Do Estado

«Seguindo a consequência do que Hobbes diz para além da sua própria intenção explícita: se a soberania, como animal artificial, como monstruosidade protésica, proestatal, como Leviatan, é um artefacto humano, se ela não é natural, então é desconstrutível, é histórica; e enquanto histórica, sujeita a transformação infinita, ela é ao mesmo tempo precária, mortal e perfectível (…). É como um pulmão de aço, uma respiração artificial, uma “alma artificial”. O Estado é então uma espécie de robot, de monstro animal que, na figura do homem, ou de homem na figura do monstro animal, é “mais forte”, etc. do que o homem natural. É assim como uma prótese gigantesca destinada a amplificar, objectivando-o fora do homem natural, o poder do vivente, do homem vivente que ela protege, que ela serve, mas como uma máquina morta, uma máquina de morte mesmo, uma máquina que não é senão a máscara do vivente (….)»

Derrida, “O soberano Bem – ou estar mal de soberania” [Conferência proferida em Coimbra, Novembro 2003], p. 93-95.


“The Girl With the Prefabricated Heart” (story by Fernand Léger, music and lyrics by John Latouche, sung by Libby Holman and Josh White) from Hans Richter’s “Dreams That Money Can Buy” (1947):

«Oh, Venus was born out of the sea foam
Oh, Venus was born out of the brine
But a goddess of today, if she is Grade A,
is assembled upon the assembly line.

How divine! Rise and shine
Upon the assembly line.

Now, Julie was born as is proper
Her every proportion was planned
She was poured from a mould, exquisite and cold
And she grew up untouched by human hand.

Oh, how grand! See her stand
Untouched by human hand.

Her chromium nerves and her platinum brain
Were chastely encased in cellophane
And to top off this daughter of science and art
She was equipped with a prefabricated heart.

She prepares for life.

Shall I be auburn or dark or fair?
Shall I unbind my nylon hair?
Would love make skies look clearer?
Or should I serenade my mirror?

A hero would always admire me
He’d pamper and pet and inspire me
Why else were my charms made so drastic ?
Why else were my arms made so plastic ?

What else was my heart electroplated for?
Oh, send me the mate it was prefabricated for.

Then just like the movies, a mail-order male
Was sent by the gods direct from Yale
He was handsome with biceps of stainless steel
Plus which he was rich, and his love for her was real.

By fate he was guided to knock at her door
‘Twas love at first sight for evermore
They were made for each other, exclusively planned
So he bent his knee and he asked her for her hand

Her bridal gown was a synthetic weave of coal tar, milk, and wood,
spun under atomic pressure in a four-billion-dollar machine.

I’ll offer you sterilised flowers
Expensive and scentless and rare
There’ll be pedigree birds singing songs without words
As they fly through the air-conditioned air.

Your fanciful dreams I’ll interpret for you
Your hidden desires I will bring into view
All the wheels in your brain I will polish and shine
To prove they can move in harmony with mine

Oh, nature and art will not win her
So ply her with diamonds and pearls
For bracelets and rings are practical things
That appeal to the mind of a healthy girl (x 2).

– Julie, at last you’re mine.
– I guess.
– I’ve always dreamed of this moment divine.
– It will be nice, unless…
– Oh, darling, let us seal our marital bliss
with a glorious technicolour kiss.
– I suppose so.
– You express every ideal I’ve ever had.
You’re as evocative as a full-page ad.
Tell me that you care.
– You’re mussing my hair.
– Oh, darling…
– Watch my new clothes.
– Beloved.
– Oh, well, I suppose.
– Angel.
– Don’t make such a fuss.
– Treasure.
– You’re so impetuous.
– Dearest! Sweetest! Queen!
– Oh, this is ridiculous!
Sisters, come to my aid!

Her Amazon sisters were passing that way.
They rushed to her aid and they saved the day.
The swine! He has frightened her out of her wits.
The brute! We should shoot him and tear him into bits.

Wheels started turning inside her head
So from his ardent arms she fled
Girls of wax can’t use devotion
They might melt if they felt an emotion

She left him bereft and wifeless
And he fell to the ground… quite lifeless
But she rides on into the dawn
On and on as her wheels revolve
A riddle whose answer none can solve
Who sends all her dreams to the laundry
Who prefers to live in a quandary
Her loneliness she must insist on
She’s Isolde without a Tristan
Her groom who for doom was slated
Dissolved into tears and disintegrated

And so she rides on through the evening
As pure as she was at the start
For there’s no man alive who could ever survive
A girl with a prefabricated heart
A love-proof, unbreakable heart (3 x)


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