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Open Access Publications from the University of California

This series is automatically populated with publications deposited by UC Santa Barbara Department of English researchers in accordance with the University of California’s open access policies. For more information see Open Access Policy Deposits and the UC Publication Management System.

Cover page of Rocket Theory

Rocket Theory


What this chapter offers is not another history of accelerationism as philosophy or coterie, but rather a tracing out of accelerationism as it has become co-opted and memetically entered into popular discourse as political affect and cultural condition. What is the significance of this memeification, and why, beyond the obvious literalization, does this take the form of the rocket? We take account of the way in which a political philosophy committed to pushing capitalism to its breaking point and beyond ironically finds itself deployed for capitalistic, even hyper-capitalistic, ends. What we are calling “rocket theory” is not simply a play on an idiom but also proposes a theoretically informed way of thinking through the convergence of oppositional forces as manifest in accelerationist politics, or anti-politics, in our moment.