City of Man

The code of signification and its domestication of language, of all social relations in representation, is the process of political economy. Postmodernism’s scheme of value and generalized equivalence is not limited to exchange and use, or to production, but invests in the code of signs, language, sexuality and consumption. This political economy of the sign does not appear to have a center of gravity, since it seems to no longer be a part of the direct process of material production. Yet, it isn’t writ anywhere that representation did not comes first before material production. That material production served as a reference, a fundamental one at that, is only of relative consequence, because just as long the functional and structural organization of codes have operated. It isn’t a matter of exchanging one authority over the other: it is not an idealism or a materialism that is naive about the content of production, since the system itself doesn’t concern itself with idealism or materialism. The form proceeds through material, through labor power, language, commodities, representations and signs all at once. That is the terror of the social such that it becomes its own determination.

Perhaps it ought to be called a differentiation of social productivity, which running through both industrial coercion and consumerist disciplinary concentration, integrates and ventilates of all the combines of social control?

Or perhaps just call it the City of Man, which lives only for itself?






Published by fldwrk

I am a painter.

10 thoughts on “City of Man

  1. I like that. And I would say further that the political itself can be viewed from two orientations. That the political does not “truthfully “encompass everything, but while it is the only manner through which we are able to estimate anything at all, there are two aspects of Viewing. One that sees that the entirety of everything human is contained by politics and that’s nothing escapes politics, such that human beings are determined in such and such manner is that cannot be escaped; and then one that sees politics as merely tools to be used, tools that do not in scribe the world entirely nor the human being.

    There is an irony that can be removed, and really that’s what my work is about. Thx. .

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    1. Augustine says in his preface – “And therefore, as the plan of this work we have undertaken requires, and as occasion offers, we must speak also of the earthly city, which, though it be mistress of the nations, is itself ruled by its lust of rule.”

      I would tend to agree with you that it does not encompass everything. Beings are not completely determined by that structuralization. In the end, they refuse to be caricatured.

      (From my perspective this is the fundamental failure of all identity politics, which is oriented in the direction of the system itself, which only plays with signs or the mercurial surface of caricature, going so far as to posit a doctrine of racial essentialism out of that structure of signs – subsumed entirely in that reifying structure. There is no space for redemption).

      Whereas, in each person, place or thing there is a reserve that isn’t representable, and that can never be represented.

      Wouldn’t this realization, however, emerge from a certain vantage point, and particularly, would it be that in order to convey it as a tool to be used there ought to first be a subtraction? – A subtraction from the entire political economy.

      I have been asking this question because I am beginning to write a small pamphlet on mysticism. This lead me to investigating Theology.

      Augustine’s City of God is distinct from politics as the Other city, as Other to the entire order of political economy. Speaking metaphorically, the Lord’s table overthrows the table of the money changers. The money changers are not just money changers, it is capital itself.

      Subtraction: even as iconoclasm not only of the sign, as it works in domesticating objects and consciousness, but also of the identity itself subject to iconoclastic rupture.

      So this Other city, the City of God, which does not live for itself as if its own determination even at the contempt of God, but which lives for God even at the contempt for itself, is the focus. Is this perhaps the vantage point in which to realize, like a fish that realizes that it is wet, that the entire structuralizing economy can be subject to a subtraction?

      “God” itself to me is not an issue – be it virtual, currently inexistent yet even as a potential emerging telos, retroactively present in some sense. What matters in such iconoclasm is becoming a true mensch: the world is such and such, and how does one make it better?

      p.s. If you still want to send me your transcript, I am still interested. Email me. My email is on contact (I don’t want to write it down here)

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      1. I am realizing more and more how I really need to redo some of it; the intro mainly. And if you do read it, please tell me of any obvious typos. Thad be very helpful. Otherwise. Enjoy. I feel like it is not beyond you . 🐟

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      2. Oh by the way: One of the edits is I need to put the notes at the bottom of the page rather than at the end of the book.

        With the reading online it gets somewhat cumbersome to have to refer all the way to the end of the document in order to read the notes; The notes many of them really are a comment that should flow with the reading itself.

        That’s sad I did publish a paperback version and it’s about 10 bucks and that pretty much covers the cost of printing it I’m not making any money and really from it

        So if you find that it is intriguing and interesting for you and that the online format is annoying then I can give you the link or you could try to find it at
        Ok. Good reading!


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  2. And in a way, the book really does deal with that same kind of dichotomy as city of God I think understands as its foundation probably.

    But I think I’m speaking to a modern audience and I feel like I’m speaking to current situations more readily.

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  3. .. ohto reply more to your comment:

    I think the issue that I deal with in my books Is the attempt to stop the Perpetuation of what is “negative “, or as you might put it “subtractive”, To alleviate the conceptual necessity of placing something perpetually outside as I just kind of absolute unattainable or unrealizable.

    In a way, I attempt to challenge that conceptual in position which likes us to view the world through absolutes to say that “all ability of conception” or “the world as concepts” thereby constitutes the absolute truth of things.

    It is really a challenge. I’m not so much dealing with ontology what may actually “be” but I’m rather challenging such ontological notions by bringing forth what is more a teleology.

    Less about what may be true of existence and more about what actually occurs.

    So I enjoy your posts because you seem to be right on that line but still on the side of a substantial art, A sort of concretezation, that must buy it’s very substance be an ontological presentation.

    But you ride so close to the line that I love it, and I feel that what I am saying what my work is about won’t be missed by you.

    But you’ll have to let me know.

    And the book that I’m currently going to put out in sections, smaller sections probably about 7 to 10 sections, I think addresses things more definitely, more philosophically. Where as The moment of decisive significance”. Is more an explanation which challenges conventional and traditional theology.


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    1. Have you ever read anything on orthodoxy, or feel inclined to?
      Because it seems that I have come across some aspects of theology found there that do, or at least present themselves, as something very different from the “perpetuation of what is “negative “, “


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