Lacan, Deleuze and world politics : rethinking the ontology of the political subject


Lacan, Deleuze and world politics : rethinking the ontology of the political subject

Andreja Zevnik


Routledge, 2016

  • : hbk

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Includes bibliographical references (p. [201]-217) and indexes



This book aims to re-think the way in which the subject is inscribed in the modern political, and does so by exploring the potentiality of Lacano-Deleuzian theoretical framework. It concerns a different ontology and a non-dualist understanding of political and legal existence, by focusing on questions such as how to think alternative notions of political existence and what kind of political, social and legal order do these come to create. This investigation into political appearance of subjects through concepts of law, body and life is led and influenced by the thought of Gilles Deleuze and Jacques Lacan, as well as Alain Badiou, Antonio Negri and Slavoj Zizek. The book takes on various conceptualisations of life, explores the relationship between law and life and develops an alternative notion of legal and political existence in particular in the context of rights. On the back of Guantanamo's legal and political discourses this work aims to show why and how the problems of world politics or the limitations of (human) rights discourse require an engagement with questions such as what it means to exist as a human being, what forms of life are politically recognised, which are not, and why this distinction. By pointing to a different ontology for thinking and understanding global politics and demonstrating how a trans-disciplinary and philosophical approaches can foster the debates in world politics, this book will be of interest to postgraduates and scholars working on critical normative ideas in international politics, critical security studies and critical legal studies.


Introduction. Monist Ontology: minimalism, nothingness and the void. Being in the World: the limits of the political subject. Being and Existence in the Fields of Politics and Law. The Book. Chapter I: Law and Life: A Creation of a Political and Legal Subject. The Psychoanalytical Origins of Modern Legal Authority. The Legal Subject and the Institution of Law. A Different Legal Ordering: Sinthome and desire. Conclusion. Chapter II: Ontology of Life and the Limit of Thought. The Thought of the Outside: Life as a Force. The Immanence of Life. From Immanent Life to Appearance in the World. Conclusion. Chapter III: Appearance in the World I: Guantanamo and logics of bodily-becoming. Becoming as minor/molecular appearing in the world. Becoming- and the politics of appearance in Guantanamo. What a Body Can Do? Body Politics: Life, Death and the Limit of the Body. Chapter IV: Appearance in the World II: Guantanamo and Expressions of the Self. Desiring the World. Torture and the Perverse Workings of Desire. Writing the World. From Language to Lalangue, from Litter to Literature and from Poems to Freedom. Naming the World Otherwise. Conclusion. Chapter V: Images of Law in Guantanamo: From a Legal Case to a New Idea of Law. Understanding Guantanamo: an exposition of Guantanamo's legal discourse. Taking Guantanamo Piece by Piece. Law as Life or Life as Law. Conclusion. Chapter VI: An Image of the New Ontology for World Politics and the Political Subject. Law and Being Without the Name-of-the-Father. Legal Recognition or What is the New Legal Existence. Conclusion. Conclusion: Subject, Ontology and World Politics. Love as an Image of an Ethical Community. 'Not-All' as a New Political Ontology. Appearance, Ontology and the World of....

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