Hatred and Its Vicissitudes
After the two world wars and the Holocaust, how is it possible that at the end of the twentieth century and beginning of the twenty-first century we have come to witness so much hatred toward the Other? Obviously, as Hardt and Negri have pointed out, globalization (the new politics of proximity and multitude) plays a prominent role.1 Yet why do new world proximities produce so much threat and hatred? The idea that intimate “proximity” advances new forms of violence shows how little we know about the apparatus of hatred in local and global politics. Today, in an age of the multitude, the difficult task before us is not necessarily to explain national, ethnic, and religious hatred, but to theorize the new violence of proximity as the forces of understanding hatred.
Despite the enormous amount of studies on violence in general and racism, anti-Semitism, prejudice, bigotry, and homophobia in particular, the concept of hatred as ideology, that is, the symptom of the repressed in the field of the social and the political, is conceptually opaque and inadequately