Minor Vices: Pathways
Minor Vices

The accusation of these vices functions to diminish the stature of a person.
This is a way of stopping or blocking a narrative unfolding.
Shifters can be linked to thresholds:

For the purpose of reinvigorating ARC we decided to meet. The aim was remediation of the current state of ARC. The occasion was increasing dispersal of members and the question was how to face that. As usual the agenda shifted as we went along and the second part of the remediation came at the end, rather than beginning with that, i.e. the question of the form the remediation would take.

The minor vices have been floating around for some time, because it is a poisonous aspect of life, and we took the anthropological road of taking that which is not worthy of serious thought and bringing it into focus as a topic, so as to free ourselves to the degree possible.

Having established a topic,we began a free floating discussion proliferating terms and categories, validating that much could and was said about this; initially we thought we would diagram these thoughts, which now seems premature, hence freeing us to explore what convergence is possible.

We originally cast this as a problem of discordancy, ethical breakdown, and turned it into one of indeterminacy and are trying to turn this into more determinate elements and to provide a mise-en-form so as to make available both objects of thought and equipment.

One of the main blockages has been insularity: Todd Meyers joined us and catalyzed our discussions, which is both singular and a test showing that this is freeing and opening, creating links and ramifications.

So we plunged into the minor vices, the machinery that makes them ramify, and a freeing relation to the dispersal.

Machinery of Amplification

The response to a critique in which a virtue is turned into a vice.


Mirror or rebound function: "you are express the vice you are naming"

What's at stake in thinking about minor vices? Increase of capacities without increasing nefarious power relations.

Machinery makes configurations which we are a part of.

What do these vices do?

How are these vices made to operate in the world.

Each of us were able to name instances of the rebound effects of the naming of vices in the world and bringing them to visibility, which raises the questton of countereffectuations and the venues, practices and relations needed to think about and work on and through those.

Increasing capacities without the intensification of nefarious power relations

First, we made two diagrams. The first is a diagram of topics.
If we raise the question of counter-effecutations, what yo usee is a consequence of subject-position--with implications fo rthe formation of the object.

Next was a schema from Foucault on truth-speaking and democracy. Foucault shows us that speaking the truth must pass through ethics; but this return to the Greek democracy enabled us to see how the speaking of truth was short circuited because of the play of the minor vices in the venues in which we are working. A general return to the point that there is a price to be paid fo rspeaking the truth.
This can both helpus in the analysis of objects, but also can be a piece of equipment for the work of counter-effectuation.

We also realized that agonism was not central to how we work internally; we have not suceeded in establishing agonistic forms, Todd has helped us to see forms where we could develop techniques of agonism as part of techniques of inquiry an dpedagogy.

Today we started with the task of using instances to build relations between the minor vices and the machinery that we encountered.

Machinery of Transformation

What are the specific means through which a vice is turned into a virtue or a virtue into a vice?

What are the means through which an ethical claim is transformed into a non-ethical claim, or the inverse?

Forms of Life Sustained by Minor Vices



Subject Positions

What are the positions for subjects made available by the machinery of amplification and transformation?

How are these positions configured?


The final step this afternoon was curation rather than synthesis, schematization, typologization, etc. Strangely enough curation seems appropriate as preparation for a group show. We did not work over the materials, we worked over our relation to the materials. We employed proto-narrative tracing the way we proceeded to make our initial distinctions and proliferation around minor vices. In order to do so, we used the exisiting equipment from the Studio that we know from prior experience is appropriate to this second stage.

Todd's interventions catalyzed how we should go forward. If our main deficit was paltry connections outside of 311, the idea that there could be more seemed right. Todd provided us with a number of other instances that pointed us towards a clustering of experiments in truth and form, and more importantly, how to establish an invitational and productive relationship to those experiments.