Hanjo Berressem

Squaring ecology: Félix Guattari’s schizoanalytic ecogram…

Squaring ecology: Félix Guattari’s schizoanalytic ecogram… puts forward the contention that Guattari’s book Schizoanalytic Cartographies is his most thorough and important contribution to ecological thought. Although Guattari mentions ecology only three times in this text, I maintain that it forms the central panel in a conceptual tryptich whose side panels are made up by Chaosmosis on the more conceptual side and The Three Ecologies on the other, more directly ecological side, both more accessible texts that have become, perhaps somewhat unfortunately, the default references for a Guattarian ecology. To no small degree, the reason for the book’s failure to engender academic analyses and to connect with a wider ecological discourse is the hyper-complexity of the diagram that forms its conceptual spine, which I argue is in fact an ecogram, and Guattari’s ecological thought in general.

Formally, this contribution makes use of Hyphen’s digital format to create a sort of interactive flipbook that combines visuals that consist mainly of variations on Guattari’s ecogram, with typographically organised blocks of text that provide commentaries on these visuals. Spatially and conceptually, these blocks are aligned with specific positions of the ecogram and the complex relations between them. This provides an experimental tool that functions as an easy-access, aesthetically interesting as well as conceptually innovative entry to that ecogram, to hopefully engender discussions of Guattari’s eco-cartographies that engage philosophical, cultural and aesthetic registers equally.

Published as a contribution to Hyphen Journal Issue 3.1: Ecologies, Squaring ecology: Félix Guattari’s schizoanalytic ecogram… expands into the exhibition space of Cloud Sediments – Hyphen Lab through an arrangement of printed pages  that follow the structure of links and layers emerging from the flipbook.


Hanjo Berressem is Professor of American Studies at the University of Cologne. He has written books on Thomas Pynchon and Witold Gombrowicz and is the author of Eigenvalue: On the Gradual Contraction of Media in Movement(Bloomsbury 2018), and Gilles Deleuze’s Luminous Philosophy and Felix Guattari’s Schizoanalytic Ecology (both Edinburgh University Press 2019).