3 Matching Annotations
  1. Oct 2018
    1. With flaked pebbles, there was only one gesture in the handling of the pebble (a blow struck at 90 degrees, to which corresponded one sharp edge and a technical consciousness). With the Archanthropian stereotype, the gesture is combined with others: “This [acquisition] was more than simply the addition of something new, for it implied a good deal of foresight on the part of the individual performing the sequence of technical operations” (Leroi-Gourhan 1993, 97). Anticipation was present from the start, from the first gesture, with somewhat less foresight. But what does this “good deal of foresight” mean? As soon as there is any sort of anticipation, in whatever “quantity,” has not a qualitative threshold been surpassed that should first be described for itself before wishing or being able to measure it? If it is possible to measure this “thing,” should one not know what is being measured? Because it is affected with anticipation, because it is nothing but anticipation, a gesture is a gesture·, and there can be no gesture without tools and artificial memory, prosthetic, outside of the body, and constitutive of its world. There is no anticipation, no time outside of this passage outside, of this putting-outside-of-self and of this alienation of the human and its memory that “exteriorization” is. The question is the very ambiguity of the word “exteriorization” and the hierarchy or the chronological, logical, and ontological preeminence that it immediately induces: if indeed one could speak of exteriorization, this would mean the presence of a preceding interiority. Now, this interiority is nothing outside of its exteriorization: the issue is therefore neither that of an interiority nor that of exteriority— but that of an originary complex in which the two terms, far from being opposed, compose with one another (and by the same token are posed, in a single stroke, in a single movement). Neither one precedes the other, neither is the origin of the other, the origin being then the coming into adequacy [con-venance] or the simultaneous arrival of the two— which are in truth the same considered from two different points of view. We shall later name this structure the complex of Epimetheus, and shall see that for Simondon it is a question of a transduc- tive relation. A “prosthesis” does not supplement something, does not replace what would have been there before it and would have been lost: it is added. By pros-thesis, we understand (1) set in front, or spatialization (de-severance [e-loignement]); (2) set in advance, already there (past) and anticipation (foresight), that is, temporalization. The prosthesis is not a mere extension of the human body; it is the constitution of this body qua “human” (the quotation marks belong to the constitution). It is not a “means” for the human but its end, and we know the essential equivocity of this expression: “the end of the human.” What is called “interiority” nevertheless indicates the problem of a potentiality of which “exteriorization” seems to be the act, that is, according to the Aristotelian theory, of which it is the truth, the sole truth. “Interiority” would be only the expectation, the call, or the promise of exteriorization— the tendency to exteriorization. Now, expectation means projection and future— anticipation. The whole problem, which thus becomes the distendedness of the past, the present, and the future, is caught in a circle in which the tool appears at one and the same time qua the result of anticipation, exteriorization, and qua the condition of all anticipation, anticipation appearing itself qua the interiorization of the originary fact of exteriorization. Exteriorization qua the act that is the horizon of anticipation, qua the gesture, is also an Erinnerung, the very moment of reflexivity, of the affection of self as a return to self. The problem remains that it does not seem that such a reflexivity may be manifestly characterized as a relation to the grammē as such.

      Stiegler: "The prosthesis is not a mere extension of the human body; it is the constitution of this body qua “human”" ||

    2. The prosthesis is the origin of inequality. The man of pure nature has everything about himself, carries himself whole and entire about himself; his body is “the only instrument he understands”; he is never in himself in default; no fissure is at work in him that would be provoked by a process of differentiation on the outside of himself, nor a differentiation of an “outside” that would be essential (interiorized) to him: he depends on no outside. This must be demonstrated, for Rousseau well knows that from the moment he no longer has everything within him, whatever he has (however little), not being a part of his being, becomes differentiated, diverges, disrupts, belongs already to the fall. Everything is inside: the origin is the inside. The fall is exteriorization. This thematic of exteriorization is central to Leroi-Gourhan’s definition of the process of humanization. We will see the paradox this definition struggles with as long as its own consequence is not drawn: the human is the technical, that is, time. The man that “carries himself, as it were, perpetually whole and entire about him” does not exteriorize himself, does not ex-press himself, does not speak: speech is already a prosthesis. Any exit outside of oneself is a denaturalization; to the extent that our ills place us outside of ourselves, they “are of our own making . . . and we might have avoided them nearly all by adhering to that simple, uniform and solitary manner of life which nature prescribed” (Rousseau 1973, 56).

      Stiegler: "The prosthesis is the origin of inequality" ||

  2. Sep 2017
    1. At some point, we may be able to make extensive modifications to human DNA, body tissues, or neurophysiological functioning, or to merge our bodies with sophisticated cybernetic devices.

      In this passage the author is allowing his intended audience, people who are curious in transhumanism, a glimpse into the future when technology merges with the human body. At this point one must question at what point does technology becomes a prosthesis? The author uses this imagery of technology merging with our body to form prosthesis, devices that function as a artificial body part, to suggest that technology at one point may be an extension of the human body. This extension of the human body supports his trans humanist ideas because it may allow a person to reach beyond their human potential.