Before the Law: Humans and Other Animals in a Biopolitical Frame
A Paperback edition by Cary Wolfe in English (Feb 12, 2013)
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Animal studies and biopolitics are two of the most dynamic areas of interdisciplinary scholarship, but until now, they have had little to say to each other. Bringing these two... Read more
Animal studies and biopolitics are two of the most dynamic areas of interdisciplinary scholarship, but until now, they have had little to say to each other. Bringing these two emergent areas of thought into direct conversation in Before the Law, Cary Wolfe fosters a new discussion about the status of nonhuman animals and the shared plight of humans and animals under biopolitics. Wolfe argues that the human-animal distinction must be supplemented with the central distinction of biopolitics: the difference between those animals that are members of a community and those that are deemed killable but not murderable. From this understanding, we can begin to make sense of the fact that this distinction prevails within both the human and animal domains and address such difficult issues as why we afford some animals unprecedented levels of care and recognition while subjecting others to unparalleled forms of brutality and exploitation. Engaging with many major figures in biopolitical thought?from Heidegger, Arendt, and Foucault to Agamben, Esposito, and Derrida?Wolfe explores how biopolitics can help us understand both the ethical and political dimensions of the current questions surrounding the rights of animals.
Cary Wolfe is chair and the Bruce and Elizabeth Dunlevie Professor in the Department of English at Rice University. His books include What Is Posthumanism? and Animal Rites: American Culture, the Discourse of Species, and Posthumanist Theory, the latter also published by the University of Chicago Press.
The author ranges across bioethics, cognitive science, animal ethics, gender and disability to develop a theoretical and philosophical approach responsive to humans' changing understanding of themselves and the world. Original.
Electrifying, provocative, and controversial when first published thirty years ago, Donna Haraway's "Cyborg Manifesto" is even more relevant today, when the divisions that she so eloquently challenges?of human and machine but also of gender, class, race, ethnicity, sexuality, and location?are increasingly complex. The subsequent "Companion Species Manifesto," which further questions the...
Animal studies and biopolitics are two of the most dynamic areas of interdisciplinary scholarship. Bringing these two emergent areas of thought into direct conversation, this book fosters a new discussion about the status of nonhuman animals and the shared plight of humans and animals under biopolitics.
" "More than fifteen years ago," Jacques Derrida writes in the prologue to this remarkable and uniquely revealing book, "a phrase came to me, as though in spite of me. It imposed itself upon me with the authority, so discreet and simple it was, of a judgment: cinders there are (il y a là cendre). I had to explain myself to it, respond to it--or for it." In Cinders Derrida ranges across his work...
In Philosophy and Animal Life, Cora Diamond begins with "The Difficulty of Reality and the Difficulty of Philosophy," in which she accuses analytical philosophy of evading, or deflecting, the responsibility of human beings toward nonhuman animals. Diamond then explores the animal question in the more general problem of philosophical skepticism. Focusing specifically on J. M. Coetzee'sThe Lives of Animals, she considers the failure of language to capture the vulnerability of humans and animals. Stanley Cavell responds to Diamond's argument with his own close reading of Coetzee's work, connecting the human-animal relationship to further themes of morality and philosophy. John McDowell follows with a critique of both Diamond and Cavell, and Ian Hacking explains why Cora Diamond's essay is so deeply perturbing and, paradoxically, favors poetry over philosophy in overcoming her difficulties. Cary Wolfe's introduction situates these arguments within the broader context of contemporary continental philosophy and theory, particularly Jacques Derrida's work on deconstruction and the question of the animal.
Extinction Studies focuses on the entangled ecological and social dimensions of extinction, exploring the ways in which extinction catastrophically interrupts life-giving processes of time, death, and generations. Drawing on fieldwork, philosophy, literature, history, and a range of other perspectives, each of the chapters in this book tells a unique extinction story that explores what extinction is, what it means, why it matters?and to whom.
Those nonhuman beings called "animals" pose philosophical and ethical questions that go to the root not just of what we think but of who we are. Their presence asks: what happens when "the other" can no longer safely be assumed to be human? This collection offers a set of incitements and coordinates for exploring how these issues have been represented in contemporary culture and theory, from...
Offers a way of thinking about animal rights, our obligation to animals, and the nature of philosophy itself. This book explores how the animal question is bound up with the general problem of philosophical skepticism. It considers the failure of language to capture the vulnerability of humans and animals.
While moral perfectionists rank conscious beings according to their cognitive abilities, Paola Cavalieri launches a more inclusive defense of all forms of subjectivity. In concert with Peter Singer, J. M. Coetzee, Harlan B. Miller, and other leading animal studies scholars, she expands our understanding of the nonhuman in such a way that the derogatory category of "the animal" becomes meaningless....
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