Omnicide: Mania, Fatality, and the Future-in-Delirium

Omnicide: Mania, Fatality, and the Future-in-Delirium

Jason Bahbak Mohaghegh

March 2019
Urbanomic/Sequence
Foreword by Robin Mackay
Paperback 115x175mm, 488pp.
ISBN 978-0-9975674-6-5
$29.95

Available in the Sequence bookshop and from the MIT Press ORDER 
 

Jason Bahbak Mohaghegh’s Omnicide offers readers a view into a unique philosophy of delirium, mania, and vitalist annihilation: the startling revelation that everything that is, should not be. Omnicide is a singular kind of taxonomy, a teratology of thought-creatures that dovetails around his chosen writers, from the revelatory self-abnegation of Forugh Farrokhzad to Sadeq Hedayat, the poète maudite of modern Iran. These and other “poets of the lost cause” come together in a compelling book that is a strange hybrid of Aristotle’s Categories, Borges's Book of Imaginary Beings, and the Necronomicon.

 —Eugene Thacker, author of Infinite Resignation and In the Dust of This Planet


What kind of circumstances provoke an obsessive focus on the most minute object or activity? And what causes such mania to blossom into the lethal conviction that everything must be annihilated? There is no turning away from the imperative to study this riddle in all its mystifying complexity and its disturbing contemporary relevance: to ask how a lone state of delirium forges a hidden route to world-erasure.

A fragmentary catalogue of the thousand-and-one varieties of manic disposition (augomania, dromomania, catoptromania, colossomania…), Omnicide enters the chaotic imaginations of the most significant poetic talents of the Middle East in order to instigate a new discourse on obsession, entrancement, excess, and delirium. Placing their voices into direct conversation, Jason Bahbak Mohaghegh excavates an elaborate network of subterranean ideas and interpretive chambers, byways and burrows by which mania communicates with fatality. Like secret passages leading from one of the multitudinous details of a bustling Persian miniature to the blank burning immanence of the desert, each is a contorted yet effective channel connecting some attractive universe (of adoration, worship, or astonishment) to the instinct to all-engulfing oblivion (through hatred, envy, indifference, rage, or forgetting).

A captivating fractal of conceptual prisms in half-storytelling, half-theoretical prose, a rhythmic, poetic, insidious work that commands submission, Omnicide absorbs the reader into unfamiliar and estranging landscapes whose every subtle euphoric aspect threatens to become an irresistible invitation to the end of all things.

Jason Bahbak Mohaghegh is Associate Professor of Comparative Literature at Babson College. His focus is on tracking experimental thought in the Middle East and the West, with particular attention to exploring concepts of chaos, violence, illusion, silence, sectarianism, madness, disappearance, and apocalyptic writing. He is the author of The Chaotic Imagination (Palgrave, 2010); Inflictions (Continuum, 2012); The Radical Unspoken (Routledge, 2013); Insurgent, Poet, Mystic, Sectarian (SUNY, 2015); and Elemental Disappearances (with Dejan Lukic; Punctum, 2016). He is also co-editor of Manifestos for World Thought (Rowman & Littlefield, 2017), co-editor of the Suspensions book series (Bloomsbury), and co-founder of the 5th Disappearance Lab (www.5dal.com).


CONTENTS

Mania Tabula
Foreword: In Praise of Abnormal Persistence by Robin Mackay
Introduction: Movement of the Lost Cause

Part 1
Augomania (Light)
Heliomania (Sun)
Selenomania (Moon)

Part 5
Dromomania (Travelling)
Ecdemomania (Wandering)
Cartogramania (Maps)
Kinetomania (Continual Movement)
Dinomania (Dizziness, Whirlpools)
Labyrintomania (Labyrinths)

Part 20
Monomania (Aloneness)
Isolomania (Isolation)
Megalomania (Self)
Catoptromania/Eisoptromania (Mirrors)
Colossomania (Giants)
Omnicide Returned: Endtime Visions

Select Bibliography



Jason Bahbak Mohaghegh
Omnicide Talk & Book Launch 
Wednesday, May 29, 2019, 7pm
Miguel Abreu Gallery
36 Orchard Street
New York, NY 10002

PRESS RELEASE  IMAGES  VIDEO


Maniac Lullabies
Jason Bahbak Mohaghegh, Robin Mackay,
Amy Ireland 
VIEW

To Situate the Otherworldly
Concretely in the World
Review of Omnicide by Javier Padilla
3:AM Magazine, June 2019
VIEW