College: College of Social Sciences and International Studies
Research Centre/Unit: Centre for Political Thought
I arrived in Exeter in September 2011, after graduating from Aberystwyth; University of Wales with a BScEcon (Hons) degree in International Politics and International History. I received my Masters in Critical Global Politics, and I am now a PhD candidate in political theory, reading Laclau, Deleuze and Ranciere.
I listen to the discussions about post-democracy, radical democracy, and the politics of disagreement with great interest. What attracts me in democracy the most, is the virus that it includes for dissent, extremes, and the nurturing of ideas that are only democratic by being originally exterior to it. Democracy is often understood as a system or form of government, perhaps with an attached principle of majority rule, minority rights. But there is a completely different way of understanding politics: Having been introduced to the thought of Jacques Rancière, I developed my current fascination with the notion of the democratic and the political in democratic theory. Ranciere effectively understands politics as the outcome of the clash between the part that has a part, those who are counted, and the part that has no part -- that which is exterior or minor. Politics is thus linked intimately to agonism, and the struggle against the 'police order'. My main research question is: (How) can the minority become the majority? I propose that despite the question itself being scandalous, the very nature of democracy requires the possibility of change. The current fears regarding the tyranny of the majority, or the tyranny of the minority expose the distance between the ideal and the real in theory and practice.
Currently I am being co-supervised by Dr Andrew Schaap and Dr Alex Prichard, reading Rancière, Laclau, Deleuze on the topics of the people and the sub-units that constitute them in the form of the majority and the minority. The lessons from philosophy and political theory, as well as their limitations offer insights to post-democratic forms of society and indeed the future of global relations. My research has taken me on a vast ideological and theoretical journey, that keeps enticing and pulling me in day by day.
I am very interested in topics that explore contemporary politics and issues relating to human rights, global inequality and the critique of 'liberal' democracy; but also more abstract political ideas, including the position of 'voice' in democratic politics; post-democratic politics and re-conceptualizations of the notion of the democratic and the political. I also have an interest in anarchism, autonomism, bottom-up politics and alternative cosmopolitanism, post-Marxism, and environmentalism. Prior to my studies in Aberystwyth, I studied towards a BSc degree in Computer Games Development. It was not my cup of tea, but the experience helped me understand the place of technology and the importance of hard science in our contemporary world.
As a Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) I have been teaching to first-year undergraduates since 2012, covering introductory topics, I.R. theory, and challenges in global politics:
[POL1017] The Globalization of World Politics (2012-2013, 1st term, convenor: Dr Alex Prichard) 1 Group
[POL1018] The Challenges of World Politics in the Twenty-First Century (2012-2013, 2nd term, convenor: Dr Bice Maiguashca) 1 Group
[POL1017] The Globalization of World Politics (2013-2014, 1st term, convenor: Prof Doug Stokes) 5 Groups
[POL1018] The Challenges of World Politics in the Twenty-First Century (2013-2014, 2nd term, convenor: Dr Bice Maiguashca) 5 Groups
[POL1017] The Globalization of World Politics (2014-2015, 1st term, convenor: Dr Lucas Freire) 5 Groups
[POL1018] The Challenges of World Politics in the Twenty-First Century (2014-2015, 2nd term, convenor: Dr Gregorio Bettiza) 5 Groups
[POL1017] The Globalization of World Politics (2015-2016, 2nd term, convenor: Dr Christie Smith) 5 Groups
[POL2057] Security Studies (2015-2016, 2nd term, convenor: Dr John Heathershaw) 5 Groups
Grand Challenges 2015 - Royal Albert Memorial Museum (June 2015, leader: Prof. Gabriella Giannachi)
2015: Best Postgraduate Teacher in Politics - Nominated for Best Postgraduate Teaching Assistant, Students' Guild Teaching Awards.
2016: Best Postgraduate Teacher in Politics - Nominated for Best Postgraduate Teaching Assistant, Students' Guild Teaching Awards.