Dispossession. The Performative in the Political. Conversations

  • ID: 2253267
  • Book
  • 240 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
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Dispossession describes the condition of those who have lost land, citizenship, property, and a broader belonging to the world. This thought–provoking book seeks to elaborate our understanding of dispossession outside of the conventional logic of possession, a hallmark of capitalism, liberalism, and humanism. Can dispossession simultaneously characterize political responses and opposition to the disenfranchisement associated with unjust dispossession of land, economic and political power, and basic conditions for living?

In the context of neoliberal expropriation of labor and livelihood, dispossession opens up a performative condition of being both affected by injustice and prompted to act. From the uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa to the anti–neoliberal gatherings at Puerta del Sol, Syntagma and Zucchotti Park, an alternative political and affective economy of bodies in public is being formed. Bodies on the street are precarious – exposed to police force, they are also standing for, and opposing, their dispossession. These bodies insist upon their collective standing, organize themselves without and against hierarchy, and refuse to become disposable: they demand regard. This book interrogates the agonistic and open–ended corporeality and conviviality of the crowd as it assembles in cities to protest political and economic dispossession through a performative dispossession of the sovereign subject and its propriety.
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Preface vii

1 Aporetic dispossession, or the trouble with dispossession 1

2 The logic of dispossession and the matter of the human (after the critique of metaphysics of substance) 10

3 A caveat about the "primacy of economy" 38

4 Sexual dispossessions 44

5 (Trans)possessions, or bodies beyond themselves 55

6 The sociality of self–poietics: Talking back to the violence of recognition 64

7 Recognition and survival, or surviving recognition 75

8 Relationality as self–dispossession 92

9 Uncounted bodies, incalculable performativity 97

10 Responsiveness as responsibility 104

11 Ex–propriating the performative 126

12 Dispossessed languages, or singularities named and renamed 131

13 The political promise of the performative 140

14 The governmentality of "crisis" and its resistances 149

15 Enacting another vulnerability: On owing and owning 158

16 Trans–border affective foreclosures and state racism 164

17 Public grievability and the politics of memorialization 173

18 The political affects of plural performativity 176

19 Conundrums of solidarity 184

20 The university, the humanities, and the book bloc 188

21 Spaces of appearance, politics of exposure 193

Notes 198

Index 205

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Judith Butler
Athena Athanasiou
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