The Expulsion of the OtherSociety, Perception and Communication Today
The Expulsion of the Other
Society, Perception and Communication Today
Translated by Wieland Hoban

The days of the Other are over in this age of excessive communication, information and consumption. What used to be the Other, be it as friend, as Eros or as hell, is now indistinguishable from the self in our society’s narcissistic desire to assimilate everything and everyone until there are no boundaries left. The result is a ‘terror of the Same’, lives in which we no longer pursue knowledge, insight and experience but are instead reduced to the echo chambers and illusory encounters offered by social media. In extreme cases, this feeling of disorientation and senselessness is compensated through self-harm, or even harming others through acts of terrorism.

In his new work, the renowned cultural theorist Byung-Chul Han builds on his previous critique of neoliberalism, arguing that our times are characterised not by external repression but by an internal depression, whereby the destructive pressure comes not from the Other but from the self. In his characteristically concise style, he traces this violence of the identical through phenomena like fear, globalization and terrorism. It is only by returning to a society of listeners and lovers, by acknowledging and desiring the Other, that we can seek to overcome the isolation and suffering caused by this crushing process of total assimilation.

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  • March 2018
  • 96 pages
  • 140 x 210 mm / 6 x 8 in
Available Formats
  • Hardback $49.95
  • 9781509523054
  • Paperback $14.95
  • 9781509523061
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  • 9781509523092
Table of Contents

The Terror of the Same

The Violence of the Global and Terrorism

The Terror of Authenticity

Anxiety

Thresholds

Alienation

Counter-body

Gaze

Voice

The Language of the Other

The Thinking of the Other

Listening

Notes

About the Author
Byung-Chul Han is a Korean-born Professor of Philosophy and Cultural Studies who teaches at the University of the Arts (UdK) in Berlin. He is the author of more than 20 books including The Scent of Time, Saving Beauty and The Burnout Society.
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Reviews

‘No other philosophical author today has gone further than Byung-Chul Han in the analysis of our global everyday existence under the challenges of electronically induced hyper-communication. His latest -- and again eminently readable -- book concentrates on the "Terror of Sameness”, that is on a life without events and individual otherness, as an environment to which we react with depression.  What makes the intellectual difference in this analysis of sameness is the mastery with which Han brings into play the classics of our philosophical tradition and, through them, historical worlds that provide us with horizons of existential otherness.’
Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht, Albert Guérard Professor in Literature, Stanford University

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