A New Way to Suffer: Girard, Rancière, and Political Subjectification


Abstract
The question of politics is underdeveloped in René Girard's mimetic theory. This can be fairly easily accounted for. First, mimesis is essentially an ethical mechanism. In Girard, it pertains both to a set of moral prescriptions and to an ethos, understood here as a way of being that exchanges harmful repetitions for favorable ones.1 Throughout his work, Girard advances an ethics of generosity that steers clear of reciprocity, which, in his framework, would lead to violence.2 Second, Girard concentrates on social structures and religious institutions that have been developed over the ages to deal with mimetic crises. These structures of containment protect communities from an all-consuming outbreak of violence by...
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