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The Weight of All Flesh: On the Subject-Matter of Political Economy by Eric L. Santner (review)

The Weight of All Flesh: On the Subject-Matter of Political Economy by Eric L. Santner (review) Eric L. Santner, The Weight of All Flesh: On the Subject-­ atter of Political Economy Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016. 291 pp. Eric Santner’s The Weight of All Flesh is an ambitious and thought-­ rovoking work that stages new conversations between psychoanalytic, biopolitical, Marxian and political-­heological theories of subjectivity and sovereignty in order to offer a powerful account of life under contemporary capitalism. Expanded from Santner’s Tanner lectures, delivered at Berkeley in April 2014, the book lays the groundwork for a political theory of the “flesh”—a “jointure of the somatic and the normative” (24) that sutures human bodies to the structures that enable them to make sense of their being in the world and motivate them to action. In keeping with both psychoanalytic and certain poststructuralist discussions of the relationship between bodies and body politic, this process of suturing produces a surplus— a “virtually real supplement” that “summon[s] on the scene . . . forms and practices of knowledge, power and administration” (23) tasked with managing the surplus and ensuring the continued maintenance of the body’s link to communal Law. This treatment of the flesh emerges directly from Santner’s previous work (23), and a lucid editorial introduction by http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Comparatist University of North Carolina Press

The Weight of All Flesh: On the Subject-Matter of Political Economy by Eric L. Santner (review)

The Comparatist , Volume 41 – Nov 1, 2017

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Publisher
University of North Carolina Press
Copyright
Copyright © Southern Comparative Literature Association.
ISSN
1559-0887
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Abstract

Eric L. Santner, The Weight of All Flesh: On the Subject-­ atter of Political Economy Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016. 291 pp. Eric Santner’s The Weight of All Flesh is an ambitious and thought-­ rovoking work that stages new conversations between psychoanalytic, biopolitical, Marxian and political-­heological theories of subjectivity and sovereignty in order to offer a powerful account of life under contemporary capitalism. Expanded from Santner’s Tanner lectures, delivered at Berkeley in April 2014, the book lays the groundwork for a political theory of the “flesh”—a “jointure of the somatic and the normative” (24) that sutures human bodies to the structures that enable them to make sense of their being in the world and motivate them to action. In keeping with both psychoanalytic and certain poststructuralist discussions of the relationship between bodies and body politic, this process of suturing produces a surplus— a “virtually real supplement” that “summon[s] on the scene . . . forms and practices of knowledge, power and administration” (23) tasked with managing the surplus and ensuring the continued maintenance of the body’s link to communal Law. This treatment of the flesh emerges directly from Santner’s previous work (23), and a lucid editorial introduction by

Journal

The ComparatistUniversity of North Carolina Press

Published: Nov 1, 2017

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