In this interview, Jodi Dean discusses her career as poststructuralist political theorist, activist, and blogger. She has written on Slavoj Zizek, political solidarity, neoliberalism, media politics, media theory, the Occupy movement, and communism. Long concerned with the issue of solidarity on the left, Dean laments the contemporary Left’s inability to say “we,” a reluctance that, she argues, makes political action impossible. She finds that leftist currents such as radical democracy and radical pluralism have lost the conviction that capitalism must be overturned. However, her quarrels with Ernesto Laclau and others remain a discussion among comrades, in the spirit of an antagonism vital to any political movement. In her latest book, The Communist Horizon, she argues in favor of a new communism and a new communist party capable of uniting the Left against neoliberal capitalism. Unlike many contemporary thinkers on the academic left, Dean defines politics in terms of fundamental antagonism and advocates a return to party hierarchy and structure, which she is convinced are essential for achieving egalitarian goals. The interview helps connect the ideas threading through Dean’s published monographs, which include Solidarity of Strangers: Feminism after Identity Politics; Aliens in America: Conspiracy Cultures from Outerspace to Cyberspace; Publicity’s Secret: How Technoculture Capitalizes on Democracy; Zizek’s Politics; Democracy, and Other Neoliberal Fantasies: Communicative Capitalism and Left Politics; Blog Theory: Feedback and Capture in the Circuits of Drive; and The Communist Horizon.
Janell Watson; Repoliticizing the Left: An Interview with Jodi Dean. the minnesota review 1 November 2013; 2013 (81): 79–101. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00265667-2332174
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