Jiatu Gu: A Discursive Discussion on Affect: From Joy to Discords to Civil War


Advisor/tutor: Amitabh S. Rai

July 2020


This thesis takes Spinoza’s affect theory as the anchor. It starts from investigating the passive form of joy, that which based on recognition—how it can be mobilized and structured against the body’s capacity to act and even may well pave the way to fascism. To analyze this, the paper dives into the readings of Negri and Hardt’s project of Empire, Foucault’s bio-politics and Deleuze and Guattari’s concept of desire. Then, in order to move away from the passive form of joy to achieve the active ones, it further explores the conditions or affects that need to be recognized—violent, painful and cruel discords. This part of the thesis heavily draws inspirations from Deleuze and Guattari’s differential ontology, specifically the notions of rhizome and the “body without organs.” Last but not least, following along with this line of thought, with the help from Tiqqun, The Invisible Committee and among other radical groups, this thesis presents how this ethic of active form of joy might inform to revolutionary and emancipatory political(anti-political), social(anti-social) practices.