Could it be that poetry, as a prophetic forebear and pained translator of the ‘language of acts’, is, as a mode of singularisation, what enables me to embark on this mutual de-conditioning and to settle upon forms of affective transmission and distributed vulnerability that palpitates the senses to become, perversely, ‘organs of knowledge’?
____1_________________How to write or speak, then, when the cruelty of everyday tyrants inhabits the silt of nerves and their jealously guarded power inhibits the very possibility of perceiving?
2_______________________________Would I choose a defensive verbosity, a fake erudition, an overly complex knowledge-wrack that would preserve me as self-possessed and self-regarding in what I think I know?
Would I rather choose the ‘language of acts’, a language of unmediated suffering (phôné), a
scream of unblocking, that can claim no alphabet and that, as an affective transmission, seems
to summon the reticent and the unreachable across regions?
Howard Slater at Mute
Howard Slater is a volunteer play therapist and writer who lives in East London
Aesthetic Education Expanded is a series of 12 articles commissioned by Mute and published in collaboration with Kuda.org, Kontrapunkt, Multimedia Institute, and Berliner Gazette. It is funded by the European Commission. A central site for all contributions to the project can be found here: http://www.aestheticeducation.net/. The series looks at the contemporary afterlife of the project of ‘aesthetic education’ initiated in the 19th century, from the violent imperatives of training and ‘lifelong learning’ imposed by capitalism in crisis to informal projects of resistance against neoliberal pedagogy and authoritarian repression.
Expanding the scope of the aesthetic in the tradition of Karl Marx to include everything from anti-austerity riots and poetry to alternative and self-instituted knowledge dissemination, the series encompasses artistic, theoretical and empirical analyses of the current state of mankind’s bad education and attempts to open up an understanding of what is being done against capital’s massive assault on thought and action whether in reading groups or on the streets of a world torn between self-cannibalisation and revolt.