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T to take a closer look at it and maybe write up "on I couldn t remember the name of the painting though so "I couldn t remember the name of the painting though so maybe write up on I couldn t remember the name of the painting though so asked my friend about it He couldn t remember it either but he could tell it s mentioned somewhere in What is an Apparatus by Agamben And that s how I came across this bookSerodine s painting is briefly mentioned in The Friend one of the three short essays of this book The three essays are each an attempt to define an important term Apparatus a key term in Focault s philosophy that roughly refers to the network of structures and mechanisms that serves a necessary function for practicing power the Friend the philos a term so incredibly close to philosophy and yet so conceptually distant and the Contemporary a term perhaps useful to understand our relationship with the philosophical texts of our time Among the three friend remains the least defined term Serodine s painting in fact is brought up as an example to portray the near impossibility of the conceptualization of friendshipEach

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is at slightly interesting but neither one is stunning For Apparatus Agamben presents an interesting trace oikonomia the Church s final resort for explaining the administration of divine power He also decides that everything which has a potential to control and orient our lives may be considered as an apparatus and that man is in desperate need of a strategy to deal with them Restoring these apparatus to the free use of man or Profanation Agamben claims is the only counter apparatus that would do the ob Yet he fails badly to really explain what this really means or how it s even doableAlmost half of The Friend is spent on emphasizing the impossibility of its conceptualization and the other half on repeating a passage by Aristotle In What is Contemporary the third essay Agamben first asserts that being contemporary does not mean coinciding with one s time or even agreeing with it but it s about establishing a uniue relationship with that He then relies mostly on The Century a poem by Osip Mandelstaum to draw a few properties for his definition and further elaborate itThere are not a ton of original ideas in this short book far less indispensable ones Yet at times one comes across interesting points discussed here and there that one might be able to pick uestion or build up on perhaps similar to how that painting has lingered and transformed in my mind Otherwise you might as well do without this one and go pick up a denser auspicious book that offers a better chance of proving didactic 3 essays of which I was most interested in the first What is an Apparatus Agamben creates a categorical criteria between 1 Living things and 2 The Apparatuses which seek to control them with subjectivity in between Capitalism he suggests is the accumulation and proliferation of apparatuses He also describes the move from discipline to control In the disciplinary society apparatuses were used to create subjectivities the creation of individuals whereas in the control society there is only a desubjectification and no subjectification The individual is disseminated and turned into a numerical value Thus politics as an apparatus no longer considers individual movements workers movement bourgeoisie etc but is only concerned with the perpetuation of itself a machine with left and right poles To escape this apparatus Agamben suggests we cannot simply seek to destroy it or to use it for ourselves as we might see in accelerationism or Negrism but instead posits the possibility of Profanation the sacred object becoming profane This is a very short collection of essays so short that I cannot imagine why anyone would buy it As with my last experience reading Agamben I don t get what the big deal is The first essay is a clearly written explanation of the apparatus concept found in Foucault and Deleuze Pretty interesting and sort of useful but ultimately ust explaining something already developedThe second essay explores friendship via Aristotle and covers some of the same territory as Derrida Pretty interesting but not groundbreaking at allThe final essay is about time and it is proba. Hilosophers tend to be very skeptical about friendship In his second essay Agamben tries to dispel this skepticism by showing that at the heart of friendship and philosophy but also at the core of politics lies the same experience the shared sensation of being Guided by the uestion 'What does it mean to be contemporary' Agamben begins the third essay with a reading of Nietzsche's philosophy and Mandelstam's poetry proceeding from these to an exploration of such diverse fields as fashion neurophysiology messianism and astrophysics. One of the most fascinating things I have read a while It s short and reasonably accessible too Agamben makes use of Foucault s definition short and accessible too Agamben makes use of Foucault s definition the apparatus or dispotif the network of institutions technologies knowledge systems etc that exercise power within the social body of our society and traces its use over time to establish a relationship between modern organization of the world with the early Christian church The Holy Trinity Father the Son and the Holy Ghost needed the concept of apparatus the early Christian church The Holy Trinity Father the Son and the Holy Ghost needed the concept of apparatus explain and produce the administration of God s will through the divine economy Agamben s uses the concept of the apparatus for describing the process of shaping and arranging of human subjects and offers profanation as a way of engaging in hand to hand combat with apparatuses that control form and direct our livesI still haven t the clue what he is really suggesting we do though by profanation Crime Chapter 1 What is an Apparatus Separating divine being and governance Leaves us with the governance Governance needs a subject though object perhaps rather as per definition we separated it from it s being and so we get us the subjects in our struggle with the governancedispotif apparatus But be careful because government can lead to catastrophic failure so make sure you uestion the apparatuses hand to hand profanation to reclaim them for yourself change them find new ones understand their influence etcAlso cool is that the creation of apparatuses is part of being human We are aware of our environment or precisely our separationdistance from it this introduced boredom the capacity to suspend this immediate relationship with disinhibitors but also the Open our awareness of the possibilities which we then crowd with instruments ie apparatuses because we want to further nullify our connection to animalistic nature to maximise our Open We want to enjoy being I would say from this there is no way to exist without apparatuses or iron cages of the spirit But what if we don t embrace conscious awareness Devoid ourselves of governance Is this lack of freedom better than a life of iron cages Read this on a lazy afternoon which probably isn t the best way to do it but it s so short that it lends itself to be read uickly The title essay isn t necessarily a breakthrough for Agamben but it s a nice piece that places his criticisms of the society of the spectacle in line with Foucault s idea of an apparatus He seems to be grasping for credibility but I also gave his theory tons of credibility so it s informative but not essential The second essay Friend is a short close reading of a passage from Aristotle that Agamben believes is under read and it s interesting but also not central to understanding Agamben The last essay however sure is an eye opener Even after reading The Time That Remains I was a little confused about how Agamben s messianism works I m still not 100% This book is so short and its essays such sketches that its price tag is its most shocking attribute The three essays range from very good to alright but none is particularly original The title essay is a hyper compression of the author s own The Kingdom and the Glory and will almost certainly be the most satisfying both theoretically and programmatically for better and worse thing GA ever pens lots of cookies here for his anarcho and Tiunist audiences It is for this reason also the most adaptable to the zine form where at a price of a dollar to free it is much at home than in this object barely larger than the stack of 20 dollar bills Stanford wants for it Contemporary apparently the text of a lecture to introduce a seminar of GA s reads like a not particularly exciting gloss on Benjamin s theses on history and Foucault s genealogyarcheology Andor on GA s own method Friend is the hardest to summarize but also despite some very interesting nuggets the most lackluster An illuminating description of and elaboration on Foucault s notion of the dispositif or apparatus I first learned about this concept from the Geopolitics and Development book I read which analyzed the apparatuses surrounding development The three essays collected in this book offer a succinct introduction to Agamben's recent work through an investigation of Foucault's notion of the apparatus a meditation on the intimate link of philosophy to friendship and a reflection on contemporariness or the singular relation one may have to one's own time 'Apparatus' dispositif in French is at once a most ubiuitous and nebulous concept in Foucault's later thought In a text bearing the same name 'What is a dispositif' Deleuze managed to contribute to its mystification but Ag. Che cos'è un dispositivo?N a systemic fashion The apparatus is of the conceptual contributions to political thought that I hope stands immortal in the history of far in the future like Aristotle s polis immortal in the history of thought far in the future like Aristotle s polis Leviathan Marx s ideology Gramsci s cultural hegemony Michels iron law of oligarchy and countless What is an apparatus and why is it so enlightening This is not something I really care to go into detail about here as this would take a great amount of time and Agamben has done a better ob than I ever could but in the words of FoucaultWhat I m trying to single out with this term is first and foremost a thoroughly heterogeneous set consisting of discourses institutions architectural forms regulatory decisions laws administrative measures scientific statements philosophical moral and philanthropic propositions in short the said as much as the unsaid Such are the elements of the apparatus The apparatus it self is the network that can be established between these elements by the term apparatus I mean a kind of a formation so to speak that at a given historical moment has as its major function the response to an urgencyThe apparatus therefore has a dominant strategic function I said that the nature of an apparatus is essentially strategic which means that we are speaking about a certain manipulation of relations of forces of a rational and concrete intervention in the relations of forces either so as to develop them in a particular direction or to block them t0 stabilize them and to utilize them The apparatus is thus always inscribed into a play of power but it is also always linked to certain limits of knowledge that arise from it and to an eual degree condition it The apparatus is precisely this a set of Strategies Of The Relations of the relations supporting and supported by certain types of knowledgeAgamben submits his interpretation of Foucault s idea and provides some elaboration by utilizing some of his own contributions to political thought ok boomer Agamben s etymological The Monk as Man: The Unknown Life of Swami Vivekananda journey into and then subseuently rebirthed out of the Foucauldian term dispositif was insightful not only in thinking about Foucault but also on Agamben s own projects I am thinking primarily of his work in Homo SacerI would however seek to propose an inverse relation of sacrality and profanity in the machinic relations of apparatuses and ourselves in the process of subjectification and desubjectification This is pretty poorly stated but this is not the place to elaborate on my own thoughts necessarilythe second essay on friendship was interesting especially the closing section on Aristotle and the primacy of friendship as con sentuality an existential being with or a between of selves that is primordial and in a sense nonconceptualizable A sans fundamental proximity or relationality with the other that grounds our existence in an abyssThe last essay on contemporaneity was my least favorite In many ways it wasust an elaboration of an idea from Nietzsche with an exigesis of a poem theological conceptions of the kairos some astronomical metaphorsfiguative concepts and some talk about fashion thrown in as well But overall it was the least interesting of the three in my opinionThis book is of great interest to those making their way into Agamben s corpus It is extremely short however so be careful about how much you spend acuiring it This is a painting one of my friends showed me a couple of months ago The Apostles Paul and Peter on the Road to Martyrdom by Giovanni Serodine he said Agamben says the two apostles in this painting are so close that there s no way they can see each other hence a perfect allegory for friendship I took a look It reminded me of I Corinthian 1312 also by Paul For now we see in the mirror dimly but then face to face That s an interesting take I told him Though that makes me wonder if the painter too had I Corinthian 1312 in mind and if yes did he mean to show Paul finally coming face to face and still unable to see Is this about Paul being tried with doubt close to his end I forgot all about the painting a little while later until a few days ago when I decided I d wan. Amben's leading essay illuminates the notion 'I will call an apparatus' he writes 'literally anything that has in some way the capacity to capture orient determine intercept model control or secure the gestures behaviors opinions or discourses of living beings'Seen from this perspective Agamben's work like Foucault's may be described as the identification and investigation of apparatuses together with incessant attempts to find new ways to dismantle them Though philosophy contains the notion of philos or friend in its very name