The others of hierarchy: Rhizomatics of organising

Publication Type:
Chapter
Citation:
Deleuze and the Social, 2006, pp. 58 - 74
Issue Date:
2006-01-01
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© in the edition, Edinburgh University Press, 2006. In his preface to Anti-Oedipus, Michel Foucault suggests that Deleuze and Guattari answer questions less concerned with why things might be so, and more concerned with how to proceed. The procession that he identifies is the employment of desire in political action against (at least) the ‘fascism in all of us, in our heads and in our everyday behaviour, the fascism that causes us to love power, to desire the very thing that dominates and exploits us’ (Foucault 1983: xiii). Fascism comes in many incarnations. As Deleuze and Guattari (1987) enumerate, this includes ‘[r]ural fascism and city or neighbourhood fascism, youth fascism and war veteran's fascism, fascism of the Left and fascism of the Right, fascism of the couple, family, school and office’ (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 214). It is the fascism of the office and the organisation that we wish to address in this chapter. We understand this fascism to operate on what Deleuze and Guattari refer to as a ‘molecular’ level. It is, in other words, a fascism that is already active prior to its organisation or normalisation on the ‘molar’ level of the state. It is, therefore, a kind of microfascism which Deleuze and Guattari understand as ‘cancerous body rather than a totalitarian organism’ (Deleuze and Guattari 1987: 215). This does not, of course, entail that particular organisations cannot be ‘molar’ or normalising forces. It is rather to acknowledge also that in organisational settings fascism has its own rhizomatics.
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