Subtraction and Contraction

Deleuze, Immanence, and Matter and Memory


We begin with a remark from Chapter 2 of What is Philosophy?, which discusses the plane of immanence. This book, of course, is by Deleuze and Guattari, but the text, in this case, clearly indicates a Deleuzian provenance.

[…] There are at least two ways to approach such a text. The first way—the most natural way—would be to try to understand by applying oneself to a more in-depth reading of Deleuze. This would necessitate, for example, an elucidation of what Deleuze means by ‘plane of immanence’ or ‘chaos’. It would also mean resituating this text in the light of Deleuze’s Cinema—and more especially in the light of the two commentaries in The Movement-Image dedicated to the first chapter of Matter and Memory. But there is a second way of approaching this text, and it is this alternative that we shall pursue here. It might at first seem somewhat artificial, but we hope that its aim and its interest will rapidly become evident…