This essay examines the notion of “playing with law” that Giorgio Agamben proposes in State of Exception and, more broadly, his understanding of “play” as developed in works such as Infancy and History. In this latter text, Agamben provides his most extended discussion of play, throughout which he ties it to the necessity of a reconsideration of history and the experience of “infancy.” The first part of this essay discusses the conceptual nexus of play, experience, and history and shows its importance for the later reflections on law and politics, particularly in relation to a conception of justice that is established with the deposition of law. The second part of this essay builds on this to briefly consider the theoretical and political implications of this conceptual nexus.

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