Deleuze, Nikolas Rose, Philosophy, Sociology

Deleuzian Politics, or: what to think of the horizontal body?

This week I handed in an essay on Nikolas Rose’s book The Politics of Life Itself. In the essay I try to comprehend what it means for Rose that we, as biological citizens, understand ourselves in fully somatic terms. Furthermore, I consider the fact if this, as becomes apparant, very liberal or governmentality perspective really ‘exhausts reality’. That is; following Rose’s use of Deleuze, I try to show how there is always something that ‘transcends’ the body inside the immanent, horizontal plane of individuality, politics, science and economics. For Rose, we as somatic individuals more or less have at our disposal the biomedical, genetic facts of science so as to use them to work on ourselves and, consequently, to authorize the knowledge that flows from science and, according to Rose, determine the path and direction of these sciences. With Deleuze, I try to show that, following the example of the altering relation between experts and laymen, there arise new forms of ‘horizontal’ hierarchies and authorities. It’s interesting to see how Rose combines Foucault and Latour to subsequently turn to Deleuze to work out his comprehension of a new 21th century somatic ethics or self-management, but, in doing so, forgets that Deleuze is always ‘more than’ predictable.

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