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Jason E. Smith: Strategy and the Passions
Strategy and the Passions
(p. 169 – 182)

Jason E. Smith

Strategy and the Passions
Guy Debord’s Ruses

PDF, 14 pages

  • ethics
  • change
  • emancipation / liberation
  • justice
  • potentiality
  • politics

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Jason E. Smith

is Assistant Professor in the Graduate Studies in Art Program at Art Center College of Design. He has written widely on political theory and contemporary art. His work has been published in Artforum, Critical Inquiry, Il Manifesto, Radical Philosophy, and Rethinking Marxism. He is the co-translator of Jean-Luc Nancy’s Hegel: the Restlessness of the Negative (2002) and Tiqqun’s Introduction to Civil War (2010). He is currently working on a book about Guy Debord’s films.

Mark Potocnik (ed.), Frank Ruda (ed.), ...: Beyond Potentialities?

Nearly the whole history of political thought is spanned between two poles: one of founding, establishing, and justifying a stable and just order on one side and of justified transformation and necessary break with that same order on the other side. Between institution and emancipation, reform and revolution, the question of possibility is always arising for politics. Are there possibilities to change the order of society? Are there possibilities for a different justice? Where to find them and how to define them? Are they already present in the situation, or do they have to be actively created? Or does one have to rethink collective emancipation in a way that it does not rely upon given possibilities?

The question of possibility is raised in philosophy itself in different terms: as a question of potentiality and potentials but also as a question of the impossibilities of changing political order. In recent political discussions this question is more present than ever and is newly posed in fundamental ways by thinkers such as Agamben, Badiou, and Deleuze, or Lacan and Žižek. The present volume assembles articles that investigate this question and the new guise it took from different perspectives and highlight its relevance for contemporary political thought.