Democratic Anxieties

Democratic Anxieties : Same-Sex Marriage, Death, and Citizenship

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Description

Democratic Anxieties: Same-Sex Marriage, Death, and Citizenship takes contemporary opposition to same-sex marriage as a starting point to consider anxieties about sex and death within conceptions of democratic citizenship. It pursues a less anxious democratic citizenship in creative readings of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Hannah Arendt, and Friedrich Nietzsche, and demonstrates how developing an appreciation of mortality is essential to the continued pluralization of democracy.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 206 pages
  • 157.48 x 231.14 x 22.86mm | 453.59g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 0739149865
  • 9780739149867
  • 2,150,531

Review quote

Feit discovers heteronormativity in Rousseau's account of citizenship, suggesting he employs unease about death as a way to direct the sexuality of citizens toward reproduction, which allows the community to continue and to express consent. Feit's Hannah Arendt rejects this heteronormativity but does not overcome the anxiety about death that gives rise to it, thus leaving entire areas of life separate from politics. Feit's Nietzsche promotes a pluralism that lacks the anxieties of Rousseau or Arendt, accepts death, and allows for what Feit calls 'queer forms of reproduction.' His discussions of Rousseau, Arendt, and Nietzsche are ministerial to his engagement with contemporary queer theory and the question of same-sex marriage and citizenship. The strength of Feit's work ultimately lies in his own engagements with queer theory, and the true value of the book is the originality of his account of the disagreement over same-sex marriage, which could have been expanded. Best for advanced students and scholars working on questions of citizenship and same-sex marriage; the book may be too theoretically advanced for undergraduates. CHOICE Rare is the book that prompts one to rethink the entire scholarly enterprise of political theory. Mario Feit's Democratic Anxieties-breaking with prevailing academic camps and conventions in order to explore democracy's intertwining fears about sex and death-is just such a book, both pioneering and profound. -- John E. Seery, Laurance S. Rockefeller Visiting Professor for Distinguished Teaching, Princeton University Mario Feit engages debates about same-sex marriage and queer families as a way into thinking about the existential dimension of democratic politics. While his original and provocative readings of Rousseau, Nietzsche and Arendt will be of special interest to scholars in political theory, philosophy and intellectual history. Democratic Anxieties addresses fundamental concerns about gender, sexuality, faith, secularism and the future of democracy. -- Morris B. Kaplan, Purchase College, State University of New York, author of "Sexual Justice: Democratic Citizenship and the Politics of Desire" Democratic Anxieties is an interesting and timely book on an important issue. Displaying an admirable balance between advocacy and analysis, Feit brings considerable scholarship to bear on the topic, offering some new and unexpected readings of canonical texts in the process. Refreshingly free from jargon and neologisms, the book is clearly argued and judicious in its presentation of positions with which it disagrees. Feit's work is a telling reminder that these are ongoing issues worthy of sustained reflection and debate, and readers of Democratic Anxieties will undoubtedly come to think about them in new light. -- Simon Stow, The College of William and Maryshow more

About Mario Feit

Mario Feit is assistant professor in the Department of Political Science at Georgia State University.show more

Table of contents

1 Introduction: Same-Sex Marriage, Extinction, and Citizenship 2 Chapter 1: Jean-Jacques Rousseau's Anxious Democracy 3 Chapter 2: Hannah Arendt and Political Immortality 4 Chapter 3: Affirming Death: Friedrich Nietzsche On Creating a Future 5 Conclusionshow more