SUMMARY - No Speed Limit_ Three Essays on Accelerationism (Forerunners_ Ideas First) - Steven Shaviro



Here is a summary of the key points:

  • Accelerationism initially argued that pushing capitalism to its extreme through further development of productive forces could potentially exhaust its internal contradictions and open new post-capitalist pathways.

  • However, neoliberal capitalism has proved highly effective at absorbing and incorporating forces of disruption and change into its logic of "creative destruction." There is no true outside to its power under conditions of "real subsumption."

  • As all aspects of life become monetized, commodified, and subjected to economic rationality, aesthetics risks being fully reduced to capitalist logic through endless consumerism and data extraction.

  • Some see accelerationist aesthetics as a response, seeking to push creative excess past the point of capitalist recuperation. But stories often depict worsening dystopian horrors of intensified neoliberalism without clear exit.

  • By intensifying awareness of being trapped in capitalism's unending crisis-renewal cycles, accelerationism risks merely intensifying the system rather than transforming it. Its political potential remains unclear given capitalism's ability to integrate change.

So in summary, it questions the viability and political efficacy of accelerationism given neoliberal capitalism's all-consuming logic of subsumption and resilient response to incorporate disruptive forces into its perpetual renewal.

Here are summaries of the key points made in the passage:

  • The passage argues that humans are in the midst of a massive, global psychological transformation brought on by new technologies and their integration into our lives. Our sense of self, identity, and interaction with others is changing fundamentally.

  • Social media, smartphones, and immersive virtual experiences are blurring the boundaries between reality and representation. They are reshaping how we understand the world, other people, and ourselves.

  • Rather than remain fixed categories, the divisions between "online" and "offline", "public" and "private", and "true" and "false" selves are breaking down. Our inner and outer lives are melding together in new ways.

  • This technological transformation has profound philosophical implications that are just beginning to be grappled with. Questions are raised about the nature of humanity, community, perception, knowledge and reality in this changed technological environment.

  • The passage argues that we need new conceptual frameworks and vocabulary to make sense of these changes and their effects on human psychology, society and cognition. Our old models and categories may no longer apply to understanding the human experience.

In summary, the key idea is that emerging technologies are catalyzing a massive psychological shift in humanity by restructuring our relationship with information, others and ourselves in ways that require new frameworks of analysis.

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