Note I on Travecacceleration

The first in a series on Travecacceleration by Brazillian artist Ode ~ listen to the text on Ode’s bandcamp produced and mixed by mafius and mastered by RHR. Cover art by Caio Oviedo and illustration by Neith Nyer.

Ode by Neith Nyer

In “Notes on Blacceleration” (2017), the American artist, writer and curator Aria Dean locates a line of black radical thought mobilising and accelerating, throughout history, black people as living capital and speculative value and an absence in the accelerationism literature: a definite failure in dealing with the first accumulation experiences and in particular with the way black people divide (and have always divided) that which is capital and that which is human. Therefore I am not interested in addressing the dimension of blackness isolated as a fundamental and decisive characteristic, as explored by Dean in the article published in e-flux journal #87, nor the isolated dimension of travestilidade, when I talk about travecacceleration. What I am interested in is rather blackness side by side with travestilidade, since both my black identity and my travesti identity makes me and other people like me be considered subhuman: however, we also reinvent ourselves as inhuman and antihuman in efforts to advance with, through and beyond the modes of repression and alienation present in capitalism.

Although black people can no longer be literally bought and sold and although the logic of racial capitalism still remains, as reinvented throughout the centuries by means of white supremacy ideologies incorporated in the colonial world-system, the logic of cisgender capitalism operates through supremacy ideologies incorporated in this diagram. In addition to being racist, such a diagram was moulded so that, intrinsically, it is cisheteropatriarchal and so that it puts black people and overall, travestis in a position that does not allow us to claim our own images, enunciations and epistemologies. Although they are not always available for brute and manual labour, black people and blackness continue to incorporate a speculative and semiotic value desired by a white market, like travestis and travestilidade incorporating the condition of being their own capital. Therefore, in the cracks, in these hybrid places where identities mix, proliferate and come into unimaginable kinds of devir, the travesti always bursts and prevents the establishment of a human/capital dichotomy where accelerationism takes its side: we simultaneously co-constitute capital and subjectivity and we are the historical inevitability of this transgression that the white and cisgender humanism revokes.

The radical black thought guiding Aria Dean in her notes for decades affirms inhumanity and antihumanity as fundamental and decisive characteristics for liberation. Therefore, travecacceleration is the study of a phenomenon that may be understood as transhuman and may seek syntheses through syringes, pills, industrial silicone and surgeries but results in emancipating techniques based on eccentric, dissident and monstrous subjectivities, so as to shatter the taxonomy capitalism uses to racialise, sexualise and classify identities to better exploit them, as pointed out by Paul B. Preciado in “Un apartamento en Urano: Crónicas del cruce” (2019).