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Thinking Doing: The Politicisation of Thoughtless Action
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Political Science.
2005 (English)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Scholarly disputes about the concept of political action commonly centre on what can be regarded as political. By contrast, Hannah Arendt suggests that the concept of action itself is an equally significant component and consequently bids us to ‘think what we are doing’. The dissertation explores the idea and relevance of ‘thinking doing’ by theoretically investigating the conceptualisations of action in the contemporary political-theoretical development that is here called the politicisation of thoughtless action. Examples are selected from three areas: theorising everyday racism, individual accountability for global environmental harm, and gender performativity. The analysis revolves around the apparent difficulty of talking about such thoughtless action in its politicised form. It is argued that ‘thinking doing’ is a significant meta-methodological tool for maintaining the conceptual flexibility to register emerging forms of political action while at the same time satisfying requirements of conceptual consistency—a balancing skill essential for the scholar aspiring to theorise her contemporary context.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Statsvetenskapliga institutionen , 2005. , 194 p.
Stockholm studies in politics, ISSN 0346-6620 ; 111
Keyword [en]
Action, Political action, Collective action, Hannah Arendt
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-768ISBN: 91-7155-179-4OAI: diva2:198819
Public defence
2006-01-09, sal G, Arrheniuslaboratorierna, Svante Arrhenius väg 14-18, Stockholm, 13:00
Available from: 2005-12-12 Created: 2005-12-12Bibliographically approved

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