She’s just not that into you

Tiqqun, Preliminary Materials for a Theory of the Young-Girl, trans. Ariana Reines, Semiotext(e), Intervention series 12, Los Angeles, 2012. 144 pp., £9.95 pb., 978 1 58435 108 5. How best to describe the colonization of the body at this particular juncture of capitalist life? Much recent theorizing has focused on a kind of war of […]

Framing and Freeing

Framing and Freeing: Utopias of the Female Body Lynda Nead The standard definition of utopia is in two parts: it is at once ‘no place’ and also the imagined location of the good society. * Utopian fiction and non-fiction frequently tell the story of the traveller who moves from the flawed world of the present […]

The Inorganic Body and the Ambiguity of Freedom

The Inorganic Body and the Ambiguity of Freedom Andrew Collier The universality of man manifests itself in practice in that universality which makes the whole of nature his inorganic body, (1) as a direct means oflife and (2) as the matter, the object and the tool of his life activity. Nature is man’s inorganic body, […]

Do We Need a Sex/Gender Distinction?

Do We Need a Sex/Gender Distinction? Val Plumwood We live an embodied life; we live with those genital and reproductive organs and capacities, those hormones and chromosomes, that locate us physiologically as male or female …. We cannot know what children would make of their bodies in a nongender or non sexually organized world, what […]

Women, Humanity and Nature

Women, Humanity and Nature Val Plum wood There is now a growing awareness that the Western philosophical tradition which has identified, on the one hand, maleness with the sphere of rationality, and on the other hand, femaleness with the sphere of nature, has provided one of the main intellectual bases for the domination of women […]

The Human Body in Social Theory

The Human Body in Social Theory: Reich, Foucault and the Repressive Hypothesis Russell Keat 1. Are human bodies human? / recurrent issue in both philosophy and the human sciences has been the possibility of identifying distinctively human characteristics – such as the capacities for language, purposive action and conscious experience; sodallty, historlcity, and cultural diversity; […]

Birth of the Subject

Birth of the Subject Colin Gordon Since 1970 Michel Foucault has published three books, L ‘Ordre du Discours (The Order of Discourse), Surveiller et Punir (Surveillance and Punishment) and La volonte de savoir (The Will to Knowledge), none of which has yet appeared in English in this country. 1 This body of untranslated work, which […]

The Philosophy of Merleau-Ponty

him and to which he claims special access, nor ‘from a· source inside him, which he is ~ecially privileged to possess. The formula is presented to us at the start, and then it is worked upon, in front of us, in terms of sound and sight. The marve~lous feeling of release provided by the piece […]

Jacques Rancière

INTERVIEW Jacques RancièreDemocracy means equalityPassages: Jacques Rancière, for more than twenty years you have been following a somewhat unusual philosophical itinerary. It is obvious that what you are doing has nothing in common with traditional academic work. Most of your books reveal philosophical thought in unexpected contexts or in contexts that have been reformulated in […]

The need in thinking

22In Bodies That Matter, Judith Butler attempts to deconstruct the body and matter in the same way that the self-constituting, stable, centred subject has been deconstructed in recent years. [1] In the process, Butler claims to be operating in a theoretical realm beyond the frameworks of materialism and idealism. While I concur with many things […]

Bodies, lost and found

In the decade following the publication of The Second Sex (1949), Simone de Beauvoir had been both devastated by political events – her experience of the Algerian war, McCarthyism and racism in America – and profoundly affected by her intense involvement with Claude Lanzmann. Curiously though, in 1963, de Beauvoir described the fact that she […]

Bodies and power, revisited

Foucaultʼs early approach to the question of bodies and power is perhaps best known in his analysis of the body of the prisoner in Discipline and Punish. [1] Many of us have read and reread this analysis, and tried to understand how power acts upon a body, but also how power comes to craft and […]

Shiny, happy people

Commentary Shiny, happy people ‘Body Worlds’ and the commodification of health Megan stern Gunther von Hagenʼs touring ʻBody Worldsʼ exhibition of dissected, ʻplastinatedʼ human corpses has generated a great deal of public interest, much of it critical and even hostile. The use of animal body parts in art installations and exhibitions and documentaries exploring human […]

Kristeva and The Idiots

Kristeva and The Idiots Cecilia sjöholm The thematic obsessions of filmmaker Lars von Trier are as dubious as they are relevant to contemporary thought: unconditional love, feminine sacrifice, childish gestural provocations and victimization are contrasted with the neurotic fears of normality and authoritarian abuses of power. It has been said by various film critics that […]

Surplus consciousness

Surplus consciousness Houellebecq’s novels of ideas Martin ryle Michel Houellebecqʼs fiction is said to be selling better outside France than that of any French novelist since Camus. Atomised (1999) and Platform (2001), his two more recent novels, appeared in English within a year of their publication. [1] The comparison some reviews have drawn with Camus […]

An immanent transcendental

An immanent transcendental Foucault, Kant and critical philosophy keith robinson Every philosophy conceals a philosophy; every opinion is also a hiding place, every word also a mask. Nietzsche, Beyond Good and EvilThe relation of Foucaultʼs work to philosophy remains an unsettled issue. Indeed, Foucault sometimes preferred to present himself as ʻthe masked philosopherʼ. Much like […]