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The Parent as CitizenA Democratic Dilemma$
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Brian Duff

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780816672721

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816672721.001.0001

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Exposing the Citizen as Parent

Exposing the Citizen as Parent

(p.201) Conclusion Exposing the Citizen as Parent
The Parent as Citizen

Brian Duff

University of Minnesota Press

This chapter considers several contemporary theories that invite rethinking regarding the role of parenthood in modern politics. These include William Connolly’s articulations of a “pluralist” democratic citizenship that balances contest and virtue, and the interest in “biopolitics” typified by Michel Foucault and Giorgio Agamben. In particular, the infiltration of ideas about parenthood into our political thinking offers a new perspective on Connolly’s efforts to apply Agamben’s ideas regarding “bare life” to contemporary American politics. Applying this perspective to public policy along with political theory, the chapter then extends that analysis to the parent-centered antipoverty programs proposed by the Obama administration.

Keywords:   parenthood, William Connolly, democratic citizenship, contest, virtue, biopolitics, Michel Foucault, Giorgio Agamben, American politics, political theory

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