德勒茲 29

Deleuze 29 德勒茲 Treatise on Nomadology 論遊牧學

Translated by Springhero 雄伯



Proposition III: The exteriority of the war machine is also attested to by epistemology, which intimates the existence and perpetuation of “ nomad” or “ minor science.”




   There is a kind of science, or treatment of science, that seems very difficult to classify, whose history is even difficult to follow. What we are referring to are not “ technologies” in the usual sense of the term. But neither are they “ sciences” in the royal or legal sense established by history. According to a recent book by Michel Serres, both the atomic physics of Democritus and Lucretius and the geometry of Archimedes are marked by it. The characteristics of this kind of eccentric science would seem to be the following.




   !. First of all, it uses a hydraulic model, rather than a theory of solids treating fluids as a special case; ancient atomism is inseparable from flows, and flux is reality itself, or consistency.




   2. The model in question is one of becoming and heterogeneity, a opposed to the stable, the ternal, the identical, the constant. It is a “ paradox” to make becoming itself a model, and no longer a secondary characteristic, a copy; in the Timaeus, Plato raises this possibility, but only in order to exclude it and conjure it away in the name of royal science. By contrast, in atomism, just such a model of heterogeneity, and of passage or becoming in the heterogeneous, furnished by the famed declination of the atom. The clinamen, as the minimum angle, ha meaning only between a straight line and a curve, the curve and its tangent, and constitutes the original curvature of the movement of the atom. The clinamen is the smallest angle by which an atom deviates from a straight path. It is a passage to the limit, an exhaustion, a paradoxical “ exhaustive” model. The same applies to Archimedean geometry, in which the straight line, defined as “ the shortest path between two points,” is just a way of defining the length of a curve in a predifferential calculus.




  3. One no longer goes from the straight line to its parallels, in lamellar or laminar flow, but from a curvilinear declination to the formation of spirals and vortices on an inclined plane: the greatest slope for the smallest angle. Form turba to turbo: in other words, from bands or packs of atoms to the great vortical organizations. The model is a vortical one; it operates in an open space throughout which things-flow are distributed, rather than plotting out a closed space for linear and solid things. It is the difference between a smooth ( vectorial  , projective, or topological) space and a striated ( metric) space: in the first case “ space is occupied without being counted,” and in the second case “ space is counted in order to be occupied.”




   4. Finally, the model is problemic, rather than theorematic: figures are considered only from the viewpoint of the affections that befall them: sections, ablations, adjunctions, projections. One does not go by specific differences from a genus to its species, or by deduction from a stable essence to the properties deriving from it, but rather from a problem to the accidents that condition and resolve it. This involves all kinds of deformations, transmutations, passages to the limit, operations in which each figure designates an “ event” much more than an essence; te square no longer exists independently of a quadrature, the cube of a cubature, the straight line of a rectification. Whereas the theorem belongs to the rational order, the problem is affective and inseparable from the metamorphoses, generations, and creations within science itself. Despite what Gabriel Marcel may say, the problem is not an “ obstacle” ; it is the surpassing of the obstacle, a pro-jection,  in other words, a war machine. All of this mvement is what royal science is striving to limit when it reduces as much as possible the range of the “ problem-element” and subordinates it to the “ theorem-element.”




  This Archimedian science, or this conception of science, is bound up in an eseential way with the war machine: the problemata are the war machine itself and are inseparable from inclined planes, passages to the limit, vortices and projections. It would seem that the war machine is projected into an abstract knowledge formally different form the one that doubles the State apparatus. It would seem that a whole nomad science develops eccentrically, one that is very different from the royal or imperial sciences. Furthermore, this nomad science is continually “ barred,” inhibited, or banned by the demands and conditions of State science. Archimedes, vanquished by the Roman State, becomes a symbol. The fact I that the two kinds of science have different modes of formalization, and State science continually imposes its forms of sovereignty on the inventions of nomad science. State science retains of nomad science only what it can appropriate; it turns the rest into a set of strictly limited formulas without any real scientific status, or else simply represses and bans it. It is as if the “ savants” of nomad science were caught between aa rock and a hard place, between the war machine that nourishes and inspires them and the State that imposes upon them an order of reasons. The figure of the engineer ( in particular the military engineer), with all its ambivalence, is illustrative of this situation. Most significant are perhaps borderline phenomena in which nomad science exerts pressure on State science, and , conversely, State science appropriates and transforms the elements of nomad science. This is true of the art of encampments, “ castrametation,” which has always mobilized projections and inclined planes; the State does not appropriate this dimension of the war machine without submitting it to civil and metric rules that strictly limit, control, localize nomad science, and without keeping it from having repercussions throughout the social field ( in this respect, Vauban is like a repeat ofArchiedes, and suffers an analogous defeat). It is true of descriptive and projective geometry, which royal science would like to turn into a mere practical dependency of analytic, or so-called higher, geometry ( thus the ambiguous situation of Monge and Poncelet as “ savants”). It is also true of differential calculus. For a long time, it has only parascientific status and was labeled a “ Gothic hypothesis” ; royal science only accorded it the value of a convenient convention or a well-founded fiction. The great State mathematicians did their best to improve its status, but precisely on the condition that all the dynamic, nomadic notions—such as becoming, heterogeneity, infinitesimal, passage to the limit, continuous variation—be eliminated and civil, static, and ordinal rules be imposed upon it ( Carnot’s ambiguous position in this respect). Finally, it is true of the hydraulic model, for it is certain that the State itself needs a hydraulic science ( there is no going back on Wittfogel’s theses on the importance of large-scale waterworks for an empire). But it needs it in a very different form, because the State needs to subordinate hydraulic force to conduits, pipes, embankments, which prevent turbulence, which constrain movement to go from one point to another, and space itself to be striated and measured, which makes the fluid depend on the solid, and flows proceed by parallel, laminar layers. The hydraulic model of nomad science and war machine, on the other hand, consists in being distributed by turbulence across a smooth space, in producing a movement that holds space and simulataneously affects all of its points, instead of being held by space in a local movement from one specified point to another.. Democritus, manaechmus, Archimedes, Vauban, Desargues, Bernoulli,Monge, Carnot, Poncelet, Perronet, etc; in each case a monograph would be necessary to take into account that special situation of these savants whom State science used only after restraining or disciplining g them, after repressing their social or political conceptions.



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