Larval Terror & the Digital Darkside

Larvatus prodeoI advance masked—wrote the young René Descartes, suggesting that he advanced upon the stage of the world like an actor wearing a mask (larva being the Latin word for mask). A few centuries later, Friedrich Nietzsche observed that ‘whatever is profound loves masks’ (1966: 50, aphorism 40) and that ‘every philosophy also conceals a philosophy; every opinion is also a lurking-place; every word is also a mask’ (1966: 228-29, aphorism 289). Indeed, every presentation and/or subject-position is a ‘projection’ that conceals, disguises and dissimulates; every persona is a mask atop a mask—a meshwork of masks and of masking. I—any I: myself, yourself or otherwise—advance not merely camouflaged, but forever camouflaged (indeed hypercamouflaged): every persona hides another persona, and another and another, ad infinitum. So my first point is to highlight this larval condition of [an] infinitely recurring masking—the darkside or underbelly that accompanies and ultimately ungrounds any and every quote‐unquote ‘enlightened’ position.”

Larval Terror and the Digital Darkside

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