Published on behalf of Heythrope College (University of London) by Blackwell Publishers
The Heythrop Journal vol:52 issue:6 pages:952-961
Though the work of René Girard has brought a special significance to the study of the interrelations between sacrifice and sacrality in our contemporary world, it has yet to be fully reckoned with the work of both Walter Benjamin and his heir, the Italian theorist Giorgio Agamben whose project on the Homo Sacer has aroused great interest in contemporary political thought. By focusing upon Benjamin’s early conceptualization between mimesis and its relation to language, a position can be elaborated upon that attempts to steer mimesis clear of its linguistic indebtedness and toward a ‘purer’ realm of gesture. In this sense, perhaps a more proper ‘divine’ language of gestures can be said to coalesce with certain historical-religious proclamations, something which Agamben’s work challenges us to consider as a viable, albeit ‘profane’ political and ethical option for humanity.