The book and the rhizome : the implications of and alternatives to linear logic, with special reference to artist books

Cardoso, Tuscani (2015-03)

Thesis (MA)--Stellenbosch University, 2015.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This thesis entails an explorative and argumentative study that is concerned with the importance and relevance of artist books, as substantiated by art-historical research into the way in which people present, organize and interpret knowledge about their world as observed in the history of the ever-evolving book; as well as related critical and theoretical discussions surrounding language and art. The structure of the thesis is based on the triadic treatment of book types as presented in philosophers Deleuze and Guattari’s theory of the Rhizome in A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia (1987). Each book essentially stands for a particular system or paradigm of thought that is described in terms of a biological structure. These are the Root book, the Fascicular book and the Rhizome. The root and fascicular structures are shown to be ubiquitous within dominant Western habits of thought, emphasised by the tendency to organize elements around a singular, central motif and, as a result, to create binaries. Although useful for certain practices in life, these patterns of thought have potentially problematic socio-political implications, and they are especially limiting with regards to creative work. An argument is developed in defence of the third book type, the rhizome, as a means of thinking in a non-linear, acentred and more complex and connected way about art, oneself and one’s world. At its core, this thesis works towards establishing a theoretical framework for the practice of artist books, showing how, in numerous ways, artist books encompass this rhizomatic way of thinking.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie tesis omvat ’n verkennende en argumentatiewe studie wat gemoeid is met die belang en relevansie van kunstenaarsboeke, soos gestaaf deur kunsgeskiedkundige navorsing oor die maniere waarop mense kennis aanbied, organiseer en vertolk, soos dit in die geskiedenis van die altyd-veranderende boek gesien word. Die tesis sluit ook verwante kritiese en teoretiese besprekings rondom taal en kuns in. Die struktuur van die tesis gebruik as basis die drievoudige indeling van boektipes in die *losowe Deleuze en Guattari se teorie van die Risoom in hulle werk A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia (1987). Elke boek verteenwoordig in essensie ’n bepaalde sisteem of paradigma van denke wat in terme van ’n biologiese struktuur beskryf word. Die drie tipes is die Wortelboek, die Fassikulêre of Trosboek, en die Risoom. Die wortel- en trosstrukture word uitgewys as alomteenwoordig binne dominante Westerse denkgewoontes, waar dit beklemtoon word deur die geneigdheid om elemente rondom ’n enkele sentrale motief te organiseer, en sodoende binêre opposisies te vorm. Alhoewel dit nuttig mag wees vir sekere lewenspraktyke, hou hierdie denkpatrone potensieel problematiese sosio-politiese implikasies in, en hulle is besonder beperkend vir kreatiewe werk. Die tesis ontwikkel verder ’n argument ter verdediging van die derde boektipe, die risoom, as ’n wyse om op ’n nie-lineêre, a-sentriese en meer komplekse en verbonde manier oor kuns, die self en die wêreld te dink. Die kern van die tesis is gemoeid met die vestiging van ’n teoretiese raamwerk vir die praktyk van kunstenaarsboeke, en dit wys hoe kunstenaarsboeke op velerlei maniere die risomatiese wyse van denke omvat.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/96908
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