[-empyre-] on the 'destructive character' (post by Heiner Weidmann)

Sonja Leboš sonjalebos at gmail.com
Fri Nov 28 20:41:37 EST 2014

Dear Ana, it is so touching that you are a member of Women in Black. They
are still a very important pillar of support to women all over Balkan.
lots of warm regards

Sonja Leboš

2014-11-28 3:31 GMT+01:00 Ana Valdes <agora158 at gmail.com>:

> ----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------
> Sonja I was very moved for your description of rape as an ancient weapon.
> I am a member of the pacifist group Women in Black and I traveled with them
> from Belgrade to Tuzla to march with the Srebrenica survivors most of them
> women many of them raped. I has never seen so much dignity and stoicism as
> in those women. My friends Women in Black from Belgrade are mostly Serbs
> but they have done a wonderful job in solidarity and peace and are accepted
> by the Bosnian women as systers.
> Ana
> Enviado desde Samsung Mobile
> -------- Mensaje original --------
> De: Sonja Leboš
> Fecha:27/11/2014 22:54 (GMT-03:00)
> A: soft_skinned_space
> Asunto: Re: [-empyre-] on the 'destructive character' (post by Heiner
> Weidmann)
> So,  a little about my work that wanders in the thoughts of
> reconceptualization of notion of urban, cultural memory, hybrid cities and
> media.
> What I found very important recently in my work on city and memory is the
> art of co(m)-memoration. How do we come together and commemorate
>  collective traumas?
> Usually, there is a plastic, even more usually huge plastic errected in
> space that should substitute for our loss.
> Therefore I studied a little a fantastic architect, Bogdan Bogdanović.
> (The link on the catalogue of the exhibition is here:
> http://www.theatreofmemories.eu/documents/pdf/bogdanovic_catalogue.pdf
> and the initial Mnemosyne publication is here
> http://www.theatreofmemories.eu/documents/documents.php).
> He talks about anthropology of remembrance. Also, he knew that already
> Roman people, in their decadence, started to deviate the human relation to
> nature  -so he talks about Etruscan urban agglomerations as the least form
> of dialogue between human beings and their environment.
> He was a master of that kind of monumental plastic, - however there was
> sth in those monuments of the socialist Yugoslavia - they commemorated
> resistance and human dignity.
> However, Bogdanović transcended the concept of socialism, and dug deeper
> in the extremely complex structure of collective trauma.
> So he built in stone - for the eternity.
> I would again remind of what I think is the problem of the civilization
> embedded in these Roman and Greek concepts of culture: ceasing the moment,
> grabbing the present, losing the touch with eternal.
> Benjamin was right also about one very important thing for our discussion:
> the close connection between media (film at the time that has evolved in so
> much more, including telematic performance) and military. The technological
> link is so strong, that it is impossible to think the devices that enable
> using media and sophisticated devices for the destruction of Other (and
> Self).
> About gender war: the 90's in Balkan brought to the fore the enormous
> power of the ancient weapon of war -  the rape. The scope of using the
> penetration and fertilization of the body of the woman, using the woman as
> the plain womb for placing the seed of hatred - that is so tragic that one
> should think of a new language of drama to express it.
> At the same time similar was going on Ruanda.
> And then the UN acknowledged that the act of rape is the act of the war
> crime.
> And here, with that word: I would like to stop.
> Put it under the magnifying glass of the tool that Johannes dislikes -
> etimology.
> [1150–1200; Middle English *werre* < Old Norse *verri* worse
> <http://www.thefreedictionary.com/worse>]
> The Act of Worsening the Self to the point of mutilation and, ultimately -
> Death.
> Death - the biggest and the most dangerous trap of our civilization.
> Everybody is so afraid of it.
> There were times when cemeteries were within the cities. Than they were
> banned from the core of the urban to the periphery.
> Fear of Death is what moves the Earth.
> And that is worse, much worse than Death.
> Re-member Agamben's musulman?
> the man not dead but not alive either?
> non-human, denied by ueber-mensch
> Sonja Leboš
> sonjaleboš@gmail.com
> www.resurbanae.wordpress.com
> www.theatreofmemories.org
> www.cybercine.org
> www.uiii.org
> 2014-11-27 22:38 GMT+01:00 Johannes Birringer <
> Johannes.Birringer at brunel.ac.uk>:
>> ----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------
>> [relayed from Heiner Weidmann, who was our guest in Week 2 but could not
>> write
>> as he felt like withdrawing, or as Erik had intimated, prefering the
>> 'stillness of listening/self-absenting']
>> ich habe mir überlegt, dass benjamins "destruktiver charakter" doch sehr
>> zentral ist. es ist so was wie ein gegenmodell gegen die "aura": dieser
>> mythos ist ja so offensichtlich nostalgisch und antirational, dass er
>> eben nicht - wie man es benjamin gern unterstellt - ein festzuhaltendes
>> ideal darstellt, sondern im gegenteil, etwas, mit dem aufgeräumt werden
>> muss. aufräumen damit - und es festhalten in einer paradox gegenteiligen
>> form: das war eben die hoffnung, die benjamin in die radikale moderne
>> setzt.
>> die moderne architektur zerstört, zerbricht die innenräume und stülpt
>> sie nach aussen, und es ist doch arbeit (nur keine "schöpferische"), es
>> ist doch produktiv.
>> der destruktive charakter ist natürlich das gegenteil des sammlers (und
>> das ist benjamin vor allem gewesen, auch wenn "der destruktive
>> charakter" ein selbstportrait ist), und ich denke, dass haben wir doch
>> auch schon erlebt: nicht nur den reiz des sammelns und sich einbauens,
>> sondern auch den reiz des wegschmeissens, der uns beim umziehen und
>> räumen wie ein furor, wie eine reinigende begeisterung überkommen kann.
>> heiner weidmann
>> [translation, jb]
>> i was thinking that benjamins "destructive character" might be
>> an idea going to the core. it's kind of an anti-model, against the "aura"
>> (discussed
>> in the “work of art in the age of its technological reproducibility”
>> essay), aura being
>> a myth that is so obviously nostalgic and anti-rational, that it is
>> precisely
>> not - as some would accuse Benjamin - a sustainable ideal, but on the
>> contrary
>> something that has to be done away with, must be cleaned out - and held
>> in a
>> paradoxical, opposite form: that was just the hope that benjamin placed
>> in the
>> radical modernity.   modern architecture destroys, breaks the interiors
>> and turns
>> them inside out, outwards, and it is still destructive labor  (just not
>> "creative"),
>> but yet it is productive.
>> the destructive character is of course the inverse of the collector (and
>> that is what benjamin was above all, even if "the destructive
>> character " is a self-portrait ), and i think we have perhaps all
>> experienced that: not only the charm of collecting and propping ourselves
>> up,
>> but also the charm of throwing away, of destroying, which may overcome us,
>> when we move or clean up, like a  furor, like a a cleansing ecstasy.
>> +   +    +
>> _______________________________________________
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>> empyre at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au
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