#3 'Disruptive and Wilful Subjects' - 31/10/17

For our third session, we will be reading the first chapter of Sara Ahmed's Willful Subjects (2014), entitled 'Willing Subjects.' A PDF is accessible via Google Drive here.

(Secondary reading: a blog post by Sara Ahmed on feministkilljoys, entitled 'Willful Stones,' accessible here).

In 'Willing Subjects,' Ahmed is interested in fundamentally redefining "will" as not that which is behind action but, rather, 'an object of thought' and a 'mode of experience' that may or may not predicate an action (25). She construes the relationship between the potentiality of "willing" and the effects of "willing" in Lacanian terms as a split between 'the subject of enunciation and the subject of the énoncé' whereby '[t]he will appears on both sides of the address, on the side of the subject and the object: who is willing, what is willed' (27; original emphasis). To the extent that the willing subject is split, Ahmed suggests that 'willing as an activity rests precisely on a subject that is out of time with itself [...] always behind or ahead of itself' (29). We might say that she considers willing as both an end in itself and a condition of the possibility of future action (cf. Arendt, The Human Condition 1958).


Join us at the LHRI, 5-6:30pm. (Please enter via the main door).


All welcome!



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