It was the ideas of audioanarchy that grabbed us, all those years ago. It was the point at which the conflicts converged, as we were provided with a framework to make sense of the whiteness around. Rather speculatively, and with much enthusiasm, we were grabbed by those words referenced (.138) and alluded to in Jan D Matthews popular, iconoclastic essay: “Throughout the first years of our lives we were forced not just to internalize a few aspects of capital, but to build up a structure of internalizations. As our capacity for coherent natural self-regulation was systematically broken down, a new system of self regulation took its place, a coherent system, incorporating all the aspects of self-repression. We participated in capital’s ongoing project of colonization by colonizing ourselves, by continually working at the construction of a unitary character-structure (character armor), a unitary defense against all drives, feelings, and desires which we learned were dangerous to express. In the place of our original transparent relations to our world, we created a structure of barriers to our self-expression which hides us from ourselves and others.” Even if we were young, we accepted, that “while it is not easy to resist, it is well worth it. Only through resistance to this society can life become worth living.” Meaning was our rhythm; it meant something; it was real, and yet, looking backwards, many years later, what can we say, and more importantly, where do we go from here…
At the conclusion of “New Order Of Barbarians”, the speakers advance the notion that people who do not have a proper, constructive, continuous self-construct, struggle to have peace in their lives. These people without set, specific roles struggles to reconcile the contradictions in their thinking influenced by their internalised, societal constructs. They do not completely belong to the spectacle they are already at odds with having long refused to identify with it, and thereby, denying themselves “status”, “prestige”, miss out on the benefits and privileges conferred upon them, such as value. In refusing to accept the notion of “productivity”, they are generally despised in the dominant discourse of the mainstream narrative. (In “The Myth of Mental Illness” Szasz writes about people who, ‘by rebellion, through espousal of value and goals too sharply at variance with those dominant in the culture at a given time,” were viewed to lack “positive contribution to the social welfare”. (p 38) Since they do not participate in the performance of productivity (mastery), they are viewed as being impotent, incompetent and incapable, which itself; is associated with being handicapped; crippled; disabled; characteristics also linked to themes of helplessness, childishness, neediness and dependence – invalids, rejects and failures. Without a respectable, reputable, identity-construct, these people are seen to be of lesser value, as if to suggest they were invalid, anonymous, invisible, and even unimportant. In their respective “Boxes”, they represent “counter-culture.” They are viewed to be important; and even if without (formal) credentials, creditable.
Sadly, as time goes on, these people get caught in a conflict alluded to by Monte Maddox (What Wrong With Black Women), people struggle against erotic discontent and structured desire. These “warriors” and “freedom-fighters” want “liberation” and “dignity”, and yet, they battle against “injustice” and anonymity which leaves them “pathological” and “maladjusted.” In their efforts to compensate for and even correct their damage and denigration, they attempt to channel their instincts, impulses and other “moods” into alternative avenues and outlets, sometimes even falling back on the behaviours of the mainstream people. Many thus sympathise with Maddox’s ridicule of “the hard-core, bad ass, thug niggas, that black women love, hold and cherish. The same men that beat those fine, round saucy black bootys every night.” (p xxiii) Meanwhile, these females are idolised and worshipped by the less-hypersexual males who are restrained and inhibited, leading law-abiding lives, often-times on welfare, benefits, dole and employment insurance. In their desperation to get access to sex (“power”), they make a fetish of females: “he sucks da titty but gets no sex. He buys dem drinks but gets no booty. He takes her shopping but ends up spending the night over the kitchen sink wanking off. Poor brothers!…time to act like an adult.” In our present predicament, power is translated in mastery, consumption and acquisition. Recognition is granted to those who achieve, whilst those who rebel and attempt to create a new reality are seen as being in an adolescent phase. Unfortunately, as the Bobby Rush’s of this world learned, eventually, without enterprise, chase careers… money matters.
“you do not actually know someone until you fight them”
* Jay Amrod and Lev Chernyi, “Beyond Character and Morality: Towards Transparent Communications and Coherent Organization.” Howard J. Ehrlich ed. Reinventing Anarchy, Again (San Francisco, California: AK Press, 1996), 321.