Philosophy and Social Criticism 46 (3):342-366 (2020)

In this article, I re-examine political subjectivity by way of looking at the canonical text of Chinese Daoist philosophy – Zhuangzi. I trace the course of how the body is conceived in Zhuangzi and discuss its relation with the unmaking of personhood. I then look into ways in which the body–self nexus in Zhuangzi gives rise to new conceptualization of political relations. I argue that, in Zhuangzi, the body is conceived as spontaneous and dispossessed. The body as such foregrounds the condition for unsettling subjectivity. In staging ambivalent subjectivities, Zhuangzi describes a mode of politics where political relations thrive on indeterminacy and uncertainty. I submit that the authors of Zhuangzi propose a depoliticizing approach to politics whereby ‘effortless action’ replaces established processes in reinventing new relations and subjects.
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DOI 10.1177/0191453718820900
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Feminism and Rethinking Our Models of the Self.Johanna Meehan - 2017 - Philosophy and Social Criticism 43 (1):3-33.
Philosophy of Change and the Deconstruction of Self in the Zhuangzi.youru wang - 2000 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 27 (3):345–360.
Zhuangzi and Thoreau: Wandering, Nature, and Freedom.Carl J. Dull - 2012 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 39 (2):222-239.
Wandering Beyond Tragedy with Zhuangzi.Franklin Perkins - 2011 - Comparative and Continental Philosophy 3 (1):79-98.

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