Monday, October 17, 2011

The Nothingness of Equality

I've been putting the finishing touches on an essay that ought to see the light of day sometime in 2012 (it has already been accepted for publication). If you were in Montréal last April at the Sartre Society conference, you've already heard parts of it. If everything works like I want it to, it will eventually form part of a chapter in my book on Jacques Rancière. Here's an abstract of what you have to look forward to:

The Nothingness of Equality: The ‘Sartrean Existentialism’ of Jacques Rancière 

I propose a mutually constructive reading of the work of Jacques Rancière and Jean-Paul Sartre. On the one hand, I argue that Rancière’s egalitarian political thought owes several important conceptual debts to Sartre’s Being and Nothingness, especially in his use of the concepts of freedom, contingency, and facticity. These concepts play a dual role in Rancière’s thought. First, he appropriates them to show how the formation of subjectivity through freedom is a dynamic that introduces new ways of speaking, being, and doing, instead of being a mode of assuming an established identity. Second, Rancière uses these concepts to demonstrate the contingency of any situation or social order, a contingency that is the possibility of egalitarian praxis. On the other hand, I also argue that reading Sartre with Rancière makes possible the reconstruction of Sartre’s project within the horizon of freedom and equality rather than that of authenticity.

1 comment:

Baran Akkush said...
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