17.02.2013 Agamben – The Coming Community & Potentialities

Agamben, G., 1993. The coming community. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.

Agamben, G., 1999. Potentialities: Collected essays in philosophy. Redwood City, CA: Stanford University Press. pp. 177-184.

Text chosen by Peter Buwert

For this week’s reading group I’ve chosen two texts related to the chapter I’m currently writing for my thesis, both by Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben.

The main text I’ve chosen for us to discuss is a very short section from the book “The Coming Community” entitled “Ethics”, in which Agamben presents an account of ethics in terms of human potentiality.

The second supplementary text is a slightly longer chapter from the essay collection “Potentialities” entitled “On Potentiality”. In this chapter Agamben expands on Aristotle’s concept of potentiality and what this means for humanity, ethics and freedom.

In my research I’m attempting to re-conceptualise ethics in design by re-discovering design’s ethical foundations. Agamben’s thoughts on the links between potentiality and ethics are one element which I’ll be attempting to synthesise into my argument.

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