Anxiety, Ambivalence and Sublimation: Ontological In/security and the World Risk Society - John CASH

John CASH* 

This article aims to expand the social-theoretical and psychoanalytic range of research on ontological in/ security, by exploring parallel concerns addressed by Beck, Kristeva, Butler and Zizek. These include, first, the psychic roots of othering processes and their encoding into cultural repertoires. Second, the difficulties and possibilities of displacing othering processes within national and international politics. Third, the disruptive effects of globalising processes on the symbolic efficiency of cultures and on their encoded defences against ontological insecurity. Fourth, the crucial significance for political and international relations of the qualitative characteristics of those defences against ontological insecurity that gain predominance within cultural repertoires and their variable norms of recognition. Likewise, the significance of those norms of recognition that challenge established norms and successfully reorganise cultural repertoires.

Keywords:  Psychoanalysis, Cultures of Anarchy, Symbolic Efficiency, Norms of Recognition, Othering Processes.

*     Fellow, University of Melbourne, School of Social & Political Sciences