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Il CovileIl Covile

rivista in rete
diretta da
stefano borselli

risorse conviviali
e varia umanità
issn 2279–6924

Non rifiutare ma preferire (Nicolás Gómez Dávila)
La via del saggio è fare ma non contendere (Lao Tze)

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Here is where death is, here is where we have to jump.

Is not death more desirable than life
that is a mere preventive measure against death?

Karl Marx

The coronavirus, causal agent of covid 19, is the virus of enmity. This disease signals the intolerability of current living conditions for men and women who can bear them less and less, expressing simultaneously fatigue and self-hatred of the species.

Its appearance is the result of a long process that began in the Neolithic period with the separation from the rest of nature and the enslavement of women and the putting into dependency of children.

The more we fight against it, the more we reinforce what we are fighting against. As a result, the threat of the virus (or even other viruses) will increase along with the enmity within the species.

Living together will become more and more difficult, calling back into question the fundaments of the species, which could only manifest itself within nature because of the exceptional strength of its community in continuity with all that lives.

Our possible extinction is therefore tied to the hyperdevelopment of enmity sustained by hyperindividualism, combined with the enormous overpopulation affected by megalomania, which prevents it from being present in the world and founds its madness. It has also conditioned, through the destruction of nature, the development of climatic disruption that threatens all life on earth. In so doing, the species finds itself in the presence of a phenomenon of comparable magnitude, even if it was different in its manifestation - an ice age - from which it had to and was able to protect itself, by creating the tools (in the very general sense of the term) that allowed it to continue its life process, which, from now on, it is no longer able to do because of its madness preventing it from seeing reality. Curiously, it was not during a phase of glaciation but during a phase in which a much gentler climate prevailed, that the dynamic of enmity that now affects our roots emerged. But the process of life, both at the organic and psychic level, is based on cooperation and symbiosis. Until when can the species tolerate enmity?

The pandemic fully reveals the horror the break of continuity with nature constituted, the wandering into which one cannot go any further, because further on lies death. To escape this, only an immense vital leap can allow us to achieve the salvific inversion consisting in abandoning the dynamics of enmity, as of friendship its dyadic complement, by finding our place - the presence within the totality of the life phenomenon, freed and liberated from an artificial dyad.

* * *

Comment on the citation. This sentence is part of the second paragraph on page 58 in the Costes edition, 1937, tome V of the philosophical works. In this paragraph, K. Marx's thinking is broader and more incisive. Here is the beginning, including the citation:

The human body is mortal by nature. Hence illnesses are inevitable. Why does a man only go to the doctor when he is ill, and not when he is well? Because not only the illness, but even the doctor is an evil. Under constant medical tutelage, life would be regarded as an evil and the human body as an object for treatment by medical institutions. Is not death more desirable than life that is a mere preventive measure against death? Does not life involve also free movement? What is any illness except life that is hampered in its freedom? A perpetual physician would be an illness in which one would not even have the prospect of dying, but only of living. Let life die: death must not live. (Karl Marx, Rheinische Zeitung №132, Supplement May 12 1842.)

Let us not forget that the subject of the article from which this is extracted is entitled: "Debates on the freedom of the press and publications of the discussions of the Diet". The freedom in question here is not a metaphysical concept but a concept indicating some concreteness. Hence, freedom is obstructed by censorship and the censor intervenes when he thinks that what is expressed is "evil". In conclusion, K. Marx denounces the phenomenon of repression and points out the impossibility of it achieving its goal: "death must not live!" However, he does not express this explicitly, but rather with the help of a discourse weighted with strong inchoation. This is very often the case when one resorts to comparisons that signal difficulty in exposing something that touches and affects us deeply.

Camatte Jacques

October 2021

* * *

Thus, after the dynamic of the obsolescence, of the substitution by machines, and of the installation of various prostheses generating an artificial man, which can appear as a response to a possible fear of the disappearance of the species, the species itself is now dominated by the becoming of the autonomised form of Capital and thus by the dynamic of innovation while, in its relationship with nature, it is under the dependence of mutations of the coronavirus responsible for covid19. But innovation and mutation designate only one and the same phenomenon. As a consequence, unless inversion occurs, Homo sapiens is headed to extinction, through what can be considered as the concretisation of the metaphor of progress.

Camatte Jacques

February 12th, 2022

Francesco Borselli

Refer to the Glossary: Inversion, Dyad


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Wehrlos, doch in nichts vernichtet
Inerme, ma in niente annientato
(Der christliche Epimetheus
Konrad Weiß)


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