Lācis as a Multilingual Ecosophy

  • Susan Ingram
Keywords: Asja Lācis, Félix Guattari, Wikipedia, ecosophy, multilingualism


This article examines the multilingual academic and cultural phenomenon that is Anna/ Asja Lācis through the theoretical lens of Félix Guattari’s concept of ecosophy. Lācis became somewhat known internationally as Walter Benjamin’s Latvian Bolshevik girlfriend, but as that facet of her reputation has garnered only sporadic interest, causing her to fall into oblivion, there has been a resurgence of interest in her in Latvia(n). The article mobilizes an ecosophical approach that focuses on linguistic specificity as the mode of enfolding environment, social relations and subjectivity. Taking the multiplicity of naming practices as my focus, both of Lācis herself, her Latvian environment, and the scholarship that has sprung up online on her on Wikipedia, I argue that Anna/ Asja Lācis cannot be studied from a monolingual perspective, no matter what the language may be, a conclusion I find exemplary of Guattari’s insistence on the multiplicity of subjectivity