AFF-K-Toolbox.doc - Michigan Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 1\/1457 Idriss Michigan 7 Week Seniors HAMP Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 A E Everything is in

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Unformatted text preview: Michigan Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 1/1457 Idriss Michigan 7 Week Seniors HAMP Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 A - E Everything is in alphabetical order. Michigan Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 2/1457 Idriss Michigan 7 Week Seniors HAMP Michigan Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 3/1457 Idriss Michigan 7 Week Seniors HAMP **AGAMBEN** Michigan Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 4/1457 Idriss Michigan 7 Week Seniors HAMP Link = Oversimplified Agamben’s biopower is over-simplified and prevents us from confronting specific political circumstances. Virno 02 (Paolo, PhD and Italian philosopher, “General intellect, exodus, multitude,” Archipelago No. 54, June 2002, ) Agamben is a thinker of great value but also, in my opinion, a thinker with no political vocation. Then, when Agamben speaks of the biopolitical he has the tendency to transform it into an ontological category with value already since the archaic Roman right. And, in this, in my opinion, h e is very wrong-headed. The problem is, I believe, that the biopolitical is only an effect derived from the concept of labor-power. When there is a commodity that is called labor-power it is already implicitly government over life . Agamben says, on the other hand, that labor-power is only one of the aspects of the biopolitical; I say the contrary: over all because labor power is a paradoxical commodity, because it is not a real commodity like a book or a bottle of water, but rather is simply the potential to produce. As soon as this potential is transformed into a commodity, then, it is necessary to govern the living body that maintains this potential, that contains this potential . Toni (Negri) and Michael (Hardt), on the other hand, use biopolitics in a historically determined sense, basing it on Foucault, but Foucault spoke in few pages of the biopolitical - in relation to the birth of liberalism - that Foucault is not a sufficient base for founding a discourse over the biopolitical and my apprehension, my fear, is that the biopolitical can be transformed into a word that hides, covers problems instead of being an instrument for confronting them. A fetish word, an "open doors" word, a word with an exclamation point, a word that carries the risk of blocking critical thought instead of helping it. Then, my fear is of fetish words in politics because it seems like the cries of a child that is afraid of the dark..., the child that says "mama, mama!", "biopolitics, biopolitics!". I don't negate that there can be a serious content in the term, however I see that the use of the term biopolitics sometimes is a consolatory use, like the cry of a child, when what serves us are, in all cases, instruments of work and not propaganda words. Michigan Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 5/1457 Idriss Michigan 7 Week Seniors HAMP We’re not all Nazis Not all politics turn to Nazism—modern power structures are incredibly diverse. Rabinow & Rose 03 (Paul, Professor of Anthropology at UC Berkeley, Nikolas, Professor of Sociology @ the London School of Economics, “Thoughts On The Concept of Biopower Today,” December 10, 2003, pdf/RabinowandRose-BiopowerToday03.pdf, accessed July 07, pg. 8-9) The interpretation of contemporary biopolitics as the politics of a state modeled on the figure of the sovereign suits the twentieth century absolutisms of the Nazis and Stalin. But we need a more nuanced account of sovereign power to analyze contemporary rationalities or technologies of politics. Since these authors take their concept and point of reference from Foucault, it is worth contrasting their postulate of a origin and beneficiary of biopower to Foucaultís remarks on sovereignty as a form of power whose diagram, but not principle, is the figure of the sovereign ruler. Its characteristic is indeed ultimately a mode of power which relies on the right to take life. However, with the exception of certain ‘paroxysmal’ moments, this is a mode of power whose activation can only be sporadic and non-continuous. The totalization of sovereign power as a mode of ordering daily life would be too costly, and indeed the very excesses of the exercise of this power seek to compensate for its sporadic nature. Sovereignty, in this sense, is precisely a diagram of a form of power not a description of its implementation . Certainly some forms of colonial power sought to operationalize it, but in the face of its economic and governmental costs, colonial statecraft was largely to take a different form. The two megalomaniac State forms of the twentieth century also sought to actualize it, as have some others in their wake: Albania under Hoxha, North Korea. But no historian of pre-modern forms of control could fail to notice the dependence of sovereign rule in its non-paroxysmal form on a fine web of customary conventions, reciprocal obligations, and the like, in a word, a moral economy whose complexity and scope far exceeds the extravagance displays of the sovereign. Sovereign power is at one and the same time an element in this moral economy and an attempt to master it. Not all biopolitics bring about genocide—it trivializes Nazism to say that all enactments of the state of exception are equivalent. Rabinow & Rose 03 (Paul, Professor of Anthropology at UC Berkeley, Nikolas, Professor of Sociology @ the London School of Economics, “Thoughts On The Concept of Biopower Today,” December 10, 2003, pdf/RabinowandRose-BiopowerToday03.pdf, pg. 8-9) Agamben takes seriously Adorno’s challenge “how is it possible to think after Auschwitz?” But for that very reason, it is to trivialize Auschwitz to apply Schmitt’s concept of the state of exception and Foucault’s analysis of biopower to every instance where living beings enter the scope of regulation, control and government. The power to command under threat of death is exercised by States and their surrogates in multiple instances, in micro forms and in geopolitical relations. But this is not to say that this form of power commands backed up by the ultimate threat of death is the guarantee or underpinning principle of all forms of biopower in contemporary liberal societies . Unlike Agamben, we do not think that : the jurist the doctor, the scientist, the expert, the priest depend for their power over life upon an alliance with the State (1998: 122). Nor is it useful to use this single diagram to analyze every contemporary instance of thanato-politics from Rwanda to the epidemic of AIDS deaths across Africa. Surely the essence of critical thought must be its capacity to make distinctions that can facilitate judgment and action. Suggesting that the camp is everywhere is silly—government power may be expansive but it does not always produce corpses—Nazism was unique. Levi & Rothberg 03 (Neil, Professor of English @ Drew University, Michael, Professor of English @ the University of Sydney, “Auschwitz and the Remnants of Theory: Towards an Ethics of the Borderlands,” (11: 1/2), 2003, pg.30-31) At the same time, Agamben's formulations strike us as problematic and inadequate in several respects. First, by restructuring the "zone of the human" to conform to the condition of the Muselmann, Agamben removes the figure of the Muselmann from the context-the camps-in which he or she is "produced." The Muselmann becomes an isolated figure floating, like a Giacometti sculpture, in an otherwise apparently empty abstract space that Agamben calls "humanity." The Muselmann is meant to bear a certain truth about the nature of ethics "after Auschwitz," but is it not important when trying to articulate such an ethics to reflect on what Auschwitz was?4 Surely such an account should attend to the historical, legal, and political conditions that led to the development of the camp system, including the kinds of features that Zygmunt Bauman focuses on in Modernity and the Holocaust - such as a massive, morally indifferent bureaucratic apparatus that dehumanized its "objects" and distanced its agents from a sense of responsibility for their actions, as well as the obsessive hatred of the Jews that Saul Friedländer has recently dubbed "redemptive antisemitism."5 If the Muselmann would not have existed without these factors, shouldn't an ethics focused upon this figure also take account of them? Interestingly enough, in Homo Sacer Agamben himself argues that "the camp" is the "nomos" (definitive political element) of the modern. In remarking that "[w]hat happened in the camps so exceeds the juridical concept of crime that the specific juridico-political structure in which those events took place is often simply omitted from consideration" (1998, 166), Agamben could be preparing a critique of what is omitted from Remnants of Auschwitz. Homo Sacer argues that the camp is the space where the state of exception becomes normal and where "whether or not atrocities are committed depends not on law but on the civility and ethical sense of the police who temporarily act as sovereign" (1998, 174). This line of argument produces an antinomy in the Agamben oeuvre: for the Agamben of Homo Sacer a camp is a camp if Michigan Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 6/1457 Idriss Michigan 7 Week Seniors HAMP anything is possible within it, no matter whether or not it actually produces Muselmänner and corpses, while for the Agamben of Remnants of Auschwitz the important fact about the Muselmann is simply that such a figure happened, not where and how he became possible. What links the positions of his two works is a level of abstraction that deliberately brackets features of each paradigm ordinarily understood as essential: for the camp, figures such as the Muselmann; for the Muselmann, the conditions of the camp. Both moves permit Agamben to dismantle the boundary between the Nazi camps and the modern world. We have already seen this in relation to the Muselmann, in the wake of whose existence all previously existing moral concepts must be revised. It can be seen also in the examples of modern camps Agamben offers, including, "[t]he soccer stadium in Bari into which the Italian police in 1991 provisionally herded all illegal Albanian immigrants," the zones d'attentes in French international airports where foreigners requesting refugee status are At such moments Agamben seems to be suggesting that Auschwitz is potentially everywhere, a suggestion that ends up eliding the specific challenges posed both by the Muselmann and the camp system. held, and even, he suggests in an earlier version of the essay, gated communities in the USA (1998, 174).6 Michigan Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 7/1457 Idriss Michigan 7 Week Seniors HAMP Alt fails Agamben’s “coming community” is too weak to be sustainable. Gordon 04 (Andrew, Lee and Juliet Folger Fund Professor of History at Harvard University, “Review Study: Rethinking Area Studies, Once More,” Journal Of Japanese Studies, Vol. 30, No. 2, 2004, pg. 424-425) Okada draws on Giorgio Agamben to argue for “singularities to form a community without affirming an identity.” Such a community would be premised on a belief “that humans cobelong without any representable condition of belonging” (p. 200). This is an ambitious but doomed quest. The sort of community here envisioned is devoid of the emotional attachments that reinforce strong communities in real life. The sad part— and here I agree with Okada entirely— is that these emotions so easily rest on feelings of exclusion or essentialist notions of identity; the sadder part is that I don’t see how the community he seeks could generate loyalties sufficient to allow its survival. Agamben’s alternative is utopian and impossible. Cmiel, 96 (Kenneth, “The Fate of the Nation and the Withering of the State”, American Literary History, Spring, p. 196, JSTOR, Professor of Cultural History at Iowa) If community cannot be a closed thing, if it is forever open to the potentially new, then the dream of a national community is simply impossible. In Agamben's community, the idea of some- thing being "un-American'' makes no sense, for there is no defining essence in a "whatever singularity.'' Yet Agamben is also aware that capitalism and the state will continue. Indeed, he recognizes that after the fall of Communism they are sweeping the globe. Politics, in the future, Agamben argues, will not be community building but the perpetual project of communities against the state "a struggle between the State and the non-state (humanity), an insurmountable disjunction between whatever singularity and the State organization'' (84). I doubt Agamben's new community is actually coming. It remains far from clear that communities without identities are emerging anywhere except in the febrile imaginations of a few philosophers. It is not that I dislike the dream. It is for me the most attractive dream there is. It is that I am skeptical that such "whatever singularities'' are possible on more than the level of personal behavior. Politics is too clunky for such subtlety. Even the new social movements seem far more downto-earth and prone to defining themselves than Agamben's theorizing. Politics, alas, demands more leaden language. Still, the image of the state fighting communities is one worth pondering. Its distance from earlier welfare state thinking could not be more dramatic. Instead of the state embodying the will of the nation we have a picture of numerous communities at war with the state. It is, and I say this with no relish, a far more plausible picture of our emerging politics than Walzer's happy pluralism. Just think of insurance companies, Perotistas, and gay and lesbian activists-all communities distrustful of the states all committed to struggling with the state. Agamben does not ask what this perpetual warfare will do to government. Like Walzer, he assumes that the state will trudge on as before. Yet if this warfare between humanity and the state is constant, is it not plausible to surmise that hostility to the state will become permanent? Agamben’s criticism does nothing—it is totalizing, empirically false—we must make reforms to solve. Daly, 04 (Frances, Australian National University, “The Non-citizen and the Concept of Human Rights”, borderlands, Research Fellow in Philosophy, ) It is always possible to suppose that a self-fashioned potentiality is simply available to us, and in some senses it is, but not because a type of theory merely posits the social and the historical as completely open to our manipulation or 'perforation'. Likewise, we cannot merely assume that changing 'forms of life' necessarily amount to types of refusal. Such a claim would only make sense if it were put forward on the basis of an appreciation of an impulse to freedom from particular types of constraint and oppression. It would also require a sense of how this impulse takes place within a variety of conditions, some of which might be easily altered and some of which might not. In the absence of an engaged sense of what this impulse means, and of the context in which elements of freedom and unfreedom do battle, it is impossible to speculate on the nature of the subjectivity or potentiality which might be emerging or which might be in stages of decomposition. Agamben merely presumes that a strategy by which we all identify as refugees will renew a politics and thereby end the current plight of the refugee, as if no other reality impinges on this identification. This is also assumed on the basis that the State – in Agamben's theorizing, the abstraction of an all-encompassing, leviathan State – is equally, readily and easily liable to perforation. This contradiction is indicative of a wider problem where what we encounter is a form of critique that is oddly inappropriate to the type of issue it addresses. 29. Much can be said in criticism of the doctrine of right, of the limited nature of the understanding of freedom and rights in documents on rights, of the assumption of the place of citizen rights as the locus of the fundamental rights of the human, and most significantly, the absence of any sense of the undetermined nature of what being might mean. But what must be stated, I feel, is that it would be a serious impoverishment of the ethical problem that we currently face to deny any potential value of rights in carrying forth traces of an impetus towards human dignity, of the ideals of freedom and equality, and to thus reduce rights to what might be termed an absolute politics. Rights cannot be reduced to citizenship rights as if the ideas of rights and citizenship are coterminus. What most critically needs to be understood is, firstly, why values of Michigan Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 8/1457 Idriss Michigan 7 Week Seniors HAMP freedom and equality have such a limited and fragile place within conditions of such inordinate legalism, and, secondly, what the absence of freedom, which the cause of human rights inevitably suggests, means for the installation of any such rights. we are left with a gestural politics that contains a posture of radicalism but one which fails to connect the aspirations of those who are struggling to achieve elementary rights with a vision of a world that could accord them a degree of dignity. To acknowledge this is not to be seduced by concepts of right or law, but is rather to refuse the denial of a radical questioning of the possibilities with which a discourse presents us. Benjamin's understanding of a genuinely messianic idea is something that is "not the final end of historical progress, but Without such an understanding rather its often failed and finally accomplished interruption" (Benjamin, 1974: 1231). We find this in values that resist exploitation and assaults upon human dignity. And it is this realm that currently requires urgent, emphatic and significant renewal. Michigan Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 9/1457 Idriss Michigan 7 Week Seniors HAMP “Whatever Being” Alt Fails Whatever being is impossible to realize—we can only empty out the concept of rights if there is a concrete alternative. Daly, 04 ( , The non-citizen and the concept of 'human rights', Frances Daly,Australian National University 2004). it is important for us to ask whether a human potentiality must start from emptiness. Agamben repeatedly refers to the need to begin from a place of 'amorphousness' and 'inactuality', assuming that there is something that will necessarily follow from the simple fact of human existence – but why should we assume this? What might constitute or form this potentiality is surely concerned What it is that we might want a human potentiality to mean is, of course, a complex, difficult and open-ended issue. But with what is latent but as yet unrealized. For Agamben, there is nothing latent that is not already tainted by a sense of a task that must be done (Agamben, 1993: 43). There is no ability to achieve any displacement with what is present within values of community and justice, there is only an immobilizing nothingness that assumes a false essence, vocation or destiny. If the 'whatever' being that he contends is indeed emerging, and it possesses, as he argues, "an original relation to desire", it is worthwhile asking what this desire is for (Agamben, 1993: 10). If it is simply life itself, then it is not clear why this should be devoid of any content. Any process of emptying out, of erasing and abolishing, such as that which Agamben attempts, is done for a reason - it involves critique and rejection, on the basis, necessarily, that something else is preferable. But Agamben provides us with very little of what is needed to understand how we might engage with this option . Michigan Aff K Toolbox 2011 Part 1 10/1457 Idriss Michigan 7 Week Seniors HAMP No Impact Biopolitics is an empty term that is deployed in the place of actual analysis of material conditions—their impact representations block useful criticism. Virno, 02 (Paolo, University of Cosenza, 'General intellect, exodus, multitude. Interview with Paolo Virno', Archipélago number 54, published in English at ) professor of linguistic philosophy Agamben is...
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