Interrupting the Myth of the Partage: Reflections on Sovereignty and Sacrifice in the work of Nancy, Agamben and Derrida
Author: Walt, Johan
Source: Law and Critique, Volume 16, Number 3, December 2005 , pp. 277-299(23)
Abstract:Agamben traces the bio-political essence of modern politics to the non-sacrificial killing of Homo Sacer in Roman law. Nancy, on the other hand, links the history of Western politics to the fundamental logic of sacrifice in Western metaphysics. He nevertheless contemplates the possibility that Western societies may finally have arrived at the threshold of a non-sacrificial existence. Derrida seeks to resist the sacrificial logic of Western metaphysics and politics, but nevertheless appears to accept it as an irreducible fact of human co-existence. Unlike Nancy, he envisages no actual or actualised beyond beyond the realm of sacrificial metaphysics and politics. He thus can be said to interrupt Nancy’s ‘myth’ of a non-sacrificial Partage. This article compares these three philosophical stances in the hope of throwing more light on the role of sacrifice in the law and politics of our time.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: Rand Afrikaans University, Aucklandpark , 2006, Johannesburg, South Africa, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Publication date: December 1, 2005