Adam Knowles, Heidegger’s Fascist Affinities: A Politics of Silence – Stanford University Press, 2019

pid_30670.jpgAdam Knowles, Heidegger’s Fascist Affinities: A Politics of Silence –  – Stanford University Press, 2019

Reexamining the case of one of the most famous intellectuals to embrace fascism, this book argues that Martin Heidegger’s politics and philosophy of language emerge from a deep affinity for the ethno-nationalist and anti-Semitic politics of the Nazi movement. Himself a product of a conservative milieu, Heidegger did not have to significantly compromise his thinking to adapt it to National Socialism but only to intensify certain themes within it. Tracing the continuity of these themes in his lectures on Greek philosophy, his magnum opus, Being and Time, and the notorious Black Notebooks that have only begun to see the light of day, Heidegger’s Fascist Affinities argues that if Heidegger was able to align himself so thoroughly with Nazism, it was partly because his philosophy was predicated upon fundamental forms of silencing and exclusion. With the arrival of the Nazi revolution, Heidegger displayed—both in public and in private—a complex, protracted form of silence drawn from his philosophy of language. Avoiding the easy satisfaction of banishing Heidegger from the philosophical realm so indebted to his work, Adam Knowles asks whether what drove Heidegger to Nazism in the first place might continue to haunt the discipline. In the context of today’s burgeoning ethno-nationalist regimes, can contemporary philosophy ensure itself of its immunity?

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London Conference in Critical Thought (LCCT), 5-6 July 2019, Goldsmiths, University of London

London Conference in Critical Thought (LCCT),
Friday & Saturday 5-6 July 2019
Richard Hoggart Building
Goldsmiths, University of London

We are delighted to be able to invite you to the 8th annual London Conference in Critical Thought (LCCT), hosted and supported by the Centre for Invention and Social Process (CISP) at the Department of Sociology at Goldsmiths. The conference offers a space for an interdisciplinary exchange of ideas for scholars who work with critical traditions and concerns.

Central to the vision of the conference is an inter-institutional, non-hierarchal, and accessible event that makes a particular effort to embrace emergent thought and the participation of emerging academics, fostering new avenues for critically-oriented scholarship and collaboration.

The streams for #LCCT2019 are:

• Art MANIFESTOS: The future of an evolving form

• Automating inequality: AI, smart devices and the reproduction of the social

• The Cold War Then and Now: Theories and legacies

• Culture/Politics of trauma

• Difference, evolution and biology

• Gendered technologies, gender as technology

• Immanence, conflict and institution: Within and beyond Italian Theory

• Multiplying Citizenship: Beyond the subject of rights

• Radical Ventriloquism: Acts of speaking through and speaking for

• Rethinking new materialisms: Ethics, politics and aesthetics

• Thinking critically with care

2019 Short Programme

2019 Long Programme

For more details, please visit:

The LCCT is free to attend but registration is required here


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The Hollow Crown: Shakespeare and Political Theology, Hampton Court/Garrick’s Temple, June 21-22 2019

The Hollow Crown: Shakespeare and Political Theology, Hampton Court/Garrick’s Temple, June 21-22 2019

The Hollow Crown: Shakespeare and Political Theology event consists of two related events, both of which highlight current thought on political theology in Shakespeare.

The first day, held in the Jane Seymour Room at Hampton Court Palace, dovetails into two themes: Crown and Crowd. The Crown section begins at 10 am and features talks on coronation rituals and absent kings by Charles Farris, Helen Phillips, Anthony Musson and Michael Hattaway. The crowd section begins at 2 pm with talks by Sam Gilchrist Hall, Edel Lamb, Sally Barnden and Yan Brailowsky. The day also features musical interludes by ARCHIcantiores performing ‘royal’ and ‘crowd’ music as well as ballads. Ticket price includes tea, coffee and a packed lunch.

The second day at Garrick’s Temple (a short walk from Hampton Court and Hampton Station) continues the symposia on Shakespeare in philosophy with a day on the seminal political theologian Ernst Kantorowicz (1895-1963). Speakers include Jennifer Rust, Lynsey McCulloch, Guillaume Foulquié, Adam Sitze, Stuart Elden, António Bento and Rachel Eisendrath. Tea, coffee and lunch are included in the ticket price.

Ticket prices are £20 for one day or £30 for both days.This event is organised by Kingston Shakespeare together with Historic Royal Palaces, Garrick’s Temple to Shakespeare, the Shakespeare and Philosophy project.

Registration required – details here.

I’ll be speaking on the second day about ‘Kantorowicz, Shakespeare and the Oath’ – a paper which is related to the lecture I gave in Klagenfurt last month on ‘Foucault, Shakespeare and the Oath’. There is limited overlap between the two talks, though they are both drawn from the same longer manuscript.


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Canguilhem (Polity 2019) reviewed by David Beer at The Sociological Review

Canguilhem coverMy recent book Canguilhem (Polity, 2019) is reviewed by David Beer at The Sociological Review.

In his new book, his ninth authored volume, Stuart Elden casts his laser vision on the frequently overlooked work of Georges Canguilhem. A keystone in French social theory, Canghuilhem was born in 1904 in Castelnaudary and studied at the École Normale Superérieure. He spent two years in military service between 1927 and 1929 before moving into medical training. The interdisciplinary thinking that would continue through this works, ranging across medicine, history and philosophy were established in these early biographical moments. Various incidents then led to him, a decade or so later, joining the philosophy department at the University of Strasbourg in 1941. The publication of his book The Normal and Pathological followed shortly afterwards in 1943. That particular volume opened up a style and approach that combined the philosophical and the biological (or medical) that he would go on to explore and develop in the years that followed. Indeed, Elden’s book, which captures both the thinkers key ideas and the means of their formation, is rich in its exploration of the distinctive ways that Canguilhem combines history with philosophy in this work. Mostly focusing on lectures and essays, his work probed at the conceptualisation of norms, pathologies, reflexes, medicine, disease, evolution, regulation and the knowledge of life. A far-reaching set of concerns that partly explains his wide but latent influence. Canguilhem explored the transformations, changing conditions and  shifting ideas in these different areas. Following a productive and, Elden notes, reflective period of retirement, Canguilhem continued to write and speak on these issues until his death in 1995. Beyond his own work, it is perhaps his support and written report on Foucault’s thesis on the history of madness that is his most widely known intervention. [continues here]

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Books received – After Grenfell, Spatial Histories of Radical Geography, Shakespeare, Marlowe, Foucault

A mixed bag of books recently bought, mainly for the Foucault and Shakespeare work, but also the recent collections After Grenfell: Violence, Resistance and Response and Spatial Histories of Radical Geography.



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Boštjan Nedoh, Ontology and Perversion: Deleuze, Agamben, Lacan – Rowman International, June 2019

5c5a861bf5ba741230da56d6Boštjan Nedoh, Ontology and Perversion: Deleuze, Agamben, Lacan – Rowman International, June 2019

This book examines the philosophical and political relevance of perversion in the works of three key representatives of contemporary philosophy and psychoanalysis: Gilles Deleuze, Giorgio Agamben and Jacques Lacan.

Perversion is often understood simply in terms of cultural or sexual phenomena. By contrast, Boštjan Nedoh places perversion at the heart of philosophical, ontological and political issues in the works of Deleuze, Agamben and Lacan. He examines the relevance of their discussions of perversion for their respective critical ontological projects. By tracing the differences between these thinkers’ understanding of perversion, the book finally draws lines of delimitation between the vitalist and the structuralist or psychoanalytic philosophical positions in contemporary philosophy.

Why is perversion not simply a social phenomenon but a mode of being? In this remarkable book, Nedoh audaciously stalks a novel ontology that dresses in variegated furs. Lacan’s indifferently ferocious superego is juxtaposed to and played against the vitalist simulacra of Deleuze’s Masoch and Agamben’s Sphinx. Should critique drive with high heels?

Lorenzo Chiesa, Author of Subjectivity and Otherness and The Not-Two
For an ontology to be truly fundamental and absolute, it must account for everything under the sun. Given this, the category of the perverse, with its peculiarities and strangenesses, represents perhaps the greatest challenge to any ontological ambitions. In Ontology and Perversion, Boštjan Nedoh admirably rises to this challenge. He does so through a wonderfully illuminating defense of Lacan’s reflections on ontology in relation to the ontologies of Deleuze and Agamben. Nedoh’s book makes perversion an unavoidable point of reference for contemporary Continental metaphysics.
Adrian Johnston, Professor and Chair, Department of Philosophy, University of New Mexico
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Neil Brenner, New Urban Spaces: Urban Theory and the Scale Question – OUP, June 2019

Progressive Geographies

9780190627195Neil Brenner, New Urban Spaces: Urban Theory and the Scale Question – OUP, June 2019

The urban condition is today being radically transformed. Urban restructuring is accelerating, new urban spaces are being consolidated, and new forms of urbanization are crystallizing. In New Urban Spaces, Neil Brenner argues that understanding these mutations of urban life requires not only concrete research, but new theories of urbanization. To this end, Brenner proposes an approach that breaks with inherited conceptions of the urban as a bounded settlement unit-the city or the metropolis-and explores the multiscalar constitution and periodic rescaling of the capitalist urban fabric. Drawing on critical geopolitical economy and spatialized approaches to state theory, Brenner offers a paradigmatic account of how rescaling processes are transforming inherited formations of urban space and their variegated consequences for emergent patterns and pathways of urbanization. The book also advances an understanding of critical urban theory as…

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Foucault Studies No 26 published, including a 1967 Foucault interview on Nietzsche (all open access)

cover_issue_775_en_US.pngFoucault Studies No 26 is now published (open access)

It contains an interview between Foucault and Jacqueline Piatier ‘On Nietzsche‘ from 1967, a number of book reviews, and these articles.

Claire Cosquer
Salvador Cayuela
Marrigje Paijmans
Mario Bruzzone


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22 tips for writing academic cvs and covering letters

A very useful guide for job applications – some UK specific, but much of general relevance.


One of the things that’s kept me from my blog in the past year or so – apart from moving jobs and cities and leading an eight-person research team – is that I’ve sat on half-a-dozen interview panels. The last one involved reading through a pdf of all the applications that was 1,100 pages long – just under 60 applications (I have heard of posts attracting nearly 100 applications). That’s an awful lot of blog posts.

Indeed, it’s an awful lot of anything. If you’re an applicant, it might almost make you pity the interview panellists. If you’re a panellist, it might also give you a lot of opinions on how to write – and how NOT to write – standout cvs and covering letters.

So, here is a blog post with some advice for you if you are writing up your cv and your covering letter for an academic…

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The case against Woodrow Wilson, after 100 years

A long and thoughtful piece about the legacies of Woodrow Wilson in International Relations

The Disorder Of Things

This guest post is a collective statement, written by Philip Conway in consultation with several other current and former PhD candidates at the Aberystwyth University Department of International Politics. It is co-signed by a number of current and former Aber PhD candidates, not all of whom were directly involved in the drafting process. It does not, therefore, necessarily present a consensus. However, it does, we hope, present a constructive and forceful contribution to an important debate.

At Aberystwyth University, the year 2019 marks the Centenary of the Department of International Politics. A century, that is, since the philanthropists David, Gwendoline, and Margaret Davies donated a sum of £20,000—more than £1m in today’s money—in order to establish a Chair of International Politics (the first of its kind in the world). The Chair was established “in memory of the fallen students of our University.”[1] It was to be…

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