Topology and M/s

In the topology of an M/s situation the members are situated in such a manner that the “between” of each member’s place is the conjoining of the members themselves, in that they are not isolated subject-things but are the “open” that creates the place in which they can appear to one another as the people they are.  As a result there is no “between” in the common sense of a space between objects (subjects) but a shared place that is constituted by the members themselves.  Each “place”, and the situation-place as a whole has differences that imply what is appropriate for each member as far as duties and comportment to the other members and to any other beings that appear in that clearing.  Since there is nothing fundamentally relational about the topology I dislike referring to it as a relationship.

Each M/s topology, as well, is unique,  being a topology of the individuals within it and their proper places.  The event of appropriation itself determines what “proper” means in this instance, made more explicit through the alternative translation as the pairing of enownment/enslavement.

The underlying difference between the Master and slave in their comportment is that the Master’s comportment is always firstly a listening, while the slave’s is always firstly a hearing.  The similarity is intentional, but the implied difference is crucial.  Hearing, horen in anglo saxon, meant both to hear and to obey, with no differentiation.  A proper hearing, then, implies obedience.  The Master, though, listens.  Any speaking, especially an ordering speaking, is simultaneously a careful listening.  The care taken in the listening is what determines the appropriateness of the ordering.  Without careful listening the ordering is arbitrary and leads to tyranny rather than mastery.


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