The Aesthetics of Necropolitics

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Every politics is an aesthetic. If necropolitics is the (accelerated) politics of what is usually referred to as the ‘apolitical age’, then we must attempt to understand what are its manoeuvres, temporalities, intensities, textures, and tipping points? Bypassing revelatory and reconstructionist approaches – the tendency of which is to show that a particular site or practice is necropolitical by bringing its genealogy into evidence – this collection of essays (brought together and framed by Lushetich) and written by artist-philosophers and theorist-curators articulates the pre-perceptual working of necropolitics through a focus on the senses, assignments of energy, attitudes, cognitive processes, and discursive frameworks.

Drawing on different yet complementary methodologies (visual, performance, affect, and network analysis; historiography and ethnography), the contributors analyse cultural fetishes, taboos, sensorial and relational processes anchored in everyday practices, or cued by specific artworks. By creating a space for mapping the necropolitics’ affective cartography, Lushetich has enabled the authors to expand the concept beyond its teleological, anthropocentric, and reductive horizon of ‘making and letting die’ to include posthuman and posthumous actants, effectively arguing for the necropolitics’ transformatory, political potential.

The volume is divided into three sections, each of which serves a different purpose. The first examines the inherited 'conditions' that create the 'acceptability for putting to death' and denigration, making transparent the formation, continuation and, in some cases, perverse sophistication of past necroploitical practices, while engaging critically with their normalisation. The second part of the volume accentuates emergent directions sprouting from the various abstracting mechanisms and focuses on the reorganisation of epistemic practices as well as on the resistive potential always present in scientific procedures. The third section is concerned with the formulation of tactics at the limit of the necroploitical horizon, the digital unconscious, indeterminacy and loss.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherRowman & Littlefield
Number of pages228
ISBN (Electronic)9781786606860
ISBN (Print)9781786606853
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018

Publication series

NameExperiments/On the Political
PublisherRowman & Littfield International


  • Art & Politics
  • Political
  • History & Theory
  • Protest and Social Movements
  • Social, Political and Legal Philosophy
  • Political Theory and Political Philosophy


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  • Prologue

    Lushetich, N., Dec 2018, The Aesthetics of Necropolitics. Lushetich, N. (ed.). London: Rowman & Littlefield, (Experiments/On the Political).

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

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