philosophy is to create new concepts, new little machines.

But how do you recognize that you are encountering a new concept or a new little machine?

According to Deleuze it is simple. You recognize a new concept from that it is little odd and that it is necessary. And this is so only when it responds to a real problem.

Unfortunately I don’t have here more room to dwell on Deleuze’s very important distinction between a real and a false problem (maybe it is enough for us here to say that freedom is in creating problems and that it is this semi-divine power, that takes us always beyond the immediate state of our experience towards the conditions of our experience, which makes also the false problems, both non-existent and badly stated, disappear).

In the following I will try to outline some of the partial components of the real problem to which Robin Hood corresponds.


Production of Subjectivity

The cognitive and affective mechanisms of accumulation have changed economy from production of objects to subjects, as production of commodities is still often mistakenly understood, into direct production of subjectivity. The economy is directly acting on our nervous system affecting particularly our ethico-aesthetic perception, that is, our ability to understand meanings which cannot be said in words.

The economy does not in other words function only through exchange values, monetary values, but also through mechanisms of subjectivation. They are the most important means of organization of the accumulation in an economy where our abilities to understand and learn, to feel and create meanings and to relate to the presence of others have replaced direct labour and machines as the central forces of production. Economy has become production of subjectivity.

In semiocapitalism the essence of productivity lies no longer in the ability to reduce costs per unit, but rather in the ability to respond to unexpected situations and unforeseeable opportunities. That is why productivity of knowledge and affective work is more and more based on the autonomy of work performances. Production takes place in the “head”, in “communication” or “cooperation between brains” and it cannot be organized and controlled like industrial work, at the level of physical work performances or with methods tied to a particular space (the sphere of disciplinary practices). Here is the origin of the autonomous nature of creative and knowledge work, but also the reason for the emergence of the new forms of control and organization which don’t restrict themselves within the boundaries of formal work time and work place but go directly “inside the head”, that is, which produce conditions of work at the level of subjectivity.

This is also why making money has today much more to do with “production of worlds” than with production of material commodities as Maurizio Lazzarato for example has noted. Semiocapitalism is not so much a form of production than a production of a form: it is manierism, production of habitus, beliefs, desires and conceptions and expression of subjectivities that are incorporated in these. It is a “productive-economic-subjective” compound as Félix Guattari says. We are ourselves integral organs to the functioning of this compound: our feelings, perceptions, hopes, desires and imaginary ghosts are not something separate but integral components of the functioning of economy. This transfer of the mechanisms of production of value into our mental environment is far more important to the analysis of our psyche than the mother relationship or family. This is what Deleuze and Guattari meant in their famous analysis in L’Anti-Oedipide: desire is social, capitalism is about the appropriation of desiring production.

Guattari says that the analysis of the social formation of desire is a micropolitical question. It deals with the way in which the molar, stratified, stable and perceivable levels of society traverse and connect to the partial, molecular, invisible and processual elements of production of subjectivity that are always open towards future. Molar and molecular are not opposite to each other, the real problems are always at the same time both molar and molecular. That is why in micropolitical analysis subjectivity and group dynamic can never be separate from some kind of a material or social reality or real “political” level. On the contrary, real problems are always questions of many heterogeneous components, of many processes of subjectivation and emerging connections of its partial components which tremble and get constructed and destroyed in different assemblages and moments. It is within these assemblages that microanalysis needs to grasp the partial components of subjectivation and map the relationships between molar and molecular forces to enable openings towards future which would perhaps make our existential territories more habitable. Existential pragmatics, this is the function Guattari found in Kafka’s machine: working with existence in mutation, at the same time deteriorating, deterritorializing, mapping itself and becoming.

The very essence of the semiocapitalist accumulation is in that it does not restrict itself within the sphere of economic surplus value, but that it uses all possible means of capture and management of subjective abilities and powers, of appropriation and modulation of subject’s time, desire and creativity. It does not operate so much at the level of our actual actions in particular space and time (actual working tasks, working places and working times), but rather sinks its teeth directly into the molecular, aleatory, the uncertain and indeterminate still in the process of becoming. That is why the question of “becoming”, like in Kafka, the question of the possible in my own live, the question of creating my own problems, interferes directly to the essence of semiocapitalist accumulation.

By spreading the structures and risks of production into structures of subjectivity, meaning, desire and relationships, semiocapitalism has broadened the ecological crises into our mental and social environments. The question of the ecology of the incorporeal “species” of thoughts, desires, feelings, states of mind and modes of cooperation is as pressing a problem as is the ecology of the natural world.

The question of the virtual ecology does not mean curling up into oneself nor giving up political commitments. On the contrary, it means re-thinking political practices, means of cooperation and collective action in a way that could respond to a historical situation which has wrecked the ability to function from the old political and social practices of solidarity and collective action.

We thus discover behind the question of precarity and changes in production and economy a real problem which has to do with our mental ecology: the question of the new controls which have penetrated our subjectivity and relationships and the necessary mutation of the “place” of resistance. What is at stake is the possibility of becoming as such.

As Guattari understood from Kafka, “becoming” is always a question about the ability of a process to become singular or not. Facing the new controls which work upon the conditions of my thinking and behavior, I am losing my singularity, my singular way of breathing, feeling, thinking, desiring and not desiring and my capacity to give any particular expression to it.

The question of the future should begin from understanding the relationship between this exhaustion of the possible at my disposal and how value is produced in semiocapitalism.


Mobilization of Pathos

Labour force is detaching itself form the spatial, physical and biological coordinates that used to characterize it in industrial production and it is turning into a “potential”, “abstract” or “immaterial” category without a distinct spatial and temporal existence.[1] With the concept of immaterial labour force I try to refer to that dimension – or what Henri Bergson calls duration – of human life which prevents everything from being immediately given, and because of which we are not reducible to our spatial existence or to out position in a chronological continuum of time. That is the immaterial dimension of human life which has become the essential force of production in semiocapitalist economy and causes problems to any serious thinking of organization.

To gain further insight to the idea of immaterial labour maybe we could say that it is the soul that is today put to work.[2] Soul is like the gravity of the body, the force that makes us alive and incline towards others, it is how we fall in life and what makes us fall with others. As Jason Smith writes in the preface of Berardi’s book, soul does not lie beneath the skin. It is not simply the capacity for abstraction, the seat of intellectual operations, but also of emotions and feelings, affective and libidinal forces that weave together the world: attentiveness, the ability to address, care for and appeal to others. It is the web of attachments and tastes, attractions and inclinations. To say that soul is put to work is to say that the contemporary subject of semiocapitalism is not simply a producer of knowledge and a manager of symbols. Soul is an aesthetic organ. Economy has become mobilization of pathos and organization of the mood.

But it is hard to continuously put into work more and more of one’s “soul” – personality, mood, attentiveness, feelings, thinking, relations, pathic capacities – while at the same time the magic of work, the certainty, stability and predictability of life it once offered seems to have totally lost its credibility. Lost is also the promise of any collective subjectivation, semiocapitalism is cooperation without memory. In the subjective states of mind this precarization of work is expressed as a loss of coherence, exhaustion, cynicism, opportunism and instrumentalization of social relationships.

The logic of the production of value has changed: work in the traditional sense of the term, and factory as the corresponding the model of production, have rather converted into mere “costs” which must be eliminated from the system. This striving away from “production economy” expresses itself as redundancies, rationalizations and closing down of factories but the reason of these cost savings is in the transformation in the core of value production. Value is no longer created in direct material labour and production, it is no longer created in a particular place (factory/office) or in a particular time (working time). Rather its place is the entire society and its time the indeterminate “right moment” or taking advantage of what ever opportunity.

By precarious work one usually means an area of work where no permanent rules can be determined in relation to employment relation, wage and working time. Essential in precarization is however not the lack of rules concerning the employment relation, the wage and the hours of work – the permanent rules that have held in the end only during a limited time span in the heart of the 20th century as the central part of the Fordist-Keynesian model of production – but this diminishing role of the work tied to a determined time, place and performance in the production of economic value. The production is less and less tied to the concrete working tasks in a determinable time and place: it takes place less and less inside the place and time of wage work in its traditional sense. Wage work as a form of organization of the labour force is unable to absorb and utilize workers’ knowledge, workers’ subjectivity, experience, independence and networks which are central in terms of productivity in knowledge economy.

In short, work and production have detached themselves from particular places, times and contents and become abstract categories. Yet this abstractness of work and our engagement with it is something very real and concrete: “abstract labour” has become an empirical, experiential category.[3] Experience of abstractness of labour (detachment of its concreteness) expresses itself, for example, in the distrust with respect to the permanence of employment or even to the stability of one’s immediate community. There are sudden moves and changes in our professions and areas of work and we have to move from task to task, project to project. The particular places and times of work vary and more important than learning something tied to a specific content is to “learn to learn”. Just like any business firm, I need to follow carefully what is going on around me, but at the same time I have to avoid too deep or profound a relationship with the things I do and the people I meet. Commitment is a risk and may lead to personal failure when options need to be kept open in the midst of unforeseeable multiplicity of possibilities. I need to have an opportunistic interest in everything, but at the same time I need to cynically not have an interest in anything. It is safer to be little bit distant and bored.

Emotions of distance, cynicism, restlessness, boredom and exhaustion are maybe the states of mind that describe our experience of working life today.[4] So what is restlessness? It is the opposite of asceticism. I am restless when I know that I should do something, but I do not know what or how to do that something. Inside myself there is a will and desire that is constantly stirring but has no particular direction or purpose. To be restless is to directly feel in front of myself the abyss of possibilities. I am ready for anything, the doors of the world are open to me, but I am restless because I have not yet found anything particular to say or to do or I already see that my action will lead to counterfactual outcomes or at best to nothing: I remain cynically outside the sphere of action. What is boredom? I am bored when there is nothing in the world that could interest me: I have seen it all, done it all. The world cannot offer anything new to me. I look at everything with intellectual and emotional disinterest. If restlessness is pure desire for action without a clear direction or origin, then boredom is a state of mind in which one realizes that there are no reasons for action, that all reasons are trivial and in vain. I am bored when I am not anymore interested in doing or saying anything particular, I have stepped outside the sphere of action. The precarious state of mind means experiencing at the same time the abundance of your possibilities and the arbitrariness and trivialness of the reasons and purposes of everything. It is an experience of ontology revealing itself phenomenologically, maybe the most cruel experience there is, as Giorgio Agamben has explained. It is the experience of potentiality.


Flight of Meaning

Meaning can be viewed as a reduction of reality to a finite enunciative concatenation.[5] When the infosphere – the dimension of intentional signs surrounding the sensible organism – is slow enough to be screened and scanned by mind we can extract meaning, we can find a common rhythm, a harmony, something Guattari called a refrain. But when the infosphere overruns mind’s rhythm of elaboration (when the semiotic flow is going too fast for our mind to process information in a rational way) the psychosphere is affected and meaning fails to be constructed and shared. Meaning escapes, it can no more be grasped as a finite explication and as a workable tool for social interaction and understanding. It is from this flight of meaning that the new mechanisms of control are constructed.

Overproduction is an inherent feature of capitalism because, rather than to the logic of the concrete needs of human beings, commodity production responds to the abstract logic of value production. However, the kind of overproduction manifest in semiocapitalism is specifically semiotic: an infinite excess of signs circulates in the infosphere and saturates individual and collective attention.

As Franco Berardi has insightfully said, it means that we don’t live any more in the conceptual framework of Freud’s Civilisation and its discontents. In Freudianism at the basis of pathology lies concealment: something is hidden from us, removed and then disappears; we are prevented from something. A semiotic regime can be characterized as repressive when one and only one meaning can be ascribed to its signifiers. There you hear everywhere the wisper ”What did the leader mean?” and the position of the despot-leader is naturally paranoid: Did they understand my message? Is everyone definately obeying? Is somebody trying to escape from my control?

But we are not dealing with effects of repression or disciplinary power anymore. My communicative disorders and precarious state of mind are not pathologies of repression, removal, concealment, restrictions or direct exploitation. On the contrary, they are effects of semiotic inflation, excess of meaning and information, excess of possibilities and visibility, of continuous overload of infoneural stimuli and overinclusion.[6]

Perhaps we could say that whereas Freud identified the dominant social pathology with neurosis, which he believed to be the result of a process of detachment and removal, today is defined more by a psychosis which has more to do with overload of energy and information and relates to the disappearance of centers of meaning and identification. Unlike neurosis, which is symbolic because it operates on the rhetorical and linguistic level of detachment and on the normative basis of Oidipus, psychosis is never characterized by symbolic castration. On the contrary, what Berardi calls the the first video-electronic generation – which has difficulties in understanding the affective meanings of words because it has learned more words from machines than from mothers and thus lost the affective connection to language – and its panic disorders, ADHD, dyslexia, the school killings in Finland… these are the first effects of the pathologies of inflation of meaning and hyper-expressivity.

I find myself as an inhabitant of the semiocapitalist universe which is characterized by the excess of speed of the signifiers and the absence of steady meaning centers. This is what characterized schizophrenic interpretation for Gregory Bateson. For him a schizophrenic has difficulties in finding a way to put oneself to a communicative relation with (a) messages coming from other people; (b) verbal and nonverbal messages one transmits; and (c) one’s own thought, sensation and perception.[7] These difficulties belong now to us all. Exposed to an overload of signifying impulses I feel unable to process the meaning of statements and stimuli in a meaningful way which would be based for example on the truth values of successive statements. Rather, signs and things connect to each other independent of the subjective control which I think I can have over them. It is a kind of machinic logic where the processes don’t work through signification but through affective contamination or attunement of frequences and vibrations and bifurcations which just start to happen to me, despite of me, free of me.

For example panic – the bodily experience of loosing control, respiratory problems, acceleration of heart beat which may cause fainting and losing of communicative abilities – is related to the feeling of being overwhelmed, when faced with the infinity of nature or with the infinity of meanings. Its etymological root is in the Greek word pan which means “everything existing”. Maybe that is why the Greeks were afraid of the roar of Pan, of the irrational madness, panic (panikon deima, the feeling of sudden immediate fear, horror, anxiousness or insecurity that takes so easily hold of the groups of animal and men), caused by the protector of shephards and flocks, which emerged and started to transmit when people distanced themselves too far away from the Gods or existing political boundaries and meanings.

Also depression has been related to this distance to boundaries and meanings that guide one’s behaviour. The growth of the phenomenon can be connected to the moment when the disciplinary models of behaviour, rules of authority, clear meanings and regulations and their controlling centers started to collapse.[8] When the demands of individual behaviour, of becoming your self and of using the opportunities of your life started then to become dominant, the responsibility of your life became assigned fully to you. Everything is now possible to you, all the windows to the world are open to you: just do it! As Bifo says, the root of depression is in the feeling of inadequacy and impotentiality, in the exhaustion under the weight of encountering one’s potentiality and of becoming oneself. The realization that I can’t sustain further the tension, that I am a loser in the relation that sucks all of my motivations results to a kind zero-degree of the exchange between me and the world. Everyone who has tried to motivate a depressed person will recognize the ice cold stare that one gets in return: I don’t want to, nothing interests me, I don’t care, the world has nothing interesting to offer to me.


Semiocapital and Arbitrary Power

Semiocapitalism – where value is produced more with words than machines, where products are more symbols, images, projections, expectations and communicative actions than material things, and where value production coincides more and more with semiotic production – does not only transform labour into profit, but penetrates much deeper to the tissue of our existence. Capital is not a simple economical category that is related to the circulation of commodities and services and accumulation of wealth. We have been trying to approach it as a far more intimate semiotic operator and speak therefore of semiocapital.

As a semiotic operator capital operates both in the sphere of meaningful (signifying) production and in the sphere where we are no longer dealing with meaningful effects but with effects which don’t have a meaning, which don’t need a meaning to function and get something done. For example the frissions, flashes and waves of fear, panic, restlessness and anxiety which circulate and radiate today in our states of mind are born, transmitting and travelling in this region. Just like a sound, which is composed of intensities, intervals, a rhythm and a tempo, they have very different and much more direct effect to us than the meanings of words. Or like in Kafka’s Metamorphosis, the music played by his sister talks directly to Gregor’s senses. He feels like a gate opening to a longed for source of unknown nourishment. A-signifying sign machines do not operate on the level conscious understanding and language but directly through nervous systems, affects and unconscious. They don’t speak, they don’t mean, they only function and take effect. They don’t produce meanings but simply function without meaning anything. As such a-signifying processes are only operational means without any meaningful or interpretative dimension that would settle or slow them down. They synchronize and modulate preindividual and preverbal partial components of subjectivity and make affects, psychic vibrations, feelings and perceptions function like parts of a machine. A-signifying processes don’t know persons, subjects or individuals, but touch and bind together prepersonal, prelinguistic and precommunal elements and intensities which move at a “molecular level”. Guattari’s schizoanalysis intended to work in this field to deal with the semiotic and material characteristics of such interaction – which surpass the systems of meaning and representation within which individuated subjectivities recognize each other, engage in dialogues, cooperate, exploit and alienate from one another.

This is why Guattari talks also about institutional semiotics whose scope should be broadened to encompass areas of organization which are not only linguistic and human, and of machinic subjectivity, whose interior is composed at the crossroads of many heterogeneous, contradictory, independent partial components which do not even necessarily fit together.

The starting point of the work of Robin Hood has been to begin a cartography of the subjectivity produced and consumed by semiocapitalist mechanisms of valorization. In this cartography it has been essential to understand that the production of subjectivities is not only a human affair, a matter of semiotic exchange between humans, but that there is also something like a “machinic consistency” that operates without any meaningful and interpretative mediation. That is why the theories of politics which place the most emphasis on speech, language and communication or think of them as the only valid expressions of politics, are today so weak. The power of language to act, as exercised in the Greek polis for example, is no longer sufficient for describing the “political word” of the new mechanisms of control.[9]

In a situation where we are confused with mixed signals (information overflow) or where our belief in the meaning, value and common purpose as a some kind of external reason directing our actions is lost – and precisely here is the reason why we today experience at the same time the abundance of our possibilities and the arbitrariness of all reasons and purposes (the simultaneous experience of restlessness and depression, boredom and panic) – these a-signifying machinic processes gain more and more important organizational role.

“Mielivalta” is a particular concept which we have been using to understand further this form of organization. It is s a specific Finnish word which combines the both senses of the emerging power. It reads literally mind-power, memory-power or sense-power: the latter word valta means power and the first word mieli has its etymological roots in the German words der Sinn (sense), die Launen (mood), die Lust (desire), der Verstand (reason, understanding), die Erinnerung (memory). “Mielivalta” is not power over actual bio-life but over the potential or non-actual dimension of life, the life of the mind.

But the first meaning of “mielivalta” is a use of power that is not based on reason (or on meaning, law, norms, rules, objective facts), that is, a power that is senseless or arbitrary. Mielivalta is arbitrary power. The arbitrariness means here the explosion of the infosphere, the indeterminacy and erosion of basis, values and meanings, which can no longer operate as the legitimating basis of actions. Arbitrary power is not only power over life of the mind but also power that is able to operate in the absence of meaning, amidst inflation of meaning and the “state of senselessness” following it – as the Spanish writers described the first economic inflation and its consequences in the16th century. Mielivalta is a little machine that opens the nexus between the entrance of soul into work and the floating currencies and signifiers:

the nexus between the loss of faith in the sign (or in any external reason directing action) and the production of wealth in modalities that cannot be thought or understood by the concepts of modern economy. It is power without logos, that is, arbitrary power or pure power, power without permanent relationship to a meaning, norm, law or to some particular task which would justify it, or more specifically, its relation to these is arbitrary. It is not a means toward an end, but it operates in “some other way” as Walter Benjamin says.[10] Mielivalta is an attempt to understand the controlling nature and logic of a-signifying semiotic machines which operate in a way that they can avoid the mediation of meaning – and they need to, this is fundamental for them because the arbitrariness (the loss of faith in the sign, the meaning, the law as a guiding principle of action) has penetrated our immediate experience. It is precisely this loss of faith that distinguishes arbitrary power from despotic power and the overcoding of meaning characteristic to it. The semiocapitalist controls are rather bare functions without meaning or bare operational means (automatisms) without a meaningful or interpretative dimension to settle or slow them down.

In a condition of overabundance of meaning or absence of meaning (arbitrary sign, inflatory sign) we are no longer within the sphere of meaningful organization. We are no longer faced with the question of organization of meaning, no longer dealing with the question of organization through meaning, but of organization of desire which does not aim to mean, communicate or mediate information, but to directly create a relationship with the world.


Discreet Charm of the Precariat

The mechanisms of semiocapitalist valorization are already in the soul of independence: the demands of building independent life, production of own meanings, self-learning and taking care of myself independently which surround me from everywhere subject me and tie me more and more tightly into the “natural environments” where I as if unnoticed seem to always know what to think and how to behave. The real problem is not something external to us – like neoliberalism, financial capitalism, greedy bankers and their henchmen – but it is already in our hearts and in our minds, in our relationships and in our friends. The real problem is that my work blends with my personality and transforms into a kind of black hole which exhausts me by as if forcing me to be capable of my own capabilities (to cooperate and create meaning, to be inventive and independent), sucking my imagination and energies and leaving me empty of emotions and senses, like Walter Benjamin’s Mickey Mouse, without a real body and a real life. The real problem is the impotence of cooperation and politics resulting from this displacement of external conflicts and juxtapositions from the ‘outside’ to the ‘inside’ of me.

The real problem is the fragility of cooperation, the difficulty and slowness of building the conditions of joint creation, the unpredictability and suddenness of how easily cooperation falls on the traditional conflicts and problems of communities, how both the ‘good’ cooperative innovation and the ‘bad’ cooperative negation depend on the same cruel experience of uncertainty, and how easily all the potentiality of cooperation turns into vicious violence.

The real problem is how our empathy becomes reactive and strategic, something which includes the “understanding” of the other, but holds on to the development of this knowledge in conditions which Bracha Ettinger would call non-matrixial. The real problem is the disastrous effects which schizoid and paranoid defense mechanisms and strategic empathy create in tearing apart the psychic tissue in the potential moments of cooperation by wounding that fragile space where there is consciousness of the connection between many subjective moments and where there is a possibility to connect to the potentiality of the other while surrendering oneself to its transforming power.

To paraphrase Luis Buñuel’s wonderful study on the bourgeois state of mind, the real problem is the discreet charm of the precariat.

It seems that in a situation where self-organization, cooperation and self-learning are already essential components of the semiocapitalist mechanisms of accumulation, living labour can only escape by withdrawing totally to itself, away from cooperation, in total “unemployment” or in only “apparent” participation, in boredom and depression, giving nothing to the enterprise that has taken the form of a self-organizing community or a platform of learning.

What is a community of the depressed? How do opportunists and cynics cooperate? The traditional organizational and political thought has always considered these states of mind dangerous, because it is impossible to control people who are not interested in anything, who do not commit to common task, who don’t keep their promises, have no clear direction, purpose, or consistency in their action or who just pretend to participate. It is precisely here where the classical methods of politics and organization face today their limit: they face the pathos of distance, human subjectivity without any particular direction or task, apathetic, indifferent and possessing a paradoxical immunity to any meaningful attempts of organization.

But perhaps it is this very instability, ambivalence, a kind of distance or indifference on which any serious thinking of organization of cooperation should today start. “From this pathos of distance they first arrogated to themselves the right to create values”.[11] Could we think that Guattari’s “pathic foyer “of subjectivity is also a-pathic? That is, interpreted positively as restlessness or indifference to what is calculated to move feelings, to excite interest and action and that perhaps it is in this autonomy, untouchability or indifference (to all attempts to direct and organize behavior and thinking), that we should start looking for the possibility of creation and cooperation – not chaos but the essence of becoming that gives us consistency and that is necessary for creation.

This is the little machine we would like to assemble.


[1] Virtanen Akseli (2010) Immaterial as Material. Exhausting Immaterial Labour in Performance. Joint Issue of Le Journal des Laboratoires and TkH Journal for performing Arts Theory no. 17, October 2010, 17-22.

[2] Berardi Franco (2009) Soul at Work. Translated by Francesca Cadel and Guiseppina Mecchia. Semiotext(e), Los Angeles. See also Negri Antonio (2009) The Labor of Job: The Biblical Text as a Parable of Human Labor. Translated by Matteo Mandarini. Duke University Press.

[3] For the concept of “ideal real” see Virtanen Akseli (2009), Arbitrary Power, or on Organization without Ends. The Swedish Dance History. Inpex, Stockholm.

[4] Vähämäki Jussi (2003), Kuhnurien kerho [Drones Club]. Tutkijaliitto, Helsinki.

[5] Berardi, Franco & Virtanen, Akseli (2010) From Arbitrary Power to Morphogenesis. Niin & näin filosofinen aikakauslehti, 66 (3), 35–44.

[6] Pelbart, Peter Pál (2009) Vida Capital. Ensaios de biopolítica. São Paulo: Iluminuras, 109-116; Berardi, Franco (2006). Tietotyö ja prekaari mielentila [Infolabour and Precarious States of Mind]. Trans. by Mikko Jakonen et al. Helsinki: Tutkijaliitto, 96-98.

[7] Bateson, Gregory (1972). Steps to an Ecology of Mind. Collected Essays in Anthropology, Psychiatry, Evolution, and Epistemology. The University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 194-200.

[8] See Ehrenberg, Alain (1988) La fatigue d’être soi: dépression et société. Paris: Editions Odile Jacob;

Berardi, Franco (2007) The Pathologies of Hyper-Expression. Discompart and Repression. Trans. by Arianna Bove. Art and Police. Transversal nro 10.

[9] The problem of politics concerns today not only the level of representation but that of the production of subjectivity. And this in its turn is a question of heterogeneous semiotic levels. What is essential here are not meanings but the building of heteregeneous collective assemblage of enunciation that gives support and consistency to mutations in subjectivity. Robin Hood is a project towards future. It tries to understand the a-signifying machinic nature of the functioning of semiocapitalism on the one hand, and the squeezing out of ethico-aesthetical partial objects from the dominant refrains, self-evidencies and deathly repetitions of our lives on the other: how do certain semiotic processes start to become autonomous, start to work for themselves, create irreversible mutations and excerete new universes of reference? We are trying to move towards an organizational experiment which brings together the mapping of our existential territories and create cuts and openings from the patterns and environments that seem to set the conditions of our thinking and behavior.

[10] Benjamin, Walter (2000) The Critique of Violence. Selected Writings. Vol. 1. Ed. Marcus Bullock & Michael W. Jennings. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 236–253.

[11] Nietzsche, Friedrich (1969) Moraalin alkuperästä [Zur Genealogie der Moral]. Pamfletti. Tr. J. A. Hollo. Otava, Helsinki, I:§2.


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