Psycho-geography and Schizophrenia: Queers 'Out for a Walk'

Ioannis Vamvakitis
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I strongly believe that an emancipatory homoerotic desire could only exist as a schizophrenic desire which according to Deleuze's and Guattari's 'schizoanalysis' is simultaneously 'architectural' (Grosz, E, 2001) and anti-structural — it is counter-structural, and thus, revolutionary, productive and proud (Deleuze, Guattari, 1982). Therefore, in my DPhil project, I am scrutinizing whether the homosexual could be what Deleuze and Guattari have defined as an 'Anti-Oedipus' who through his/her 'schizophrenic' wanderings 'confronts' capitalism's social fascism 'that causes us to love [social] power [and] desire the… [structures] that dominate and exploit us' (Foucault, M, 1982, xii). What I would like to find out is whether the homosexuals could present a schizo-desiring e/motion that strives against capitalism's strategic homophobic places — institutional discourses — of power and truth, and in conflict with its 'Psychoanalysts and Semiologists' who interpret desire in relation to structure and 'lack' (Foucault, 1982, xii). Moreover, and in relation to R. D. Laing's 'anti-psychiatric' existential ontology, I will attempt to clarify whether the schizo-desiring and anti-structural homoerotic e/motion — in the case that it does exist — constitutes the homosexual subjects anti-social leading them to marginality, 'despair' (Laing, R. D., 1960), and eventually, to disciplinary institutionalisation, or whether it constitutes them counter-social leading them to radical and liberating modes of social embodiment — to counter-structural, heterotopian identity and space-time constructions 2.

What I would like to find out is whether we could discover "schizo-geographies" in the UK and in Greece. I am looking for transcendental dimensions where the homosexual technical and 'neurotic' subjects moving within structural spaces, are being transformed into 'schizophrenic' desiring subjects moving within 'closet' spaces and/or towards the creation of counter-structural spaces and 'anti-oedipal' psychogeographies. If these transcendental dimensions do exist, two very important questions to answer are: first, whether these "schizo-geographies" depend on each homosexual subject's psychic particularities, explaining whether the homoerotic desire constitutes heterogeneous subjects and a diversity of e/motions; and second, whether they depend on each country's national and cultural features and differences, explaining whether the homoerotic desire and its schizo-driftings obey structural specificities of the 'nation'?

Last year at the MECCSA conference (12/2003) I presented my DPhil's major theoretical concepts. This year I would like to present my Greek subjects' psychogeographical maps (17 slides)- how do these theoretical concepts apply on real gay and lesbian people moving within real spaces?

Keywords: Schizophrenia, Anti-oedipus, Gay/Lesbian Identity, Space, Ethnography, Geography, Psychogeography, Schizogeography
Stream: Sexuality, Gender, Families
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English

Ioannis Vamvakitis

DPhil Candidate in Media and Cultural Studies, Associate Tutor in Media and Film, School of Humanities Department of Media and Film, University of Sussex

DPhil candidate in Media and Cultural Studies, University of Sussex (10/2003–10/2007). My DPhil is titled 'Psycho-geography and Schizophrenia: Queers "Out for a Walk"; MA in Media and Cultural Studies, University of Sussex (10/2002–09/2003) - my MA dissertation was titled '"Big Brother": The Reality Show as a Globalized Post-documentary Form' – Through M. Foucault and H. Lefebvre I attempted to scrutinize the type of western disciplinary spaces that 'Big Brother' forges and reproduces, in order to westernize its global inmates and audiences - and received one of the highest marks in the class; a 2:1 grade of 66/90. BA in English Literature, Empire State College, State University of New York (02/2001-02/2002). I participated within the 'Space, Place and Emotion' panel where I presented the main theoretical concepts concerning my DPhil project titled 'Psycho-geography and Schizophrenia: Queers Out for a Walk'. Professional Qualifications: Associate Tutor at the University of Sussex, in the Media and Film Department, in the School of Humanities (2004/2005). Tourist Guide, 'PAYSANIAS' Travel Agency (05/2002–08/2002). Student Leader, in inter-European cultural exchange programs in the UK, France, Spain and Greece on behalf of the Argiroupolis' Town Hall in Athens and on behalf of 'Raddous school' private summer-camp (1990-1996).

Ref: H05P0483