Contemporary Political Theory 19 (4):621-641 (2020)

Recent theories of community aim to think the term beyond its definition as the ownership of shared identity, language, culture or territory. For Esposito, to reduce community to a property whose possession distinguishes members from non-members undermines the commonality the term implies. The common opposes what is proper or one’s own; it belongs to everyone and anyone. Rather than securing identity and belonging, community, defined by its impropriety, disrupts them so that we are in common. While his work successfully illustrates the incompatibility of the common and the proper, it leaves unanswered the question of how communities come to experience their impropriety. Through a comparison with Rancière’s improper community, we can identify and gesture beyond this limit. Its members intervene in proper communities by exercising the right to decide on common matters despite officially having no right to do so. Their actions, by demonstrating the openness of the common to anyone and everyone, turn its privatisation into a shared wrong that connects community with non-community. By supplementing Esposito’s work with Rancière’s, we see how communities relate to what they have deemed improper in a way that both challenges and revitalises their sense of commonality.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1057/s41296-019-00365-5
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 65,784
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Homo sacer.Giorgio Agamben - 1998 - Problemi 1.

View all 20 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Community and Nihilism.Roberto Esposito - 2009 - Cosmos and History 5 (1):24-36.
Community and Nihilism.Roberto Esposito - 2009 - Cosmos and History : The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy 5 (1):24-36.
Immunity, Community, Biopolitics.Roberto Esposito - 2012 - Las Torres de Lucca: Revista Internacional de Filosofía Política 1 (1):101-114.


Added to PP index

Total views
7 ( #1,049,678 of 2,463,155 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #449,391 of 2,463,155 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes