Piergiorgio Donatelli

The Social and the Ordinary

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Ordinary; Event; Elizabeth Povinelli; Veena Das; Stanley Cavell.

The article examines an exchange between Elizabeth Povinelli and Veena Das over the role of the ordinary. They both argue that we can situate social worlds in the ordinary and daily lives of people shaped by micro or quasi events. This minute texture of living makes it difficult or actually impossible, though, to sort out events that call forth criticism and political action. Following Stanley Cavell's lead, the article suggests how life described under the signature sign of the uneventful may be a proper place for envisaging when the need for criticism and change is called forth. This requires though to undo a picture of agency centered on the pure chooser in a world wiped off from the inexhaustible detail of life, in Iris Murdoch's words.

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