Autopoietic theory is increasingly seen as a candidate for a radical theory of law, both in relation to its theoretical credentials and its relevance in terms of new and emerging forms of law. An aspect of the theory that has remained less developed, however, is its material side, and more concretely the theory’s accommodation of bodies, space, objects and their claim to legal agency. The present article reads Luhmann’s theory of autopoietic systems in a radical and material manner, linking it on the one hand to current post-structural theorisations of law and society, and on the other hand extending its ambit to accommodate the influx of material considerations that have been working their way through various other disciplines. The latter comprises both a materialisation of the theory itself and ways of conceptualising the legal system as material through and through. This I do by further developing what I have called Critical Autopoiesis, namely an acentric, topological, post-ecological and posthuman understanding of Luhmann’s theory, that draws on Deleuzian thought, feminist theory, geography, non-representational theory, and new material and object-oriented ontologies. These are combined with some well-rehearsed autopoietic concepts, such as distinction, environment and boundaries; Luhmann’s earlier work on materiality continuum; more recent work on bodies and space; as well as his work on form and medium in relation to art. The article concludes with five suggestions for an understanding of what critical autopoietic materiality might mean for law
Keywords Materiality  Autopoiesis  Luhmann  Critical autopoiesis  Systems theory  Matter  Deleuze  Law and materiality
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DOI 10.1007/s11196-013-9328-7
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References found in this work BETA

We Have Never Been Modern.Bruno Latour - 1993 - Harvard University Press.
Foucault.Gilles DELEUZE - 1988 - Univ of Minnesota Press.

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Knowledge Construction in Legal Reasoning: A Three Stage Model of Law’s Evolution in Practical Discourse.Olaf Tans - 2018 - International Journal for the Semiotics of Law - Revue Internationale de Sémiotique Juridique 31 (1):1-19.

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