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  • Farewell to Freedom

    Riccardo Baldissone

    Chapter from the book: Baldissone, R. 2018. Farewell to Freedom: A Western Genealogy of Liberty.


    The chapter first relies on Nietzsche and Wittgenstein to expose the neoliberal recovery of the Classical subordination of the various uses of a word - such as freedom - to a single proper meaning. It then sets the reconsiderations of the subject of freedom within the wider recasting of conceptual entities as processes. Whilst this endeavour harks back to Hegel, Nietzsche redirects it towards the overcoming of the conceptual domain; more recently, Simondon reconceives individuals as processes of individuation, and Foucault constructs subjects as processes of subjectivation. The processual reshaping of human entities questions the notions of freedom and autonomy, as it challenges their very locus, namely, individual and collective identities. The chapter recalls the rethinking of both individual and collective subjectivities as multiplicities, and it advocates the elaboration of a relation-oriented language that could strike a relational middle path between autonomous and heteronomous alternatives; as a contribution to such a vocabulary, it puts forth the neologism ‘throughdom.’ This new theoretical tool may be used to undermine the priority of legal entitlement over actual participation; it could also help to relieve personal and political practices from the postulation of absolute self-mastery, which the discourses of freedom inherit from the authoritarian framework of Classical speculation. More in general, it may be deployed to orient in a participatory direction the ongoing intermingling of human and non-human components that constitute our subjectivities.

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    How to cite this chapter
    Baldissone, R. 2018. Farewell to Freedom. In: Baldissone, R, Farewell to Freedom. London: University of Westminster Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.16997/book15.e

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    Published on July 23, 2018