This article critically assesses the late writings of the European social theorist Cornelius Castoriadis in the light of controversies concerning relations between human subjectivity, contemporary culture and political autonomy. My argument is that Castoriadis can now be regarded as a classic figure in social theory. There are three central areas, I shall suggest, that make Castoriadis's theoretical innovations important for the history of social thought: (1) his analysis of the mediation of psyche and society; (2) his views upon culture; and (3) his interpretation of autonomy. Notwithstanding the importance of his work, however, I argue that the thesis of radical imagination needs to be grounded in a broader sociology of affective processes and intersubjective relations, which will in turn permit a theorization anew of the links between subjectivity, social reproduction and political domination.
Elliott, A. (2002), "Subjectivity, culture, autonomy: castoriadis and social theory", Lehmann, J. (Ed.) Critical Theory: Diverse Objects, Diverse Subjects (Current Perspectives in Social Theory, Vol. 22), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 367-392. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0278-1204(03)80017-8Download as .RIS
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