Dismantling the Face: Pluralism and the Politics of Recognition

Deleuze Studies 6 (3):389-410 (2012)
Plural expressions of ‘belonging’ in postcolonial and multicultural societies give particular emphasis to a politics of cultural recognition. Within nations, diverse communities call for acknowledgement of their aspirations, for fair representation in public life and for protection of the distinctive cultural practices and beliefs that define and help to sustain minoritarian identities. Recognition is also important for group self-concept and cohesion, and so plays a vital role in the creation of stable platforms for political resistance. This essay explores Deleuze and Guattari's concept of ‘faciality’ and their implied critique of the politics of recognition. I argue that their rejection of the ‘politics of the face’ does not simply dismiss or disregard the pluralist imperatives of the just recognition that is required for postcolonialism. In fact, their preference for ‘dismantling the face’ provides a perspective that can be useful in assisting efforts to rethink recognition in terms adequate to forms of pluralist political engagement and non-imperial forms of subjectivity and sociality.
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DOI 10.3366/dls.2012.0071
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G. Deleuze (2000). The Logic of Sense. Filosoficky Casopis 48 (5):799-808.

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