Gatekeepers and Gated Communities

Philosophy Today 66 (4):763-779 (2022)
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In his 2018 essay Down to Earth, the French philosopher Bruno Latour proposes a hypothesis that connects a number of contemporary issues, ranging from climate denialism to deregulation and growing inequality. While his hypothesis, namely that the elites act as if they live in another world and are leaving the rest of the world behind, might seem like a conspiracy theory, I will argue that there is a way to make sense of it. To do so, I will turn to two other authors, Timothy Mitchell and Shoshana Zuboff, to highlight the kind of logic that Latour seems to have in mind. In the final section, I will propose to capture the commonalities of these authors through the concept of shifting reciprocities and will return to Latour’s political plea to define one’s territories, reinterpreted as reciprocities.

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Massimiliano Simons
Maastricht University


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