Achieving commonwealth: a reformation of Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri’s biopolitical subject
LE3 .A278 2019
Master of Arts
Social and Political Thought
Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri’s trilogy offers an analysis of the powers of contemporary global society and the biopolitical subject’s potential resistance. In Empire, Multitude: War and Democracy in the Age of Empire and Commonwealth, they reconceptualize the power relations of contemporary global society and the production of an alternative world by redefining the subject through affirmative biopolitics. I argue that their biopolitical subject’s productive potential and communal bonds remain unrealized. I contend that Hardt and Negri’s reliance on biopolitics as the subject’s defining characteristic is an undertheorized problem. Therefore, I argue that Hardt and Negri’s reliance on biopolitics limits their understanding of the subject. To remedy this shortcoming, I engage with Rosi Braidotti’s Zoë-centric subject and nomadic theory. Braidotti theorizes a vital, sustainable, and productive subject through an affirmative theory of Zoë and the production of subjectivity through becoming-nomadic. By reimagining Hardt and Negri’s biopolitical subject through Zoë the bonds the subject makes to one other are strengthened and the subject’s productivity is directed towards sustaining life.
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