by Akis Gavriilidis
Brussels, as everybody knows, is the seat of the EU institutions, as well as of several other international agencies –private, public, or any combination of the two- who all day long praise the virtues of «liberalisation and market-oriented reforms» and propose/ impose them on all countries as the only one-size-fits-all solution. So much so that the name of the city itself has come to constitute a synonym for neoliberal governance.
But apart from being a symbol, Brussels is a real city where real people live, whose lives and needs are administered and served (or not) every day, in certain ways rather than others. (Ιncluding the people –dozens of thousands of them- who work for the said institutions and agencies). These ways can rarely be considered as a paradigmatic delivery of the promise for a “smooth functioning market system which provides 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