from teqqun 2 – theses on the terrible community (2001)


Everyone knows the terrible communities, whether because they’ve spent some time in them or because they’re still there. Or simply because they’re still stronger than the others, and so some of us have still partly remained in them – while at the same time being outside of them. The family, the school, work, prison – these are the classical faces of this contemporary form of hell, but they are the least interesting because they belong to a bygone depiction of commodity evolution, and are at present merely surviving on. There are some terrible communities, however, that fight against the existing state of things, and that are simultaneously quite attractive and much better than “this world.” And at the same time their way of approximating truth – and thus joy – distances them more than anything else from freedom.

The question that arises for us, in a final manner, is more of an ethical than a political nature, because the classical forms of politics are at the low water-mark, and their categories are leaving us, like the habits of childhood. The question is whether we prefer the possibility of unknown dangers to the certainty of the present misery. That is, whether we want to go on living and talking in accord (in a dissident manner, of course, but always in accord) with what has been done up to now – and thus with the terrible communities – or whether we want to really put to the test that little part of our desires that culture has still not managed to infest with its cumbersome quagmire and try to start out on a different path – in the name of a totally new kind of happiness.

This text was born as a contribution to that new journey.

Read the whole of this publication, translated from the original French, HERE.

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