<$BlogRSDURL$>

"And the stars are projectors, yeah, projecting our lives down to this planet Earth." - Modest Mouse


7.13.2004

Burroughs & Hyperstition 

Cybernetic Culture Research Unit hosts an intriguing article called Lemurian Time War:
The account that follows charts William Burroughs’ involvement in an occult time war, and considerably exceeds most accepted conceptions of social and historical probability. It is based on ‘sensitive information’ passed to the Ccru by an intelligence source whom we have called William Kaye. The narrative has been partially fictionalized in order to protect this individual’s identity.

Kaye himself admitted that his experiences had made him prone to ‘paranoid-chronomaniac hallucination,’ and Ccru continues to find much of his tale extremely implausible2. Nevertheless, whilst suspecting that his message had been severely compromised by dubious inferences, noise, and disinformation, we have become increasingly convinced that he was indeed an ‘insider’ of some kind, even if the organization he had penetrated was itself an elaborate hoax, or collective delusion. Kaye referred to this organization as ‘The Order,’ or – following Burroughs – ‘The Board.’
Within the paranoia, however, are some key insights into Burroughs and his style of magickal prose.
In the hyperstitional model Kaye outlined, fiction is not opposed to the real. Rather, reality is understood to be composed of fictions – consistent semiotic terrains that condition perceptual, affective and behaviorial responses. Kaye considered Burroughs’ work to be ‘exemplary of hyperstitional practice’. Burroughs construed writing – and art in general – not aesthetically, but functionally, - that is to say, magically, with magic defined as the use of signs to produce changes in reality.

Kaye maintained that it was ‘far from accidental’ that Burroughs’s equation of reality and fiction had been most widely embraced only in its negative aspect – as a variety of ‘postmodern’ ontological skepticism – rather than in its positive sense, as an investigation into the magical powers of incantation and manifestation: the efficacy of the virtual.
I recommend spending some time surfing around the CCRU site. All sorts of great stuff.

[Thanks to Hyperstition for the link!]

Comments: Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?