This article puts an emerging war doctrine archive through the paces of its philosophical analogues. Establishing in the first part of the article the “weaponizing of culture” (a now-common U.S. military phrase), which is occurring autogenically, that is, within and without the remnants of the liberal representative state, the author argues that war is now a fully operational part of the organizational work that terms like community, culture, and humanity are now doing (and doing differently than before). War in the sense invoked here is activated at various levels of intensity and visibility (think Katrina, the Patriot Act, Wall Street) as a civil or civilian war within the United States that is everywhere present but is hardly recognizable as such. In addressing one essential area of governmentality—demographics—the author makes the case for a change in liberal governmental reason that is evident in the U.S. Census 2000, concluding that demography has taken a uniquely post–civil rights turn in the unprecedented context of a coming U.S. white minority. Categorical self-identification within the permeable race and ethnic categories that the state now endorses paradoxically releases it from whatever previous civil-rights obligations the state may have had. In unpacking how this process works—call it autogenic violence at the level precisely of “recognition”—this article revisits Habermas's reliance on a juridically grounded base for intersubjectivity. Habermas extends the appeal for liberal international law to an updated endorsement of Kant's quest for perpetual cosmopolitan peace. With the problem of history and the relationship between temporality and the “cultural” disciplines such as philosophy in mind, the author updates Habermas's updating of Kant in a context of perpetual war that neither figure is willing to imagine.

The text of this article is only available as a PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.