Jenseits der Autonomie: Die De/Problematisierung des Subjekts in Zeiten der Digitalisierung

Katharina Block, Sascha Dickel


In the socio-theoretical discourse on digitisation there is, among others, a
strong sceptical and explicitly critical perspective towards socio-technical
developments. The focus of this scepticism is the autonomous subject as the
normative guiding value of modern society, which seems to be at stake due
to the progress of digitisation processes. Accordingly, there seems to be a
broad consensus that these developments will be problematic. However, it
is also a possibility that they may not be problematized in social practice.
This is hardly taken into account by contemporary social theories. In our
contribution we would therefore like to plead for a problematisation of this
practical de-problematisation. The de-problematisation of human
autonomy is not only a possible vision of the future, but, as an already
present undoing of autonomy, an empirical object that calls for a theoretical
exploration that is not limited to a mere diagnosis of a problem in need of
correction. Instead of theoretically assuming that the acting subjects must
be interested in their autonomy, our contribution discusses the practical deproblematisation
as a real possibility of future dealings with digital technologies
and, against this background, pleads for a theoretical problematisation
of this de-problematisation, which takes into account the possibility of
posthuman social orders.