Den nomadiska historiens kartografi – En aktualisering av det historiska hos Walter Benjamin och Rosi Braidotti
Towards a nomadic cartography over history – An actualization of the historic in Walter Benjamin and Rosi Braidotti
The following essay concerns questions about the status of history in Walter Benjamin´s critical philosophy of history and Rosi Braidotti´s nomadic feminism. I conduct a comparative actualization through locating affinities in their respective theory concerning question around the status of history and historiography, how we remember, write and present history, the relation between the present-day, the past and the future, between the subject and the collective. My thesis is structured around how Walter Benjamin presents his critique of history influenced by a monadic idea of perception, which Paula L. Schwebel argues for in her doctoral thesis on Benjamin´s use of Leibniz concept of monads. I argue that this can be read together with Sigrid Weigel´s idea of an image-like-epistemology in Benjamin´s thinking. They both exemplify how Benjamin´s work can be read as a relational whole, from the early writings on language to the later thinking influenced by historical materialism, they therefor break with a certain tradition of reading Benjamin in primarily two separated fields, the early concerned with language-philosophy and the messianic and the later with Marxist theory. Their respective readings can be said to draw a map through Benjamin´s thinking as a whole, and shows how much can be gained through such a reading. I will also argue, with help from Howard Eiland and Michael W. Jennings masterful biography Walter Benjamin A critical Life, that a reading that takes in consideration both the biographical and the theoretical aspects of Walter Benjamin can open up for new and productive perspectives on his unique thinking. Rosi Braidotti´s nomadic feminism draws on a vitalist legacy, from Spinoza and Leibniz to Deleuze, and concerns questions about affirmative visions of the nomadic subject in the globalized era of late capitalism. How can a counter-history on Europe and the European identity, in a Deleuzian minoritarian mode, be actualized against its history of colonialism, fascism and phallocentrism?