Immunity and Community in Esposito, Derrida and Agamben

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Roberto Esposito (1998; 2002; 2008) examines how current immunological apparatuses originally designed to protect communities end up undermining the very body they sought to protect. By “immunological apparatuses” he refers to a wide range of phenomena, ranging from technical devices such as security cameras, discourses promoting the suspicion of the other, or laws seeking a supposedly safe distance in regards to those deemed dangerous. This paper compares Esposito’s view on the interplay between community and immunity with Giorgio Agamben’s and Jacques Derrida’s.
For them, these two notions are not so central, but Agamben’s inquiry into the state of exception, and Derrida’s reflections on certain binomia, such as hospitality-hostility and justice-law, shed light on the same interplay. After pointing out their similarities, I argue s that the raison d’être of their ultimate and irreconcilable difference is that Agamben’s approach is antinomic, while Derrida’s is aporetic and Esposito’s is rather dialectical.
Translated title of the contributionImmunity and Community in Esposito, Derrida and Agamben
Original languageEnglish
Article number68296
Pages (from-to)93-112
Number of pages20
JournalRevista de Filosofía (Universidad de Comillas)
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 20 May 2022


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