#Accelerate, 335–346


Terminator vs Avatar


In the introduction to his 1993 translation of Lyotard’s Libidinal Economy, Iain Hamilton Grant refers to a certain ‘maturity of contemporary wisdom’. According to this ‘maturity’, Grant observes, Economie Libidinale was ‘a minor and short-lived explosion of a somewhat naive anti-philosophical expressionism, an aestheticizing trend hung over from a renewed interest in Nietzsche prevalent in the late 1960s’. Grant groups Lyotard’s book with three others: Deleuze and Guattari’s Anti-Oedipus, Luce Irigaray’s Speculum: Of the Other Woman and Baudrillard’s Symbolic Exchange and Death. ‘Libidinal Economy has in general drawn little critical response’, Grant continues, ‘save losing Lyotard many Marxist friends. Indeed, with a few exceptions it is now only Lyotard himself who occasionally refers to the book, to pour new scorn on it, calling it his “evil book, the book that everyone writing and thinking is tempted to do”.’ This remained the case until Ben Noys’s The Persistence of the Negative, in which Noys positions Libidinal Economy and Anti-Oedipus as part of what he calls an ‘accelerationist’ moment…