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What has become of subjectivity?
(article appeared in the review KILIAGONO)

Rorschach: image of a test

That subjectivity which many industrial slogans evoke – when they claim that the X product can be ‘personalized’ – is a reassuring double sent among people to prevent them from questioning themselves on the disappearance of another subjectivity, very differently characterized and rewarding. But the dulling presence of the former points at the absence of the latter. It isn’t necessary to share the opinion of Adorno or Marcuse in order to feel the contradiction between the self-proclaimed possibility of personalizing something and the depersonalized nature of this something. The person is held in such a miserable regard that a squiggle or an acronym should be sufficient to meet its expectations. That’s how one would want it.    

Immersed in a reality which needs to repeat itself continuously in order to pursue the obliteration of the Subject, it is easy to loose contact with our own subjectivity up to the point of not knowing anymore what it is, urged as it is to become what one wants it to be.  One may as well oppose the pretence of being subjectively free and shut oneself up in a prison: in doing so one would see the limits of its own freedom much better. Outside the prison these limits cannot be seen.

From these premises one is admitted, through an open consequential itinerary, to the poetics of the trapped subjectivity. To adopt it means to evade every impulse coming from expectations not at all subjective but completely subjected to the logic of marketing: able to pass off conditioning as spontaneity, roars of banalities as ideational flows, impudence as expressive urgency, constraint as freedom. It is better to prevent the acting of such subjective, shutting it up in those prisons which the foreboding Piranesi called Prisons of Invention. It will be necessary to keep her – in case for long - until it finds its own authenticity. In the darkness of the Castle’s dungeons, on which entrance is written a deceptive epigraph celebrating freedom, salutary changes can be produced. Even though at the cost of confinement.

In the concrete composition procedure one could operate as follows: work out the first writing plot, applying a strongly formalized code, based – for example – on binding numerical connections which can be established among sounds. A voluntary and metaphoric prison. The choice of a restrictive code could so become a precious occasion to regain, thanks to it, a real composition subjectivity. How? To the number and its intrusive pervading the plots of composition would be referred the task, historically provisional, of producing intermediate and paradoxical forms, so much predictable as full of highly imaginative virtualities for their own responsiveness. From the conjugation of the results of an alien logic (such would the numerical one be) with an emotiveness obliged to react to stimulus uncontaminated from any pseudosubjectif interference, a real subjectivity would learn to read the peculiarities of its own reaction, to recognize the physiognomic of its Self. Not overhelmed by the pressure of the consumer strategies, the Subject would reappropriate the control of the composition procedures without fearing anymore to unconsciously mime the ‘personalization’ dear to the tactics of illicit trade.

My composition activity oriented itself in the above-mentioned manner: starting in 1984.