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Metaphorical and metonymical equality: From a rhetoric of society to an aesthetics of politics

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The notion of the division of the sensible allows Jacques Rancière to suspend and redraw the lines between the politics of aesthetics and the aesthetics of politics, as well as between forms of political and aesthetic equality. The essay discusses Rancière’s work from a different angle, namely the distinction of two rhetorical figures, metaphor and metonymy, following Ernesto Laclau’s use of Gérard Genette’s reading of Proust as a model for his political theory. Outlining Rancière’s own use of the two figures as political models as well as his readings of Proust, the essay traces the differences between the rhetoric of society (Laclau) and the aesthetics of politics (Rancière).
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Keywords: Ernesto Laclau; Jacques Rancière; aesthetics; metaphor; metonymy; politics; rhetoric

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2017

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