A subject-effect can be briefly plotted as follows: that which seems to operate as a subject may be part of an immense discontinuous network … of strands that may be termed politics, ideology, economics, history, sexuality, language, and so on. … Different knottings and configurations of these strands, determined by heterogeneous determinations which are themselves dependent upon myriad circumstances, produce the effect of an operating subject. Yet the continuist and homogenist deliberative consciousness symptomatically requires a continuous and homogeneous cause for this effect and thus posits a sovereign and determining subject.

(Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, “In Other Worlds”)


6 thoughts on “Subject-effect

  1. I’ve come across this today, and thought it could be an interesting counterpoint to your Deleuze. Though I know Spivak is not one of your favourites of all times, will you bear with me? xs

  2. In a footnote to the excerpt posted above, Spivak suggests her appropriation, from Anti-Oedipus, of the notion of subject-effects. I’d appreciate it if someone can refer me to any text that comments on her appropriation of the concept – thanks!

  3. Can anyone tell me please what is the difference in Spivak’s use of capital S and small s in the word “subject” at the first paragraph of her monograph “Can the subaltern speak?” I really need help..

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