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By Jean-Jacques Lecercle (auth.)

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Sample text

This is the position of Lestrade (in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes), who wishes to arrest somebody, whether he is the culprit or not, and of Dr Watson, who exults in the results achieved by his friend; this is not the position of Sherlock Holmes himself, even less of his elder brother Mycroft, the real genius, who mulls over the problems and never goes on all fours to collect fragments of ash in order to come closer to the solution and establish proof. As we all know, what is interesting in a Sherlock Holmes story is not the solution (which is always a disappointment and announces the death of the text), it is the problem: why should a red-headed shopkeeper be employed to copy the Encyclopaedia Britannica for three hours every afternoon?

That Deleuze shares this view, that he is in a sense a disciple of Bergson (he contributed to the revival of a philosopher whom the positivist tradition of structuralism despised) is clear. Like Badiou (who calls such people sophists), he intensely dislikes the Anglo-Saxon exponents of the linguistic turn in philosophy, most notably Wittgenstein (against whom he uses violent and uncontrolled words in his Abecedaire28 ): for him the idea that all philosophical problems might be grammatical problems is anathema.

Deleuze once said that, in their common books, one of them wrote the sketch of a chapter, and the other developed it. Whether this is fact or legend is irrelevant here: in both cases it marks the depth and seriousness of their collaboration. All this is still not fair enough to Guattari. The problem is: having admitted they were Siamese twins of equal vivaciousness, how can we separate them, and discern, beyond the general indications given by Deleuze, Guattari's specific contribution? It would appear that we cannot, and no careful reading of L'Anti-CEdipe and Mille plateaux will yield indications susceptible of proof, as opposed to vague feelings and arbitrary decision, of what is to be ascribed to whom.

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