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The power of occlusion

Jenkins, D; Lukes, S; (2017) The power of occlusion. Journal of Political Power , 10 (1) pp. 6-24. 10.1080/2158379X.2017.1285156. Green open access

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Abstract

The ability to control the terms of debate has powerful consequences for what is and is not considered a valid argument, and what does and does not get taken seriously as a description of the world. In this paper, we focus on the ways in which power is at work to pre-emptively exclude certain ideas and descriptions of relevant phenomena before questions about what should be done about that phenomena can even be asked. We describe this as the power of occlusion. Beginning with Gilbert Ryle’s notion of the category mistake, we go on to consider the various ways that have been employed to understand the market, focusing primarily on the (mutually exclusive) descriptions employed by Friedrich Hayek and Karl Polanyi. The essay ends with a survey of the ways in which unconditional basic income has been occluded from debates surrounding welfare reform, arguing that in order to confront the power of occlusion it is necessary to challenge many of our assumptions surrounding work and reciprocity.

Type: Article
Title: The power of occlusion
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/2158379X.2017.1285156
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/2158379X.2017.1285156
Language: English
Additional information: © 2017 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Occlusion, category mistakes, credibility, controversy, basic income
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1544668
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