The Repulsion of Proximity

The idea that we might fear or be repulsed by the other seems to fly in the face of the standard reading of the work of Emmanuel Levinas. His critics see the other as repulsive, as I do, but see this as jarring with their view of Levinas’ supposedly domesticated or gentrified other to whom […]

Barbarous Indifference and Selfish Egotism

In his The Condition of the Working Class in England, an extensive study of London and the industrial cities of the north that he visited as a young man in the first half of the nineteenth-century, Friedrich Engels observed: ‘The more that Londoners are packed into a tiny space, the more repulsive and disgraceful becomes […]