THE UNIVOCITY OF DELEUZE
by Beth Metcalf
b.metcalf@comcast.net



What is Univocity?

(2003) Spinoza’s Univocity is the key in the understanding of Deleuze. Univocity differs from any Representational ontology of classification according to genus and species.

Univocity IS Multiplicity

(2005) Univocity overcomes all opposition of many/one with Multiplicity (real distinction, ontologically singular).

The Immanence of Univocity

(2003) The immanence of Univocity shows us that Individuals are not separate forms or Subjects. What is the life of immanence where there are no ‘individuals’ of the kind in Representational thinking?

Force Relations

(2003) Ideas are the sub-representative internal relation of difference without a concept. Ideas must not be confused with concepts.

Transcendental Empiricism

(2003) Deleuze’s Transcendental Empiricism is not to be confused with Representational Transcendentalism or Empiricism which trace conditions from the possibility of the concept.

Expressive Univocity

(2003) Univocity is not a correspondence of an object of perception with a conceptual form of Representation. It is the expression of an internal understanding that precedes all representation.

Ethics and Common Notions

(2003) Deleuze-Spinoza’s Univocity is an ethics of difference. It is not a metaphysics of moral generality.

Logic of Sense

(2005) Univocity is the expressive logic of sense. It is not to be confused with the Representational logic of signification.

Bergson and Univocity

(2005) I will try to make the case that Bergsonism is consistent with Deleuze’s Univocity. So, why does Deleuze never apply the term ‘Univocity’ to Bergson’s thought?

The Empty Form of Time---Eternal Return

(2003) With Univocity, the empty form is not merely empty of empirical content. It is also empty and without concept. It is pure order. It is the Eternal Return, the third synthesis of Univocity.

Nietzsche’s Univocity

(2005) In order to understand Nietzsche’s Univocity, we must know the active forces that appropriate it.

Deleuze Versus Hegel

(2005) Representational philosophy (such as that of Hegel) presents us with a choice: either you will accept difference as negatively determined, or you will be condemned to the undifferentiated abyss of black nothingness where there is no difference at all. Deleuze rejects that alternative.

Parallelism and the Syntheses

(2005) I try to show that Deleuze bases his three syntheses on Spinoza’s parallelism. With Spinozist Univocity, disjunction becomes a real synthesis. Univocity opens all the forms. Disjunction becomes all-inclusive.

Variety and Variation

(2006) We reach real difference only if we reach the virtual forces of intensity. The virtual is actualized in varieties of singularity.

Stoic Univocity

(2008) I attempt to draw Deleuze's diagram of Stoic Univocity. The diagram is not circular, but it is a paradoxical element unfolding in a Mobius strip.

Hjelmslev's Univocity

(2009) I compare what Deleuze calls the 'classical conception' of linguistics with his reading of Hjelmslev. I attempt to show why this is an example of Univocity.

Univocity Versus Analogy

(2009) Analogy is equivocal being said of the univocal.  Univocity is the reverse.  It is univocal being said of the equivocal.

(2016) Addendum

Movement-Image and Time-Image

(2010) I compare Deleuze's movement-image (indirect representation of time) with the time-image (direct presentation of time). In the former, spatialized time is subordinate to movement. In the latter, movement becomes subordinate to a transcendental empty form of time.

Machinic Univocity

(2010) I believe that, if we are to understand the machinic model of flows described by Deleuze and Guattari, it is important to understand their reading of Spinoza. Deleuze and Guattari find machinic univocity in Spinoza.

Philosophy is Univocity

(2010) Univocity is the answer Deleuze and Guattari give to their question 'What is Philosophy?' Whenever philosophy is thought in the image of Representation, it comes into crisis which can only be settled by a relativism of opinions. Deleuze and Guattari reformulate the problem. Univocity is their answer to the crisis of Representational Phiosophy.

Univocity and Structuralism (Part 1)

(2008) There seems to be some ambiguity about Deleuze’s assessment of Structuralism.  How can his Univocity shed light on this ambiguity?

Univocity and Structuralism (Part 2)

 

(2010) In Deleuze’s article ‘How Do We Recognize Structuralism?’ he criticizes the “old structure” of structuralism and foresees the “new structure” of univocity.  I attempt to address the confusion that results when Lacan’s disciples project notions of the old structure into their reading of Deleuze.

The Old and The New Structure

(2014)  In ‘How Do We Recognize Structuralism’ Deleuze tells of two accidents that are the immanent tendencies of structure whenever its series remain at the level of signifieds/signifiers.  Today’s task is to reach a new structure that can avoid the accidents of the old classical structuralism.                                                                                                                   

(2016) Revised.

 

Sub-representative Domain (Part 1) Individuation

 

(2010) We cannot reach Deleuze’s univocity unless we reach his sub-representative domain of univocality.  Singular individuation is pre-individual.  It is a process beneath the forms and substances of representation.  The plane of representations must always remain open to its sub-representative transcendental source, not in negative opposition but in vice-diction.

 

(2016) Revised

 

Sub-representative Domain (Part 2) Deleuze-Spinoza

 

(2010) Deleuze’s univocity must include the sub-representative domain if it is to reach real difference.  I believe we can best understand this through Deleuze’s Spinozism.  Difference is modal, not substantial.  To reach this modal difference, we must reach the sub-representative plane that Deleuze finds in Spinoza.

Sub-representative Domain (Part 3) Perspectivism

(2010) Deleuze’s perspectivism is the truth of the relative, not the relativity of truth.  But we can reach this perspectivism only if we reach Deleuze’s sub-representative plane of univocality.  I explore the example of two critics of Deleuze, Badiou and Hallward, to ask if they are reaching his perspective.

 

Sub-representative Domain (Part 4) Intensity

 

(2011) Intensity is pure difference in itself. But we cannot reach this difference if we are still thinking in terms of concepts bound by extensive relations. We must reach a sub-representative domain of intensity.

Univocity vs. Phenomenology

(2011) Consciousness is a double of something.  Deleuze’s reading of Foucault’s univocity shows that ‘consciousness’ is a ‘statement’ where a prior doubling makes it flush with the real.  ‘Consciousness’ as a statement is said in one sense.  But ‘consciousness’ has real difference on different historical strata (e.g. the stratum of phenomenological intentionality or the stratum of univocity).

Genesis: Ontological and Logical

(2012) It is a serious, yet common, misunderstanding of Deleuze's univocity to assume that it describes a simple correspondence between the singularity of the individual and the generality of the logical proposition.

Hyppolite and Hegel

(2012) Hyppolite credits Hegel with the insight that philosophy must be an ontology of sense. However, Deleuze notices a problem that Hyppolites's Hegelian bias won't permit him to see --- a problem that prevents both Hyppolite and Hegel from reching an ontology of sense.

Numerical and Real Distinction

(2012) Deleuze’s Spinozist univocity is offered as a solution to the problems of Representational philosophy.  But it is not simple to reach the real distinction of Deleuze’s sub-representative virtual. In this article, I try to make the case that Deleuze’s univocity is really different from the Representational interpretations that are so prevalent. I contend that commentary on Deleuze never escapes Representational Thinking because it still confuses numerical distinction of substances for real distinction.

How Can We Avoid Relativism?

(2013) This article is in response to those who accuse Deleuze of "intellectual imposture" and postmodern relativism. In particular, this is in response to 'Fashionable Nonsense' by Alan Sokal and Jean Bricmont; and 'Postmodernism Disrobed' by Richard Dawkins.

Two Types of Multiplicities

(2014)  According to Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorem, there can be no proof of consistency within an arithmetic system (no endoconsistency).  Also, there will be true statements that are not demonstrable within a consistent system (no exoconsistency).  Set theory is not adequate for finding both conceptual consistency and functional reference.  But Deleuze and Guattari introduce univocity in order to reach an intersection of two types of multiplicities for both consistency and reference.

The Difference of Univocity

(2015)  When under the shackles of the Representational Image of Thought, ‘difference’ is seen to be merely the variable relations that maintain and produce identity.  And, there is still a common misconception that Deleuze’s ‘difference’ must maintain that Image of what is possible.  However Deleuze, even when he writes with Guattari, always presents univocity as the way to reach real difference that, from the point of view of the Representational Image, seems impossible.  The difference of Deleuze’s univocity escapes any principle that would maintain or produce identity. 

Politics of the War Machine

(2015)  Liberal political traditional analyzes social structures at the level of normative Ideology.  Many individuals and groups are unified according to collective normativity of State.  But this type of political thought cannot account for any real revolutionary change.  Deleuze’s univocity introduces real revolutionary difference that does not maintain or reproduce the same State structure.  Univocity is the ontological process of ‘becoming minoritarian’ that does not maintain or reproduce a unifying normativity.

Postulates of Linguistics

(2016)  In chapter 4 of A Thousand Plateaus Deleuze and Guattari examine four postulates of traditional representational linguistics.  They challenge these postulates of representation and contrast them with their own linguistic postulates based on univocity.

Deleuze's Repetition of Kant

(2016) Deleuze returns to what he sees as Kant's insight that was promised but never fulfilled by his Copernican Revolution. Deleuze makes a new repetition of Kant with real difference.

Sub-atomic Philosophy

(2017) Deleuze and Guattari tell us that philosophical concept has often been confused with scientific function.  However, philosophy and science are two types of multiplicities that intersect without resemblance.  Today there is the need for a new contemporary (sub-atomic) philosophy of univocal being that alludes to contemporary science.   

 

BOOK REVIEWS:


Widder’s Genealogies of Difference

(2003) Nathan Widder remains in Representational thought. He does not reach Deleuze’s Univocity.

Levi Bryant’s ‘Difference and Givenness’

(2011) ‘Difference and Givenness’, by Levi Bryant is a traditionally strucutralist reading of Deleuze.  He believes that we can reach an understanding of Deleuze by way of the structural relations of structuralism.  However, I see Deleuze as going beyond traditional structuralism in order to reach a more truly anti-essentialist structure.

Zizek’s ‘Organs Without Bodies

(2012)  Zizek’s structural relations of elements (organs without bodies) prevent him from reaching Deleuze’s intensive forces of difference (bodies without organs).  As long as Deleuze is read from a classical perspective, a Unifying One-ness will be the only possible way to understand him.  However, once we finally reach Deleuze’s plane of univocity, we can see that Deleuze’s forces never approach Univeralizing Unity.  Deleuze says that univocity is the only ontology of immanence, because it is not a unifying theology of transcendence.

 

Daniel W. Smith’s ‘Essays On Deleuze’

 

(2014)  Daniel W. Smith’s collection of essays on Deleuze is an attempt to think that strange thought of univocity.  I use this attempt to illustrate why I think it is necessary to reach a sub-representative and extra-propositional domain where differential forces of vice-diction are different in kind from variables that maintain identity. 

 

Foucault’s ‘Theatrum Philosophicum’

(2015) Here I review an essay by Michel Foucault in which he reviews Deleuze’s Difference & Repetition and Logic of Sense.  Foucault discusses Deleuze’s theater of mime where sense intervenes in “uses of representation”.  These uses have nothing to do with the old philosophies of Representation-Analogy.

Manuel Delanda’s ‘Intensive Science and Virtual Philosophy’

 

(2016) I argue that, since Delanda leaves out Deleuze’s ontology of univocal being, his reconstruction of Deleuze’s thought can only maintain a structure of conceptual identity.  Delanda sees Deleuze’s ontology as a mind-independent realism with an added speculative dimension.  If he wants his reader to see this “Speculative Realism” as something other than naďve realism, he has a lot more explaining to do.

 

Art and Madness

 

(2017) Raymond Roussel wrote How I Wrote Certain of My Books.  Michel Foucault wrote a commentary on Roussel’s book entitled Death and the Labyrinth.  Gilles Deleuze and Maurice Blanchot each wrote a commentary on Foucault’s book.  They all discuss an apparent deficiency in language.  There seems to be an excess of things and a lack of forms.  Foucault’s Roussel reverses this fault in language with what, as I see it, Deleuze calls ‘univocal being’.