Autonomy & Subjectivation in the Coming Century
SEPTEMBER 3-6, 2 0 0 9    

A seminar with Franco Berardi "Bifo" organized by 16beaver group, autonomedia, and minor compositions.*

Lead Up Events
Discussion at Autonomedia (08/17)
Discussion at 16Beaver (08/25)

Sad Europe
Ten years after Seattle
How to heal a depression?

Precarious Rhapsody

Technology and Knowledge
in a Universe of Indetermination

In addition to Bifo, each day, we will have guest discussants adding commentary, questions, and experiences. They will include:

Jack Bratich, Zoe Beloff
Erika Biddle, Jonah Bossewitch
Stephen Duncombe, Jim Fleming
Brian Holmes, Mallory Knodel,
Alfredo Lopez, Jamie McClelland,
Jackie Orr, Paolo Pedercini,
Claire Pentecost, Annie Robinson,
Stevphen Shukaitis, Abe Walker,
Mckenzie Wark.

Minor Compositions

* Minor Compositions is a research-theorizing-publishing project currently developing in the greater London metropolitan basin. It has recently published a series of essays by Bifo entitled "Precarious Rhapsody: Semiocapitalism and the pathologies of post-alpha generation".

We are pleased to invite you to participate in a seminar with Franco Berardi (aka Bifo) this September at 16Beaver. Tentatively titled Connective Mutations: Autonomy & Subjectivation in the Coming Century, Bifo has suggested that we focus our energies and inquiry for these four days on questions of subjectivation and autonomy.

The concept of the subject is crucial for radical philosophy of the second half of the twentieth century. Arguments and debates over the nature of the subject, the location and nature of the revolutionary subject, have vastly shaped radical politics and organizing. The work of Félix Guattari and Gilles Deleuze changes the frame of this discussion, proposing the concept of subjectivation, or becoming-subject, as a framework to understand the multiple becomings and states of social encounters. This concept of subjectivation overlaps significantly with the concept of class recomposition developed in the 1960s and 70s by autonomist thinkers such as Sergio Bologna, Mario Tronti and Toni Negri. Both strains of thought focus on how forms of social antagonism and resistance give rise to new social positions and possibilities for collective becomings.

Today we find ourselves in a transformed condition, one created by techno-anthropological and connective mutations, marked by overwhelming flows of immaterial labor and information flows that threaten to exceed the limits of the body. Cyberspace may be infinite, but cybertime is not. This intensification and expansion of technological dynamics and automatisms makes problematic the very possibility of collective subjectivation. Have we reached a state where the immersive flows of information, affect, and desire act to dampen or even preempt the emergence of new collective subjects?

We hope this event will be both an opportunity for sharing new and vital questions, as well as a developing some of the questions we have pursued in these last years of focused collective research (e.g., Continental Drift). We will also be encouraging participants to read some texts in preparation. So details will be forthcoming as we work on this site.




Sept. 3 - Thursday 5:00-10:00pm
Sept. 4 - Friday 10:00-11:00pm
Sept. 5 - Saturday 11:00-11:00pm
Sept. 6 - Sunday 11:00-11:00pm

For Detailed Schedule:
click here

We will ask participants for a modest sliding scale fee ($25-50), which should help us defray costs associated with bringing Bifo here from Italy, as well as covering our food for the 4 days. Of course, we will not turn away anyone who cannot afford to pay. Minor Compositions is kindly donating a copy of the book for participants of the seminar. Moreover, they have posted a pdf of the book for those who are not in the city and want to prepare in advance for the event. If you are interested in attending, we ask you to please write to us in advance at subject (at), so that we have good sense of how many people we will have.

For those who will not be able to attend, we will once again try our best to stream or post video of the events.