Suspicion and Love

  • Matthew Chrulew University of New South Wales


Recent philosophy has witnessed a number of prominent and ambivalent encounters with Christianity. Alongside the retrievals of Paul and political theology, thinkers such as Žižek and Negri argue that in our era of imperial sovereignty and advanced global capitalism, the most appropriate politics is one of love. These attempts to reinvigorate progressive materialism are often characterised as a break with the relativist tendencies of French philosophy, moving from the negativity and disconnection of postmodern suspicion to a new, constructive politics of creativity and fraternity. Deconstructive critiques have insisted on the exclusions necessary to any such politics of love. Foucault’s genealogy of Christianity—specifically, of the emergence from pastoral power of modern governmentality and biopolitics—sketches a further significant dimension of love’s suffocating history and contemporary risks.

Author Biography

Matthew Chrulew, University of New South Wales
Matthew Chrulew is an adjunct researcher in the School of Humanities at UNSW. He is co-editing (with Dinesh Wadiwel) the volume Foucault and Animals, and (with Jeffrey Bussolini and Brett Buchanan) three forthcoming special issues of Angelaki on "Philosophical Ethology." Recent essays include "Animals in Biopolitical Theory: Between Agamben and Negri," New Formations 76 (2012), and "Managing Love and Death at the Zoo: The Biopolitics of Endangered Species Preservation," Australian Humanities Review 50 (2011).
Special Issue on Foucault and Religion