Habermas, Kristeva, and Citizenship

By Noëlle McAfee | Go to book overview

5 Relational Subjectivity

The idea of the subject as an open system, a subject-in-process, is a central aspect of what I’ll call a model of relational subjectivity. By this I do not just mean Nancy Chodorow’s notion that we have the capacity to relate to and nurture others. I mean something much deeper: our very subjectivity is constituted relationally, in the relation between conscious and unconscious, semiotic and symbolic, self and other; also in the various political identities that we hold simultaneously. All these relations involve tension, yet at the same time they are productive. As relational subjectivities we are always “under construction,” always producing ourselves and each other. Relational subjects are always deeply indebted to each other.

Yet at first glance this debt seems to come in the form of a threat— of a negation of, and from, the other. A tenet of both poststructuralism and psychoanalytic theory is that our own self-identity is founded on our difference from others. Simply put, I realize myself only when I differentiate myself from others. Yet, though alterity occurs at the interpersonal level, certainly, more fundamentally it occurs intrapersonally. From a psychoanalytic point of view, someone’s identity is formed by the repression or rejection of many desires and drives. As these drives are driven underground, so to speak, into the unconscious, a conscious identity is born. Thus, alterity—differentiation of oneself from another—is the very basis for subjectivity.

So it is difficult at first to see how relationships could occur between subjects who at some level are always separating themselves

-129-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Habermas, Kristeva, and Citizenship
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 220

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.