5. Internation and Nations

Michał Krzykawski, Edoardo Toffoletto and Bernard Stiegler

The main objective of our program in the field of economics is to reduce the anthropic effects— that is “anthropogenic forcings” of all kinds1, which gives impetus to the increase of entropy— of human activities. This objective requires us to reevaluate the diversity of knowledge and the locality of economies. We call this diversity of knowledge noodiversity, that is negative entropy, insofar as it results from an exosomatic transformation and constitutes an extension of biodiversity. As it was explained in the first chapter, fighting against the increase of entropy, and generating what Erwin Schrödinger defined as negative entropy, has a necessarily local character. Therefore, we argue that it is indispensable to reactivate the notion of internation, outlined by Marcel Mauss in 1920. Calling upon the internation, Mauss tried to respond to the creation of the League of Nations2 and the internationalist critique from Marxist socialists who believed to overcome what they considered the formal and idealist cosmopolitism, described by Emmanuel Kant (1991, 51)3.

Today, more or less everywhere in the world, nationalisms and populisms seem to dominate the public sphere and political stakes. These reactionary movements were primarily stem from the “anthropogenic” development of global economy, as it has functionally generated the increase of entropy and destroyed localities. Facing this reality, we must carefully rethink, at the institutional level, the relation between the local and the global, and the national and the international, in order to challenge the political crisis of our times and show that, quite contrary to nationalism and its poisonous xenophobia, nations, and more generally localities, do have a future. In a new geopolitical context, which is being potently reshaped by means of technology, a different account of the nation and other forms of localities is urgently needed in order to provide fundamentals for a new macro-economy. This chapter strives to respond to this need.

The main objective of this chapter is to lay the theoretical groundwork for the internation and the organization of the institutions constituting the internation on the basis of thermodynamic constraints. A thermodynamic approach to the internation makes it possible to redefine the concept of nation, and more generally territorial public powers, in relation to the concept of locality and, as a result, draw these concepts away from nationalisms and “localisms”. To put it shortly, nations and territorial public powers are localities as long as they function as open systems which are governed by institutions capable of instituting and institutionalizing negentropic processes in order to sustain public power. However, dealing with the question of localities and institutions from within the era of disruption, it is necessary to discuss them in a strict relation with technologies in order to respond to geopolitical power shifts which create economic conflicts and rising military tensions. It is only through the articulation of these complex issues that the globalization, responsible for the increase of entropy, can be changed into rewordling [remondialisation] which fosters the anti-anthropic modes of organization.

The period we are living in is that of transition. The internation has a key-role to play in order to turn this transition into a viable future in the Anthropocene-becoming-Neganthropocene (Stiegler 2018). Therefore what we call upon as the internation is a common and open public sphere where nations and localities can meet and negotiate in order to optimize their coordinated choices at the level of global economic struggle against entropy and anthropy. This is the only way to overcome the Anthropocene epoch as Entropocene and elaborate a new rationality which required for such an economy.

[This chapter is currently being updated]