Ontology as Critique: On Jean-Luc Nancy’s Inoperative Community

In: Research in Phenomenology
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  • 1 DePaul University

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The following paper addresses itself to the question of ontology in the work of Jean-Luc Nancy. In so doing it attempts to read Nancy’s ontological project as a project of the deconstruction of structural forms of political violence. To this end, Nancy’s notion of “inoperative community” is brought into dialogue with Benjamin in order to show how, in Nancy’s work, ontology operates not as the refusal of critique, but as its very condition.

  • Connor Peter, Garbus Lisa, Holland Michael & Sawhney Simona “The Inoperative Community” The Inoperative Community 1991 Minneapolis University of Minnesota Press 1 42 ic

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  • Connor Peter, Garbus Lisa, Holland Michael & Sawhney Simona “Myth Interrupted” The Inoperative Community 1991 Minneapolis University of Minnesota Press 43 70 mi

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  • Miami Theory Collective “On Being-in-Common” Community at Loose Ends 1991 Minnesota University of Minnesota Press 1 12 bic

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    Cf. for instance Andrew Norris, “Jean Luc Nancy and the Myth of the Common,” Constellations 7:2 (2000), 272–295 and more recently Bruno Bosteels, “Politics, Infrapolitics, and the Impolitical. Notes on the Thought of Roberto Esposito and Alberto Moreiras,” New Centennial Review 10.2 (2010): 205–38.

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  • 8

    Cf. Arendt, Origins of Totalitarianism, 477.

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