FIRST PART - BASIS
Chapter 7 – FIELD EFFECTS
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Chapter 7 - FIELD EFFECTS
The segmentarization and transversalization, the angularization and processionality typical of Homo are not cold operations; neither are indicialization and indexation, and more generally possibilization. Tensions continuously arise between the multiple and diverging attractors. For Homo's orchestral brain and all his more or less integrating senses, particularly his globalizing vision <1C1> and proportioning hearing <1C2>, it is difficult to grasp a thing (cause) without others intervening simultaneously. Each exerts its attraction and repulsion whilst modulating the attraction and repulsions of others.
In hominid perception and motricity, these attractors and associated fields determine field effects that we call perceptive-motor field effects, as perception and motricity are not dissociable, each supposing the other and partially stemming from it. It would even be wiser to say, because of the normalisation of the perceived by the moved <2A2d>, motor-perceptive field effects <2A2d>. Similarly, in the area of signs, there are tensions that stem between indicia, indexes, indicia and indexes, sometimes even between all the signs and the body. In this case, we shall speak of logico-semiotic field effects.
Both types of field effects occur and develop in images, music, language and writing, and we shall have the occasion to find them and refine their comprehension on the occasion of chapters 9 to 19. But what we have just seen of the brain, indicia, indexes and possibilization gives us a good insight of their nature. And the very precocious role they had to play in the anthropogeny. We must envisage them from now on.
7A. Static perceptive-motor field effects. Reversible forms. The Müller-Lyer illusion
We had to wait until 1910 before Homo saw a little more clearly that, when an animal identifies a prey, predator or mate, he does not make a simple addition of isolated stimuli as the former associationism gave to believe, but that his brain grasps certain stimuli in a field of tensions (similitude, contrasts), where they give way to a resultant that we call Gestalt in German, and forme in French. The German word is better because it marks the idea that this is a forming process, of putting into form (Gestaltung), precisely in a field.
The simplest case of these forms is that where the resultant is immobile, let us say static, for example this figural and valorist contrast that attracts the pecking of a chicken, and that we call "ball" or "grain". So we noted how the animal brain distinguished some forms through instinct or learning, then we made simple forms more complex and, inversely, we made complex forms simpler to measure the extent to which they would remain recognizable in both cases. This meant starting to understand how technician Homo specialises the "Gestalist" availability of its nervous system and its animal brain to distribute and normalise its environment. With the difference that what functions like a stimulus-signal for animals <4H>, by inducing an irrepressible passage from perception to action, is maintained in technical and semiotic distanciation for Homo.
We must however see that, even when it is distanciated and technicized, perception remains subject to a coercion, as the phenomenon of reversible forms indicates. The same cube drawn (thus the resultant of a field of nine straight lines) can be perceived in salience, then in withdrawal, then again in salience... but successively and irrepressibly. It is sufficient indeed that our globalizing and transversalizing glance should take one of these lines as being in the front or in the back to make that our hominid (and probably also mammalian and primatal) brains should instantaneously operate a coherent tri-dimensional repartition of lines from one to the next by maintaining four in a plan and by projecting the five others in the depth. Indeed, our perception-motricity, even if it has become transversalizing with the upright position, remains phylogenetically caudal-rostral at the start, selected for the attack-fleeing and predation, transforming any oblique into a vanishing line. Today still, this same faculty supports the perspective and projective schema. And it will, above all, allow for the frames of the framing, this decisive anthropogenic driving factor since the neolithic.
Another case is more enlightening still, that of the Müller-Lyer illusion. We see that two physically equal right segments are perceived as unequal depending on the orientation of the obliques at the top of their extremities. This is a direct, stable field effect that is even more identifiable that we can make it vary by increasing or decreasing the angle of obliques, or by tracing them further than the extremities of the initial segments. Here again, for Homo, perception is compulsory although it does not work as an animal stimulus-signal, since it does not lead to irrepressible passage to an action. Optical Illusions is a term that frequently comes back on this subject. Yes, because we deem unequal what is equal. But we must see that this illusion is not a deviation of perception, but the consequence of its very nature, which consists in deciding the resultant of attractions in perceptive fields.
7B. Kinetic perceptive-motor field effects
The animal and Homo also have to deal with moving objects-targets. In this case, apart from the capacity of recognizing the prey, the predator, the partners and their location in t0, it is necessary that the brain should anticipate their ulterior displacements in t1, t2...tn, from their site in t0, particularly that many superior animals hunt from movements rather than forms, at least from the moment when, during the chase, their vision starts relaying their sense of smell. Yet, in animality, these kinetic perceptions often seem blurred. The cheetah "pursuing" an antelope, the cat playing with a mouse would not need many things in this regard; the vague grasping of the moving, then that of its directions and its speeds should probably suffice to define a terminal leap succeeding in a basic grasping for an efficient capture. As for the precision of the praying manta, it is absolutely elementary, seeing that between the visual perception and tactile grasping, coordination is so instantaneous that the displacement of the prey becomes negligible in the cerebral calculation.
The same does not apply for Homo. The fact that it works by stepped protocols, its technical and semiotic distanciation, but also the slowness of its running pace compared to many of its preys and predators have selected a brain and nervous system that is increasingly capable of anticipating, from a first movement, the successive positions in the space of an entire body, and those of its sections. Thus inferring perceptively from the back legs of a hunted mammal, the positions and forms of its trunk, neck and head in the following moments. This grasping of kinetic perceptive-motor field effects will one day allow Homo to practice ball games, to draw arrows from a bow, to kill a monkey in a tall tree with a blowpipe.
Hominid kinetic field effects even enlighten the past from the future. Thus, some speeds and directions of mobiles give to "see" irresistibly that one has triggered the other (sentiment of causality) or still, that one has weighted or acquired a part of another while staying itself (sentiment of substance), as Michotte demonstrated in 1940 for western Homo, into a significant complement of the Gestalttheorie.
7C. Dynamic perceptive-motor field effects. Motions
The hominid situation is sometimes even more complicated. It is not only necessary to identify a movement, but also to evaluate the forces from which it proceeds and that it maintains. This nervous and cerebral work must grasp curvatures within curves, or still, motions (mouvance, in French), meaning movements (displacement) with the forces from which they proceed <2B1>. The physicists clearly oppose the kinetic, which is limited to movements, and the dynamic, which takes into consideration the forces committed. In this case, we shall speak of dynamic perceptive-motor field effects.
Having to hold, at length, in his hands stones and bones to shape, dishes to cook, infants to nurse, hominid specimens very quickly had to become capable of such estimations, that will serve Homo hunting when he designed weapons, and Homo ludens when he started throwing and catching objects such as balls, to which the perception of kinetic field effects does not suffice. It would be useful to the anthropogeny to know if anterior animals really need such estimations, or if to reach their prey they are content with perceiving their movements without having to specify the weights and forces that these movements imply. We already posed this question on the occasion of the contrast between pre-hominid and hominid brains <2B1>.
7D. Excited perceptive-motor field effects
Perceptive-motor attractors are often so multiple and in such conflicts of attraction that the resulting field effects are unstable, hesitating inside of themselves, but also between them and their background from which they fragilely stand out. It will therefore be pertinent to resort to the notion of excitation such as it appears in some physician mathematicians (Thom), and to say that such field effects are excited (citare, swaying, ex). Seeing that in this case, the prefix ex- marks an intense interstability that does not go more towards the outside than towards the inside, which is no less implosive than it is explosive. It would perhaps be prudent to specify, each time that they are excited (citare, ex) and incited (citare, in), or excited-incited, but the formula is cumbersome.
If we then figured the perceptive-motor attractions and repulsions of the given by using gradients of potential similar to the lines marking the altitudes on our geographical maps, we would see that these gradients would become less frequent as they pull away from the various gravitational hearths and we would also see them to curve mutually, to inter-curve according to odd surfaces, where the fields of attractors overlap. We would even see them change of sign briskly, or in any case marking catastrophes (change of forms) from attraction to repulsion, from curvatures to fracture, from tightening to closing, etc.
The animal, probably because it is taken in the immediacy of stimuli-signals (releasers) <4H>, has neither the time nor the interest to maintain the excited field effects, whose its nervous system is the place. And there is only the caress and the licking in mammals, and the delousing in primates, that exploit more or less richly the inflexions and curvatures of the tactile and kinaesthetic field. And perhaps also some regulated gyrations in pursuit games, for example with dogs.
On the other hand, excited field effects play a considerable role in Homo, who cultivates them for numerous reasons. (a) Its status of possibilizing animal. (b) The endotropic, and therefore imaginative, slopes of its nervous system, particularly its brain. (c) The distances and distanciation inherent to the technical objects and signs <4A>, indicia and index. (d) Its things-performances, which are always in-situation-in-the-circumstance-over-a-horizon <1B3>. (e) Its three-dimensionality, which imposes itself to things (causes) which themselves are rather multidimensional. (f) A tension arises inevitably between its transversality and its residual animal rostrality. (g) The segments of Homo's technique are only in temporary emersion in a natural environment which contradicts them with its prior segments (of mountain, river, bushes, of too open milieu) or simply by its general entropy.
We can, in Homo, enumerate perceptive-motor field effects that are tactile, olfactory, gustatory, auditory, and visual. Touch offers the primary experience of field effects in the caresses of the infant or the lover, when the flat hands multiply, as they move amongst the body of another and the own body, inflexions between tactile attractors of surface and depth, until the perceiver and the perceived, the moving and the moved, the self and the other almost merge to consolatory or orgiastic ends. In the same way, hominid smells and tastes are diversely closed, open, porous, compact, stabilizing, vertiginous. The mobile nature of partials (harmonic) of the sound forces hearing to perpetual adjustments between inter-stable sound synodies. The look of a seated drinker is forced to the same compatibilizations when he is assailed or bathed by the interferences between volumes, traits, shades, luminances, saturations of his favourite bar. Dostoïevski attributed the amorous slavery of the Karamzov father to an "inflexion" of Grouchineka's neck. Was it the neck that inflicted in this case, or was it the extent-duration, or even the space-time that fragilely stretched on this occasion ?
7E. Logico-semiotic field effects: static, kinetic, dynamic, excited
Along these perceptive-motor field effects in indicializing, indexing and therefore semiotic Homo, field effects emerge also on the occasion of signs insofar as multiple attractors activate and passivate each other between themselves, and sometimes within themselves. These are logico-semiotic field effects.
They present the four same types: static, kinetic, dynamic, and excited. Static, when the attractors between signs or inside signs give way to stable resultants. Kinetic, when large or tiny movements make augur ulterior movements. Dynamic, when these movements invite to calculate under them the forces that engender them. Excited, when they maintain inextinguishable inter stabilities, for example in the equivocal, humour, indignation, the ambiguities of presence-absence <8A>.
We will thus ask ourselves where logico-semiotic field effects feed themselves from. (a) In general, the types of signs are not very coordinable between them. For example, indicia are non-intentional and full signs, whilst indexes are intentional and empty signs <4H>. Then, indicia go from object to subject whilst indexes go from subject to object. Moreover, indicia feed pregance whilst indexes confirm or provoke salience etc. These are all divergent attractors between which resultants, when there are any, are not definitive, just susceptible of stabilization, curvatures, inflexions and excitations. (b) On the other hand, signs, like perceptions, are grasped through thematized, possibilized, modulated modes of existence: submission/bluff, play/serious, exploitation/coquetry, confrontation/isolation, and dream/reverie. And still through modes of the possible, like the non-realised, the supposed, the imagined, the realisable, the necessary, the impossible, etc. So many occasions of curvatures, inflexions and excitations. (c) Finally, there is a permanent tension in Homo between his signs and his body. Although the hominid body may be orthogonalized, frontalizing, lateralized, indexed, it remains sensible, sensitive, immediate, concrete, labile, perishable. Conversely, the signs are themselves insensitive, mediate, abstract, sometimes almost imperishable. Between bodies and signs, it is no longer a question of curvatures-inflexions, but often of veritable alternating cancellations.
7F. Structures, textures and growths (ultrastructures) related to field effects
Static, kinetic, dynamic and excited field effects, either perceptive-motor or logico-semiotic, invite us to make the distinction, in hominid productions, between structures, textures and growths. Etymologies are once again very anthropogenic.
Structures, as the structurae in struere (build) implies, are constructed by progressively placing or accumulating materials on top of each other; and this progressivity of elaboration means that they usually emit (induce) an apparent law (of construction); mathematics was often defined as the theory of structures. Textures, texturae from texere (weaving), have as archetype the weaving, which offers structures if one only keeps the position of the threads, but that also comprises irregularities if we observe the material of the thread with its grain; we metaphorically speak of the texture of a stone, leather, skin. Finally, growths, crescentiae from crescere, target living organs, of which we recently learned that they initially result from amino acids and proteins, thus polymerization. Modes of formation (Gestaltung) of growths are very different to those of structures or textures, such as exemplified in atlases of histology, and biologists have even invented on this occasion the term ultrastructure, "the visible ultimate physiological organization of protoplasm" (Merriam-Webster) <21E2a>.
Field effects have obviously various fortunes depending on these three types of formation. Through structures, which are easily decipherable, field effects are often static, kinetic and dynamic, more rarely excited, but then sometimes very powerfully, in architectural, musical, philosophical systems (for instance Hegel). Field effects are hardly static or dynamic, but often kinetic and even excited through textures, when the latter reign supreme, in some fabrics, or when those textures are coupled to structures in musical accords, photographs, films, the starry skies. Through growths and their ultrastructure, seeing that the latter are not easy to be integrated, field effects can only happen in the macroscopic phenotypes resulting from it, a leaf, a tree trunk, a muscle, a foot, a head, and they will then be static, kinetic, dynamic or excited depending on whether these effects offer structures (the inflexions of an anatomy) or textures (the complexion of a skin).
Growths are particularly obvious in plants. Textures in animals (skin, hair, feather). Structures in technical buildings and in animals as chassis. Seeing the art of an era insisting on images of plants, animals, buildings is thus a precious indication of its plastic and even general options. The way in which, in their practice and theory, a hominid group or specimen weighs the relative importance of structures, textures or growths with their adjoining field effects is an essential cultural trait. We shall often have the occasion to verify that the transition from a vision of the world using structures and textures to a grasping of the universe by growths (polymerization) is the major anthropogenic revolution of the 20th century <21E2a>.
7G. Calculations, descriptions and compatibilization of field effects
To what extent can we calculate (mathematically), describe (suggestively), or compatibilize (rhythmically) field effects ?
Let us limit ourselves to perceptive-motor field effects in a first while. Those that are static, kinetic and dynamic are extremely difficult to calculate insofar as they result from interactions between multiple and moving factors, the ones belong to exterior data whilst the others belong to neuronic reactions; the almost-impossibility to give strict coordinates referring to strict axis probably contributed to discourage experimental psychology <24A1> to take them into consideration. But finally, they belong to such an extent to the order of usually calculable functionings by a physicist, since it is a question of forces and resultants of forces, that we could define them as being calculable, if not de facto, at least de jure. In any event, they are widely realisable and compatibilisable by the rhythm, with its eight aspects of periodical and metronomical alternation, the interstability, accentuation, tempo, the self-engendering and suspense, convection, strophism, the distribution by nodes, envelopes, resonances, and interfaces <1A5>.
As for the excited perceptive-motor field effects, their nature is so much to be non-fixed, and even to escape any fixing any time it could occur, that they could be defined as incalculable not only de facto, but de jure. However, they also are realisable and compatibilized by rhythm; it is even the essence of the function of the rhythm in Homo to settle down into those excited perceptive-motor field effects and to activate-passivate them, thus to control them in a certain sense. In the end, they are therefore not totally indescribable, since one can activate-passivate them using rhythms that suggest, evoke and invoke them; and also distinguish them amongst themselves, for instance by inventing gestures, or a dance, or lyrics indicating that a page by Mozart is not one by Beethoven.
The status of logico-semiotic field effects is also fleeing. It is true that we can abundantly speak about them insofar as they belong to language, and that language always manages to say many things on its themes and on itself. But as field effects (static, kinetic, dynamic, excited) they also escape calculation: what is the logic weight of contraries, contradictories, a comparison, an opposition, a pleasantry, a negation or affirmation of belief? Once again, rhythm allows comptabilizing them sufficiently. And also to set them apart, for example by thematizing, in one hundred different manners, the logic of a phrase by Voltaire versus one by Madame de Sévigné, an evidence of Descartes versus a (de)monstration of Wittgenstein.
Any calculability - even only descriptive or suggestive - supposes a referential. Let us note that for field effects, whether they are perceptive-motor or logico-semiotic, the only invokable referential is the most general. This one alleges each time a topology, therefore rates of close/distant, surrounding/surrounded, opening/closure, etc. A cybernetic, therefore rates of activity/passivity, positive/negative reactions (feedback) etc. A logico-semiotic, therefore rates of indiciality (indicium)/indexation <4, 5>, or still of contingent/necessary <6>, etc. A presentivity, therefore rates of thematization of the presence, absence, and of presence-absence <2B10, 8H>.
Excited field effects engage a (rhythmical) compatibilization of (mathematical) incoordonnables, whether it concerns their calculation, suggestion, or practice. This compatibilization is one of Homo's most constant and archaic dimensions and activity-passivity. We can call this the artistic exercise, or art, which is then understood in the broadest sense as it invades everything or almost. Because indeed Homo must protect himself from excited field effects in its technical activities, which precisely suppose precise delimitations of the object and the gesture. Homo also protects himself in most games, which require an application conventionally regulated of means for ends <27B1>. He also avoids them in some morals. But he enjoys and takes pleasure in them almost everywhere else, at the service of the universalization or the thematization of presence <8C>. Right down to the most ordinary activities.
7H. Stimuli-signs, particularly sexual
We have made a clear distinction between stimuli-signals, or releasers, characterising the animal world, and Homo's signs, while announcing that we find in the hominid experience a wide mix of the two, which we can call stimuli-signs <4H>.
In a first while, stimuli-signs are the releasers (triggering factors) linked to the food in hunger, to the fleeing or combative prey in the hunt, to the predator that arrives in a caudal-rostral manner in the combat, to the sexual partner in rut and heat. Techno-semiotic Homo puts distance between himself and these stimuli, transforming them into signs, but they maintain something of the immediateness of the goals that they were in animality at the service of vital urgencies. On the other hand, for manipulating Homo, some technical behaviours are so elementary and immediate that they function like stimuli-signals, for instance layered stones that almost compulsively call for the layering of new stones, or the hole digging that calls for new digging. Each time, these combinations of the sign and the stimuli-signal produce, through their ambiguity, static, kinetic, dynamic and often excited perceptive-motor and logico-semiotic field effects.
The most imperious and archaic stimuli-signs are those of hunger. But the most complex and diffusive are those of sexuality. The anthropogeny must therefore focus on the latter to enlighten, and probably found biologically, technically and semiotically what stimuli-signs are, and even what field effects are in general.
7H1. Sexual topology-cybernetics
Amongst Homo's stimuli-signs, we shall keep the three that were most socialised in all cultures: the vulva, the penis, the breasts. In pre-hominid mammals, these organs were more or less protected and dissimulated by the four legs. For Homo, they were exposed by bipedality, then by the relatively hairless skin. And their visual and stroking attractions, that suited the distance of technique and the distanciation of the sign, became even more prevalent that the olfactory stimuli of anterior mammals, which were very immediate, were dimmed in the hominid brain.
7H1a. The topologizing, geometrizing, writing vulva
The female genital tract of mammals has the complicated functions of receiving, housing, maturing, subtle and intense physiological exchanges and formal modifications, from pregnancy to the evacuation of the foetus. This is why its anatomy intensely exemplifies most of the seven elementary catastrophes of differential topology: the fold, the cusp, the swallowtail, the butterfly, the hyperbolic umbilic, the elliptic umbilic, the parabolic umbilic. Furthermore, because of its partial accessibility, it activates the couples of general topology: open/closed, contiguous/non-contiguous, continuous/non-continuous, discovered/hidden, close/distant, etc. This double topological animation is confirmed by an intrusive and extrusive smooth musculature, lubricating suffusions, cyclic smells, and by the labile blocked blood flow compatible with gestative dilatation, in contrast with the supposed frank blocked blood flows of the erection of the male genital tract.
The vulva is the exterior edge of this internal-external structure, texture and growth <7F>. In upright Homo, a biped with widely spreadable legs, it became both visible from afar and accessible to the manipulation of the fingers with subtle distal commands, as well as to the lips and to the tongue, differentiated by the language. At the same time, for angularizing Homo, the vulva distributed its topological richness in the geometrical frame of an isosceles triangle with a point to the bottom, still marked by a vertical mediator. This "good form" is so decided that it will be one of the first figured by sculpting Homo during the superior Palaeolithic before becoming a preferential segment of the generating schematism in the neolithic <14D>. When writing will emerge with primary empires, vulva will once again, meaning "woman" in Sumer, verify a fundamental characteristic of the written sign, which is of being capable of withstanding a 90° rotation without ceasing to be identifiable <18B2b>.
Therefore, the female genital tract, "place of affluences and effluences" in China, gathers two aspects of what we have called a stimulus-sign: (a) stimuli close to the stimuli-signals of animality, amongst which an archaic hair system contrasts with that of the hair, more recent; (b) a great techno-semiotic richness, activating-passivating the distanciation and certain conventions of technique and signs.
Apt to perceptive-motor and logico-semiotic field effects of all kinds, this region of the body, known as rahâm in the Koran, will one day provide a fundamental name of the unique God: the Matriciant, ar-Rahmân, and the Matricial, ar-Rahîm, multiplying its plural matrices, desired of Desirance, hamada. In the penultimate sourah, Allah is said al-Falaq, the Lord of the Slit, slit of live (analogizing) and perhaps also of death (macrodigitalising), since it is a question of protection against enemies.
7H1b. The ityphallic penis
The hanging penis, already selected in Primates (because of a first rising?), has a central evidence in the standing position. Tumescent and erected because of stable blood blockages of the male genital tract, it makes apparent and manifest not only a form but a forming process. According to their taste for stereometry, the Greeks created the compound adjective ithyphallic (phallos, itHus, right, equitable, avenger) to designate this phenomenon.
Therefore, the penis will soon and everywhere become both indicium and index (a) of the action from within, energy (ergeïn, in, acting, inside), (b) of the surrection and resurrection in the ityphallic figures of Greek tombs, (c) of the integrated form in the Greek exaltation of convexity up to homosexuality, (d) of the articulation in general (articulum, artus, joint, -culum, diminutive suffix), particularly that of the Vedic verse, which is one of the senses of Sanskrit word lingam, (e) of the intensity (tendere, in) that the sign has as sign, sometimes called "significance", (f) of the technical object and the weapon ("the powerful sword" of the Arabian Nights), (g) of the one desiring the desirable.
Mainly index, thus firstly an empty sign, the penis is less rich topologically, geometrically, scripturally than the vulva, which is firstly an indicium, therefore a full sign. In Cantabrian caverns, the penis is an accent rather than a figure, and in Sanskrit the lingam alleges the signification or the significance <9E> and mainly the articulation (like that of the verse) more than it is itself a sign. However, ostensibly orgiastic, it has enough indiciality going hand in hand with enough indexating charge to confirm the notion of stimulus-sign. It too triggered thus countless static, kinetic, dynamic and excited perceptive-motor and logico-semiotic field effects.
7H1c. Salient breasts
By opposition to pre-hominid breasts, that only are salient during lactation, Homo's breasts were selected almost constantly salient. The nipple aerola is probably the response to the suction of increasingly differentiated lips of speaking Homo's infant. Hominid breasts belong to the area of stimuli-signs. Their saliency is firstly an anatomic consequence of the standing position but, by combining protusion and fold, tumescence and de-tumescence, they also belong to the cybernetic area, as the very topological Roman designation demonstrates: sinus (sinuosus, sinuare, in French les seins (breasts), in Italian Seno), particularly the English breast and German Brust, which, according to Kluge send back to the idea of a germinative swelling genesically shared by the chest and the belly (Bauch), from the Indo-European root *bHreus. This is a good example of what specific selection is in Homo. Both natural and artificial, biological and techno-semiotic.
7H1d. External-internal organs. Libido
To the isosceles triangle vulva, to the upright trait-point penis, to the sinuous breasts, we must add, amongst stimuli-signs, the horizontal bar of the mouth and the circles of the pupils and eyes. So many "good forms" selected by geometrizing or topologizing Homo's body and brain. So many organs where the hominid body is more or less penetrable and emitting, where the inside and the outside meet in the form of accessible, even exhibited, mucosa. Adjoining a passive intimacy (endotropy) to the active intimacy (endotropy) of Homo's face and look <3E>.
The selection of these external-internal portions of the organism, timidly announced in the animal world, was first due to Homo's perceptive system: globalizing vision, proportioning hearing, stroking touch, planing smell and substantializing taste <1C>. On the other hand, any availability to inter organic contacts had to be selected in a primate who was fond of encounters and worried by its upright position. Finally, we can think that there was some coherence in the fact that the inside of the organism should outcrop in many ways in animals with highly endotropizing brains <2B>.
When, in around 1900, Homo started interrogating, through psychoanalysis, the ontogenetic construction of the significant relations between its body and its *woruld, it first turned to these external-internal orifices with mucous or sphincters: mouth, anus, urethral and genital organs. And the importance not only of pleasure and pleasures, but also of enjoyment encouraged Homo to conceive the anthropogenic importance of a libido, an in(de)finite primordial libet.
7H2. Sexual partition-conjunction
However, to situate phylogenetically the hominid sexual impetus with its stimuli-signs and field effects, it is not enough to put together the topological, geometric, external-internal, cybernetic and semiotic properties of isolated genital organs, as remarkable as they might be. We must here again note how much these organs are coaptative and even conjunctive, i.e. that the form of each one includes and calls by inversion the form of the other and the completion by the other. And how this anatomic complementarity ends in the sensible complementarity of the bisexual orgasm. We shall call this relation, which takes place at every stage and level of the anthropogeny, partition-conjunction, because it both distinguishes and puts together, succeeds in creating a unifying distinction, sexual in the strong sense. We have noted this in our chapter on the encounter <3C1-2>. We must come back to it, because we could not at this moment see what the static, kinetic, dynamic and especially excited field effects, whether they are perceptive-motor or logico-semiotic added to encounter.
7H2a. The perceived mortise-tenon and gloving-gloved relation
For geometer Homo, the mortise-tenon joint is remarkable as minimal partition of the One; One is divided in two, but into Two which refer to their reciprocal implications, and thus to the One, since their division, and even in virtue of their division; phylogenetically and ontogenetically, male and female organs are the two versions of one same basic embryological sequence. For tect Homo(architect), the mortise-tenon link provides the closest and sturdiest imbrication. For cybernetician Homo, the copulation action-passion is held in motors and sensors that circularly respond to one another; perception-motivity of a partner is induced by the perception-motivity of the other, in such a way that the rhythm exerts there, as much or more than in the walk, its characteristics of alternation, interstability, accentuation, tempo, the self-engendering and suspense, convection, strophism, the distribution by nodes, envelopes, resonances, and interfaces<1A5>.
It is so true that in Homo, who thematizes excited field effects, the sexual momentum seems to have as a motive the partition-conjunction itself, rather than the thrust or the linear attraction of an organ to its complement, as we could think that it is especially the case in static, eventually kinetic and dynamic field effects of animality. This would be confirmed by the obsession for impotency and frigidness that particularly haunts those who, like Montaigne, have sexual models of intrusion and self-stimulations where A goes to B and B to A. Partition-conjunction proposes itself like a relation that defines its terms more than it is defined by them, it is perhaps even a relation that engenders its terms. (According to the testimony of Marie Bonaparte, Freud seems to have constantly insisted that in its coital imaginations, the child around 1900 would identify itself to the two coupled adults).
7H2b. Orgiastic non-information
As Masters and Johnson verified and as we can see from everyday experience, the bisexual orgasm is distributed in around four main stages: (a) an initial exaltation (arousal) that incites and installs the intromission, (b) a plateau that is more or less long of synchronisation of neuronic synodies (c) a final upraise up to a climax, (d) a drop in levels accompanying a reversal of neuromediators (neurotransmitters and hormones) once the climax is over. Even if this basic schema should be handled according to the polarities of the masculine and feminine, we can see how it favours an extreme exaltation of field effects, particularly excited field effects.
Furthermore, the orgasm completed the partition-conjunction by other characteristics than its overexcitement. As such, it does not comprise information on the states of the environment, on the self-body or on the coapted body, as Bergson remarked before W. Reich started speaking of founding sensation. By which it creates a situation beyond or below the cleavages of techniques and representations of the sign, and contributes to make One whilst distinguishing the Two. However, insofar as it is a life experience close to death "petite mort" (little death) in popular French language, the pre-orgasmic stages or para-orgasmic stages are particularly favoured by Homo as extreme, indefinite, easily available experiences of unlimited possibilization and excited field effects; just as in Indian Tantra and in preliminary pleasure in the western world.
7H3. Universalized partition-conjunction
In this sense, Homo's partition-conjunction and its pre-orgasmic or para-orgasmic effects became true about everything. Because everywhere in the techno-semiotic *woruld we find concave/convex, mortice/tenon, gloving/gloved couples with their implications of general, differential topology, of cybernetic, of logico-semiotic. There are countless cases where, between two wholes, the external variables of A are in coaptation with the internal variables of B, which is the main mathematical foundation of partition-conjunction. Finally, all sorts of para-orgasmic states hover around orgasmic states, in exaltations that can be musical, linked to images, textual or logical.
Whence these substitutions that we find in Homo between its genital tract and other organs with similar properties, particularly sphincter orifices: mouth, anal and urethral tracts. One day, Homo will become psychoanalyst and will think that such substitutions follow an increasingly complex regulated order privileging the mouth first, the place for experimenting the liquid continuum through tumescence and de-tumescence of orality; then the anus, place for experimenting the solid discontinuum through the solid separations of anality; then the urethral tract combining the two aspects in directed liquidity; finally, the genital tract that is complex enough to engage two coaptable organisms, and even virtually a third, engendered, and returning the partition-conjunction into conjunction-partition, in genitalia.
And beyond the organs of the body, partition-conjunction with orgasmic charge will extend to the entire field of hominid activities-passivities. We find it diversely modulated, between the eater and the eaten, the hunter and the hunted, the builder and the built, the listener and the listened to, the imaging and the imaged, the killer and the killed, the thief and the thieved. And for all the senses, sight, smell, touch, and especially hearing.
Ruts and heat became perpetual for Homo because of their contribution in the encounter <3C2>, but also because they offered culminations and generalisations of perceptive-motor and logico-semiotic field effects, both by their copulatory aims (topological) and by their orgasmic aim (cybernetic). At the same time, they were the subject of jokes, even contempt. Probably because partition-conjunction defied the capacities of expression of transversalizing theoretic Homo and that the orgasm escaped the informational field of technique and semiotic. Only music succeeded in going where the images and words would fail, particularly with partitive-conjunctive Beethoven, and orgasmic Wagner <15G2e>.
Thus, the omnipresence of orgastic partition-conjunction produced two main conceptions throughout history. (a) That where sexual partition-conjunction appears to be the main attraction, of which the others would then be mere substitutes. There is then, in the end, only a diversely sublimated sexual libido. Excited field effects of every order are considered as derivations of the coital and orgasmic assemblies. (b) That where partition-conjunction is a disposition of Universe, at least in the terrestrial environment, and where sexual partition-conjunction is only a climax. Sexual exaltations would be a specific case of much more generalised excited field effects.
7I. Fantasies and imaginary
Perceptive-motor and logico-semiotic field effects complicate greatly perceptions, imaginations, conceptions, volitions and the affects of Homo, as they surround, cross, and inhabit them with many fantasies. Rather than giving a general definition of the fantasy, we must first distinguish its various sorts carefully.
7I1. Fantasies of things-performances
We probably speak already of fantasy each time that, in the exotropic or endotropic grasping of a thing-performance-in-situation-in-the-circumstance-over-a-horizon <1B3>, the field effects that it triggers or to which it participates become the preponderating element. More briefly: fantasies are then things-performances with their field effects as soon as the latter become prevalent. In Greek, "Phantasma" covered the apparition, the ghost, imperious dream, vision, image in spirit and without particularizing consistency, prodigy, celestial phenomenon, reminiscence, echo, etc. All this crowned with the semantic constellation formed by phantasia, phantadzein, phantasioûn, phaneros, phanos (adjective and substantive, bright and vacillating light of the torch) etc. It is in the very nature of the fantasmatic field that we hesitate on its number: fantasies, in the plural, or the fantasy, with a singular collective.
The most frequent case of such fantasies is that where the accompanying field is perceptive-motor and excited, creating this average irradiation (visual, auditive, tactile, kinaesthetic, olfactory, gustatory) that in most people accompanies flexibly the daily operations of daily life. But this field can also be logico-semiotic, or still perceptive-motor less excited than dynamic, kinetic, static. The common trait to all cases is a certain vertigo, where the perceived and the perceiver, the imagined and the imaginer, the logified and the logifier can hardly be distinguished, but are in a sort of fusion state, that must be defined less by a confusion than by a growth in potential (of slope in the thermodynamic sense). In a tender attachment or a violent fascination. In a brisk, extended, or relaxed rapt.
We can then indicate occasions favourable to the apparition and the maintenance of these fantasies. (a) When the logico-semiotic relation between attractors influencing the thing-performance, let us refer to those attractors by X-Y, hesitates between the felt, the perceived, the imagined, the indicium, the index, the concept, the wanted. (b) When, using the words of David Marr <Vision, Freeman, 1982>, the X-Y ratio is only grasped in nervous circuits at a 2,5 dimension, meaning "subject-centred", and not yet at "3 dimensions", meaning "object-centred". (c) When X-Y, as beam of attractors, is powerfully crossed by the attractions of other attractors. (d) When the technical thematizations of X-Y are haloed by the distanciating thematizations of signs that invest, dilate, make them salient, swell them with pregnances. (e) When the semiotic thematization of X-Y is already magically an uncontrolled presence. (f) When X-Y belongs to several modes of existence and categories of the possible. (g) When, in X-Y, the topological rate of close/distant, open/closed, encompassing/encompassed, compact/diffuse matters more than the segmentarity and substitutability. (h) When, in X-Y, the vertigo of the seven elementary catastrophes of differential topology threatens ostensibly the structural stability, particularly the ”good form” (i) When the apprehension of X-Y hesitates between activity and passivity. (j) When the sexual partition-conjunction that invests X-Y renders blind to its other functioning. Etc.
Things-performances fantasized this way are so inherent to possibilizing Homo that most of its functionings know two regimen. (A) A fantastic regimen, where actions-passions spontaneously dilate by the intensity of field effects. (B) An objectal regimen, where technical and cognitive operations give way, by control, by critique (krineïn, screening), to a grasp which is as segmentarizing and splitting as possible. In daily life, these two regimen obey to the endless and flexible passage from one to the other. A passage that is however not a real mediation, which is impossible in such a fluent area, but a rhythmical alternation that exploits in various dosages the eight properties of rhythm <1A5>.
7I2. Fantasies of *woruld
It is of the nature of the fantasy of thing-performance, which is eminently rhythmical because of its field effects, to extend its resonances to the situation and the circumstance and, through them, to the horizon. We can even wonder if there is not in every fantasmatization a certain short-circuit between the thing-performance and the horizon, blurring the mediation of the circumstance and the situation.
So, the fantastic grasping of a thing-performance tends to become that of the *woruld in general, i.e. the environment appropriated by Homo, and even the environment as it is appropriated by Homo. Not that in this case, which will be that of poetry, music, spatial arts, the fantasy is without themes, but those themes matter very little in their specificity. The fantasy of *woruld with this meaning probably always comprises a certain presentive experience, meaning a thematization of presence <8B9>.
7I3. Fantasies of partition-conjunction (sexual and universalized)
Assuredly, the central theme of fantasies, i.e. functionings accompanied by prevalent field effects, is the sexual partition-conjunction. Already because of the impossibility of observing it technically, logically, geometrically. Then, because it triggers embracing excited field effects, and even the entry into a generalised partition-conjunction <7H3>.
7I4. Fantasies of presence, absence, presence-absence
The fantasies we have just approached fall rather clearly into the order of functionings, even if they are complicated functionings. But we still see hominid specimens aiming at almost pure states of presence, and almost pure states of absence. We would even dare say states of presence-absence <8A>. Zen, voodoo, some pre orgasmic states of exhilaration due to music, alcohol or psychotic drugs (psycHè, dèloûn, showing the naked soul) are clear cases of such thematization <8B9>.
Functionings then look for intensifications, or conversely, for collapses. Mobilised field effects are especially perceptive-motor and excited, even if their dynamic, kinetic and static variety are of some help. As for the logico-semiotic field effects, they prove particularly efficient when presence-absences are sought by annulment, as in Zen, or in some western poetry dating back to the fifties. Seeing that these limit experiences neither become rare nor do attenuate as we go back in hominid history, we can believe that they appeared very early on in the anthropogeny, and that they played a key role.
7I5. Fundamental fantasies as organo-techno-semio-presential hyper fields
In the end, we can see that all the fantasies of thing-performance, of *woruld, of partition-conjunction, of presence-absence that a hominid specimen maintains constitutes throughout its entire existence a hyper field, that we can call its fundamental fantasy. This fantasy is not simply a sum or an average, the mere result of the aforementioned fantasies. But rather, it engenders them as much as it is engendered by them, given the memorizing interrelations of neuronic synodies in general and of the endotropy and floating hominid attention in particular <2A5, 2B2>. In this hyper field, which we sometimes call the "sixth sense" <1C3>, globalisation by coenesthesia and kinesthesia assuredly plays a basal role, like the gestural and vocal posture.
The fundamental fantasy, through pleasure and the inherent eight characteristics of rhythm <1A5>, by the structures and the textures that it animates and that animate it, is probably what is most singular in a hominid specimen. And also the most essential element that this specimen exchanges in its experiences of sexual and universalised partition-conjunction. More generally, if love and friendship and hatred to some extent, are inter-systems richer than the addition of the systems that make them up, it is mainly through the encounter of two fundamental fantasies <11L2>.
7I6. Compulsive fantasies
Hominid specimens that we usually call "normal" practice an endless to and fro between the techno-scientific and fantastic treatment of their environment. The first treatment specifies the second for the action, the second opens and solubilises the first for pleasure and a certain universalization of perception. Between these two treatments, the dosage is subtle, and once again rhythmical. But this rhythm is fragile. One needs no more than an unbalance of neuromediators, a few traumatic memories, too close or too distant nervous synodies, a temporary tiredness or state of nervousness, for compulsive fantasies to take place.
In compulsive fantasies, the crossing between the cuts of the synodic cleavage and the intensities unique to any fantasy, whatever it may be, gives way to sorts of short-circuits with punctual overexcitements. And, what is elsewhere only an intensifying difference of potential takes the aspect of a vertiginous funnel. The usual dosage between excited, dynamic, kinetic, static field effects gives way to an imperious prevalence of the two or three latter; and the same runaway mechanism can take place in logico-semiotic field effects.
Of all fantasies, the compulsive fantasy is the most studied in our contemporary societies because of its effects of theft, rape, singular or collective murder that are all more or less isolated or serial. Different models can be envisaged. (a) The "normally" plural and animating energies of the fantasies of the *woruld and of the fundamental fantasy are gathering and strangling in some people under the attraction of a fantasy of thing-performance-in-a-particular-situation. (b) A unique field effect adds or multiplies the properties usually distinct of stable, kinetic, dynamic, excited, even logico-semiotic field effects over a same thing-performance-in-situation, but here without horizon <1B3>. (c) Field effects, instead of identifying presence-absence as a nimbi (a horizon) absorb it within themselves in such a way that the compulsive action or abreaction are often described as a black hole.
If neurophysiology one day manages to establish the concomitances between these compulsive fits and neural actions, it will perhaps see more clearly what is due "objectively" to the originality of some things-performance-in-situation-in-the-circumstance-over-a-horizon encountered by the compulsive subject and what is due, "subjectively", to the particularities (types) of cleavages and synodic commutations that a specific brain operates.
7I7. Sacrificial fantasies
Sacrifices are the occasions for extremely fusional fantasies. Possibilization <6G2> showed us how Homo, when he sacrifices, realises inside his *woruld, substitutions that allow him to win some favours, contacts, repairs of unbalances (debts), modifications of oneself or the other, in any case establishments or reinstatements of the order of the *woruld. These substitutions are regulated. But at the same time, they are so multidimensional, both so far away and close that the sacrificer emerges in a sort of ubiquity and unanimism, where not only the things around him are equivalent, but where the things and himself become interchangeable. Here, there is as much exaltation as there is calculation. And this can only give way to field effects that are sometimes static, sometimes kinetic and dynamic, but most of all discretely or violently excited.
Fantasies of oblative equivalence that widely escape utilitarianism have played a capital role in the anthropogeny. For the most part, they conveyed the heroism of the warrior, the pleasure of the consecrated, the endless devotion, the renouncement of the dying, the decentring of the lover, the jumps beyond Reality towards the abyss of the Real <8E1>. We had to approach sacrificial fantasy after all the others because it uses them all, combining fantasies of thing-performance, of *woruld, of universalised or sexual partition-conjunction, of presence, without forgetting the hyper fields of the singular or collective fundamental fantasies.
7I8. Cognitive fantasies and faith (belief)
Fantasies even have the effect that Homo is the place of affirmations, of spoken or gestural thematizations of things and performances that can not be handled and controlled with the usual means: apparitions from beyond, continuation of life after death, resurrection, providence as foresight for a distant future or construction of this future, assurance (certitude) that the course of the world is crossed by good and evil universal forces, various revelations, convictions that one must be conservative or progressive, assurance that science will ultimately dissipate the mystery (Scientism) or that it will always lag behind, etc.
These affirmations also known as beliefs have their own capacities. They commit the entire existence of the believer in every detail: I "am in state of" penitence to ensure my heaven or not go to hell, I "am from the" left (or the right), I "live according" to my belief in the ultimate victory of a good God or Satan, I "militate for" atheism. They give themselves as not subject to revision. They are generally accompanied by a certain insisting tone, too powerful or too whispering, always inspired, meaning committing the breath. They are usually introduced by a thematizing formula: "I know that", "it is evident and certain that", "we could not doubt that". They often call upon tradition or authoritative argument: "We always thought that", "Plato already said or saw that". They are internalized by every one, but are generally shared by groups, the magnitude of which conditions their certitude and evidence. They go hand in hand with activities where field effects are powerful and supported: music, arts, poetry, dance. They are shared less by communication than by communion and participation <8G2-3>.
But essentially, the contents of belief and religious, political, scientific faith comfort each other, test each other, prove themselves using partial or total rhythmic arrangement <1A5> that the field effects that accompany them bring to the believer. Perceptive-motor and logico-semiotic, these field effects are static, kinetic, dynamic and particularly excited <7A-E>. We see the extent to which belief could have been considered, according to the cultures and the eras, like the knowledge of another order, or like a knowledge more enlightening and surer than ordinary knowledge. And particularly leading to the Real beyond Reality <8E>. We shall come back to this on the occasion of the spiritual "life", whether it be religious, political or philosophical <27D3>.
Besides, we find in all communities and societies a faith in the sense of faith in the other, or to the other (pistis, fiance). Indeed, in the encounter <3A> between two possibilizing specimens <6A>, in their confrontation, each one never knows what hides in the head of the other. He can only believe in him, to him, to believe him. And according to the same criterion as for any other belief, by the rhythmic arrangement of the existence that this adhesion brings him, believe in friendship and love. Belief and trust interpenetrate. The same rhythmic, rhythmical movement affirms the eternal life and the god that reveals it. Absolute revolt and Satan offering the model. The German glauben (*galauba) covers intellectual and personal trust. The English to believe couples the concession (lêfan, to allow) and cherishing (lêof, dear).
7J. Imaginary versus imagination versus perception. Imagos
What we have just seen about fantasies invites us to make a useful distinction that the French language allows between imagination and imaginary. Imagination grasps the imagined without fantasy and without predominating field effects. Conversely, the imaginary implies a fantastic grasping of the imagined, it is the imagined with its field effects, and from these field effects.
Imaginations are in this case functionings that, in the endotropic cerebral circulation, (re)animate more or less exhaustively some perceptions, motivities, volitions, affects that were inscribed on the occasion of exotropic cerebral circulation by memorisation, then elaborated by memoration <2A5>. So understood, imagination, whether "reproductive" or "creative" according to the traditional vocabulary, plays an essential role in technician, historian, mathematician, physicist, biologist, scenarist, political Homo. For example, a cosmologist has the faculty to imagine (even mentally) the successive movements of the sun and the planets according to the seasons. Imagination refers to reality, even when it invents explicit comparisons ("it's like"), or implicit comparisons such as metonymies and metaphors ("a sail in the distance", "storm of words").
Imaginary is imagination when it is joined by the fantasy, i.e. when it manipulates its objects with their perceptive-motor and logico-semiotic field effects; it has the modalities that we recognized in the fantasy <7I>. Littré wanted that imaginary should be "what is only in the imagination, and that is not real". But phantom limbs prove that the distinction is not that simple. Like a phantom, the amputated leg is only there in the imagination, but it persists so intensely because it worked in the real for so long. On the other hand, to use correctly the prosthesis, the amputated must, every time that he puts it on, reanimate his phantom, as though adjoining to it field effects, imaginary, that would otherwise be lacking.
The imaginary is so important for Homo that it gives way to a mode of existence, reverie <6B>, the depth of which Rousseau demonstrated in his Rêveries du promeneur solitaire, and the phenomenological richness of which Bachelard demonstrated in his essays on poetic imaginary: La Terre et les rêveries de la volonté, La Terre et les rêveries du repos, L'Eau et le rêves, L'Air et les songes, etc. Besides, even outside reverie, imaginary carries all major artistic works, if it is true that in these works the designated of perception or imagination (for example, a crowning of the Virgin Mary) is accompanied by field effects that are sometimes so powerful that they are the actual theme of the work. More generally, the imaginary accompanies every hominid activity, since the latter is generally carried by everyone's fundamental fantasy. Finally, the imaginary intervenes even in scientific and mathematical creation. René Thom introduces his Apologie du logos with a chapter entitled "Rêveries ferroviaires" (railway reveries), leading us to understand that his later works as differential topologist are somehow due to the sorting of wagons on the inclined plane of the Montbéliard train station fantasised by his childhood brain.
This raises the general question to know whether every scientific, political, religious or artistic creation does not emerge partially from a powerful imaginary. In two ways at least. First because creating supposes pleasure that fundamentally feeds on field effects; the Ignatius of Loyola of the Spiritual Exercises is as constant on this point as the Nietzsche of Die fröhliche Wissenschaft (The Joyful Wisdom). Then the change in referential - that genius invention is - realistically supposes that the objects concerned are animated by static, kinetic, dynamic, excited field effects, even by paradoxes of partition-conjunction, universalised or sexual. If the physicist revolutions of the two first thirds of the twentieth century were the work of individuals aged under 27 years, it is perhaps because it is an age when the imagination, the imaginary and the conceptualizing neutralization are most likely to meet. Besides, it is generally true that there is not veritable pedagogy without horizon, which does not merge with the aims of the imagination and supposes the imaginary.
We still need to mention that the imaginary animates or mixes not only some imaginations but some perceptions too. This is the case when raping, murdering, and thieving compulsive field effects are triggered by the sight (sound, smell or touch) of a swinging handbag, a dancing child, a lonely woman on a deserted path; or when a brisk and incoercible turmoil of pity is triggered in front of an imploring or mute individual, starving or wounded. And it is also the case when themes are correctly perceived, but are numbed or swollen with static, kinetic, dynamic, excited field effects. Whether these effects are perceptive-motor or logico-semiotic. Or still [numbed or swollen], of thing-performance, of *woruld, of sexual or universalised partition-conjunction, of presence absence, of sacrifice.
7K. Semiotic of field effects
Are field effects signs? Assuredly, they contribute to reinforce, between segments of universe, these mutual calls - from a distance - that are triggered by the functions of technical objects, when the screwdriver calls the screw, when the hammer calls the nail, and reciprocally <4B>. But are they segments of universe thematizing other segments and depleting in this thematization, like the signs <4A>? Adding semiotic distanciation to technical distance ?
Yes for perceptive-motor field effects since, when they are static, kinetic, or dynamic, they contribute, in image, musical, and language mimes to the recognition or designation of an animal, a plant, a congener, by their characteristic and even designating allure <14A3-4-7>. Even when they are only excited and do little or not help to designate a specific designated, they realise and define at least the topologies, cybernetics, logico-semiotics, general or singular presentivities <7G> that have some relation with the sense and the non-sense, sometimes even with openings onto the Sense or the Non-Sense <8F2-3-4>. And this semiotic dimension evidently also belongs to logico-semiotic field effects, the main vehicle of which is language, which conveys sense and significations from everywhere <8F>.
Partition-conjunction lends itself to an endless investigation because it intervenes everywhere in hominid situations. Here, we wanted to indicate the areas and paths of deployment, that will be analysed in-depth in later chapters on tectures <13>, images <14>, music <15>, dialects <16-17>, writing <18>, but also on lives <27>, many of which, including artistic, love, mystical lives feed and develop from these.
Henri Van Lier
Translated by Paula Cook, 2017
(Last update, October 13, 2017)