Social Theory in the Anthropocene 1. Catastrophe and Patiency

Dec 2, 2019 | articles, research

Journal article by Hong-Jung Kim (2019)

“인류세의 사회이론 1: 파국과 페이션시 (Social Theory in the Anthropocene 1. Catastrophe and Patiency)”


First proposed by Paul Crutzen and Eugene Stoermer in 2000, the concept of the Anthropocene has had staggering repercussions in a variety of disciplines. In response to the Anthropocene narrative as a problematization of the eco-ontological urgency that humanity is confronted within the 21st-century, I will deal with the following theoretical themes in this article. Firstly, I will analyze the central agendas underlying the Anthropocene discourse: the expansion of human agency into the planetary level and the possibility of unprecedented catastrophes in the near future. Secondly, I will propose to address the Anthropocene discourse as problem assemblage. Thirdly, I will examine Clive Himilton and Dipesh Chakrabarty’s theses in order to understand the shock that was brought to bear on the humanities and social sciences by the Anthropocene narrative. Fourthly, I will reinterpret the allegory of the angel appearing in Benjamin’s Theses on the Philosophy of History to explore new possibilities of transformative becoming of the subjectivity, focusing on the concept of patiency. Finally, I will present the concept of reflexive catastrophism.

Assemblage, Benjamin, Angel of History, Catastrophism, Agency, Patiency, Agentializing Patiency

Published in the Korea Association of Science and Technology Studies (KASTS)

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