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Authority, Experience and the Life of Power

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by Claire Blencowe
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Authority, Experience and the Life of Power by Claire Blencowe

Taking up the challenge of understanding power in its complexity, this volume returns to and revitalises the concept of 'authority'. It provides a powerful analysis of the ways that relationships of trust, attachment, governance and inequality become possible when subjectivities and bodies are invested in the life of power. The collection offers a vibrant new analysis of the biopolitical, arguing that 'experience of life' has become equated with 'objectivity' in contemporary culture and has thus become a primary basis of authority. 'Biopolitical' or 'experiential' authority can be generated through reference to a variety of experiences, performances or intensities of life including creativity, radicalism, risk-taking, experimentation, inter-relation, suffering and proximity to death. The authority-producing capacities of community and aesthetics are key issues, pointing to vexed relationships between politics and policing, inventiveness and violence.

The contributors develop their theoretical analyses through discussion of a range of specific sites including mental-health service user and survivor politics, biological knowledge, refugee activism, stories of suffering, urban art, anarchism, neo-liberal community politics and marketization. Authority, Experience & the Life of Power challenges thinking on what 'the political' is and isn't, pushing against the all too easy equivocation of revolutionary break and empowerment.

This book was published as a special issue of the Journal of Political Power.

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Ebook Details
Pages: 160
Size: 279 KB
Publisher: Routledge
Date published:   2016
ISBN: 9781317610847 (DRM-EPUB)
9781317610854 (DRM-PDF)

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