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Resisting with authority? Anarchist laughter and the violence of truth

Brigstocke, Julian ORCID: 2022. Resisting with authority? Anarchist laughter and the violence of truth. Social and Cultural Geography 23 (2) 10.1080/14649365.2020.1727555

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How is it possible to resist with authority? This article explores the role of humour and laughter in contesting authoritative knowledge and discourse. Bringing Michel Foucault’s account of ‘parrhesia’, or courageous truth-telling, into conversation with geographies of humour, laughter, and authority, the paper explores affective, non-representational modes of truth telling in early anarchist spatial culture. Focusing on an anarchist cabaret in 1890s Paris which humorously parodied the forced labour camps to which anarchists had been deported after the 1871 Paris Commune, as well as on the grotesque laughter of an executed anarchist’s severed head, the paper develops a new theorisation of how satire, parody, irony and the grotesque were deployed in militant truth-telling to articulate a new aesthetics of revolutionary authority.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Geography and Planning (GEOPL)
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISSN: 1464-9365
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 16 December 2019
Date of Acceptance: 28 November 2019
Last Modified: 26 Oct 2022 15:22

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