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Twelfth Night engages audiences in exploring the failure of hospitality from the positions of shipwrecked strangers seeking refuge in Illyria. While the law polices against strangers presumed hostile and households remain oblivious to the plight of the refuge seekers, household hospitality, grounded in patriarchal property relations, remains open to mercenary perversions from within. With Viola and Sebastian assuming nonthreatening roles as domestic servant and tourist, the play stages comedy’s marriage drive as the means by which society assimilates strangers deemed desirable and excludes individuals deemed undesirable. This repurposing of plot device effectively probes the will’s affective disposition to others in prompting a range of action from hospitable to hostile. The process reveals inhospitality not just to strangers without but also to members within the household; it also renders imaginable instances of mutual and even unconditional hospitality. In posing the problem of hospitality, Twelfth Night speaks to the global migrations—climate, economic, political—we confront in our communities today. Viola stands for the migrant here, her wit and resourcefulness countering stereotypes that normalize fear and inaction, even as her stalled nuptial indicates the need for systemic social inclusions based on mutual hospitality, fueled at heart by a transformation of the will.
Questions of the American founding are organized around debates about its republican, liberal, or religious heritage. I locate the founding not in a historical moment but in a mythology reenacted in the cultural imagination. In that narrative, which America shares with Rome, the community is continually reconstituted by ongoing refoundings of Strangers who are dislocated from their own place and past. Where foundings are usually placed in service to securing an identity, the Roman and American foundings unsettle identity.The Introduction provides an argument for how we can understand the tensions that lie in the formation of identity and narratives of belonging, and how we can, in turn, draw on Rome to explore these tensions in American culture and politics.
The boundaries between space and place remain unsettled in the founding imagination in three ways: as a space that is unbounded since there is nowhere that cannot potentially be converted into a place; as a space that is already an inhabited place; and as a place that is continually infused with new groups, thus potentially altering the familiarity of that place. This chapter explores the fate of the Samnites in the Roman imagination and the Native Americans in the American imagination as the wild Stranger who threatens place. The Samnite and the Native American are different from the corrosive Stranger, yet both play a part in the construction of its identity. The Greeks, Italians, and Gauls remained a flourishing aspect of Roman culture even as they were cast as Strangers to make room for Rome’s ownership of its past, just as the European and immigrant were cast similarly in the United States. But the Samnites and Native Americans were frozen in time, simultaneously rendered invisible and retained as an image of not just the conquest of wildness but the unifying and securing of a familiar space.
The chapter explores efforts to answer how a community premised on a dislocation from the past, but comprised of people who bring with them their own pasts, locates itself in time. How does a community constituted by other pasts not simply blur into those pasts? I argue that in both Rome and the United States a particular type of Stranger, the corrosive Stranger, is constructed in response to this question. The corrosive Stranger is not defined against some preexistent purity, but is used to construct an imagined purity that gives a community a genealogy that distinguishes it from other communities and also posits a notion of true belonging that is different from juridical membership. I look at the different efforts by Cato the Elder, Cicero, and Varro for the Romans and then by Noah Webster for the United States to craft a genealogy of national identity that is defined against the threats of the corrosive Stranger. I then look at attempts by W. E. B. Du Bois and Booker T. Washington to confront the burden of memory reflected in the Stranger marked by race who carries America’s own memory.
This chapter examines the metaphysical origins of antisemitism, what drives the phenomenon, and what exactly antisemitism is anti-. Antisemitism, it is argued, cannot be reduced to a form of racism or bigotry. The Nazis, for example, were not antisemites because they were racists; rather, they were racists because they were antisemites: They had to establish an antisemitic premise in order to arrive at a racist outlook. Antisemitism is not a form of racism; rather, racism is a form of antisemitism. The Why of antisemitism is to be found in a fundamental opposition to a fundamental teaching from Judaism concerning the sanctity of the other human being, particularly the stranger. It lies in an ascent to the divine Throne of Judgment on the part of the antisemite, who now determines truth and lie, good and evil, salvation and damnation. Thus the Why of antisemitism lies in succumbing to the most ancient of temptations, the temptation to be like God.
At the heart of Judaism is the most frequently repeated commandment of the Torah, namely the care and the concern for the stranger, for the one who is deemed “the other.” Judaism is the religion of “otherness,” as one can see in the notion of the Jews as “a people apart” (see Leviticus 20:24), as well as in the view that that the non-Jew, the “other,” may be counted among the righteous as readily as any Jew. The basis for this view is that the other is not so “other”: the other, too, is a ben adam, a “child of Adam,” regardless of his or her beliefs, ethnicity, or color. Fundamental to an understanding of the Covenant is an understanding of Jewish teachings on the importance of the stranger or the ger: According to Jewish teaching, there is no Covenant with God without an embrace of the stranger. Next, the chapter notes the commandments regarding the treatment of the stranger, with a closer look at the meaning of the word stranger, in contrast to other words that mean “strange.” Finally, the chapter explores the teachings from the Jewish oral tradition regarding the stranger and the notion of the Righteous among the Nations.
The literature on International Relations theory has yet to align relational theory with role theory, despite the fact that these two theories share so much epistemological common ground. This article uses role theory to bridge the gap between the Confucian and Western conceptions of relationality, whose practitioners regard each other as strangers. With the support of role theory, the comparative analysis of relationality in this article has mainly focused on two different types of relations: prior rule-based relations and improvised relations. The differences in the cultural preparation for these two relations partially explain the plurality of the relational universe and the perception of stranger. Role theory is one way to reconnect the seemingly irreconcilable relational universes. To illustrate the value of a composite agenda of relational theory and role theory, the article will use Kim Jong-un of North Korea as its case. Confucian relations propose that, for all nations, the necessity of having a certain role relation is a more important agenda than insisting on exactly what role to take.
The final chapter of this volume provides several points of further theoretical elaborations, which, important for our overall argument, would have unduly cluttered the various chapters. It starts by considering how challenges to common sense arise from various types of dissent or deviance including children, homecomers, newcomers, strangers, foreigners, robots or aliens. It proceeds to discuss why and how object-relations and 'inter-objectivity' thought, noted by various scholars, have not received sufficient attention in psychological scholarship and certainly not in relation to influence by artefacts. The chapter lays out the theoretical foundations for such a broadening of scope. The chapter then proceeds to discuss the historically curious dominance of dual-process models over single-process alternatives. The excursions conclude by revisiting the debates concerning the authority of science in Milgram's obedience studies in light of a broader understanding of autonomy, tyranny, argumentation, legality and violence.
This article revisits and revives the concept of ‘the Stranger’ in theorising international relations by discussing how this figure appears and what role it plays in the politics of (collective) identity. It shows that this concept is central to poststructuralist logic discussing the political production of discourses of danger and to scholarship on ontological security but remains subdued in their analytical narratives. Making the concept of the Stranger explicit is important, we argue, because it directs attention to ambivalence as a source of anxiety and grasps the unsettling experiences that political strategies of conquest or conversion, including practices of securitisation, respond to. Against this backdrop, the article provides a nuanced reading of the Stanger as a form of otherness that captures ambiguity as a threat to modern conceptions of identity, and outlines three scenarios of how it may be encountered in interstate relations: the phenomenon of ‘rising powers’ from the perspective of the hegemon, the dissolution of enmity (overcoming an antagonistic relationship), and the dissolution of friendship (close allies drifting apart). Aware that recovering the concept is not simply an academic exercise but may feed into how the term is used in political discourse and how practitioners deal with ‘strange encounters’, we conclude by pointing to alternative readings of the Stranger/strangeness and the value of doing so.
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