Feyerabend is concerned with the microphysics of power and resistance as expressed in the ordinary contexts of everyday life. I see his later reflections as somehow prolonging the meditations on metapoiesis that can be found in Dreyfus and Kelly’s ALL THINGS SHINING. The problem posed by their book is an ethical one: what to do when faced with a surge of physis in us or around us? The response that is sketched out is not in terms of mastering a set of rules but rather of developping a metapoietic skill for evaluating and navigating through the situations that life throws forth.
One of the recurrent themes of Feyerabend’s STORIES FROM PAOLINO’S TAPES is acts of resistance to the various microfascisms that surround us. He gives a whole typology of possible responses. In the last two posts we have seen declining (Bartleby’s “I would prefer not to”) and restoring symmetry (Feyerabend’s “Now I want to ask you some questions”). Another response is exemplified by Schroedinger’s action when he saw a Nazi SS harassing a Jew: “he went up to him and spit him in his face”. For Feyerabend, this act ,while courageous, is not to be understood solely in terms of refusing to give in to fear. More deeply he remarks that “Few people give such expression to their disgust”. When such disgust is felt before the intolerable, many people do not take action, but suppress their feelings or turn away. Schroedinger would “go forward and act on it”.