Tag Archives: Michel Foucault

Article published for the first time at Phàsis. European journal of philosophy

by Marios Emmanouilidis

(The Folding of the Indebted Subjectivity. Outline of a Derivative Govermentality of Debt)


In the present paper1 we embark on an effort to discuss the relation between the temporal modality of financialization and the production of an indebted subjectivity. Capitalism with derivatives2 introduces a different temporal modality, it constitutes a different regime of historicity which is related to a different –special- process of indebted subjectivation. We embark on an effort to research some basic lines of the ways in which the financial practices, and the growing reliance on financial systems of calculation in all facets of social and personal life, are changing the relations between credit, debt and subjectivity. The plasticity, fluidity, horizontality of the modern “surplus’ subject according to the imperatives of neoliberalism (a victory of the spirit of May ‘683), at first glance have nothing to do with the anchored, obedient indebted subject. The flexibility of the subjects, and the possibility of undertaking diversified tactics, constitutes a complicated procedure of freedom and submission. This is a tense cohabitation of two contradictory/ conflicting processes of subjectivation: Read More

This is the English translation (by Oliver Farry) of an interview given in 2011 by the Italian phliosopher Giorgio Agamben to Akis Gavriilidis for the Greek public TV channel ET3. The video of the interview (with Greek & English subtitles), directed by Yorgos Keramidiotis, can be viewed here. With thanks to Aida Karanxha for the transcription.

Professor Agamben, we are making a documentary on biopolitics and we are speaking to you because you are one of the main exponents interested in this idea that, unless I am mistaken, comes from Foucault but which you have approached somewhat differently. You introduced the idea of the state of exception, of the camp. So what got you interested in biopolitics and what have you brought to it that is different to Foucault or others who have written on it?


The ideas of “biopolitics” and the “state of exception” are of course, for me, linked and that may not have been the case for Foucault. Naturally, the idea came to me from Foucault; I am entirely indebted to him for that. But at the same time I have tried to fuse the problems of biopolitics, namely the fact that life has become a political issue and that biology has become a political issue, with the problem of sovereignty, with the strictly political problem of sovereignty. But this is also why it appeared necessary to me to tie the political issues to those of the state of exception, which has perhaps become the paradigm. You might Read More

by Akis Gavriilidis



The current conjuncture, in Greece and also beyond, is marked by efforts to make sense of what happened at the February negotiations within the Eurogroup. Sources close to the Greek government try to present their outcome as a «victory», while other people, outside but also inside SYRIZA, consider instead that this was a “defeat” or a “capitulation”.

I believe the latter impression presupposes a conception about strategy which is itself Eurocentric and masculinist (or phallogocentric, to use Derrida’s neologism); a conception organized around the image of the definitive battle where one has to show bravery and prevail over the opponent. Without sharing the view that this was exactly a “victory” –for roughly the same reasons.

In what follows, I will try in turn to read the strategy (if any) applied by the Greek government in these negotiations, and its gains (if any), through the lens of two closely related axioms:

– Power is not a thing, nor a substance, but it is the capacity of acting upon actions (Foucault).

– The good strategy is to try not to crush your opponent’s forces, but to use them –especially when these forces are devastatingly Read More