The Despotic Imperative:From Hiero to The Circle

Diken, Bulent (2019) The Despotic Imperative:From Hiero to The Circle. Cultural Politics, 15 (2). pp. 184-201. ISSN 1743-2197

[img]
Preview
PDF (From_Hiero_to_the_Circle_Article_BD_)
From_Hiero_to_the_Circle_Article_BD_.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial.

Download (481kB)

Abstract

The article thematizes the actuality of despotism through a double reading of Xenophon’s Hiero and Dave Eggers’s The Circle. A key text on despotism, Hiero is interesting to reconsider in a contemporary context because of its explicit focus on the economic element in the nexus of despotism, economy and voluntary servitude. Discussion this, the article turns to The Circle, a dystopic novel from 2013, which elaborates on how the attempt at creating a transparent society results in the perversion of democracy to the point where a despotism fuelled by economization and voluntary servitude becomes immediately evident. Notwithstanding the significant differences between the two understandings of despotism that proliferate in Hiero and The Circle, their shared focus on the nexus of despotism, economy and voluntary servitude testifies to an interesting case of convergence in divergence. Offering an account of this continuity, the article reflects upon the nexus of despotism, economy and voluntary servitude itself, arguing, to end with, that it should be re-thought in a new way today. The concept of use is suggested as a key concept in this context.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Cultural Politics
Uncontrolled Keywords:
/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/3300/3312
Subjects:
ID Code:
128783
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
02 Nov 2018 14:50
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
Published
Last Modified:
05 Jul 2020 06:47