Treatise on Nomadology: the War Machine is a book by Deleuze and Guattari (D&G) that also appears as a chapter in their A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia . I first encountered D&G in 1995 when I was studying for a Masters in analytic philosophy while my best friend was studying for a much more exciting Masters in continental philosophy. D&G don’t actually use the phrase Nomad War Machine very much, that’s my riff off their concepts, but they do talk about war machines (soldiers) as being nomadic, and the concept of the nomad and nomadism itself is set up in contrast with official, State institutions.
When I set up my Twitter account in 2012 I wanted a snappy name, and this is what I came up with. It’s now as much my name as my “real” name. For a very long time I tried to keep D&G and their pesky rhizomes and nomads out of my professional identity, and I avoided writing about them in my PhD as well. But in my final write up I discovered that they had somehow crept in, and the more I think about remix the more I appreciate how much they underpin my approach to life.
AXIOM III. The nomad war machine is the form of expression, of which itinerant metallurgy is the correlative form of content. Nomadology: The War Machine
“If the three ages of the concept are the encyclopedia, pedagogy, and commercial professional training, only the second can safeguard us from falling from the heights of the first into the disaster of the third.” D&G What is Philosophy?
Image by William Heath Robinson (books) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons