In this episode we focus on Neoliberalism as Exception by Aihwa Ong. We begin by discussing the distinction she draws between neoliberalism as exception and exceptions to neoliberalism, looking specifically at the technologies of power that promote the pervasion of market analysis into the details of everyday life. We also explore the ways neoliberalism as a form of governmentality relies upon the non-belonging of postcolonial and developing economies as non-members of a shared moral community, delineating who gets to be a part of neoliberal citizenry – who counts – and who does not through economic criteria. Our discussion then examines Ong’s critique of the idea of bare life in Agamben, her ecological metaphor and concept of baroque ecology, and the category of citizenship. Stay tuned as we get feisty with each other in typical fashion and answer questions pressing to our epoch: an anonymous inquirer with questions about theorists and bath salts as well as Sid, an adorable Canadian with a vital theory dating question.
Requests for texts for us to discuss? Advice questions to submit? Email us at alwaysalreadypodcast AT gmail DOT com. Subscribe on iTunes. Like our Facebook page. Get the mp3 here. RSS feed here. This episode’s music by B.
- Also by Aihwa Ong: Buddha is Hiding, Flexible Citizenship, Spirits of Resistance and Capitalist Discipline
- What is governmentality?
- Aihwa Ong, “Where the Wild Genes Are” at the University of California, Berkeley
- “What is Neoliberalism” video by Barnard Center for Research on Women, featuring Lisa Duggan, Dean Spade, and more