File(s) not publicly available
Capitalism and the corporate logo
journal contributionposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by Warwick Mules
As a form of controlled chaos, capitalism has undergone many transformations. For instance, the desire to promote products has gradually been replaced by a desire to promote the desire for products through the invention of a universal consuming self. However, one could be forgiven for not having noticed another, more nuanced change. The company name, once appended to the product as a brand to distinguish it from competitors, has now become the sign of a self-sufficient entity with its own life--the corporation. Instead of the desire for the desire for products, we now have the desire for production itself, an entirely new form of relation between the consuming self and capital, a relation that was nevertheless already prefigured, as we shall see, in capital's earliest forms. What are the underlying conditions that brought about this change? What are the 'immanent' relations between capital and its various elements, all discernible in the appearance of the name as sign, which allow us to think of the emergence of the corporation as a new form of life within the capitalist milieu? In this short article I will approach the corporation as a form of sign-life created within the capitalist milieu, a sign-life that links the manifest appearance of the company name, the logo, with an imaginary yet fully affective 'body' of the corporation.