Security, Technology and Global Politics
Thinking with Virilio
By Mark Lacy
Routledge – 2014 – 168 pages
Series: PRIO New Security Studies
This book analyses some of the key problems explored in Paul Virilio’s theorising on war and security.
Virilio is one of the most challenging and provocative critics of technology, war and globalisation. While many commentators focus on the new possibilities for mobility and communication in an interconnected world, Virilio is interested in the role that technology and security play in the shaping of our bodies and how we come to see the world – what he terms the 'logistics of perception'.
Security, Technology and Global Politics explores Virilio’s work in this area, with each chapter using examples from popular culture – from video games and on-line graphic novels, to films from around the world - as a starting point from which the author goes on to develop a critical engagement with Virilio’s work. One of the key themes that emerge from this analysis is the importance of the idea of 'disappearance' – the aesthetics of disappearance or the politics of disappearance. The book argues that the politics of disappearance provides a disturbing and insightful introduction to the key questions posed by politics of security in the twenty-first century.
This book will be of much interest to students of critical security studies, political theory, sociology, political geography, cultural studies and IR in general.
'An incisive text that provides a timely contribution to the relevance of Paul Virilio's work. More than simply providing a generic exegesis of Virilio's thought on the contemporray issues of security, technology and catastrophe, Lacy encourages us to think through Virilios corpus such that we can rethink with and yet beyond his intellectual positions.'-- Brad Evans, University of Bristol, UK
'Mark Lacy presents a cogent and comprehensive assessment of Paul Virilio's intellectual interventions as
a critical theorist of contemporary everyday life. This study is the best and most up-to-date analysis of his provocative insights into armed conflict, globalization, information technology, urbanization, and consumer society. Security, Technology and Global Politics clearly makes an indispensable contribution by highlighting the significance of Virilio's contributions to security studies, political sociology and international affairs before and after the global war on terrorism.' -- Timothy W. Luke, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, USA
Introduction: Reading Virilio Part One: The Endo-colonization of Society 1. Security, Chronopolitics and the Democracy of Emotion 2. Cities of Panic and Siege Psychosis 3. Beyond War and Cinema Part Two: The Time of the Integral Accident 4. Accident and Emergency 5. The University of Disaster Conclusion: Virilio’s Negativity
Mark Lacy is Lecturer in the Department of Politics and International Relations, Lancaster University, and author or editor of three books.