A - the negative has an expectation that the plan will mean something specific
B - their literature requires that sacrifice be a purely symbolic gesture -- thus, their sacrifice could stand in for anything -- there is nothing which is not already in the moment of sacrificing
Botey '9 Marianna, The Infection, Vol. 5 " Toward a critique of sacrificial reason: Necropolitics and radical aesthetics in Mexico" June
The critical task of upsetting, unraveling and unfastening the neutralization of the power of death as a cultural-social device of control and political engineering, separates these forms of aesthetic practice from the realm of sublimatory codes through which capitalism used art as a toolbox to expropriate and expand over (colonize) the psychic territories attributed to “the savage, barbarian, infantile, primitive and demented.” A deconstruction of the protocols of colonial warfare and colonial narratives emerges by making evident a concealed sacrificial trace implied in modern capitalism. Moreover, the trace is activated and manifests as a political phenomenon that unfolds in the violent and brutal reality of (ex)colonial territories. Thus, we could argue that a post-colonial set of problems underlines the artistic procedure making reason unstable, displacing its centrality as an organizing axiom, and doing so by bringing into play other categories such as death, expenditure, and the concealed pulsations of the libidinal economy: that is, explicitly, by underpinning the inscription of sacrifice as central to a mapping of the human. The reading that interests us would emphasize the allegorical character of this inscription—the inscription of Sacrifice as the very notion from which to operate the chain of discursive displacement in which death, ritual, politics, metaphysics and aesthetics sediment a different logic: another economy, non-economy, a general economy. The critical task marks the extent to which the notion of sacrifice suffers an intrinsic indetermination in its multiple manifestations, working simultaneously as: theoretical operative (device-dispositif), historical structure, concept-metaphor, ideological device, symbolic economy, archeological evidence, juridical foundation of the state, the “secret” grammar of power and, also, a counter-image (hieroglyph) for a project of total revolt (i.e. the dismantling of the order of representation-domination). These examples come exclusively from the realm of art and its discourse (although all of them have heterogeneous correlates in the sphere of politics and the archive of history). Perhaps because the character —at once concealed and folded— of the problem of sacrifice as the repressed representative operating within instrumental reason has displaced its clear formulation (enunciation) as precisely a form of articulation that manifests mostly as (a) program(s) for a kind of radical aesthetics. The theoretical speculations of Bataille about the sacrificial order of the Aztecs; the analogous conceptualization Artaud proposed in the Theater of Cruelty—which was also propelled by an imagination of the mythic and ritual dimensions of indigenous culture; the initiatic pedagogy rehearsed by Jodorowsky in his Panic Theater and his early psycho-magical experiments with cinema; or the gestures of sexual transgression, perverted play and poetic violence that crisscross the multiple lexical and formal experiments of Gurrola, participate in a discontinuous and intermittent movement that approaches this other non-economy or sacrificial economy.(5) The contemporary practice of Margolles emerges in the multiple planes of circulation of these estranged and un-folded (doubled) figures, a diagram of a field of forces that forms and limits the contemporary: a cartography for a de-sublimated modernity, recounting an orgy of violent representations, while at the same time dismantling them, and searching for a space that overflows into (or is expended as) pure manifestation.
C - vote negative -- their plan is a meaningless fig-leaf for their discussion of sacrifice that has zero relation to either production incentives or production restrictions -- makes the aff impossible to debate
The logic of sacrifice and the aesthetic of excess in the 1ac credits the symoblic order with tremendous powers -- this sacrifice ultimately re-trenches into another form of exchange; sacrifice in exchange for the end of rationalist, production-logic -- we should reject this blackmail as an intolerable sacrifice against which we can imagine a cessation of production-logic through affective sharing that allows us to avoid the trap of libidinal liberation. They do not have a reason why expenditure and sacrifice are necessary to sharing
Verwoert '12 -- Access Date, Jan Verwoert is an art critic based in Berlin. He is a contributing editor to Frieze magazine and also writes regularly about contemporary art for such art magazines as Afterall, Metropolis M. Teaches at the MA Fine Arts department at the Piet Zwart Institute Rotterdam. http://www.artandeducation.net/announcement/jan-verwoert-last-lecture/
Beyond voicing this distaste for the merely strategical, the critique in the previous couple of talks concentrated increasingly on the fact that any symbolic order (the art world in particular) is always also a sacrificial economy. So the inscription into the symbolic therefore seems to imply, demand and retroactively justify a sacrifice (e.g. your life for your career). But this is intolerable. So perhaps the strongest reason for the critique of a false belief in the symbolic order is the impulse to reject the imposed need for an intolerable sacrifice. The dream of exiting the symbolic order altogether, however, seems an impossible fantasy, as, in the arts, we arrive as arrivistes in the field of the other—facing expectations, desiring the recognition of our desires and materially depending on it. Still, suspended on the threshold of the symbolic, on the rim of this regimented field, in a material zone where non-sense makes too much sense, the question remains whether we cannot discover something moving—motions, things, creatures, ideas that will not be sacrificed but will stay alive and wiggling, moving in their erratic motion: motives that move things, souls and thoughts, like locomotives—always un poco loco—throughout the history of art and philosophy. To delineate and develop some such locomotives in order to open up a counter-discourse to the sacrifical logic of the symbolic order—on its threshold—was the desire that first led us to look at motives related to the production of the effect/affect of art. Discussing the motivations for production, the attempt was to try and replace the vocabulary of the strategical paradigm—the lingo of declared intentions and the cocksure construction of references—with more shaky terms like inspiration, vocation and dedication: terms that, precisely because of their existential dimension, exist on the threshold of the unverifiable, and therefore always remain riddled by Iron Maiden’s tormenting question “How can I be sure that what I saw last night was real and not just fantasy?” (Orpheus tried to check and he blew it.) In pursuit of the notion of dedication, the question of care as the ulimate existential motivation (Why do we do what we do? ‘Cos we care.) was raised, exposing its ambivalent position on the threshold of the symbolic: always drawn into a symbolic economy of tit for tat, care still remains unconditional and therefore excessive, empowered by the need of the other, and, precisely because of this, always deprived of a safe symbolic mandate, since the nature of the other remains fundamentally indeterminable. For who would know what anyone really needed? On this limit of acknowledging the missing mandate, the locomotif of a creature appeared in the history of painting: the lion that walked into St. Jerome’s study one day, thorn in paw. Jerome, being a translator, no certified cat-doctor, unprepared and without symbolic mandate, plucked the thorn anyway, intiating a social mode of conviviality with the wild cat without a contract, economy or grand narrative to symbolically validate it. The only reason for this being possible was perhaps that his study (as Antonello da Messina and Vincenzo Catena depict it) was a semi-public space, open to the occurence of such events. Animals then continued to linger on the threshold of the symbolic, as creatures that wiggle, that embody the motion of emotion and the effect of affect on the soul, as witnesses to this effect in ways that are not entirely reducable to symbolic signification. This final talk will try to substantiate this intuition further by looking at the locomotif of Orpheus and the animals which continued through the centuries to manifest intuitions about the affective effect of art and the kind of creaturely social bond it may initiate. As the muse Kaliope’s child, the figure of Orpheus may aso bring us back to the question of inspiration as (demonic) amusement in the society of the muses (the museum as pan-demonium). In defiance of the sacrifice of affect to the symbolic, another motif which emerged was that of a particular face: the appeal of a face that generates emotions as material events, a face that cannot be consecrated to the symbolic laws of social value: the shitface, the profane face, neither good nor bad but in touch with—and sharing—the devine through touching the soul, profanely. As a practice, profanation, the sharing of the material share in the ritual of veneration (the holy body, the host, that which becomes edible) may then finally emerge as the model for a mode of art and thinking that could allow us to move along the threshold to the symbolic, sharing materially instead of sacrificing symbolically what is divine and secret. To further exemplify this intuition of sharing through profanation, two more locomotifs will be invoked: the Sicillian custom of eating Santa Lucia’s eyes and the incredible pleasure of looking at Alina Szapocznikow’s mouths.
The valorization of sacrifice as a sacred act opposed to the commodification of Enlightenment rationality is not a neutral political act -- rather it is both complicit with and sanitizes the historical legacy of primordial revenge-fantasies enacted through public acts of capital punishment such as executions and lynchings. The 1ac grants the state an alibi to manufacture consent for gratuitous bloodshet -- even if this disrupts the ennui of rationality it is a brutally savage form of politics that colorblindly reinforces white supremacy
Lacquer wk Thomas, "Festival of Punishment" London Review of Books
One has to infer the arguments put by the other side, or look elsewhere (to Louis Masur’s 1989 Rites of Execution, for example). There we will find those who have been less sanguine about human progress and the efficacy of social reform, those who think that punishment ought to reflect a divine and intuitively obvious moral order. Human depravity, on this view, makes it necessary for civil government to assume the power of divine authority. Liberty, inalienable individual rights, procedural correctness and hopes for reformation or redemption have to be balanced against obligation, against the needs of a righteous community, and against the feeling that, social contract or no social contract, for civil government to be legitimate it has somehow to be congruent with God’s governance. In other words, a government here on earth can cast out and kill certain of its citizens under certain circumstances because God in heaven has ordained that this should be so. Capital punishment is the expression of both divine and communal outrage at those who have excluded themselves from full humanity through their acts. Although this view was not articulated in defences of the death penalty after the early 19th century, capital punishment retains something of its primordial sacrificial logic. Killing an offender is felt to make the world safer, more as it should be, for the good people, even if no connection is made, or claimed, at the level of social policy between the act and its putative effects. Seen in this way, as a ritual reassertion of a communal moral order, the death penalty has little to do with ideas of punishment in the rationalist Enlightenment or progressive theological traditions. This clash of world views, which has informed the American debate since colonial times, resounds still in books like McFeely’s. The poignant stories he tells, of three men who committed terrible crimes, of their defenders, their victims and of the criminal justice system, are embedded in a twisted past and in very different visions of how a new world is to be made. One of the many strengths of his elegant, humane and subtle book is to show how the claims and counterclaims that are so often made like points in a college debate – a ‘pro’ parry met by an ‘anti’ retort – are freighted with the burdens of history and the ironies of modernity. In the United States no burden is heavier than that of race. McFeely became involved with the question of the death penalty not because of any expertise in criminology – he had none – but because he had written a biography of Frederick Douglass and a book about the 67 descendants of a slave who had been brought to the tiny barrier island of Sapelo in 1802, where they still live today. Stephen Bright, the indefatigable and brilliant lead counsel of the Southern Center for Human Rights, wanted to make use of McFeely’s expertise in African American history. Specifically, Bright asked him to testify in support of two claims which he was making in a motion for a new trial. Bright’s client is – the case is not yet resolved – Carzell Moore, a black man convicted, along with an accomplice, of the rape and murder of a 23-year-old white convenience store clerk. He is awaiting execution. Bright planned to argue, first, that under the terms of the 14th Amendment a black man is not ‘equally protected’ in a Georgia courtroom which, like all the others in the state, displays the Confederate battle flag. And second, that there is an intimate connection between that flag and the bitter history of lynching which underscores the death sentence of any black man in the United States, particularly in the South. In some abstract sense, the flag might represent a proud tradition of states’ rights and benign local tradition, as its defenders in South Carolina have recently claimed. But in fact, as McFeely testified, the Georgia story is unambiguous. On 6 February 1956, its Governor vowed that no Negro child would ever attend school with a white one; three days later, the legislature voted to replace the Confederate horizontal bars that had graced the state flag since 1879 with the ‘stars and bars’: the blue and white cross of St Andrew on an in-your-face field of bright red. Its Civil War service done, this banner had rallied the Ku Klux Klan as it helped re-establish white power in the South during a half-century reign of terror. When, in 1993, the then Georgia Governor asked the legislature to remove this none to0 subtle exhibition of ‘pride in the enslavement of many of our ancestors’ he was jeered at, and finally withdrew his proposal after some months of hopeless advocacy. There have been 460 lynchings in Georgia since the late 19th century; 411 were of blacks. And, as Bright went on to argue in court, the surge in judicial executions after lynching declined in the 1930s could plausibly be interpreted as the swift removal of a black man by trial, which before had been effected by mob. The cries of ‘burn ‘em’ heard as a murder suspect is booked today echo the cries of those festive crowds that attended the hangings, immolations and castrations of earlier years. The prosecutor who opposed Bright’s motion for retrial responded – correctly, in a narrow sense – that this was all quite irrelevant. These facts had no particularly bearing on Carzell Moore; no one was proposing that he be lynched. (I also think that the three white men – die-hard segregationists all – who testified at Bright’s behest that they had celebrated the execution of Moore’s accomplice would have ‘rejoiced’ just as exuberantly at the execution of a white man. The festivities at the notorious serial killer Ted Bundy’s execution were replete with tailgate beer parties and baseball caps emblazoned with the hindquarters of a pig, as if today’s Floridans had read historians’ descriptions of pre-modern carnivalesque inversion.) That said, capital punishment in the United States subsists – inescapably – in a miasma of race. The Honorable John H. Land in 1977 presided over the trial of a black man called William Brooks, whose case McFeely follows. Land is the son of a prominent local dignitary who had seen to the lynching of an adolescent boy 65 years earlier. The barefoot ‘little black nigger’ in question had, miraculously, escaped a murder conviction in the accidental shooting of a white boy. T.Z. Cotton – the white press and courts of his day never managed to get his name right – was kidnapped from the same Muscogee County Courthouse where Brooks was tried, taken to the edge of town and, begging for his life, pumped full of bullets. Brewster Land, Judge Land’s father, was acquitted; none of those who witnessed the abduction and murder would come forward. Forty-four years later, in 1956, a prominent black physician and civil rights leader in the same Georgia town was murdered in the course of a political confrontation: an all-white grand jury refused to indict the white man who shot him – self-defence. Even if, as is clearly the case, the murder trial of Brooks was not a lynching, the distinction is lost on many. The power of the white establishment to maintain the social order through the death of black men is all too evident.
Specific, limited resolutions ensure mutual ground which is key to sustainable controversy without sacrificing creativity or openness
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