chapter  4
28 Pages


Active passivity, in the sense of a strategy designed to let things affect one unconsciously, is a logical conclusion of the drift away from the subject and from systematic control. In the libidinal Lyotard, passivity is an essential part of politics and morality, understood as a way of living. This conclusion can also be found in Gilles Deleuze, in the Logic of Sense in particular, but on closer inspection throughout his work, and in Michel Foucault in The History of Sexuality, but also in his work viewed as a whole if we follow Deleuze's reading in his Foucault. In each case a new energy or intensity is sought to replace the source of political hope and effort associated with the values of the human subject and our belief in its power to realise them. The capacity to act upon things reliably, as if external structures mirror the internal states of the subject (its desires, dreams and ideals), has become suspect with these thinkers. Can they replace it with an alternative political strategy?