Edifices: A Critique of Home Management.

dc.contributor.author Koch, Ryan E.
dc.contributor.department Political Science
dc.date.accessioned 2019-05-28T20:30:21Z
dc.date.available 2019-05-28T20:30:21Z
dc.date.issued 2018-05
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10125/62696
dc.subject Phenomenology
dc.subject Economics
dc.subject Confucianism
dc.subject Structuralism
dc.title Edifices: A Critique of Home Management.
dc.type Thesis
dcterms.abstract This dissertation is a critique of economics. It approaches this science as a cultural inheritance that is heavily invested in geometric scalability. My analysis is provoked by the premise of Xenophon’s play, Oeconomicus, in which Socrates asks if household management is like other arts where its knowledge is applicable generally. In other words, if I know how to manage my house do I not know how to manage another’s? Taken together with another concept manifest in this play- that the excellence of economics is to “grow the household”- I understand contemporary economic theory, such as neoliberalism or capitalism, as consonant with some of the earliest concepts of our term economics. Where our word economics comes to us from the Greek roots oikos nomos, meaning home management, I argue that contemporary critiques of political economy share a common denominator with their objects of protest: codes, perfection and interchangeability. The operative presuppositions are that the whole of society is family and that the nation is home. All such economic theory purports to know how others should manage their homes. I argue that the preoccupation with other homes obscures the way particular homes are folded into the political. I build my case by showing how geometry is reflected in social, domestic and subjective experience. In so doing, I draw out a contrast between home and politics in which the former is a realm of inexhaustible difference and the latter is a social will to sameness, equality, or at the very least, minimal difference. This analysis makes a philosophical argument against ontological sameness. As far as that argument succeeds, it follows that demographic politics, policy and thought are all fundamentally violent. I then proceed to theorize homemaking using non-geometric philosophies of difference. I draw from Confucianism, phenomenology, poststructuralism and biology to argue against an epistemological embrace of perceiving sameness. At the same time, I attempt to portray the home not only as a point of access for all things political, but also, as scale of life in which sovereignty is contiguous to agency.
dcterms.description Ph.D. Thesis. University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa 2018.
dcterms.language eng
dcterms.publisher University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
dcterms.rights All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
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