In this interview, political theorist Bonnie Honig discusses her career and her influential writings on contemporary democratic theory, the politics of immigration, the figure of the foreigner, the figure of Antigone, and the tensions between sovereignty and law in times of emergency. Her interdisciplinary work draws on references as diverse as Friedrich Nietzsche, Hannah Arendt, Franz Rosenzweig, Jacques Derrida, Sophocles’s Antigone, and the Bible. She offers a poststructuralist and Nietzschean reading of Arendt. Other topics on which she has written include the figure of the lawgiver in political theory and popular culture and the politics and culture of emergency. Honig defines politics in terms of agonism, or struggle; she argues against a politics of convergence and consensus. However, agonism does not only name conflict but also names cooperation and mutuality that are always already ridden by strife; so never the consensual, but also never only conflictual. After discussing the place of political theory and feminism within the discipline of political science, Honig briefly discusses her new book project on public things. Her previous monographs include Political Theory and the Displacement of Politics; Feminist Interpretations of Hannah Arendt; Democracy and the Foreigner; Emergency Politics: Paradox, Law, Democracy; and, most recently, Antigone, Interrupted.

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