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The Force of the VirtualDeleuze, Science, and Philosophy$
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Peter Gaffney

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780816665976

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816665976.001.0001

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Deleuze, Guattari, and Neuroscience

Deleuze, Guattari, and Neuroscience

(p.277) Chapter 11 Deleuze, Guattari, and Neuroscience
The Force of the Virtual

Andrew Murphie

University of Minnesota Press

The celebration of the brain forms a surprising conclusion to Deleuze and Guattari’s What Is Philosophy? Published at the beginning of the so-called “decade of the brain” of the 1990s, What Is Philosophy? is prescient concerning a series of contemporary questions regarding neuroscience in culture. What Is Philosophy? makes clear the role of the brain sciences: “It is up to science to make evident the chaos into which the brain itself, as subject of knowledge, plunges.” For Deleuze and Guattari, this plunging into chaos is the brain’s strength. It allows the brain an intense engagement with the virtual. This chapter draws on the history of Deleuze and Guattari’s discussion of the brain to explain why they think science should make evident the chaos into which the brain plunges; why the brain itself is a “subject”; what this might mean for increasingly “neural” cultures; and why much of this might involve aesthetics.

Keywords:   brain, Deleuze, Guattari, neuroscience culture, brain sciences, chaos, virtual

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