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  • Nordin_and_Smith_Friendship_and_the_new_politics

    Rights statement: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Global Discourse on 21/08/2018, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/23269995.2018.1505348

    Accepted author manuscript, 334 KB, PDF document

    Embargo ends: 21/02/20

    Available under license: CC BY-NC: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

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Friendship and the new politics: beyond community

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>2018
<mark>Journal</mark>Global Discourse
Issue number4
Volume8
Number of pages18
Pages (from-to)615-632
Publication statusPublished
Early online date21/08/18
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

What role can friendship play in contemporary politics? This article answers this question by showing how friendship supplements one of the central tropes of modern European thought: community. It argues that both the recent phenomenon of populism and more traditional political practice rely on this trope. This results in a politics which focuses on identity and difference, inclusion and exclusion. Ultimately this form of politics seeks an immanence which is impossible to achieve. In contrast, friendship offers a new way of thinking about politics as it focuses on open-ended relations between persons based not on sameness, but otherness and difference. The article articulates five key features of this understanding of friendship: (1) that it is a relationship; (2) between self and other; (3) which exists between the friends; which is (4) extendable into a network but not a unity; and (5) it eschews all programmes or projects. In this way, friendship suggests not a project or a programme, but an ethos. This article concludes by claiming that friendship is the open-ended and ongoing encounter with the other, and its politics holds a shared space open for the potential that this encounter brings.

Bibliographic note

This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Global Discourse on 21/08/2018, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/23269995.2018.1505348