August 04, 2004

The Thing: Between arrival and spontaneous emergence


To continue the thread about The Thing and Capitalism, I extracted the following passages from my old conversations with Nick which will be available in the forthcoming book, Homo-stasis.


NICK LAND: (Digression on Horror: If today belongs to terror, tomorrow and eternity belong to horror. When an apparent agency arrives at its zone of non-existence horror irrupts, activating the phobic mechanisms of an entire organic lineage. In relation to this reaction the concept of horror might be dissociated on an intensive spectrum: from ‘hot’ meat-reflex revulsion condensed upon threatened boundaries, to ‘cold’ thanatonic affect fusing into the anorganic plane. Horror films typically trigger recollections of zero-fusional ecstacies associated with body panic, catatonic fugues cut violently with accelerated heart-rate and other somatic emergency signals. When a creature encounters the terminus of its own possibility it recoils in horror, but the entire horror genre – the horror industry – relies on the fact that it does not simply recoil. This in part accounts for the pulp-genre convention that makes horror the demonic destination of lust, a sub-organic tropism to the utterly alien – compared to which any anthropomorphic ‘libido’ is a restriction. (Mother of Abominations!) It also suggests that the truth of horror is drawn from the Thing itself, especially from its antipathy to every aspect of local, specific, or familiar modes of organization. These features make of horror an avatar of the Outside.)

Virus leads into your suggested topic of possession, or Pest-capture, which can be differentiated according to the virulence of its abstraction. The virtual function of the reverse transcription enzyme as a catalyst for molecular intelligences, as sketched in Greg Bear’s Blood Music, is on obvious reference. Such K+ hyperviruses and occultural influences - innovating intelligence as a process of infection - come from such monumentally abstracted spaces that they are often felt as arriving from another galaxy. There is an entire field of potentials linked by a theme of diseases from outer space for such intelligence-plagues to latch on to, but Pest plutonism also necessitates that the issue is also thrown to the other ‘pole’ -- that of technovirus (Downham’s take on Kadrey’s ‘metrophage,’ for instance).



Thing 2


Apparently the Thing has a high sense of planetary humor.

Posted by hyperstition at August 4, 2004 05:55 AM




That game looks fantastic!

Posted by: Nick at August 4, 2004 06:10 AM



well, it is an old game (got three stars from AVAULT.COM which means for hardcore fans only) ... new PC titles are far more developed in visuals and story.

Honestly, i never played Thing 2 to the end, found it too hyper-stimulative for my nervous system (this is just an exception, however).

Posted by: Reza at August 4, 2004 06:29 AM



Brilliant observations from Nick, but can we clarify the distinction between terror and horror? (think this has hyperstitional spin-off viz. Lee Harris)

Posted by: mark at August 4, 2004 01:58 PM



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