Spectral Nationality : Passages of Freedom from Kant to Postcolonial Literatures of Liberation


Spectral Nationality : Passages of Freedom from Kant to Postcolonial Literatures of Liberation

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  • 製本 Hardcover:ハードカバー版/ページ数 432 p.
  • 言語 ENG
  • 商品コード 9780231130189
  • DDC分類 325.301


Suggests that the profound difficulties of achieving freedom in the postcolonial world indicate the need to reconceptualize freedom in terms of the figure of the specter, glimpsed and misunderstood by Marx and Derrida, rather than the living organism.

Full Description

This far-ranging and ambitious attempt to rethink postcolonial theory's discussion of the nation and nationalism brings the problems of the postcolonial condition to bear on the philosophy of freedom. Closely identified with totalitarianism and fundamentalism, the nation-state has a tainted history of coercion, ethnic violence, and even, as in ultranationalist Nazi Germany, genocide. Most contemporary theorists are therefore skeptical, if not altogether dismissive, of the idea of the nation and the related metaphor of the political body as an organism. Going against orthodoxy, Pheng Cheah retraces the universal-rationalist foundations and progressive origins of political organicism in the work of Kant and its development in philosophers in the German tradition such as Fichte, Hegel, and Marx. Cheah argues that the widespread association of freedom with the self-generating dynamism of life and culture's power of transcendence is the most important legacy of this tradition.Addressing this legacy's manifestations in Fanon and Cabral's theories of anticolonial struggle and contemporary anticolonial literature, including the Buru Quartet by Indonesian writer Pramoedya Ananta Toer, and the Kenyan writer Ngugi Wa Thiong'o's nationalist novels, Cheah suggests that the profound difficulties of achieving freedom in the postcolonial world indicate the need to reconceptualize freedom in terms of the figure of the specter rather than the living organism.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments                                    xi
List of Selected Works Cited and Abbreviations xiii
Introduction. The Death of the Nation? 1 (14)
1. The Rationality of Life: On the Organismic 17 (44)
Metaphor of the Social and Political Body
Myths of the Organic Community 17 (8)
The Transition from Mechanistic to 25 (9)
Organismic Metaphors of the Social and
Political Body
Freedom, Culture, and Organism 34 (27)
2. Kant's Cosmopolitanism and the Technic of 61 (54)
How Can Freedom Be Objectively Real? 64 (10)
Antimechanism Before the Third Critique
Taking Credit from Nature: Culture as 74 (6)
Freedom in Kant's Historical Writings
Organized Products of Nature: Organismic 80 (9)
Causality and Freedom in the Critique of
The Political Body as Organism: 89 (10)
Cosmopolitan Culture and the
Reorganization/Organization of the
The Technic of Nature: Effacing Nature's 99 (7)
Favor and the Absolute Recuperation of
The Technic of the Other: Sheer Exposure 106 (9)
3. Incarnations of the Ideal: Nation and 115 (64)
State in Fichte and Hegel
The Original People: Fichte's Addresses to 117 (4)
the German Nation
The Nation as a Community of Language and 121 (4)
the Overcoming of Death
The Kulturnation as Spiritual Organism 125 (4)
The State as Instrument of the People: Why 129 (7)
National Bildung Is Not an Official Ideology
The Originary Infection of the Nation-People 136 (5)
The Actualization of Reason: Hegel's 141 (3)
Organic State and the Ghost of National
Wirklichkeit and the Idea of the State 144 (5)
Becoming Other While Staying at Home: The 149 (4)
Animal Organism
The Vital State and the Machine of Civil 153 (8)
Bildung as the Paradigm of Spiritual Work 161 (8)
and Freedom
Volksgeist The Apparitional Supplement of 169 (10)
the Rational State
4. Revolutions That Take Place in the Head: 179 (54)
Marx and the National Question in Socialist
The World Community of Productive Laborers: 181 (10)
Marx's Deterritorialization of Freedom
Epigenesis of Labor: The Verwirklichung of 191 (9)
Humanity and the Proletarian Revolution as
Ghostly Consciousness, Haunted Actuality 200 (8)
Acts of Culture: The Return of the 208 (25)
Nation-People in Socialist Decolonization
5. Novel Nation: The Bildung of the 235 (14)
Postcolonial Nation as Sociological Organism
6. The Haunting of the People: The Spectral 249 (58)
Public Sphere in Pramoedya Ananta Toer's Buru
The Buru Quartet's Function: Reanimating a 253 (11)
Critical Public Sphere in New Order
The Birth and Arrested Life of the 264 (5)
Indonesian Nation Circa 1900
The Modernity of National Consciousness: 269 (4)
The Spectral World of Modern Knowledge
The Comparative Gaze and the Desire for 273 (8)
National Bildung
Freedom Through the Nation: The Critique of 281 (8)
Colonialist Instrumental Reason as the
Reenchantment of the World
Conjuring the People, Giving Life to the 289 (7)
National Body: Organization as Vital
Movement and Power
"Landasan [yang] lebih mengikat": What 296 (11)
Binds a Healthy Nation People Together
7. Afterlives: The Mutual Haunting of the 307 (74)
State and Nation
The Negation of Life: The State as the 307 (5)
Agent of Death
The Negation of Death 312 (7)
The Haunting of the Colonial State by 319 (10)
Minke's Afterlife
Morbid Interrogations: The Constitutive 329 (2)
Possibility of Death Within the Living
National Body
Publicness and the Spectral Gaze of State 331 (10)
Counterfeit Life 341 (13)
8. The Neocolonial State and Other 349 (5)
Prostheses of the Postcolonial National
Body: Ng彅i wa Thiong'o's Project of
Revolutionary National Culture
National Culture as Self Recursive Mediation 354 (9)
The Onus of Narrative Fiction 363 (2)
Monstrous Bodies and Nonfunctional Organs 365 (6)
The Surviving of Surviving 371 (10)
Epilogue. Spectral Nationality: The Living-On 381 (16)
of the Postcolonial Nation in Globalization
Index 397