Piercing incomprehensible power
Author Reingard Nethersole
Affiliations: Professor emerita of Comparative Literature, University of the Witwatersrand; Visiting scholar, University of Richmond, Virginia, USA
Source: Acta Juridica, 2022, p. 220 – 245
Demonstrating the inherent indiscernibility of political power, particularly in our post-tellurian, celestial epoch (Schmitt) of ‘postdemocracy’ (Ranciere), a focus on spaces and sites of power – in its dual characteristic of dominating, controlling as well as enabling force – illuminates historic changes that produced today’s technologically and pecuniary propelled ‘governance’ (Morozov). Dispensed by idola of the ‘marketplace and the theatre’ (Bacon) coursing through cyberspace, the muted demos is coaxed into accepting Silicon Valley’s promise of utopia unless forensic rhetoric pierces the broken connection between having power and exercising it deliberatively. That depends on the extent to which concealed places of power can be made comprehensible for the demos to withstand celestial seduction and regain her politically informed voice.