Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Formation, Information*

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 11:11 PM

"The architect, Peter Eisenman, was against
the information center. 'The world is too full of
information and here is a place without information.
That is what I wanted,' he told Spiegel Online.
'But as an architect you win some and you lose some.'"

See also Winsome Tribute (March 25, 2019) and
Gravedigger's Handbook (March 19, 2017).

* See as well a related phrase.

Monday, March 25, 2019


Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 1:46 PM

(Continued from the previous post.)

In-Between "Spacing" and the "Chôra "
in Derrida: A Pre-Originary Medium?

By Louise Burchill

(Ch. 2 in Henk Oosterling & Ewa Plonowska Ziarek (Eds.),  Intermedialities: Philosophy, Arts, Politics , Lexington Books, October 14, 2010)

"The term 'spacing' ('espacement ') is absolutely central to Derrida's entire corpus, where it is indissociable from those of différance  (characterized, in the text from 1968 bearing this name, as '[at once] spacing [and] temporizing' 1), writing  (of which 'spacing' is said to be 'the fundamental property' 2) and deconstruction (with one of Derrida's last major texts, Le Toucher: Jean-Luc Nancy , specifying 'spacing ' to be 'the first word of any deconstruction' 3)."

1  Jacques Derrida, “La Différance,” in Marges – de la philosophie  (Paris: Minuit, 1972), p. 14. Henceforth cited as  D  .

2  Jacques Derrida, “Freud and the Scene of Writing,” trans. A. Bass, in Writing and  Difference  (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1978), p. 217. Henceforth cited as FSW .

3  Jacques Derrida, Le Toucher, Jean-Luc Nancy  (Paris: Galilée, 2000), p. 207.

. . . .

"… a particularly interesting point is made in this respect by the French philosopher, Michel Haar. After remarking that the force Derrida attributes to différance  consists simply of the series of its effects, and is, for this reason, 'an indefinite process of substitutions or permutations,' Haar specifies that, for this process to be something other than a simple 'actualisation' lacking any real power of effectivity, it would need “a soubassement porteur ' – let’s say a 'conducting underlay' or 'conducting medium' which would not, however, be an absolute base, nor an 'origin' or 'cause.' If then, as Haar concludes, différance  and spacing show themselves to belong to 'a pure Apollonism' 'haunted by the groundless ground,' which they lack and deprive themselves of,16 we can better understand both the threat posed by the 'figures' of space and the mother in the Timaeus  and, as a result, Derrida’s insistent attempts to disqualify them. So great, it would seem, is the menace to différance  that Derrida must, in a 'properly' apotropaic  gesture, ward off these 'figures' of an archaic, chthonic, spatial matrix in any and all ways possible…."

16  Michel Haar, “Le jeu de Nietzsche dans Derrida,” Revue philosophique de la France et de l’Etranger  2 (1990): 207-227.

. . . .

… "The conclusion to be drawn from Democritus' conception of rhuthmos , as well as from Plato's conception of the chôra , is not, therefore, as Derrida would have it, that a differential field understood as an originary site of inscription would 'produce' the spatiality of space but, on the contrary, that 'differentiation in general' depends upon a certain 'spatial milieu' – what Haar would name a 'groundless ground' – revealed as such to be an 'in-between' more 'originary' than the play of differences it in-forms. As such, this conclusion obviously extends beyond Derrida's conception of 'spacing,' encompassing contemporary philosophy's continual privileging of temporization in its elaboration of a pre-ontological 'opening' – or, shall we say, 'in-between.'

For permutations and a possible "groundless ground," see
the eightfold cube and group actions both on a set of eight
building blocks arranged in a cube (a "conducting base") and
on the set of seven natural interstices (espacements )  between
the blocks. Such group actions provide an elementary picture of
the isomorphism between the groups PSL(2,7) (acting on the
eight blocks) and GL(3,2) (acting on the seven interstices).


For the Church of Synchronology

See also, from the reported publication date of the above book
Intermedialities , the Log24 post Synchronicity.

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Espacement: Geometry of the Interstice in Literary Theory

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 3:28 AM

"You said something about the significance of spaces between
elements being repeated. Not only the element itself being repeated,
but the space between. I'm very interested in the space between.
That is where we come together." — Peter Eisenman, 1982


Parrhesia  No. 3 • 2007 • 22–32

(Up) Against the (In) Between: Interstitial Spatiality
in Genet and Derrida

by Clare Blackburne

Blackburne — www.parrhesiajournal.org 24 —

"The excessive notion of espacement  as the resurgent spatiality of that which is supposedly ‘without space’ (most notably, writing), alerts us to the highly dynamic nature of the interstice – a movement whose discontinuous and ‘aberrant’ nature requires further analysis."

Blackburne — www.parrhesiajournal.org 25 —

"Espacement  also evokes the ambiguous figure of the interstice, and is related to the equally complex derridean notions of chora , différance , the trace and the supplement. Derrida’s reading of the Platonic chora  in Chora L Works  (a series of discussions with the architect Peter Eisenman) as something which defies the logics of non-contradiction and binarity, implies the internal heterogeneity and instability of all structures, neither ‘sensible’ nor ‘intelligible’ but a third genus which escapes conceptual capture.25 Crucially, chora , spacing, dissemination and différance  are highly dynamic concepts, involving hybridity, an ongoing ‘corruption’ of categories, and a ‘bastard reasoning.’26 Derrida identification of différance  in Margins of  Philosophy , as an ‘unappropriable excess’ that operates through spacing as ‘the becoming-space of time or the becoming-time of space,’27 chimes with his description of chora  as an ‘unidentifiable excess’ that is ‘the spacing which is the condition for everything to take place,’ opening up the interval as the plurivocity of writing in defiance of ‘origin’ and ‘essence.’28  In this unfolding of différance , spacing  ‘insinuates  into  presence an  interval,’29 again alerting us to the crucial role of the interstice in deconstruction, and, as Derrida observes  in Positions ,  its  impact  as  ‘a movement,  a  displacement  that  indicates  an  irreducible alterity’: ‘Spacing is the impossibility for an identity to be closed on itself, on the inside of its proper interiority, or on its coincidence with itself. The irreducibility of spacing is the irreducibility of the other.’30"

25. Quoted in Jeffrey Kipnis and Thomas Leeser, eds., 
Chora L Works. Jacques Derrida and Peter Eisenman  
(New York: The Monacelli Press, 1997), 15.

26. Ibid, 25.

27. Derrida, Margins of Philosophy.
(Brighton: The Harvester Press, 1982), 6 and 13.

28. Derrida, Chora L Works , 19 and 10.

29. Ibid, 203.

30. Derrida, Positions , 94.

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Another Typology

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 11:04 AM

"You said something about the significance of spaces between
elements being repeated. Not only the element itself being repeated,
but the space between. I'm very interested in the space between.
That is where we come together." — Peter Eisenman, 1982

Friday, March 22, 2019

Architectural Theory

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 10:20 PM

For the late Robert Venturi, who reportedly died on Tuesday, Sept. 18, 2018.

See also The Venturi Manifesto (Log24, Sept. 22, 2018).

Charles Jencks’s Grand Unified Theory

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 2:00 PM

"The stars and galaxies seem static, eternal, or moving slowly
in deterministic patterns, becoming the background stage
on which we move. But if we could speed up the sequence,
we would see how dramatic and unpredictable this background
really is — an actor, director, script and stage all at once.
Moreover, it is a unified universe, a single unfolding event
of which we are an embedded part, a narrative of highly
dangerous and fine-tuned events, something more like
a detective thriller with many crimes and last-minute escapes
than the impersonal account of astronomy textbooks.
We are only just beginning to decipher the plot and figure out
the Cosmic Code, as Heinz Pagels puts it."

— Charles Jencks, The Architecture of the Jumping Universe :
A Polemic
  (How Complexity Science is Changing Architecture
and Culture), Academy Editions, 1995, rev. ed. 1997

"A Grand Unified Theory (GUT) is a model in particle physics…."

"Under the GUT symmetry operation these field components
transform into one another. The reason quantum particles 
appear to have different properties in nature is that the unifying
symmetry is broken. The various gluons, quarks and leptons
are analogous to the facets of a cut diamond, which appear
differently according to the way the diamond is held but in
fact are all manifestations of the same underlying object."

— Heinz Pagels, Perfect Symmetry , Bantam paperback, 1986, p. 284

See also the recent post Multifaceted Narrative.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Geometry of Interstices

Filed under: General — Tags: , , , — m759 @ 10:18 PM

Finite Galois geometry with the underlying field the simplest one possible —
namely, the two-element field GF(2) — is a geometry of  interstices :

For some less precise remarks, see the tags Interstice and Interality.

The rationalist motto "sincerity, order, logic and clarity" was quoted
by Charles Jencks in the previous post.

This  post was suggested by some remarks from Queensland that
seem to exemplify these qualities —

Saturday, March 16, 2019


Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:25 PM

See also eightfold cube.

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Cube Meditation

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 1:12 PM

See also "Eternal Recreation" (Christmas Eve, 2012).

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Les Mots

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 9:26 AM

Two links from the above post

Gamalog and Separatrix.

The latter word has a technical meaning in mathematics.
It also has a non-technical meaning, as explained below.

The comparison of Derrida to Holmes is of course ridiculous
(like the rest of the Kipnis essay). For Moriarty, see (for instance)
"We've lost the plot!" (Feb. 27, 2008).

Saturday, October 12, 2013


Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 11:22 AM

"                          … Had they deceived us 
Or deceived themselves, the quiet-voiced elders,
Bequeathing us merely a receipt for deceit?"

Four Quartets

Log24 posts of 9/11, 2013 —

Those who enjoy lead balloons may
consult also Zeppelin in this journal.

Monday, September 16, 2013

A Word to the Wise

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 7:00 PM


Fleur de Derrida*

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 9:08 AM

The above news item seems to exemplify Baudelaire's (and Murdoch's)
notion of contingency —

"La modernité, c’est le transitoire, le fugitif, le contingent, la moitié de l’art, dont l’autre moitié est l’éternel et l’immuable."

— Baudelaire, "Le Peintre de la Vie Moderne," IV (1863)

"By 'modernity' I mean the ephemeral, the fugitive, the contingent, the half of art whose other half is the eternal and the immutable."

— Baudelaire, "The Painter of Modern Life," IV (1863), translated by Jonathan Mayne (in 1964 Phaidon Press book of same title)

Thanks to the late Marshall Berman for pointing out this remark of Baudelaire.
(All That Is Solid Melts Into Air , Penguin edition of 1988, p. 133)

* For this post's title, see Language Game in this journal on 9/11,
   the morning of Berman's reported death.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 10:00 PM


An antidote to Derrida.

The Eisenman Chronicles

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 PM

Eisenman I:  DuBois, PA  (Of German descent)

Eisenman II:  Yale  (Apparently related to Eisenman I)

Eisenman III:  Newark, NJ  (Jewish)

"Confusion is nothing new." — Song lyric


Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 11:00 AM

In reply to "Poem," by Stanley Moss, in
the Sept. 16, 2012, New Yorker —

"Then we take Berlin." — Phrase by Leonard Cohen

See also this morning's 9:29 post Language Game.

Language Game

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 9:29 AM

In which Plato continues to thank the Academy.

From the Academy, a lead balloon for 9/11 —
continued from March First, 2002.

A search today for the name Eisenman
(see previous post) yields the following :

"We need a cameo from Plato, a safecracker,
a wrinkle or two to be ironed out, some ice,
some diamonds, and, above all, laughter
for this irony of ironies."

Jeffrey Kipnis, "Twisting the Separatrix,"
Assemblage  No. 14, April 1991, MIT Press

A Girl’s Best Friend?*

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 12:25 AM

Continued from September 3rd, 2013.

On that date, there were two posts in this journal:

"The Stone" today suggests…"* and
"An End in Itself."

The former dealt with some philosophy and 
mathematics related to graphic design.

The latter dealt with death and finality.

The New York Times  today has an obituary
that, revisiting Sept. 3rd, unites the topics of
death and design.

Alvin Eisenman,
Graphic Design Educator,
Dies at 92

Published: September 10, 2013

Alvin Eisenman, a graphic designer who in 1951 became the first director of Yale’s graduate program for graphic design, the first offered by a major American university, died on Sept. 3 at his home, which he also designed, on Martha’s Vineyard. He was 92.  More>>

For greater depth, see the American Institute of Graphic Arts.

* This post's title and "The Stone" above refer to the New York Times
  philosophy column "The Stone"— In particular, to its Sept. 2nd post 
 "Women in Philosophy? Do the Math."

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