Chapter

Introduction

Andreas Glaeser

in Political Epistemics

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print April 2011 | ISBN: 9780226297934
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226297958 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226297958.003.0001
Introduction

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Social arrangements in decline often look farcical. They produce events that just a little while ago were literally inconceivable. They engender plots that are, judging by the received wisdom of their time and space, whimsical, indeed improbable in the dramatic sense of the word. They also reveal clashes of political understandings in which the still presupposed commonplace is destabilized by views unthinkable only yesterday. This chapter opens up with an event from the fall of 1989 that has become emblematic for the decline and final disintegration of socialism in East Germany. Different poetics enable a number of interesting dynamic relationships or dialectics between discursive, emotive, and kinesthetic understandings. The mutually amplifying coordination of discourse, emotion, and bodily movement is central to any successful ritual; it is the mutually supportive coordination of many layers of understanding as an encompassing experience that lends it reproductive or transformative epistemic force.

Keywords: social arrangements; political understanding; epistemic force; socialism; dynamic relationship

Chapter.  28154 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social Theory

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