The movement of being: A major and minor literature of the body in political thought
LE3 .A278 2014
Master of Arts
Social and Political Thought
In the tradition of philosophy, considerations of the political realm focus on and express a concern for the individual subject, arguing that the individual's subjectivity is equated with their body as a wholly rational and autonomous entity. This conception of the individual body has gained traction through its presence in the history of political thought, dating back to the philosophy of René Descartes and Thomas Hobbes and has been dictated to be an ontology – that is, a philosophy of the fundamental nature of the political that cannot be refuted. However, this ontology proves problematic when considering the ways in which persons are moved, influenced, and changed by things outside of what one might call the domain of their own control. Using the philosophy of Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari, a critique is mounted against this dominant philosophical tradition that offers a rescripting of the tradition of political philosophy that articles the changing nature of subjectivity, and also offers a means of escaping the dominance that forces us to think politically in certain ways.
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