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The cultural politics of justice: Bakhtin, stand-up comedy and post-9/11 securitization

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Elaine Campbell



For Rabelais, `folk humour’ and its boundless forms are far from frivolous, inconsequential aspects of the human condition, but are central to modes of critique and the formation of discourses which seek radical cultural transformation by evading, exposing, resisting, scandalizing and mocking `official culture’. This paper explores the abstract notion of `justice’ through the lens of `folk humour’ – specifically, stand-up comedy which references securitisation in the post-9/11 period - taking its cue from Bakhtin’s exposition of the grotesque realism of the Rabelaisian novel. In so doing, the paper calls into question Habermasian discourse ethics, and proposes a model of ‘doing justice’ predicated on Bakhtinian dialogism.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Campbell E

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Theoretical Criminology

Year: 2011

Volume: 15

Issue: 2

Pages: 159-177

Print publication date: 20/05/2011

Date deposited: 05/12/2011

ISSN (print): 1362-4806

ISSN (electronic): 1461-7439

Publisher: Sage Publications Ltd


DOI: 10.1177/1362480610387967


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