Synopses & Reviews
Are postcolonies haunted more by criminal violence than other nation-states? The usual answer is yes. In Law and Disorder in the Postcolony, Jean and John Comaroff and a group of respected theorists show that the question is misplaced: that the predicament of postcolonies arises from their place in a world order dominated by new modes of governance, new sorts of empires, new species of wealthand#8212;an order that tends to criminalize poverty and race, entraps the and#8220;southand#8221; in relations of corruption, and displaces politics into the realms of the market, criminal economies, and the courts.
and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;As these essays make plain, however, there is another side to postcoloniality: while and#160;many postcolonies show signs of endemic disorder, they also fetishize the law, its ways and its means. How are we to explain the coincidence of disorder with a fixation on legalities? Law and Disorder in the Postcolony addresses this question, entering into critical dialogue with such theorists as Jean-Franand#231;ois Bayart ,Walter Benjamin, and Giorgio Agamben. In the process, it also demonstrates how postcolonies have become crucial sites for the production of contemporary theory, not least because they are harbingers of a global future under construction.
About the Author
Jean Comaroffand#160;is the Bernard E. and Ellen C. Sunny Distinguished Service Professor of Anthropology and director of the Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory at the University of Chicago. John L. Comaroff is the Harold W. Swift Distinguished Service Professor of Anthropology at the University of Chicago and a senior research fellow at the American Bar Foundation. Both are honorary professors at the University of Cape Town. They are coauthors of the multivolume Of Revelation and Revolution also published by the University of Chicago Press.
Table of Contents
1. Law and Disorder in the the Postcolony: An Introduction
John L. Comaroff and Jean Comaroff
2. The Mute and the Unspeakable: Political Subjectivity, Violent Crime, and "the Sexual Thing" in a South African Mining Community
Rosalind C. Morris
3. "I Came to Sabotage your Reasoning!": Violence and Resignifications of Justice in Brazil
Teresa P. R. Caldeira
4. Death Squads and Democracy in Northeast Brazil
5. Some Notes on Disorder in the Indonesian Postcolony
6. Witchcraft and the Limits of the Law: Cameroon and South Africa
7. The Ethics of Illegality in the Chad Basin
8. Criminal Obsessions, after Foucault: Postcoloniality, Policing, and the Metaphysics of Disorder
Jean Comaroff and John L. Comaroff
9. On Politics as a Form of Expenditure