• Biopolitics of COVID-19: Capitalist Continuities and Democratic Openings

    Author(s):
    Karsten Schubert (see profile)
    Date:
    2022
    Group(s):
    Frankfurt School Critical Theory, Global & Transnational Studies, Political Philosophy & Theory, Queer and Trans German Studies, Queer Theory Group
    Subject(s):
    Political science--Philosophy, Political science, Queer theory, Foucault, Michel, 1926-1984, Biopolitics
    Item Type:
    Article
    Tag(s):
    covid-19, pandemic, Democracy, Political philosophy, Political theory, Michel Foucault
    Permanent URL:
    https://doi.org/10.17613/e2xw-wj60
    Abstract:
    "Biopolitics" has become a popular concept for interpreting the COVID-19 pandemic, yet the term is often used vaguely, as a buzzword, and therefore loses its specificity and relevance. This article systematically explains what the biopolitical lens offers for analyzing and normatively criticizing the politics of the coronavirus. I argue that biopolitics are politics of differentiated vulnerability that are intrinsic to capitalist modernity. The situation resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic is, therefore, less of a state of exception than it might appear; COVID-19 is a continuation and intensification of the capitalist biopolitics of differentiated vulnerability. In order to critically evaluate this situation, the article proposes the concept of "democratic biopolitics" and shows how it can be used, among others, for a queer critique of the differentiated vulnerabilities that are produced by the coronavirus and its capitalist governance. In contrast to widespread interpretations of democratic biopolitics that focus on collective care in communities, this article highlights the role of the state and of the redistribution of political power and economic resources as key for biopolitical democratization.
    Notes:
    Citation: Schubert, Karsten (2022): Biopolitics of COVID-19. Capitalist Continuities and Democratic Openings. In: interalia 16 (2021), 95–105. https://doi.org/10.51897/interalia/OAGM9733.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Journal article    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    1 year ago
    License:
    All Rights Reserved
    Share this:

    Downloads

    Item Name: pdf schubert-2022_biopolitics_of_covid_19_capitalist_continuities_and_democratic_openings.pdf
      Download View in browser
    Activity: Downloads: 33